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New Trend in Hairstyles

Retro Styles Created with Simple Arrangements and Accessories

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Antique-style hair accessories such as elliptical barrettes (left), barrettes using large rhinestones (above right) and hair elastics with ribbons attached (below right) are very popular. They are always combined with hairstyles involving curls and braids to give a soft look.

We have seen a sharp rise in girls with extremely pretty hairstyles achieved through simple arrangements that work for both long, medium-length and short hair. The style this year is to add an accessory with a retro flair to your hair arrangement.

Hair Arrangements Become StandardThe common assumption was that elaborate hairstyles such as curled hair and braids were just for special occasions such as weddings and parties. However, curling irons for personal use can be bought inexpensively, and a wide range of hair accessories that are easy to use are now sold, making it possible for more girls to play with simple arrangements that are not too overdone. Naturally, Japanese women, who enjoy a wide range of fashions, have become interested in this ability to easily create hairstyles with only a little skill, a curling iron and accessories, and with no need to depend on a professional hair stylist.

In addition, the popularity of retro styles from the 1960s bolsters the moods of girls. Antique hair ornaments and a chic hairstyle are an essential accompaniment for clothes with a classic style.

Curl, Braid, Pile Up

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Left and middle: Alice band with a ribbon ornament, perfect for coordinating styles to create a retro look.
Right: Cloth bands combined with elastics are also popular. Some girls adeptly use both pearls and lace.

The three techniques of curling, braiding and piling up are used for simple arrangements created oneself. Girls curl their hair by using a curling iron to put a wave at the tip of their hair and create a soft movement, as if it were full of air. Braids are made by twisting together three strands of hair using the bangs or hair to the side of the ears. Braiding tightly makes the hair look too severe, so the current style is to braid loosely for a soft look. Girls pile up their hair by teasing the hair from the top of their heads or their bangs and then adding volume so that it pushes up. This technique is also intended to give a soft look.

Accessories with an Antique Feel Gain Popularity

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Left: Barrette styled to look like a ribbon, paired with braids.
Right: Hair accessories can be handmade and combined with ethnic fashions.

Once you have used one of these three techniques to style your hair, then you have to choose which accessory to use. Barrettes were the most popular accessory of the 2011–2012 fall and winter season. Simply pinning antique elliptical barrettes decorated with spangles and beads next to the ear provides a retro look, and it has become hugely popular. Elegant barrettes, hair elastics and Alice bands embellished with pearls, rhinestones and lace are much in evidence these days.

Ribbons are also a very popular motif, and various items are available to keep up with demand, ranging from hairpins that can be fastened simply to cloth bands. Some girls with more experience in hair styling buy velour and satin ribbons used in handicrafts and fasten their ponytails with their own creations or use them like Alice bands. The stores specializing in hair accessories that have been popping up recently stock a wide range of inexpensive and pretty accessories so that girls will never become bored.

The combination of accessories, which are less expensive than clothes and can quickly change your look, and hair arrangements will certainly continue to generate an infinite variety of unique styles. (March 2012)

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