Women's Hairstyles of the '70s

By Dawn Sutton

Women's hairstyles in the 1970s consisted of a variety of hairdos. A highlight of the 1970s was the "hippie" revolution, and many women wore their hair long and straight. Farrah Fawcett of the TV series "Charlie's Angels" popularized the "feathered" look. Afros were all the rage for male and female African Americans and a few other ethnic cultures. The blow drier was introduced in the 1970s, which had a significant influence on women's hairstyles.

Many women wore their hair long and straight in the 1970s

The Natural Look

Women in the 1970s wore their hair as natural as possible. This usually meant long and straight. The teased and hair-sprayed bouffant from the 1960s had passed. Often, women were a bandanna, headband or scarf around their head. Young women took turns ironing each other's long tresses with a clothes iron to create straight hair.

The "Shag" and "Mullet"

The "shag" was a very popular hairstyle for women in the 1970s. This involved layering the hair to obtain a free, natural and messy look. The shag added height to the top of the hair and thinned out thick hair in other areas. The "mullet" was also seen on both women and men and involved keeping hair short on the sides of the head and top. The back of the mullet style was kept longer, typically down to the shoulders.

Farrah Fawcett's Hairstyle

Charlie's angel Farrah Fawcett had a huge influence on women's hairstyles in the 1970s. To achieve Farrah's look of long, feathered waves of hair, women blow-dried their hair up and under to create lots of body and volume. Further blow drying was necessary around the face in an up-and-out motion to achieve the soft feathered style.


The Afro was hugely popular in the 1970s for both women and men. "Black power" was a strong influence throughout that decade. African American women would allow their hair to grow out all around their head. This created the look of a large puff of hair. It was also a more natural look that fit in with the hippie movement at the time.