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Today's Angels Want a Halo of Big '70s Hair

Trends * With "Charlie's Angels" headed for the big screen, the vintage look is coming back.

May 16, 2000|From Hartford Courant

Once upon a time, there were three beautiful angels with massive wings. Only the wings weren't attached to their shoulders. No, the "Charlie's Angels" supernaturals--Farrah Fawcett, Kate Jackson and Jaclyn Smith--wore their wings in their hair. Bouncy bangs, feathered flaps and massive manes that made the actresses the Rapunzels of prime time.

It was 1976, and suddenly every high school and college girl in the country was flipping and feathering to get wings with enough lift to approach "Charlie's Angels" comparison. It was a time-consuming ordeal that required special cuts, hot rollers, blow-dryers, back teasing and hair spray.

But the hair was everything. The hair said it all.

Fast forward 24 years, and things have come full circle. Hair is still everything, and today's most luscious locks look surprisingly reminiscent of "Charlie's Angels" hairdos.

Giselle Bundchen, the Brazilian bombshell who is one of the world's most sought-after supermodel, is often tressed for the runways like a '70s Fawcett. Smith's sensuous, soft waves look good today on the likes of Catherine Zeta-Jones and Rita Wilson. And the best shags, like Mary J. Blige's sassy spikes, owe their angelic abundance to Jackson.

Massive curls and rapturous waves are everywhere these days. Lisa Kudrow, Kim Basinger, Sela Ward, Debra Messing and Jane Krakowski are taking the sting out of the term "big hair." Madonna's "American Pie" video was amazing not for her rendition of the Don McLean classic, but for her Medusa-like tendrils.

"Last year you had the trend of flat hair. Really straight and smooth hair," said Violet DaCosta, creative director for style for Clairol Inc. "This season is volume. Today's hair is all about movement and motion without the tease. Not as big as the hair was in the '70s, but a lot of volume. A lot of height. Long, straight hair is gone."

Who knows what kind of tresses we'll be seeing when the big-screen version of "Charlie's Angels" karate-kicks into theaters in November with Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz and Lucy Liu as new millennial angels. For now, the modern-angels look requires volume.

"Having more volume to the hair adds class and style to the whole look," DaCosta said. "If you look at fashion, we're reverting to the multicultural clothing. Everything old is new again. We've reinvented the clothing, so now we're reinventing the hair."

And let's not forget the makeup.

Just as "Charlie's Angels" hair is making a return, so too are some of the signature makeup looks, especially the shiny lips, pinky blush and bronzy skin.

"That 'Angels' look was very hot. We all wanted to look like Farrah," said Eugenia Weston, founder and creative director of Senna Cosmetics. "Today the look isn't as severe. It's a sexy kind of kitteny look."

Lip gloss was standard issue in the late '70s, and today it has come back around. But the new lip smackers shimmer and glow with colors that aren't as frosty, Weston said. Today the face sports a bronzy shimmer, and cream blush is used in place of powder blush. Eyelids carry a creamy glow instead of a powdery frosted shadow, and eyelashes are big and curled.

The one marked difference between old and new angel looks is the time spent on them. Cosmetics and hair products have advanced by leaps and bounds in 20 years. Sabrina, Kelly and Jill will have much more time on their hands when they're not corralling killers.

"The products are there now to achieve the looks without a lot of work," DaCosta said.

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