The world of popular culture is often guilty of overusing the word ‘icon’ - but when it comes to David Bowie, no other word seems fitting. Performer, musician, artist, fashion maverick and cultural spearhead, Bowie was as revolutionary as they came. In light of his untimely death, we thought we’d pay tribute to DB in the on only way we know how - by taking a look at his ever-changing hair.
Here at Glasshouse, we love Bowie for his free spirit and daring wardrobe - his image was integral to his ‘outsider’ persona, and Bowie’s hair was no exception. Whether it was spiked high and Ziggy Stardust-ed or long and 1970’s, David Bowie’s hair changed almost as much as his alter egos. Here, Glasshouse gives a run down of some of our favourite Bowie styles…
Swept and side-parted:
Perhaps one of Bowie’s most gentle-looking hairstyles, this slicked back and parted ’do is oh-so-soft and works well with the natural subtle wave of his hair. It also accentuates the star’s infamous high cheekbones and strong jawline, exposing the delicate features of his face. This style also features in one of our favourite ever pictures of Bowie - cosied up to a grinning Debbie Harry during Iggy Pop’s The Idiot tour in 1977. Our stylist Fiona has some tips on creating this slicked look, advising to “Comb hair to the side and warm a little bit of Organic Colour Systems Control Texture in your hands. Apply to dry hair, smoothing as you go, scrunching the hair into its natural texture. This product allows enough texture but also gives a soft finish, just like Bowie’s!”
The words ‘David Bowie’ and ‘Hair’ probably conjure up only one image, and that’s of his jagged, high-reaching mullet made famous by his make-believe Ziggy Stardust character. Spiked on top and long toward the neck, Bowie wore his mullet with a full face of make-up, cut-to-the-navel glam rock shirts and belted trousers. This hairstyle personified the 1970’s and subsequently inspired groups of mods and rockers to adopt the look for years to come.
Long and 1970’s:
Bowie’s sense of style is so recognisable that it’s often odd to see him looking completely different to the character we see in popular culture. This long ’do appeared during the early Bowie days and is a natural, bohemian break from his usual dressed to the nines wardrobe and bouffant. Softly layered and flicking across his face and shoulders, we can’t help but be totally endeared by this more relaxed style. As his profile shot to stardom, Bowie began to adopt alter egos which came with more and more extreme looks, so we love seeing him pre-fame and a little more uncovered. Glasshouse girl Fiona has a few tips for getting a cut like DB’s: “This look can be achieved with a shaggy, layered cut, rounding the edges around the face but keeping quite a blunt chopped-in fringe. Add some of the OCS Aqua Boost Leave-in Conditioner on wet hair which will protect, hydrate and enhance natural texture to give a lived-in feel, reminiscent of Bowie’s early days”.
Fringed and modish:
Boyish and curving around the face, this hair style almost reminds us of The Beatles with its modish shape and full fringe. Posing in an embellished open-front jacket, these photos were used on the front cover of Bowie’s Space Oddity LP in the very early 1970s, but the hairstyle perhaps references the male cuts of the 1960’s slightly more. As for Bowie perched on a London rooftop, we can’t get enough of his brooding off-focus glare and long sideburns.
So as the world mourns a true cultural loss, here at Glasshouse we feel inspired by the style footprint this icon has left on generation after generation. He demonstrated that hair could be used as a tool of complete reinvention and style shifting - an ethos we couldn’t endorse more.
Words: Lucy Vincent