The Tudor hairstyles and cuts changed with the different fashions for headdresses. During the early Tudor period the hair of women was covered by the elaborate headdresses. During the Elizabethan era this changed when the fashion for ruffs became far more elaborate and increased in size which was balanced by more delicate head wear and set off by hair which was swept away from the face as can be seen in the above picture of Queen Elizabeth I.
Tudor Hair Styles - Long Hair
Women kept their hair long all through the Tudor era. Both Anne Boleyn and Katherine of Aragon had hair which was long enough for them to sit on. However, their hair was usually hidden under a headdress or hood. Some exceptions were made to this practise of concealing the beautiful hair of women. On great state occasions, such as coronations or weddings, women were allowed to show their long, flowing hair. This was true of Anne Boleyn on her coronation and also of Queen Elizabeth I. The long hair flowing hair of a young woman was seen as a sign of a virgin and the favoured hair style for a young bride on her wedding day. Once a woman achieved the married status she wore her hair swept up or hidden under her headdress. A Tudor bride would adorn her hair with fresh flowers. Long hair was generally dressed in a bun to which the variety of head coverings could be pinned. The front and sides of the hair received great attention as this was the area that was most displayed, and this was generally curled. Fringes were not in fashion during the Tudor period and fashion dictated that hair was combed way from the forehead. A high forehead was seen as a sign of beauty and hair was plucked from the scalp to achieve this desired effect.
Straight or Frizzy Tudor Hair
Tudor Hairstyles ranged from straight styles as favored by Anne Boleyn. This straight style is illustrated in the following picture of Anne Boleyn
By the time of the Elizabethan era fashion had changed and frizzy hair came into fashion. This was achieved by curling the hair with hot tongs and was a hairstyle much favored by Queen Elizabeth I. Tudor hairstyles for the court were led by the Queen. Upper class fashion, which included hairstyles, was highly elaborate - and necessary to achieve attention and success at court.
Tudor Hair styles for Men
Tudor men were often more elaborately dressed than the women and their hairstyles and beards received a similar amount of attention. Hair styles of men and their beards were kept short and this suited the fashion of the ruff. The style of ruff designed for men were generally higher in back than in front and followed the line of the jaw, framing the face and was complimented by their short hair styles. This style is illustrated in the picture of Sir Walter Raleigh.
Tudor Hair Color
By the Elizabethan era of the Tudors the image of ideal beauty was a woman with light hair and a snow white complexion which was complimented with red cheeks and red lips. Queen Elizabeth achieved this picture of ideal beauty by using white make-up but Queen Elizabeth had a natural red color hair which fitted the image of beauty. Her red hair was emulated by many of the nobility of the Elizabethan era and women dyed their hair with henna. Blond hair was also coveted and yellow hair dye was used which was made with a mixture of saffron, cumin seed, celandine and oil. Wigs were also commonly used during the Tudor period and Queen Elizabeth I had a wide variety of wigs and hair pieces which numbered over eighty. These Tudor hair pieces were often referred to as Periwigs.
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