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March 20, 2022

10 Beautiful Hollywood Hairstyles From the 1940s, and How to Do Them Yourself

Every Hollywood star knows one important beauty secret: she enhances her loveliness with a hair style designed to flatter her face, her features, even her figure. Some stars change coiffures frequently: others have found one style so suited to their beauty that they wear it constantly. You will discover, too, that nothing adds to your beauty as much, or as quickly, as finding a becoming coiffure.


These hair styles here created by Hollywood experts for every type of face—oval, round, square, rectangular and heart shaped. Choose the one most suited to your own facial structure, follow the simple directions for achieving it yourself and enjoy a glamorous, new kind of beauty immediately.

Because these hair styles were created expressly for the stars who wear them by Hollywood experts, they are tailored not only to each star’s facial structure, but also to her particular kind of hair— thin or thick, straight or curly, heavy or fine textured. To achieve precisely the same coiffure, you may have to adapt it to your own individual hair type.

For example, if your hair is thinner, straighter or finer than the star’s described, you may need to make your pin curls smaller and more numerous to get the same result. If the star’s hair is naturally curly, you may need a permanent to wear the same style successfully. If her hair is thick and taper-cut for a certain coiffure, your hair, if it is thin, may need to be blunt-cut to give it body.

Your own hair stylist can advise you on these questions when he cuts your hair for the coiffure you choose.

1. Ava Gardner


Ava Gardner has the oval face considered classic by beauty experts. This relatively short-cut coiffure is designed to make a flattering frame for her oval facial structure. Her hair is thick, naturally curly and of medium texture.

How Ava’s hair is cut: The hair is parted on the right. It is taper-cut three inches long on top and on the sides and about one and one-half inches long at the neck in back.

How Ava’s hair is set: The top front hair is set in two rows of three stand-up curls. The curls are rolled loosely around two fingers to make them unusually large. Large pin curls are used irregularly all over the head to set the rest of the hair. The curls should be as large as possible for the length of the hair.

When the hair is combed out, a dressing should be applied for grooming purposes. The hair should then be brushed, not combed, into place to give it a soft appearance.


2. Hedy Lamarr


The perfect oval of Hedy Lamarr’s face is set off by the simplicity of the center-part coiffure she habitually wears. Her hair is thick, naturally curly and of medium texture.

How Hedy’s hair is cut: The front-center strands of hair on each side of the part are about three inches long. The hair is then tapered down the sides to a length just missing the shoulder. Across the back, the hair is cut farily straight without much tapering at a just-above-shoulder length.

How Hedy’s hair is set: The waves in front are created by four large, loose stand-up curls that are rolled under. Two are set side by side with the center part between. Rolled-under stand-up curls continued two by two down the sides, slanting slightly backward in a line that goes behind each ear. There are two rows of pin curls across the back.


3. June Allyson


The youthful contours of June Allyson’s round face are accentuated by her short page-boy bob. The wave lift above the fore-head gives her face added height. Her hair is curly, fine textured and of medium thickness.

How June’s hair is cut: The hair is parted on the left and blunt-cut. The top lock in front is about nine inches long, the sides about four inches. In back, the hair is about three inches long at the neckline.

How June’s hair is set: The lift above the forehead is created by setting the top-front hair in two large stand-up curls that are rolled under. The rest of the hair is set in two rows of large pin curls around the sides and back. When combed, the pin curls turn under to form the page-boy bob.


4. Vera-Ellen


Vera-Ellen’s long bob slims the contours of her round face. A high pompadour gives her face added height while the long page-boy effect in back adds a flattering vertical illusion at her cheekline. Her hair is curly, wispy fine and rather thin.

How Vera-Ellen’s hair is cut: The hair around the face is ten inches long, the back hair well below shoulder length. There is no part in this style.

How Vera-Ellen’s hair is set: On the top of the head, the hair as far back as the crown is set in three rows of five medium-size stand-up curls that are rolled under toward the back of the head. On the sides, the hair is set in three rows of three pin curls each. The back hair is also arranged in three rows of pin curls, curving up at the sides to behind the ears.

When the hair is combed out, the side and top hair is caught at the crown in back with two combs. The ends blend down into the long page-boy sweep in back.


5. Gene Tierney


Soft waves in a side-parted, medium-long bob make a flattering frame for Gene Tierney’s square-shaped face. Her hair is thick, slightly wavy and of a fine texture.

How Gene’s hair is cut: The hair is parted on the left, with the top lock of hair on the thick, or right side cut three inches long. The hair is tapered down the side to slightly below the jaw line on this side. On the part, or left, side and in back, the hair is taper-cut to the same slightly-below-jawline length.

How Gene’s hair is set: The thick side of the hair is set in a double row of three stand-up curls. They are large, loose and rolled under, so that they comb out into half waves. The part side is set with a single, large, loose pin curl just below the part, then with a double row of two stand-up curls rolled under. Across the back go two rows of pin curls.


6. Jane Russell


The squareness of Jane Russell’s face is softened by her long bob with its side part. The hair is given a slight lift above the fore-head to round the face. And keeping the hair flat on one side of the face, fluffy on the other, also modifies the squareness of the face. Her hair is thick, heavy textured and has a slight natural wave.

How Jane’s hair is cut: The hair is parted on the left, with the top lock on the thick, or right, side about three and one-half inches long. The hair is then tapered down the side to an inch be-low shoulder length. On the part, or left side, the hair is also shoulder length, but is tapered to an inch below shoulder length across the back.

How Jane’s hair is set: The right side of the hair is set in a double row of three stand-up curls, rolled under. When the curls are combed out, clips are used to shape them into three waves. The part side is arranged in a double row of pin curls, which continue across the back.


7. Elizabeth Taylor


The poodle cut is becoming to Elizabeth Taylor’s rectangular face. Her hair is thick, heavy textured and has enough natural curl to hold the poodle coiffure well without a permanent.

How Elizabeth’s hair is cut: The hair is about two and one-half inches long around the face, and there is no part in this design. Over the rest of the head, the hair is one and one-half to two inches long, tapering to one inch at the neckline in back. Because Elizabeth’s hair is thick, it is taper-cut. Thin hair should be semi blunt-cut for this coiffure to make it seem thicker.

How Elizabeth’s hair is set: The top section of hair, from crown to forehead, is rolled in stand-up curls. The rest of the hair is set in pin curls irregularly all over the head. There should be no distinct change-over point as to direction of of pin curls in back, because there is no part in this coiffure.

Unless the hair is naturally curly, a permanent is necessary for this style. Studio experts say a cold wave is best for this design because it makes curls closest to the head. A poodle cut should be brushed, not combed, into place to shape it to the head and give it body.


8. Lauren Bacall


Lauren Bacall’s famous long bob heightens the exotic quality of her face, which is rectangular in shape. Her hair is thick, of medium texture and has a slight wave.

How Lauren’s hair is cut: The hair is parted on the left. The top lock on the thick, or right side, is just long enough to form a curl at the temple. The hair is blunt-cut to one and one-half inches below shoulder length at the sides, tapering to about two inches below shoulder length in back.

How Lauren’s hair is set: The top lock is set in two rows of four stand-up curls set perpendicular to the part and rolled under toward the back of the head. The sides and back are set in two rows of large pin curls, starting just above the ear and sloping down across the back in a slight curve. After the hair has been combed out, it should be brushed vigorously to give the curls a soft, natural look.


9. Cyd Charisse


Cyd Charisse’s cap-cut coiffure gives a piquant look to her heart-shaped face. Her hair is straight, thick and of medium texture.

How Cyd’s hair is cut: Because Cyd’s hair is thick, it must be thinned and tapered to make it cling to the head for this hair style. The bangs are cut straight in front, so that the hair is shortest in the center, longer at the sides of the bangs. The hair is thinned and tapered at the sides for a feathery look at the cheekline. In back, the hair is taper-cut and ends at the hairline. There is only a tiny part at the crown.

How Cyd’s hair is set: The hair is set dry just long enough to give it the slightest suggestion of a curve. The bangs and crown area on top of the head are set in large, loose stand-up curls that are rolled under. The rest of the hair goes into large, loose pin curls.

If the hair has some natural wave, it may assume the necessary slight curve if it is brushed almost dry after a shampoo, then gently pushed with the hands into the cap shape.


10. Kathryn Grayson


Easier to wear than a poodle cut is Kathryn Grayson’s short, fluffy bob. The curl that dips in the middle of her forehead accentuates the heart shape of her face. Her hair is thick, slightly wavy and medium textured.

How Kathryn’s hair is cut: The hair is parted on the left. Around the face, it is about three and one-half inches long, tapering to about one and one-quarter inches in length at the neckline. Kathryn’s hair is taper-cut, because it is thick. Thin hair should be semi blunt-cut for a thicker appearance for this coiffure.

How Kathryn’s hair is set: From crown to forehead, the hair on top of the head is set in four rows of three standup curls. Below the part on the left side of the head are three rows of two stand-up curls. The rest of the hair is set irregularly all over the head in pin curls. This coiffure brushes out into soft waves that form semi-curls.




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