You do not need a DeLorean to take you back in time to wear an ’80s hairstyle. Slip on a pair of neon leggings, a ruffled shirt, a pair of black, lace gloves and — of course — finish your look with big, sprayed hair. Whether you’re trying to bring the hairstyle back for a permanent look or simply borrowing it for a night out, it doesn’t take much effort to tease your way to an authentic ’80s hairstyle.

Things You'll Need

Wash your hair and air-dry or blow-dry just long enough to leave it damp. Spray a generous amount of mousse in your palm and rub your hands together. Work the mousse through your entire head of hair, paying extra attention to apply the mousse to the roots, as well.

Turn your hairdryer to the “warm” setting. Bend over so that your head is upside down and your hair is hanging away from your scalp. Finish drying your moussed hair in this position so that your hair has maximum body. Another way to achieve the same effect is to lift pieces of your hair straight up into the air, away from your head, as you blow it dry. The outcome should be hair full of body with cuticles lifting away from your scalp.

Take a 2-inch-wide section of your hair and lift it straight up into the air. With your other hand, use a comb or round brush and gently tease, or brush backward, the lower section of the lifted hair that is closest to your head. Do not tease vigorously or tangles will result. Continue working in 2-inch sections all over the crown of your head. Use your round brush to gently brush the top layer of your hair so that it looks voluminous, yet smooth on top.

Add some texture to your hair and crimp multiple, 2-inch strips of hair randomly throughout your entire head. Take a 2-inch strip of hair and lift it away from your scalp, in the opposite direction of where it normally grows. Starting closest to your scalp, crimp the entire strip of hair. The effect should be random strips of crimped hair lifting up from your head. Choose at least three strips of hair to crimp in the back of your head and two on the sides.

Curl your bangs by splitting them into two horizontal sections. Lift the top section and curl it away from your forehead and to the side to create a sideways, top curl characteristic of ’80s hairstyles. Take the bottom section of bangs and curl it towards your forehead for a round, front fringe. Add popular ’80s “wings” to your hairdo by taking sections of hair on either side of your face and curling them back. Fluff your hair with your fingers or tease sections that need extra body.

Apply hairspray generously to your entire head of hair. Lift up your hair and spray underneath and towards your roots. Do not worry about applying too much hairspray — the ’80s look was stiff, sprayed, big hair.


  • Add synthetic extensions of bright colors to your hair for more flair.