New Heights

New Heights

The beehive hairstyle is synonymous with 60s glamour. We chart its evolution from its bouffant beginnings to the modern day

the roots

Challenged with the task of devising a look to mark the new decade by Modern Beauty Salon Magazine, Chicago stylist Margaret Vinci Heldt presented spectators with the beehive - the showier, cutting-edge cousin of the bouffant. Inspired by a black velvet fez style cap decorated with two beaded bee decorations, the creation was backcombed at the crown and lacquered with plenty of Aqua Net to produce a sky-scraping hive-shaped showpiece. The style quickly became the staple of many 60s music icons from American girl group The Ronettes to soul singer Dusty Springfield who teased their hair into stage worthy updos.

style icons

The beehive has long been adopted into pop-culture, including TV, film and literature. Most recently ad agency drama Mad Men paid tribute to the look that defined the 60s with female leads sporting perfectly coiffed hairstyles, from Joan Holloway’s modest auburn 'do to Betty Draper’s towering conical structure. Audrey Hepburn’s portrayal of socialite Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and Joanna Lumley’s caricature Patsy Stone have also firmly cemented the beehive in hairstyle history. Even cult cartoon The Simpsons had Marge Simpson sporting a gravity defying blue hued style.

modern muses

The beehive is still a favourite with today’s contemporary stars. Brit award winner Adele is rarely seen on stage without her trademark coiffed look, while singer Lana Del Rey likes to work a high crown with loose waves for a look reminiscent of a young Priscilla Presley, and the late, great Amy Winehouse took hers to new heights (quite literally). The red carpet has also seen various incarnations of the beehive over the years - French actress Marion Cotillard’s ultra-elegant take at Cannes Film Festival in 2013.

get the look

Paul Costelloe’s SS16 catwalk show saw models’ hair fashioned into lavish beehives. To recreate, prep hair with label.m Texturising Volume Spray, £13.50 to for lift and long-lasting hold. Then work in label.m Resurrection Style Dust, £12.95 to roots for an instant boost, before backcombing hair from the crown with the label.m Tail Comb, £6. Tease the hair to the desired height before setting with a generous spritz of label.m hairspray, £12.75. Or get the label.m Bardot Beehive Styling Kit, £27.45 - the ultimate updo arsenal including everything you need to create the perfect 60s look. 

  • Words: Rebecca Parker

  • Banner Photography: Toni & Guy Magazine Archive: Issue 17, Photographed by Ram Shergill, Hair by Silje Vincent