Sunday, December 13, 2015

Christmas 1974 Hairdos

I have been wanting to do a Christmas Hairdo posting before the season is over and here it is.

One thing you can always count on is the December issue of vintage magazines having special Christmas sections featuring somewhat more elaborate hairdos than usual. The December `74 issue of Woman`s Day is no exception, with these four styles being so fancy they don`t look like they would last more than half a day after the rollers are out. With that in mind, its probably a good idea to leave  you curlers in until the last minute covering them with something like the turban here in the Christmas post of 2014.

Of course, be sure to try these styles well before any special Christmas to be sure they come out as you hope. Enjoy and Merry Christmas! (And as always,to enlarge the pictures and instructions if needed left click on them, and if further enlargement is needed, right click to `View Image`and then left click one more time).

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Dryer Nirvana

Here is a most amusing article from 1963 that I stumbled across with google.  Apparently not everyone liked the idea soft bonnet dryers that you can wear while you work. I can certainly sympathize: relaxing under a salon dryer is certainly to look forward to. Enjoy the article:

Saturday, September 5, 2015

1960s and 1970s German Hairdressing

I was lucky enough to pick up a Krups vintage 1970s German hair dryer\  the other day that even came with the instruction booklet. (As always,for a bigger view of the pictures, click in the image with your mouse, then right click on the image and select View Image, then left click, and click again).

Here is the whole booklet. Even if you don't speak German you can always read the pictures. It does have setting diagrams for each of the vintage hairdos:

Perhaps the best part of the booklet is the front cover showing a wetset with classic German wire brush rollers.

German brush rollers are similar to ours but as you might expect, much more solid.

Unfortunately the mesh on the rollers is so fine that you cant use plastic piks to hold them. Instead either solid metal piks that often come with the rollers or wire pins have to be used. I have never found either to be a great option.

The metal piks don't bend at all, and with the solid rollers the choice is either too loose with rollers falling out, or very tight which is fine for air drying during the day or under the dryer, but too uncomfortable for sleeping in.

Fine wire pins are more comfortable, but you can only use them from roller to roller which make set a bit less secure and harder to do.

I do occasionally like to use German rollers for a nice tight set, but due to the lack of  more flexible piks that fit I don't use them as much as I would otherwise. I should look for finer plastic piks - I have seen some that a metal coated plastic that might work with these otherwise great rollers. (Have you ever used these rollers? How do you secure them? Let me know!).

The dryer itself is easy to use although the stand is bit flimsy. It sure beats the American style tabletop style dryers which are always hard to get positioned at the right height. With the fan in top of the dryer its much more like a real salon dryer than a home one, and takes only a bit more time for drying. All in all, a very nice home dryer and as you might expect from a European item.

Another dryer you often see from the same period is the Braun floating bonnet dryer. I did a blog on it here   Without repeating too much, its surprisingly disappointing. Rather than actually floating comfortably on the inflated bonnet (like the Sunbeam dryer did) it actually sits on your top curlers and presses down on them.  I'd take the Krups dryer over the Braun on any day.

It looks like this floating bonnet dryer from Krups would be much more comfortable (wish I had one to try).

I found one nice vintage magazine with some insights and how-tos of vintage European hairdressing: the German magazine Petra (February 1966). It features a few models and their hairdos. Here are few of them:


One model, Ina, is shown with a particularity nice soft hairdo as well as a few others:

The article talks about the rollers she uses:

With  the help of  Google translate (and if you can improve the translation please let me know!):

"1. Those who, like Ina , need a lot of tension on their hair, should use Drahtwickler, perhaps with a prickly insert. They make sure the hair lies smoothly on the roller.   2. Those who not very good at winding rollers should use  Igelwickler that almost hold themselves. They are made out of plastic and and have little bristles also made out of plastic . 3. Those who have particularly long hair should use Filiganwickler."

Drahtwicker are German wire mesh rollers. I presume Igelwickler as plastic brush rollers, and I found a picture of Filiganwickler on Ebay:

And shows her set:

The article also has picture of her in a curler cap, saying she because she is so often is in curlers that she wears the curler cap to to look pretty:

 "1. Its not a secret: rollers are not  jewelry for the head. Those who spend so much time in rollers like Ina have to do something for their curler head. They must put them under a bonnet. There are many pretty bonnets from which every lady can find one that she likes.  Covered with frills or made out of lace, with soft pastel tones or bright colors. 2. When Ina was just at the hairdresser, she also puts her hair under a bonnet overnight. That way the hairdo doesn't immediately fall out and can be done nicely the next morning."

 Ina's hair do is a classic example of how brush rollers are ideal for beautiful soft styles that may or may not be curly. Her routine often being in tightly wound rollers is typical of 1960s home hairdressing and has a lot of merit: it leaves hair with a very nice texture and soft look. This section on her hair how-to is also titled (translated) "Ina: My (hairdressing) trick costs little money or time" which also dispels the myth that  regular wetsets have to take a lot of time.

Although its not the same model, the magazine also showed the classic scarf-over-curlers look, which would have been a good alternative for Ina to wearing a curler cap:


Daniela seems to wear slightly more elaborate hairdos:

 Her set for all of them is below:


Two simple hairdos and one fancy one:

And her set:


Some really classic updos:

Her set:

Hope you enjoyed this blog posting, and if you have any insights into vintage European hairdressing, please post them as a comment!

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Some 1971 Hairdos

Here are some how-to instructions from "New Ideas for Hair Styling" April 1971. (For a bigger view, click in the image with your mouse, then right click on the image and select View Image, then left click, and click). Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Dippity-Do Part Two

I was so lucky to come across not one, but three jars of vintage Dippity-do on Ebay at prices much lower than you sometimes see empty vintage Dippity-do jars going for. Perhaps the nicest thing about  having some vintage Dippity-do is  the  absolutely authentic 1960s wetset experience (after all any modern setting lotion can be used for hold). With a much more ample supply I had the luxury of useing it as it would have been in 60s and 70s without the need to skimp. 

A Typical Vintage Dippity-Do Wetset

So what was a typical vintage Dippity-Do set like? In the 60s and 70s brush rollers were the most common, with the almost iconic black wire brush rollers being used first and plastic ones becoming more popular later on. Most instructions in books and magazines at the time suggest hair be stretched and rolled as tightly as possible, and this does seem to produce the nicest results. The instructions on the vintage jars say "apply a generous teaspoonful to damp hair - comb through - then set".  This actually makes the hair a little more slippery that just dabbing the gel on to a few strands, but it does cling to the rollers well as long as you can wind the hair around the roller at least  once. Plastic piks (aka picks or pins) were used to secure the rollers. If you look closely on vintage photos of rollersets from the 60s or 70s you can usually see the piks as one or two little pink or white dots on each roller (see photo above). 

Regular and Extra-Holding

One thing I have been wanting to do is try both regular (pink) and extra-holding (green)  to see how they compare. I did try them both by setting one side with regular and one side with extra strength. Regular produce more fluffy curls while while extra-holding, the hair almost perfectly retains the shape of the roller so there really was a difference. Extra-hold would have been perfect for some of the really set-looking styles of the 60s. 

Oh that smell

Perhaps the most iconic and nicest thing about vintage Dippity-Do  is the smell which is often fondly remembered (look at the comments here ).  Its hard to describe, and about the best I can do is say it is a sweet smell that is quite unique. If you ever used it, you'll know what I mean. Its quite noticeable when you hair is first set, but then fades away as you air dry or use a dryer.

Days or nights in curlers

So whats wearing Dippity-Do set curlers all day or all night like as was so common? (So common the practice was even shown in advertisements like the Kodak one above!)   Brush rollers tightened with piks  are prickly, but you quickly get used to it if you do it regularly and know what a well done set should feel like.  Depending on how tight your rollers are you can almost forget you are in curlers or be constantly aware your set. As anyone who often wears curlers can tell you, you do sometimes end up with a set that is too tight. Faced with taking your rollers out and starting from scratch, you generally just put up with the tight, prickly and even painful curlers, and look forward to the relief of when they come out. But luckily that doesn't happen too often and most well set curlers are quite pleasant to wear,  and with the occasional whiff of Dippity-Do smell, its actually quite nice to spend the day in curlers. 

"You'll catch cold if you don't dry your curlers before bed"

Apparently that was a common belief, and drying before sleeping in rollers was often done if you had the luxury of a dryer (which few did until the 70s).  A more practical reason was that very long hair would dry to slowly to be ready in the morning, and its also much easier to go to sleep in curlers after some soothing time under a warm dryer.


Thanks to YouTube, there are many vintage Dippity-Do commecials  and 'll cheat and copy the links from a previous post in case you haven't read it: 

One amusing aspect of some of the ads was apparently to claim is was so stiff  that you could hold the jar upside down and nothing would happen. Apparently that wasn't quite true and more than one user tried this with  "unfortunate" results and a slimy mess to clean up. It apparently also had the ability to seep though varnish or paint of a drop fell on a dresser or other piece of furniture.

Sadly my vintage Dippity-Do is almost used up

With the luxury of so much vintage Dippity-Do I have been using it for my nighty sets for the last month or so. To keep things as authentic as possible and take full advantage of the opportunity,  I have been using vintage Wil-hold plastic brush rollers set neat and tight in the true tradition of the 1960s or 70s (much like the image above taken from the Wil-hold  roller package) . Being so used to overnights sets, its been really wonderful to get a whiff of the wonderful Dippity-Do aroma when waking up during the night, or in the morning the breakfast table. Sadly, I'm close to the end of my last jar and will really miss it when I (ugh) go back to more modern replacements (and sadly the modern Dippity-Do is not really the same).  Of course I'm always hoping a case of the stuff will appear on Ebay real cheap!