Ringlet Curl Styles: Unkempt Look

Figure 1.--Note the boy's rather untidy hairdo, despite his ringlets. Compare it with his sister's carefully done hair. Could it be that he did not cooperate when his mother tried to do his hair? Also note that his bow is not properly tied. This image looks to have been taken about 1910.

Most of the boys with ringlet curls had very carefully styled hair. A few images, however, show boys with inglets, but rather untidy hair. This is a little surprising as one would think that a mother who went to the trouble of curling a boys hair would also be very insistent that his hair be perfectly done, especially for a formal family portrait. Indeed HBC knows of no actual style which involved ringlets and a unkempt look.

It is unclear to HBC why boys with ringlets would not have very neatly combed hair. One possibility of course is that a boy may not have liked the idea of wearing ringlets and did not cooperate with his mother when a photograph was taken. Boys were certainly better behaved in the 19th and 20th century and less likely to object to clothes and hair styles selected by his mother. But there must have been some instances when a boy upset with his mother's choices might do his best to resist.

Christopher Wagner


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Created: November 24, 1998
Last edited: November 6, 1999