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Hair in Ancient Egypt

Egypt has a wonderful and beautiful history of hair styling.  Appearance, looks, beauty, and hair were major aspects of ancient Egyptian times, clearly seen by the creative and beautiful ways that ancient Egyptians did their hair. Ancient Egyptians used various hairstyles that varied according to the age, gender and class because in those times one's appearance determined and reflected dignity, status, and political significance.

 

Different Hair Styles For Different Social Groups


As mentioned earlier, hairstyles in ancient Egypt varied for people depending on their status, class, gender and age.

 

  • Status: High status members of society had hairstyles that were more elaborated with added adornments. 
  • Role In Society: If you were a priest, for example, then your hair had to be shaved and you could not use any kind of wig.
  • Age: Children were required to shave their hair other than one "lock of youth," which they were required to dye. 

 

Over different periods of ancient Egyptian history these styles changed to look even more impressive and dynamic and fit the changing tastes of each era.

 

Children's Hairstyles


Ancient Egyptian kids were expected to cut off or shave their head other than an S-shaped lock. This lock was considered as the “lock of youth” and this was cut off when children reached puberty. After they reached puberty boys were required to shave their hair like men, whereas girls usually kept long hairs and made different hairstyles with braiding and so on that would look good depending on the occasion. 

 

Men's Hairstyles


Men in ancient Egypt kept their hair completely shaved or cut-off in most cases. The common men used to adapt this style whereas the kings and the ones who had high status in society had long and elaborate wigs. Anybody could easily tell the difference between the low and the high classes in ancient Egypt by looking at their hairstyle and whether they were wearing a wig.

 

Women's Hairstyles


Women in ancient Egypt's Middle Kingdom kept short hair but this faded away and long, curly and plaited hair became more popular. The women with high status used wigs and adorned their hair with beautiful Egyptian jewelry. This adornment varied according to occasion and could include flowers, gold strands, beads, ribbons and much more. For women in ancient Egypt, it was a pride and a sign of beauty to have long and attractive hair.

 

Hairstyles Of The Poor


The poor didn’t have the money to pay for expensive and good-looking ornaments for their hair. As a result, they used to decorate their hairs with amulets of fish, hair rings or clasps. They used this both as their protection and as a sign of their working class and status.

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