In fashion and beauty, what’s old is always new again. A hair trend that made waves decades ago—pun intended—will often be revisited years later. When it comes to vintage trends experiencing a modern-day revival, we’re seeing ‘70s fashion make a return in a major way.
From bell bottom jeans to bell-sleeved blouses, you can’t walk down the street without seeing a ‘70s-inspired ensemble. Naturally, ‘70s hair is also making a huge comeback, with feathered hair enjoying a welcomed return in salons across the country.
Whether you prefer to rock short feathered hair, long feathered hair, or medium length feathered hair, that iconic feathered hair ‘70s look is fresh and fun. And thankfully, it doesn’t require a whole can of hairspray like it did in the past. Before you head to the salon to ask for feathered layered hair, read through this article to learn what the look is and how to maintain it at home.
What Is Feathered Hair?
You might have noticed a major trend going around social media showing women getting “the haircut.” The haircut features choppy, feathery layers all over and is often paired with face-framing pieces that help create a light and airy feel. That’s feathered hair.
When it comes to the ‘70s cut inspired by hair icons of the decade, feathered hair is all about creating layers all over your head that give your mane natural volume and texture. If you tried long layers in the past and weren’t impressed with your flat roots, then consider feathering hair styles that won’t get weighed down.
Note that this style shouldn’t be confused with the feathered hair ‘80s look, which often has an edgier, more punk/rocker aesthetic. The feathered short hair and long feathered hair of the ‘70s is much softer and has a sense of light airiness to it.
What Do Feathered Bangs Look Like?
Feathered bangs take that same breezy, layered look to the front of your face. They’re typically a fuller fringe compared to wispy bangs and can be done in a number of ways.
The most iconic (and currently trending) look is perhaps ‘70s feather curtain bangs, which involve a center part and soft volume that swings away from the face. Feathered bangs look great with short feathered hair, long feathered hair, and layered feathered hairstyles for medium-length hair.
Is Feathered Hair Coming Back?
Oh yes, feathered hair has officially made a comeback—and in a big way! This effortless-looking, layered hairstyle is one of the biggest hair trends of the moment. You’ll see it being worn by your favorite TV show characters, on the red carpet, and down the runway. It’s also firmly planted itself in street style, so go ahead and join the rest of them by sporting long or short feathered hair yourself!
What Is the Difference Between Feathering and Layering Hair?
Though intertwined, layered hair and feathered hair aren’t quite the same. Generally speaking, layered hair blends varying lengths to create movement in your mane. Many different hairstyles feature layers, but they aren’t all feathered hair.
On the other hand, feathered hair is more about creating airy volume throughout your strands via styling techniques and strategically placed layers. Once you have the cut, you’ll want to employ the right styling techniques to create a truly retro-inspired feathered look.
How Do I Make My Hair Look Feathered?
That quintessential ‘70s feathered hair was typically worn just past the shoulders. Modernized feathered haircuts can be worn at any length and customized to match your desired level of maintenance.
Long Feathered Hair: If you want long feathered hair, make sure your stylist is on the same page before they begin snipping away at your strands. They can still create feathery layers throughout your mane without taking off much length. You can even try feathered hair extensions for a more dramatic take on the trend.
Short Feathered Hair: For those who want their short hair feathered, as your stylist for short, shaggy layers. For that ultra ‘70s vibe, request feathered curtain bangs or full, straight across bangs. However you slice it, a feathered haircut can add drama to an otherwise understated bob!
Medium Length Feathered Hair: This style falls somewhere between long and short. The same principles apply, but your stylist will need to add strategic layers to create volume in the right places.
Men’s Feathered Hair: As for feathered hair for men, This look typically requires a bit more length than what you're used to. This allows your stylist to incorporate the right amount of airy layers throughout for that coveted '70s heartthrob look.
How Do You Style Feathered Hair?
Once your feathery layers are in place, the process of achieving a feathered hairstyle can begin. Remember, you’re aiming for bouncy, windblown texture and a slight curl away from your face.
At your hair appointment, your stylist will likely use a round brush and a concentrator nozzle on a blow dryer to ensure that hair looks big and beautiful. When styling feathered hair at home, you may not have the dexterity to hit every angle of your head the way a professional could. You can still nail the look, though!
Step One: Prep Your Strands
Start by coating your freshly washed and towel-dried mane with a heat protectant like Redken Quick Blowout Heat Protecting Blowdry Spray. If you have fine hair that struggles to maintain volume, you can also prep your hair with a few spritzes of Redken Volume Maximizer Thickening Spray for Fine Hair. This lightweight spray adds flexible volume from root to tip.
Step Two: Rough Dry
Rough dry your hair using the lowest heat setting possible. Move the nozzle back and forth without fussing too much over pulling your hair straight and sleek. If you have fine hair, aim for 80% dry. If you have thicker or coarser hair, aim for 50%
Step Three: Add a Texturizer
Next, add some texture to your strands with a product like Matrix Miss Mess Dry Texturizing Spray to hold disheveled, tousled looks. Aim for height at your crown and the sides of your face.
Step Four: Use a Curling Iron
Once you’ve pumped up the volume, plug in a curling iron or wand and create some waves throughout your hair. For that ‘70s feathered look, the key is to focus on the ends of your layers, giving them each a little flip away from your face.
Step Five: Hairspray
Finish off your feathered hairstyle with a few spritzes of a long-hold hairspray, like Matrix Style Link Style Fixer Finishing Hairspray. This one offers a stronghold to keep your style in place for hours, but without that stiff, helmet-head effect.
Does a Feathered Cut Damage Hair?
A feathered haircut won’t damage your strands, especially if you go to a professional who knows exactly how to nail the look on the first go. That said, anytime you heat-style your hair, it can create a bit of damage. That’s why it’s important to use a heat protectant, like Redken Quick Blowout Heat Protecting Blowdry Spray, to keep your hair shiny and healthy.
Is Feathered Hair High Maintenance?
Your maintenance routine depends on the feathered haircut you choose. A shorter, choppier cut will probably require a bit more upkeep than one with more uniformed layers, whereas long feathered hair can go a bit longer between appointments.
No matter what feathered haircut you choose, you should head to the salon for a trim every six to 10 weeks to keep your layers shaped and free of split ends. We also recommend using a hair treatment like Redken Extreme Anti-Snap Split Ends Hair Treatment to prevent breakage and split ends between salon appointments.
Interested in trying feathered hair? Make sure you’re using the right hair care products, available on hair.com, to pull off the look.