1970s Waves Are Back And Bigger Than Ever

Abba. Bell Bottoms. Crochet Tops. All of these things have experienced a recent revival on

Abba. Bell Bottoms. Crochet Tops. All of these things have experienced a recent revival on Instagram and TikTok this year as a new generation step up to experience the rite of passage that is discovering the 1970s (although lets be honest, our Abba playlist has been our not-so-guilty pleasure for as long as we can remember).

There’s one look, however, whose popularity has been head and shoulders above the rest: the ‘Farrah Fawcett’ flick.

Since TikTok user @groovy_mal shared her Fawcett-inspired tutorial (with 22 million views and counting), the whack-a-mole nature of the platform means videos of users sharing their take on 1970s hairstyles have proliferated quicker than you can say ‘Waterloo’.

From disco curls to the revival of hair rollers, one thing is very clear: 1970s hair is back and bigger than ever, with Farrah Fawcett-inspired flicks leading the charge.

As much as we love a TikTok how-to, the hundreds of videos can get a bit overwhelming (as does having to pause a video every 2 seconds to keep up). To make channeling your inner Charlie’s Angel a bit less of a mission, read on to find out the pros’ advice to mastering the Fawcett flick…

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Why Is Farrah Fawcett Hair Having A Comeback?

A year in lockdown has made us all more eager than ever to go big (and not go home), so it’s not hugely surprising that we’re looking to do the same with our hair.

‘Big voluminous hair is all about fun. As we move towards going out again, we’re going all out and saying the bigger the better when it comes to hairstyles too,’ says celebrity hairstylist Dionne Smith. ‘It’s the ultimate party style, whilst also looking chic when walking down the street.’

What Haircut Suits 1970s Waves Best?

The Farrah Fawcett isn’t just about the styling. It’s a state of mind. We’re kidding (actually we’re not). But, getting the most out of your curls does rely quite a lot on the cut of the hair, as creative director of Butchers Salon Hoxton, Dominic Roach, has seen.

‘The iconic Farrah Fawcett flick is one of the front runners,’ says Roach. ‘Combining an oversized fringe, a current trend in its own right, with feathered textured layers, flicked out and framing the face, giving a playful but modern nod to roller girl on the dance floor at Studio 54.’

Neglected to book in your post-lockdown transformation? Fear not. ‘You can always wrap different sections of the hair tighter and looser around your heat tool,’ advises Smith. ‘This will give the illusion of different length layers without actually having them.’

Can The Farrah Fawcett Work For Everyone?

In short, yes. Whether your hair is naturally straight or you’ve been blessed with voluminous curls and coils, every hair type can achieve the 1970s flicked-out look with the right tools and preparation.

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‘Heated rollers are great if you have thinner hair, they really help support the volume for longer,’ says celebrity hair dresser and creative stylist consultant at John Frieda Leigh Keates.

‘If you have thicker hair velcro rollers really do the trick. You can pop them in while you get ready and whip them out before you leave the house.’

How To Get The Farrah Fawcett Flick

The Prep

While you’d be forgiven for thinking the key to voluminous waves was all hairspray and hope, something echoed by all of the pros was the importance of prepping the hair, starting with using the right shampoo.

‘If your hair is naturally fine, use a volumising shampoo. If your hair is thick or frizzy, use a shampoo that softens and smooths hair,’ says Smith.

If your hair is naturally curly or coily, Smith recommends using a strengthening shampoo and getting rid of product build-up with the Only Curls Exfolating Scalp Scrub; ‘This gives you the best starting point for your hair, that will decrease any chances of coil breakage and damage.’

As those with curly and coily hair types will need to straighten the hair before going in with the curling tools, be sure to prep the hair with lots of heat protecting spray and let it dry completely before you get started.

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How To Get The Farrah Fawcett Flick With Hair Rollers

Hair rollers were the original way to achieve big curls back in the day. Don’t let their reputation as your grandma’s favourite hair tool put you off, once you see the results you’ll get a whole new appreciation for these cylindrical curl champions.

If you’re a first time roller, Keates suggests opting for a velcro set; ‘Large velcro rollers have less room for error, they are bigger and less fiddly, so a good way to practice.

‘Rollers are more beneficial than other curling methods due to the reduced heat source on the hair, reducing the risk of damage in comparison to wands, tongs and straighteners,’ says Roach. ‘They also retain optimum moisture in the hair for better shine and condition.’

Step 1

Choose your roller. ‘Heated rollers will automatically set the hair and change its curl pattern,’ says Roach. ‘Velcro rollers will require you to blow dry the hair back from the face section by section. The heat from the dryer allows the section to set once it has been wound around the velcro roller and the hair has cooled.

‘Just consider that the size of the roller will affect the curl, the bigger the roller the looser the curl.’

Step 2

‘Using your chosen roller, roll the hair section by section ALWAYS away from the face,’ advises Roach.

1970s waves

Getty Images

‘On the top section, roll the hair horizontally straight back from the face. On the sides of the head roll the hair vertically back from the face. Take care to tuck the ends of the hair neatly into the roller, otherwise you will have kinked ends known as fish hooks.’

      Step 3

      ‘Allow the rollers to cool, then remove. Turn your head upside down, then use a brush or a wide tooth comb to tease out the curls. For ultimate root lift, you can backcomb the root area gently. Fix the style with Aveda Control Force hairspray. Your curls will still be bouncing after a night under the disco ball.’

      How To Get The Farrah Fawcett Flick With Heated Tools

      If you’re more comfortable turning your hand to a curling wand or pair of hair straighteners, we’ve got you covered too.

      Step 1

      Start by protecting the hair with a heat protectant spray and then divide your hair into sections.

      Step 2

      This is the crucial part which will determine the volume and longevity of your curl. ‘Wrap each section around the tool, away from your face, and hold it in place for 5-10 seconds,’ says Smith.

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      ‘You can then either let the hair loose and spray with hairspray, or you can pin that rolled up section, spray with hairspray and leave pinned for a few minutes. The latter option works well for those hair types that struggle to keep curls full all day.’ After all, you don’t want your flicks falling flat when you’ve still got hours of dancing left in you.

      Step 3

      Finish off by flipping your hair upside down a few times and style accordingly.

      How To Get The Farrah Fawcett Flick When Styling A Wig

      While the majority of the same steps apply when styling a wig, there are a few things to note:

      ‘The first is to brush it out with a wig brush, or wide-tooth comb to remove any tangles. This also helps to get a smoother curl without any breakages,’ says Smith.

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      When styling a human hair wig: ‘Applying a heat protectant on human hair wigs is a must,’ she advises. ‘Wait for that to dry completely before applying any heat. Then use your favourite heat tool and wrap the hair around to achieve the voluminous Farrah Fawcett flicks.’

      When styling a synthetic wig: ‘If you’re using a synthetic wig, check the label before applying any heat tools. Some can tolerate the heat and will say that on the label, others cannot, and you should opt for rollers instead.’

      ‘Rollers are the easiest way to create curls without applying too much, or any, heat. Simply place the roller at the end of the strand and wind the hair around it, rolling the roller and hair to the base of the wig. Apply lots of wig spray and you’re good to go.’

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