One of my favourite things about living a vintage-lifestyle is the fun things I get to with my hair. I’ve pretty much always had some sort of bangs; side bangs, thick 60’s mod-inspired bangs, and most recently, I chopped myself some gorgeous 50’s bangs, styled after the sensational Bettie Page. It took me a little bit of playing around with my new fringe to figure out the best and quickest way to style these babies, but I’ve finally found the perfect routine.
If you’ve never worn bangs before, jumping into this classic pinup hairstyle might be a bit of an adjustment for you, but for those who are already familiar with having bangs and the type of care needed to put into them, it’s not that much of a leap. Despite what you may think, there’s actually not too much effort needed in order to maintain this stunning look. I always feel so fresh and put together when my bangs are looking on point.
Start with bangs that are cut straight-across. I have mine cut pretty long so that they fall over my eyebrows. This is because I have naturally fine and limp hair, so I really like to plump up my fringe. Once styled, they fall an inch to an inch 1/2 over my eyebrows. You want to be careful to not cut them too short or otherwise they will fall too high on your forehead when they’re fully styled. I had already washed my hair the previous day and styled my bangs, which is why they appear to be shorter than I described. Pull the remainder of your hair back with a clip to keep it out of the way.
Grab your favourite dry shampoo and shake the bottle, making sure you are holding the bottle 6 inches away, gently lift up your bangs and spritz directly onto the roots. This is especially important for building volume on freshly washed hair, since clean hair doesn’t tend to hold styles very well. But it also comes in handy on second or third day hair, to keep it fresh and non-greasy. Here I’m using Dove’s dry shampoo, but I’m also a big fan of Marc Anthony’s version (it doesn’t ever leave chalky residue behind)! If you don’t like or have dry shampoo, you could also use mousse on your bangs when it’s wet.
Wait around 30 seconds for the spray to dry, then going from under, use your clean hands to gently rub the formula into your roots and hair. Make sure to really work it in, as this will help your bangs to hold the style.
Grab a fine-toothed comb (it doesn’t have to have a tail like I’m using here) and gently brush through the bangs, starting from the top and moving down to the bottom.
Plug a 1 inch – 1.5 inch curling iron with a clamp (here I’m just using a basic Conair one) and put it at the heat setting you are most comfortable with. Grab a section of hair, I usually start right in the middle of my bangs, and hold the iron horizontally, clamp the curling iron around it, starting from the bottom. As you do this, hold the curling iron up and away from your face. Make sure to be very careful during this part since you don’t want to accidentally burn your face! Hold the hair in the curling iron for 10-15 seconds, depending on how long it takes for your hair to curl.
Gently release the curl from the iron, again away from your face. The curled section should sit up super high and look very funny, just like it does in the picture here.
Grab another section of hair that is beside the one you’ve already curled. Generally I end up with 3-4 sections of hair in total. Repeat steps 5 and 6.
Once you reach the corners of your bangs, you will still curl your bangs the same way as described above, except instead you will be holding the iron vertically like pictured here. This is to help achieve that wonderful ‘U’ shape.
Once all your hair bangs are curled, it should look something like it does in the picture here.
Take your fine-toothed comb, and this time brush from under the bangs, rather than from on top. Make sure to maintain the shape of the curl as you brush.
At this point you should already be starting to see the shape and style you want to end up with. If it’s not curled enough or uneven, feel free to go back in with the curling iron. Sometimes this is necessary!
Gently brush down on the top of the bangs, to smooth any flyways or jagged pieces.
Use both hands, placing one on each side of your bangs, and gently pull up the sides with your fingers to help form them into the ‘U’ shape.
Once you are satisfied with the look of your fringe, grab your favourite hairspray (I’m using the Fructis kind with the highest level of hold) and hold the can 10-12 inches away from your face, gently misting it over your bangs. Hairspray is key to maintaing this style, especially on humid or windy days. But try not to overdo it or it will be a pain to brush out the next day.
And, voila! Perfect Bettie-Bangs!
When I go to bed I don’t pin up my bangs, instead leaving them down. This helps to keep in the general shape and make it easier to style for the next day. And I promise they don’t get in my eyes as I sleep!
I hope this is helpful loves, the whole process only ends up taking a few minutes. Not too bad for the end product.