Cutting-Edge Hair News - 2017
Right photo courtesy Emily Stone News
Emma Stone had a very successful year in 2017. She won both Golden Globe and Academy Awards for best actress, and her movie La La Land was named Best Picture....well, for a couple of minutes. Stone ended the year for another Golden Globe nomination, for Battle of the Sexes. Stone changed from her traditional redhead look to brunette, to play tennis legend Billie Jean King. But in London late in the year, pictures surfaced of Stone as a blonde - not on a movie set, but in casual moments on the street or with friends.
Has Stone stumbled upon a better hair color for her? We asked Hair Fans over a week, and the original red prevailed by a 64-percent margin (9-5). No one left any comments, but we tend to think the "natural" way with hair is best - especially if it makes you stand out in a good way. Stone has shown she can do that, in several ways.
Right photo courtesy Hello Giggles
One challenge these days in watching and capturing Super-Hair is that you're not always sure if the hair is real. Even budding "supermodels" have followed the lead of Naomi Campbell by occasionally wearing extensions. One magazine actually has declared model/actress Emily Ratajkowski "a human hair chameleon" because she changes looks so often. We presented two examples from the middle of 2017, though we could have come up with more. "Em-Rata" showed up on Jimmy Kimmel's talk show in August with medium-long well-prepared waves. Then she appeared on a red carpet in September with a thick lob surrounding her face and tips hitting the collarbone - a look later determined to be a wig.
If Ratajkowski finally decides to stick to one style, what style should that be? A week-long poll found 63 percent of our Hair Fans want the longer look (10-6). One voter called the short wig "very sleek," and wondered if Ratajkowski might wear it "to play Posh Spice in a bio-pic of the Spice Girls." We can see the resemblance to Victoria Beckham there - and with Super-Hair Wars playoff entry Jillian Clare offering to be Ginger Spice, we're now taking nominations for the other parts.
U.S. history is filled with success by the Kennedy family. John F. Kennedy became President. Edward Kennedy served for decades in the Senate. His daughter-in-law, Maria Shriver, once won a Crown Award. Now we have Christina Kennedy.... and no, we don't think she's related to the others. But she's every bit as successful here, as she won our annual "Elite Eight" vote for the Best Mane on Campus of the current term.
Kennedy is a "health and exercise science" major at Regis University in Denver. She's also a cross-country runner, and she ran away from the competition in our one-week contest. Kennedy claimed 50 percent of the votes, while Carly Anson of Kentucky's Bellarmine College was second at 20 percent. Third place was a three-way tie, with Darby Demarest of Columbus (GA) State, Emma Lenoir of Christian Brothers and Kaylee Neal of New Mexico State each receiving 10 percent. (This surprisingly left former New Mexico State hair star Haylee Schoonover, the Las Cruces City League champion, with nothing.) We continue to receive many good candidates for our BMOC section, and we thank you for all of them!
Among other things, Britain's Princess Diana had outstanding hair. (Our website has a gallery to prove it.) We can only imagine what a daughter's styles might have been like. But we're convinced her sons admire women with great styles. Prince William's bride, Kate Middleton, has impressed many people with often-perfect mid-length and medium-long hair. And now Prince Harry is engaged to Suits star Meghan Markle, who has openly spoken in favor of flipping her long locks.
Since Middleton already appeared in Super-Hair Wars (a somewhat surprising 2011 loss to Linda Eder), we set up a "Royal Rumble" a la WWE wrestling. Which "duchess bride" would win a war - or better put, a hair battle of the blowouts? Our voters placed the veteran ahead of the newcomer, with "Catherine" (Kate's proper royal name) winning three-fourths percent of the votes over a week (12-4). One voter chose Middleton explainng, "...There is a push on the internet for Markle to go 'back' to her natural hair..." As in full curls?! Can we possibly resist holding that topic until the wedding in May?
If any woman in 2017 has more closely-watched hair than Selena Gomez, we'd like to know who it is (so we can watch it, of course). Our Hair Fans apparently saw greatness coming, as Gomez won the Crown Award for Newcomer of the Year ten years ago. Gomez was a Disney Channel starlet at the time. Now she's a pop music star with a Pantene endorsement deal, despite murmurs about extensions. So any hair move by Gomez will get the Internet talking - and it did in November, well before the American Music Awards began. Gomez showed up in Hollywood without extensions, but with her hair blonde instead of classic brunette.
Did Gomez do it to show newly rekindled love for Justin Bieber? Whatever the reason, our Hair Fans concluded it was a bad idea. The week-long poll ended with 88 percent of voters declaring Gomez should go back to brunette (15-2). "Brings out her eyes and looks natural," one voter wrote. While online reports indicate it took stylists nine hours to make Gomez's hair "nirvana blonde," she struck a bad nerve with another voter: "If you're going to go blonde, go blonde. Not blonde that looks like you ran out of time and money to finish the job. Terrible. But at least she got the attention she constantly craves." Indeed, our Gomez question received more than twice the votes of our AMA contest the week before.
Awards shows and reality programs on U.S. television can leave viewers asking a lot of questions. Take the 2017 American Music Awards. How many people saw "EDM" on the screen, and thought it referred to a city in western Canada? (It really meant Electronic Dance Music.) Then there was the Hair Fan who asked, "Why are actresses among the finalists at a music awards show?" Because sometimes the presenters have better hairstyles than the performers they honor or introduce. Indeed, they fared better this time - and veteran supermodel Heidi Klum was voted the woman with the best style of the night.
Klum may not have the hair power she did in our first Super-Hair World Cup in 2002. But her classic long look was enough to claim 38 percent of the votes in our week-long contest. Two actresses tied for second, as Kathryn Hahn and Camila Mendes scored 25 percent each. Then came "Other" at 13 percent, with someone suggesting Demi Lovato. Her hair held well during her song, but it was so long that we feared complaints about extensions would come if we included her. The small total count left us wondering if "voter fatigue" set in, after the CMAs and Latin Grammys - or if one comment spoke for many: "Didn't watch the show, but that's the best?"
Has it really been ten years since Olivia Palermo burst into the Super-Hair spotlight? She was only a "New York debutante" at the time, but she had perfect thick long hair that many Hair Fans dream of meeting up-close. Palermo appeared for almost a year in Top Ten Tresses, in two different stints. And she turned N.Y. P.R. and her jaw-dropping styles into an MTV reality series, then most recently a design career. But in late 2017, Palermo may be following the trend instead of leading it. She had her long locks cut to a "lob" stopping around the shoulders.
Did Palermo do the right thing? Our voters don't think so. A five-day poll found 75 percent of them longing for longer locks (6-2). One voter stated the obvious: "Longer seemed to have a lot more body. Extensions maybe...." No, no, 1,000 times no! After all, Whitney Port would have "outed" her for that years ago.
Other awards shows in 2017 have been filled with political commentaries. But the Country Music Association Awards tried to go in a different direction, by emphasizing unity. At one point, Miranda Lambert said the ceremony felt like "family". And in the country music family, great hair usually matters. A fierce contest erupted for the best hairstyle of the CMA's - but at the end, veteran Faith Hill outlasted relative newcomers to win your vote as tops.
Hill's long locks in a loving duet with husband Tim McGraw lived up to her Hair Fan's Hall of Fame reputation, and received 33 percent of the votes in a six-day poll. Rising star Lauren Alaina tied for second at 27 percent with Pitch Perfect 3 star Brittany Snow - who admittedly fooled us by appearing with red hair, instead of the blonde look of past years. Lambert had to settle for seven percent, tied for fourth with an unnamed "other." But one voter seemed saddened by the entire show: "De-emphasizing body.... that is Sooo anti-country! They need to go back to big hair!" Now hold on - we had Kimberly Schlapman of Little Big Town on the ballot, and no one voted for her extra-large curls.
Katie Holmes's career always has struck us as a bit mysterious. She came to fame in Dawson's Creek - and of course, she was married to Tom Cruise. But except for a couple of miniseries about the political Kennedy family, Holmes has stayed in the spotlight lately largely for walking around New York where the paparazzi can see her. Holmes may be busy with her own hair care line - but we don't think that explains the change she made for fall 2017. Her mid-length beachy waves were chopped, with what some called a "pixie" cut left.
Has Holmes hit it big with this move? Not with our voters, she didn't. An eight-day poll ended with 73 percent turning down the shorter look (11-4). One recommended Holmes with hair "even longer than the long hair picture.... That is when she looked youthful and best." Another skeptically asked: "She doing a bio-pick of the Fonze or maybe Rachel Maddow?" That's a good guess; Holmes revealed to People the cut is for a movie about a female ex-Marine - but this may mark the first time those other two people have been in the same sentence.
The debate over Bonnie Bernstein's hair began with the first picture we posted of her. Our "thumbnail" on the Ultimate 50 list showed her with relatively short hair, from her days as a sportscaster in Nevada. Supporters quickly said more current pictures of longer hair should be shown. The longer look indeed became the Bernstein standard, as she became Super-Hair's version of Richard Petty or Roger Federer - 24 Crown Awards, seven wins in the Super-Hair Wars Challenge of Champions, the 2003 and 2007 AAA Cups and #1 in our ranking of the greatest styles of our first decade. But in October 2017, Bernstein announced on social media: "Contemplating going back to the short 'do." She seemed stunned by the dozens of comments which followed on Instagram, both pro and con.
We knew our Hair Fans would want to comment on such a potentially momentous decision (at least for them). We even extended our poll to nine days. It ended with a 65-percent plea for Bernstein to keep the style longer (15-8). "Bonnie's hair is iconic and very flattering," one explained; "in no way would a change make her look as attractive...." Another called the current style "perfection." But from the other side: "Change is a good thing and long overdue." And one person pondered: "Those hall of fame locks may be falling to the hairdresser's floor. Snip, snip, snip!!!" Oh, the potential drama there - and locks we might want to collect, in case we ever find a real location for a Hair Fan's Hall of Fame.
The road to any World Cup can have unexpected twists and turns. In soccer, the United States and Netherlands couldn't even qualify for 2018. In the world of Super-Hair, the Philippines has qualified for the first time thanks to a second-place performance in the 2017 AAA Cup by Pia Wurtzbach. But now the former Miss Universe has startled some people by displaying a different style. The long waves that impressed Hair Fans during Cup play became a blunt-cut bob, when Wurtzbach made appearances in Malaysia during late September. She gave credit to stylist Santiago Reymond, who went on to post photos on Instagram with Wurtzbach's hair at all kinds of lengths.
Some wondered (and perhaps worried) about Wurtzbach wearing a wig. Apparently it's not, because she told Preview magazine she wanted something "away from the typical pageant girl look.... a bit sexier and edgier." It's too edgy for our voters, as 68 percent turned it down over one week (13-6). "I love short hair," one wrote admiringly. "Awful, awful, AWFUL!!" wrote another in anguish. We'd note Wurtzbach's hair fell when it was longer, and it's probably more at risk of collapsing now. But that's the "edginess" part for many Hair Fans - and could make World Cup V more interesting.
Some TV comedies have overlooked "kid sisters" who seemingly aren't supposed to be the big stars, but wind up with a big following. Erin Moran of Happy Days comes to mind - and so does Mila Kunis. The younger friend of Ashton Kutcher on That '70s Show wound up marrying him in real life, after being declared by one magazine as one of "100 Hottest Women of All-Time." Kunis's strong long hair (especially tough to beat when curled) probably played a key role in that ranking. So it was surprising when Kunis cut her hair in the summer of 2017, switching to a popular "lob" look stopping above the shoulders.
We gave our voters two full weeks to consider Kunis's change, thanks to some vacation time. They really didn't need that long - with 81 percent concluding the long hair must come back (13-3). One Hair Fan brought up her work on Family Guy: "Just because she does the voice of Meg Griffin doesn't mean she needs the hair." Hmmm - is there a live-action episode coming, that everyone is keeping a secret?
"Hispanic Heritage Month" in the U.S. has proven to be hard in 2017, in the wake of a deadly earthquake in Mexico and a devastating hurricane in Puerto Rico. But some celebrities have had time to consider other things, that might be dismissed as "first world problems." Take Spanish actress Nathalia Ramos. In mid-September she admitted on Twitter: "Honestly can't decide if I should go back to dark so I'm turning it over to you guys." About a week later, her decision came - as her normally blonde hair was fully brunette in a photo on social media.
Ramos noted the "consensus" among fans was "50/50." That didn't strike us as much of a consensus, so we put the issue before our voters. After one week, we seemed to have one. Ramos should go blonde - but our 83-percent majority didn't have many voters (5-1), so that also might not count for much. In any case, this question came up as Ramos was in the running to represent Spain in Super-Hair World Cup V. That's an event where color may matter less than beautiful content.
There was a lot of talk about diversity at the 2017 Emmy Awards. The problem for us was that there was little on stage, in terms of hairstyles. Caucasians and their cuts dominated the first half of the show, save for an intern who quietly handed over trophies. We were all set to post an apology with our poll at our deadline - but then Rashida Jones walked out and saved the day. The daughter of music executive Quincy Jones and star of the cable comedy Angie Tribeca displayed mid-length bangs that emerged from a tight pack to be voted top hairstyle of the night.
Our one-week poll had a wide range of opinions. Jones led with 30 percent, followed by a three-way 20-percent split: Allison Janney of Mom (based on a pre-produced opening, not her on-stage look), Kaitlin Olson of The Mick and "Other." And while there were two votes for "other," there were three alternative names offered in our comments: Amanda Peet, Debra Messing (both appearing after our deadline) and Jane Fonda, who was praised for a "nice surprise" mixing bangs with a sideswept ponytail (though many on Twitter were sure that was a clip-on). Alexis Bledel followed them all at 10 percent, while Emmy winner and one-time certain vote-getter Laura Dern received no votes. It's enough to make us call for both young and adult Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory to make sense of it all.
Over the last few years, CNN has been the "revolving door" cable news channel - shuffling anchors in and out like cards in a bridge game. But in 2017, Fox News Channel has been the network of change. And it's not only because anchors have come and gone. Several FNC women known for great hair have made surprising adjustments. First Julie Banderas cut her long style to a bit past the shoulders. Now a Hair Fan contends fellow weekend anchor Molly Line has done the same sort of thing - a trim of only a few inches, but stopping at her shoulders.
If our voters had a "Line-item veto," would they reject this change. Our one-week poll found the answer was no; 63 percent support the shorter look (10-6). "Looks more professional," one backer wrote. But another declared, "She crossed a line [get it?] with this new cut. Shorter is unflattering and looks silly on her." Yet one Hair Fan opted for middle ground: "Either looks great and is better than some current Top 10 members!" We will take that into consideration - and admit as we do that Line has consistently had strong styles for years. She flies under the Fox radar, by appearing only a few days a week.
For Univision reporter Daniela Ganoza and the Hair Fans who admire her, it's all about curls. Natural curls. Intense curls. Frequently high-risk curls. So much so that when a stylist straightened them out (well, almost) for red carpet reporting on Oscar night, it was big news here. As some expected, Ganoza did not keep that look long. But in 2017, she's made a more permanent adjustment. "Bang bangs!" she wrote on social media with a nightclub-lit view of fringe across her forehead.
Does the Crown Award winner for Best Curls have a cut that could win her a second for bangs? Our voters seem persuaded in that direction; 58 percent of them preferred the bangs in our one-week poll (7-5). "The old look looks like it takes too much product to hold in place and keep out of her eyes," one voter wrote. That may be true, although Ganoza's done it successfully for years. The bangs certainly could solve that issue - although many stylists probably would tell you great-looking curled bangs are very hard to accomplish. Yet it's clear Ganoza knows curls, so it might be easy for her.
For one generation, Cindy Crawford is a beauty icon from the hair on down. For a different generation, Marilyn Monroe was. So what happens when the generations combine? Crawford tried to show that during August. She posed for a photo shoot with a shoulder-length wavy platinum blonde wig - asking on Instagram: "Cindy who?" It's a testimony to her popularity that in a couple of weeks, the Crawford-Monroe merge received more than 1.4 million views. But we wondered: is this a preview of a graying Crawford in years to come?
We asked what you thought of Crawford as a blonde. While some Instagram viewers called it "epic," our Hair Fans were uninspired; 80 percent declared she should stay a brunette, while only seven percent liked the blonde look (12-1-2). The 13 percent for "another color" may be rooting for something rich and red; no one left a comment to specify. But maybe we can all agree on a picture farther down Crawford's Instagram account - the July photo where she dresses as Wonder Woman. It's enough to turn any Hair Fan into an arch-villain, ready to take her on.
Right photo courtesy TV Heads
U.S. President Trump accuses CNN often of being "fake news." But at least he can't accuse the network of having fake hair. It's the home of several outstanding styles, such as Crown Award winners Erin Burnett and Alisyn Camerota. Brianna Keilar lasted more than a year in Top Ten Tresses. And at times, Kate Bolduan has acted like a contender - similarly blonde, and mid-length when she first appeared from Washington. But as Bolduan has become an Anchor and Host, the hair has shortened. In the summer of 2017, it was practically a "Bolduan bowl" - blunt-cut at her chin.
We asked Hair Fans about this chop, and they seemed ready to chop it down. The longer look from several years earlier was favored by two-thirds of them (14-7). "I had forgoten how amazing Kate looked with longer hair," one voter admitted. "No contest for me." Another called that approach "softer and more attractive." Maybe Bolduan is preparing for a WWE-style battle with a Trump family member - you know, the kind the President tweets about.
Music comes in many forms - and those forms seem to have a hair stereotype to match them. Country music has (well, used to have) big stiff styles. Rock stars let the hair down, and often didn't care where it landed. When Diana Krall first came to fame, she seemed to fit the jazz definition - with long hair as loose as a solo, steamy like some nightclubs, yet still controlled enough to stay out of her eyes most of the time. But Krall has made adjustments over the years. And before an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live in August 2017, she made the biggest change yet - trimming to a carefree shoulder-length.
Krall went to Hollywood super-stylist Chris McMillan for this cut. Yet the man who made Jennifer Aniston famous didn't thrill our voters this time; a one-week poll ended with 58 percent of Hair Fans preferring the longer look (7-5). "She needs to crawl back to the salon and get a refund," one voter wrote. Yet with some spray (which we realize she tends to avoid), this style could hold better than any other. And look on the bright side - Krall could have gone "punk" after marrying Elvis Costello.
If Laryssa Bonacquisti is going to keep doing what she's doing on our website, the other contestants at the Miss America contest in September may not have a chance. Miss Louisiana was offered for our Hot List. Then she won a couple of rounds of Super-Hair Wars, and was added to our Top Ten Tresses list. And now Bonacquisti has gone all the way to the top - leading your annual vote to rank the Top Ten list. More Hair Fans chose her as #1 hairstyle in the world than any other!
Unlike the Wars matches, this was not a Bonacquisti blowout. In fact, most of the Top Ten members picked up votes in our one-week poll. But only two pulled away from the pack - with Bonacquisti edging talk show host Eboni K. Williams by 33 to 25 percent. A logjam for third place at eight percent included Michelle Asselin, Tracey Anthony, Casey Burke, Kendy Kloepfer and Cecily Tynan. That left three women with no votes at all - and one commenter suggested they all get booted. Trouble is, at least two of the three women offered as "waiting in the wings" have defeated styles. So the fun drama continues....
Right photo courtesy Cosmopolitan
It's one thing to get a hairstyle change that is "all the buzz." It's quite another thing to get a "buzz cut." Yet to the surprise of many people, that's what Kate Hudson has done in the summer of 2017. The actress who made some Hair Fans swoon for years with soft playful blonde waves shaved her head. Not all the way, thankfully - with short hair slicked back on top, but all the way gone on her left side. Entertainment Tonight revealed the reason why Hudson did it - a "secret project" with singer Sia, who's best known for having hair completely covering the eyes.
One of Hudson's movies is
Who says the U.S. is the only place where TV weathercasters have great hair? They've dominated our Crown Awards category for "Best Hair in Science and Meteorology" over the years. But maybe we should look east. Well, then "Look North" as well - because that's where Keeley Donovan has gained a following as a weather presenter on the BBC in the northern British Isles. Donovan has shown well-polished mid-length hair. So when she went "in for the snip" in late July, as she put it on Twitter, we wondered what the response might be.
The only good "post-cut" picture we have of Donovan is a mass-selfie from a musical performance. It appears she's stopping at the shoulders. But the change seemed to disappoint our voters, who went 57-percent for a longer look.
Yet our original "after" picture may have puzzled some voters. "I have to hold my opinion until I see a better picture of the cut," one wrote. Another called the change "great" but noted, "By your own definition, wouldn't the new cut fail to be on your site? The hair is in her eyes!!" Well, it could make at least one section - and in time, it probably will. Did Donovan really have to go that far?
She may have a nice endorsement deal with Head & Shoulders shampoo. But our Hair Fans don't think Sofia Vergara of Modern Family has the best hair in her native country. She lost in World Cup III qualifying in 2010 to Colombian icon Shakira, then lost to her again in Cup of the Americas qualifying in 2011. And in "Copa 2015," she wasn't suggested at all. So maybe Vergara felt compelled to make a big move, as another World Cup year approaches. In July 2017, she unveiled forehead-hugging bangs to go with her long steamy waves.
Vergara seemed to like the change on social media. But our voters leaned against it by a 58-percent margin over one week (7-5). "Bangs make her look younger," said one backer. "Kind of disappointed Sofia would make any change in her beautiful hair," wrote one opponent. Yet the bangs make her hair far less likely to drop in her eyes - and Vergara's allowed that to happen often. So how will Shakira respond?
Maybe we're simply noticing them more, but cute short hairstyles seem to be making a comeback in 2017. Of course, what qualifies as "cute" is in the eye of the beholder. Actress Kristin Wiig decided to take a well-rounded approach. A head of hair which already was shorter than she first displayed on Saturday Night Live went beyond a bob, to what some called a "bowl" cut. We're more inclined to call it a helmet, even though that's considered a slur in some circles.
This move came after Wiig displayed with other websites called a "pixie" cut at the Golden Globe Awards in January. But we asked Hair Fans to compare her classic look with the new one, the longer style dominated with 83 percent of your votes (15-3). One wrote the new look "seems like a cross between Dorothy Hamill and Pete Rose." Another doubted anyone "would like her 'after' look. Come on." That voter must not see the websites we see, which called the bowl "cooler." But we agree with the majority here; if Wiig's hair was thick enough to cover the forehead completely and provide some bounce, that would be so-cool-it's-hot. We advise her to check our examples of that.
Fox News Channel has experienced many changes during 2017, for a variety of reasons. One constant seems to be news anchor Julie Banderas - but some have noticed changes on her part in a more subtle way. When she took a break for Independence Day, some people thought she lightened her brunette hair. That turned out to be the lighting in a makeshift studio. But Hair Fans spotted something more obvious about Banderas. The medium-long style which grabbed their attention for years was trimmed to a bit below shoulder-length, with the part moved well to the side.
Banderas won a Crown Award for Makeover of the Year in 2011. So should she in the running in 2017? Not based on our one-week poll; 68 percent call for the long hair to come back (13-6). "Bummed," admitted one voter. "Julie was a long-haired newsbabe icon." But another wrote, "I'm glad to see [she] finally got a haircut, she was long overdue.... She possibly could go even shorter." Yet another opinion suggested a mix: "Go with longer but with side part." That might qualify as "fair and balanced" - except FNC doesn't use that slogan anymore.
When Sex and the City ended its run on HBO, we asked here which woman had the best hair. We were not surprised when Kristin Davis won. Sarah Jessica Parker barely topped Kim Cattrell for second place. Parker had a reputation for curls well before HBO, from her days as a teen star on the short-lived series Square Pegs. Parker now stars in a series called Divorce with much straighter hair - and in public appearances, it's as if the curl has melted completely.
Does Parker need those curls to have winning hair? Well, maybe not. Our one-week poll found 63% of Hair Fans like the hair straighter (5-3). No one left a comment either way, but we'd say the flipped-back long style in Divorce seems like a good compromise. The curl strength is still there - and might actually threaten to outlast Davis's waves in a New York skyscraper wind tunnel.
Some Hair Fans "came of age" watching fast-moving dance troupes on TV. Dean Martin had the Golddiggers, which included the Ultimate 50 short cut of Paula Cinko. But the woman whose hair struck as the most daring and amazing was Michelle DellaFave - long, blonde, bouncy and seldom out of line. Over nearly 50 years, DellaFave's style has changed numerous times. But we think she's matured very well - even though she's confusing us a bit these days. On some occasions, she has shoulder-length hair with bangs. But sometimes the hair looks is short as Cinko's.
We asked which look is better for DellaFave to display. After one week, we were a bit surprised to find the short cut winning two-thirds of the votes (6-3). There's truly less risk and more perfection there - and maybe they think it's time for that sort of change. We're thankful that we had an opportunity to interview DellaFave about her classic cut years ago; you can still learn from her in our Q&A section.
UPDATE: After we posted these results, Michelle contacted us through Twitter: "I did put my hair on the top of my head in a high pony tail, but no... not going to cut it..long it will stay... LOVE” Our apologies for being fooled by a picture.
Right photo courtesy Wireimage
Ever heard of Hashimoto's disease? Once British singer Leona Lewis did, it changed her entire thinking about her long hair. Lewis came to fame with natural curls that she adjusted into great springy shapes. But she would also straighten her style at times, as she did for the 2016 Tony Awards. Yet once Lewis learned she had Hashimoto's - a disease of the thyroid, which can lead to thinning hair - she resolved never to straighten her locks again. In fact, these days her hair seems curlier than ever.
We can understand why Lewis did what she did. But which style is really better on her? Our one-week poll found 73 percent of voters preferring what one called, "Curly all the way!" (8-3). That voter explained curls are "more natural and not as common." Yet while Lewis is going what one magazine described as "low-maintenance and free of toxic substances as possible," we hope she doesn't get so low-maintenance that the hair gets messy and downright ordinary.
Some women make a "mommy cut" after having a baby. They change their hair to a short style that's easy to maintain while they're occupied with caring for a young child. But Savannah Guthrie seems to be doing exactly the opposite. She came to fame at NBC News with hair that stopped around the shoulders. Yet since having a boy in December 2016, Guthrie has gone longer with her style. When we saw her filling in for Lester Holt on NBC Nightly News in late May, it was approaching the bust line.
Should Guthrie keep this up - as in letting the hair flow down? Our six-day poll found the longer style winning 69-percent support (11-5). "In my humble opinion, she has never looked better," one backer wrote. "Stunning longer style!" praised another. We'll accept that vote and her decision. But we'd point out that historically, she's no "Super-Savannah." Her hair blows around and drops often in the elements - and probably would even in Savannah, Georgia.
Right photo courtesy IMDb
The past and the present came together and embraced each other. Lynda Carter was not offended at all about Gal Gadot taking the role of "Wonder Woman" in a new movie - the role Carter had made her own for several seasons on TV in the 1970s. While Carter's series was never a ratings dominatrix, Gadot hit it big right off the bat - with her film earning more than $100 million in its opening weekend. But for Hair Fans, Wonder Woman is about more than that. Does the superhero have Super-Hair - able to fight off any threat or potential conquering villain?
We set up the showdown that simply HAD to happen. Whose hairstyle in their prime would win a hair war? An extended eight-day poll (adding to the drama, you know) was a fierce contest, with Gadot fighting back sternly after Carter seized an advantage. But Carter finally prevailed by 57 percent (8-6). We can understand why, because Gadot's hair is longer and seems much looser (even with that protective headband). It's more likely to bounce up into her eyes, while Carter's cut was more compact. It still fell a time or two, as we've shown in our Hair Pressure section - but it was simply tougher to take down. As any Wonder Woman should be.
Some people complain about "beauty pageant" contestants all having the same hairstyle. But the 2017 Miss USA contest was quite different. Kara McCullough walked out with big-time and big-sized curls, which brought praise from a lot of viewers. And they didn't hurt her at all - then again, not even a controversial comment about health care did - as she made it back-to-back pageant wins for the District of Columbia.
McCullough told People she was afraid of how people would respond to the curls - adding she's "transitioning" from a sleek straight look that she wore in the district pageant. So which style should she display as she represents the U.S. in the Miss Universe pageant? Our voters went against the social media trend, with 70 percent preferring the straight look in a one-week poll (7-3). "Go natural!" rooted on the only comment. Either approach is dangerous in terms of hold, but we'd think the curls would be easier to secure. A little "planned tangling" can be great for hold.
Can one simple haircut make a big difference for a woman? This section of our site has proven it can - and not always in the best way. Take actress Mikaela Hoover. She was offered to us by a Hair Fan with thick long hair, and we happily placed her on our Hot List. But when we entered Hoover Super-Hair Wars, we looked for a current picture - and found her style was several inches shorter, stopping at her shoulders. She won one match, but lost a second.
So which Hoover hairstyle really is better for her? Our one-week poll ended as we expected - with the longer cut winning a two-thirds majority (6-3). "Longer by a long shot!" one voter declared. "Longer looks much silkier!" OK, as you wish - but we think with the right preparation (maybe a Super-spray), this actress in Guardians of the Galaxy can guard her hair to thick perfection.
For many people in North America. "K-pop" might be considered a soft drink. But people in Asia know better. K-pop means hit music, especially in South Korea - and one of the biggest groups of the moment is AOA, or "Ace of Angels." We don't know how we missed the group's first hit song, Short Hair, but we noticed when rumors developed that the group might be breaking up. The buzz especially surrounded Park Cho-a, who's better known by her last name. Her hair actually is shorter now than it was when the group debuted - a bob with bangs, compared to shoulder-length with curl.
We wondered if Choa's chop was a good idea. Our voters in a one-week poll said no by an 82-percent margin (9-2). No one left a comment, so we'll say we love the long look as well - high-risk, even with bangs that seem to come very close to the right eye. Choa leaves a hint of bang with the short cut, but it comes across as messy and misplaced. She's acually gone more punky in recent months, which we knew wouldn't go over well - and may explain why no one offered her for our AAA Cup.
Kansas can be a windy place, which can cause headaches for women who want to have Super-Hair. Yet that's where Kara Sewell first came to our attention. She kept short styles precise at a TV station in Wichita - then moved to Cincinnati and kept the strength going. That led us to put Sewell on our Top Ten Tresses list, and she eventually was voted #1 hairstyle in the world. But Sewell has decided to get daring in recent months, by growing out her hair. She's even posted a series of YouTube videos, explaining what she's doing and how.
Sewell's style wasn't very long as we posted this, but long enough to ask Hair Fans about it. "I vote LONG!" Kara wrote on Twitter when she found about the week-long poll. We don't know if she actually clicked on our ballot, but 65 percent of our voters agree with her (11-6). "I like the subtle flip," one person wrote. From what we've seen, that flip is a key to Sewell's hold. But going longer can be riskier for keeping control. We'll see if she knows how to handle it.
Is it fair to say Girls was the 2010s version of Sex and the City? Four women on HBO lived in New York and experienced all sorts of things. Allison Williams' character reminded us of Kristin Davis - not only because of an art gallery background, but the most attractive hair. The series made Williams a breakout star, and led to other roles. She toyed with making a big haircut for a 2014 Peter Pan special, but settled for a wig. Yet when Girls ended its run, Williams decided it was time for a change. Her natural brunette hair became blonde, well before summer.
Should Williams keep the lighter look? Our one-week poll on that question ended with Hair Fans on the darker side; 82 percent want the brunette look back (9-2). "Blonde hair doesn't go with brunette eyebrows," one voter pointed out. And besides, hair changing is something Kristin Davis never has really done.
Quick - which one of these women has Super-Hair? If you chose Kate Hudson on the left, we could understand that. The movie star's thick blonde locks are admired by many. But based on our definition, she's not; Hudson's hair has dropped in her eyes many times. The correct answer is on the right - ABC News correspondent Rebecca Jarvis. We think she's had underrated styles for years, which find ways to hold in all sorts of situations.
Yet a few years ago, Jarvis's hair admittedly was more attention-getting. It was longer and arguably more tempting at CBS News. We wondered if Jarvis's recent change to a chin-length look is better for her. Our one-week poll ended with Hair Fans saying no by a 73-percent margin (16-6). "I love short hair," said the only comment. Interestingly, Jarvis had one of her closest calls on-camera during the voting week - as a swirling wind almost pushed hair from the back into her eyes. Without some body, the host of the "No Limits" podcast could have very limited hold.
If someone you know is dealing with cancer, you know the ordeal it can be - especially when it comes to treatment. We recall a line TV news anchor Peter Jennings quipped to his doctor: "When does the hair start to go?" For some women, that loss during chemotherapy can be agonizing - but with care, it can be disguised. For instance, we didn't realize Fox Business reporter and former Top Ten Tresses member Gerri Willis was in cancer treatment until she chose to take off her wig and appear with a pixie cut on Kennedy in early April.
We wondered if a shorter look in the long term would be best for Willis. Our voters said no in a one-week poll by a two-thirds margin (10-5). We certainly wish her well, whatever her hair future is - and we'd note our list of former Top Ten members includes an "Honorable Mention" for a TV anchor who once wore her hair even shorter on camera.
Some awards shows can be a challenge for Hair Fans. Pulled back, pinned-down or messed-up styles can make it difficult to fill a ballot with quality candidates. But the 2017 Academy of Country Music Awards was the very opposite. Many women brought their top-level hair game to Las Vegas, and the result was a nicer challenge: trimming the ballot to five names. So perhaps it was only fitting that for the first time, we had a three-way tie for best style of an awards show.
Our six-day poll ended with two Hair Fan Hall of Fame members in the deadlock: Faith Hill and Carrie Underwood. They were joined at 33 percent by Entertainment Tonight host Nancy O'Dell, who won praise from a voter: "I've loved her (and lately her extensions) for years." She actually made the ballot because we thought O'Dell had left the extensions at home for a night, to show a more natural-looking mid-length style. The top three were followed by Kellie Pickler at 17 percent and rising star Kelsea Ballerini at eight percent.
She may not cause the controversy of Megyn Kelly or be as all-out blonde as Martha MacCallum. But how many Fox News anchors have had a toy named after them? Harris Faulkner has - and she sued Hasbro over it. Faulkner has been an FNC for more than a decade. But some people noticed her perfect ways with hair years earlier, at local TV stations in Kansas City and Minneapolis-St. Paul. Faulkner's hair fell to the shoulders or a bit lower then. These days as a co-host of the talk show Outnumbered, she's made the cut to a chin-length style that looks tight, but seems to have room to have bounce when she needs it.
We asked which length is better for Faulkner - and 83 percent of our votes in a one-week poll went for the shorter look (10-2). We fear we may have led the jury a bit, because the best photo in our archives from her early years at Fox News showed rather messy bangs. But if Faulkner is using spray for extra-hold now (and we think she is), it had better be strong - because Hair Fans in her office might want to "Outnumber" her.
Courtesy Jack FM/Dallas
Our site is a testimony to the fact that Hair Fans have a wide range of tastes. Some like Super-Hair that's straight. Others covet curls. Some like it short. Others like it long - and some even want hair that's extra-long. Which brings us to Aliia Nasyrova, a native of Latvia who currently is a model in Russia. She grabbed attention in March 2017 for Instagram pictures showing hair she hadn't cut in 20 years. It's reached 90 inches long - about two feet longer that our Ultimate head of long hair.
Nasyrova takes a lot of time caring for that hair - and we admire that. But has she gone too far? We don't recall ever asking such a question here. So we did, and 73 percent of Hair Fans in our one-week poll declared her hair too long. Only 20 percent called it the right length, while seven percent chose "not long enough" (11-3-1). We're saddened to tell those people the classic "Long Hair Site" has been shut down for ten years. But we wonder if it's possible for Nasyrova to keep all that hair in place and perfect - without, as her husband puts it, "talking to the braid."
If we could make one request to celebrities making big hairstyle changes, it would be this: Clearly show us what you've done. Don't fake us out with GIFs, Snapchat add-ons or mid-session salon pictures. We wonder if actress and model Chloe Grace Moretz took the latter approach. She came to fame with nice medium-long hair. Then she cut it to a shoulder-touching lob, which received good reviews from magazines. But in March 2017, Moretz went even tougher - a platinum bob, accompanied by added tattoos that she explained represented her "coming of age" at 20.
The swept-back "wet look" of Moretz was the best picture we could find to illustrate what she did. She's apparently doing that a lot - and our voters aren't thrilled by it. A one-week poll found 86 percent want Moretz's mane longer (12-2). "She looks like Pony Boy," one voter said in a reference to the 1980s film The Outsiders. After looking that up and seeing Ponyboy belonged to "The Greasers" gang, we're assuming that's not a compliment.
She may have big contracts for cosmetics and shoes. And she may be singing what she calls "pop with purpose." But deep down, Katy Perry remains a chameleon when it comes to hair. Her changing colors first were mocked, then were copied by her fans. She's gone long, then short and back again. The start of 2017 has become a "short period" for Perry. She seemed to celebrate breaking up with actor Orlando Bloom by going to Hollywood stylist Chris McMillan and getting what he calls a "fade" - platinum on top, trimmed tightly at the back but with long bangs (if they're bangs at all) in front.
One of Perry's hit songs is Hot N Cold - and our voters were cold to this cut. A week-long poll found 75 percent want to see her hair longer (9-3). "Ugh," groaned one voter; "Didn't Miley Cyrus do that look, like two years ago?" Maybe so, but Cyrus changes styles a lot as well. Another noticed our "before" Perry picture was from July 2016 and said, "Apparently you missed that [Katy] went much, much shorter since going blonde." We do have a picture of it on file, but thought the July picture provided a better contrast. Maybe Perry should have gone less short; that won a majority in a similar poll in 2011 - which, to our surprise, was the last time we brought her up here.
Oscar night 2017 was controversial, to say the least. Many people showed up with political statements to make, even projected on the screen if you muted your TV. The confsing ending was something only Steve Harvey could appreciate. But at least several women had hairstyles worth watching - and for one teenager, it was a breakout night. Auli'i Cravalho stepped away from the voice booth, and sang a tune from the animated movie Moana in person. And even though she got whacked on the head by a dancer's flagpole, she and her long waves endured to the end impressively. Hair Fans rewarded her, by voting her the best style of the Academy Awards.
Cravalho apparently grew on voters during our week-long poll. After a slow start, she climbed to the top and ended with 38 percent of the voters. That took the title away from Leslie Mann, who settled for second with 25 percent. Jennifer Aniston was third at 19 percent, despite one voter's complaint that she displayed the "same boring straight center parted hair." Actual Oscar winners brought up the rear in our contest, with Emma Stone at 13 percent and Viola Davis at six percent.
First she was known as a swimsuit model. Then she did some TV hosting. And at some point, she became a lip-syncing star. But these days, Chrissy Teigen has a friendly competitor for attention in her own household. She's the wife of singer John Legend - and hopefully he doesn't mind when she changes hairstyles. Teigen made a switch for the 2017 Grammy Awards, as her long beachy waves were trimmed to slightly below her shoulders.
Should Teigen have borrowed a line from one of her husband's hit songs, and taken this slowly? The answer from our voters seemed to be yes; 80 percent want the hair to stay longer (8-2). No one left a comment either way - which was surprising, because we expected someone to use the word "extensions" at some point.
Some celebrity hairstyles are legendary - in fact, so legendary that when a newcomer shows up and outshines them, it's an upset on the order of David defeating Goliath. That sort of thing happened at the 2017 Grammy Awards. You may have never heard of Camila Cabello - and to be honest, we were confused about how to spell her name. She came to fame with the "girl group" Fifth Harmony, but left in December to go solo. That's a smart move so far, because the singer of Bad Things had long hair good enough to be voted the best style of Grammy night.
What makes Cabello's win fascinating is that she's not quite 20 years old - yet she topped two women who are in our Hair Fan's Hall of Fame. A loyal fan base may have helped her win 41 percent of the vote, topping hardy perennial Carrie Underwood with 23 percent. "Not a fan of... Underwood's short hair. I had to vote for Faith Hill," one voter admitted. Hill was third with 18 percent, followed by Tori Kelly at 14 percent. And we think the five-percent "Other" went to Demi Lovato, who was praised by several people. "Did you see her?" one wrote. "Sure it was a wig [which we knew; that's why she wasn't on the ballot], but it shows what could be! Let it grow, Demi!" She hinted at it (gasp) nine years ago - but she seems content to keep changing.
Kaitlin Stansell is living her dream and doing it well. She's become a reporter and TV news anchor - and did it while staying in her home area of the Carolinas. Stansell also has described herself as "determined" and someone who "loves being challenged." She responded to the challenge of our Myrtle Beach City League contest with medium-long hair that was prepared well enough to win the title. But now Stansell has put a new challenge on herself, by changing styles. She admitted on Instagram a cut to shoulder-length is "the shortest I've ever gone" - perhaps with some added wave for control.
Is Stansell's short look growing on Hair Fans? Our voters were left undecided. A one-week poll ended with a flat-footed tie between her old and new styles (7-7). If wr broke the tie, we'd probably vote shorter. Stansell seems to have even better-prepared hair now - ready to take on any challenge to her local crown, and maybe even some beachside breezes.
Right photo courtesy Refinery 29.
When "awards season" arrives in Hollywood, celebrities can try out all kinds of styles. They could change designers from one show to the next. But how many change hair styles, and even colors? Sarah Paulson did - and the fact that she actually won awards made it more striking. Paulson's portrayal of prosecutor Marcia Clark in The People vs. O.J. Simpson brought her a Golden Globe, and she accepted with a blonde center-part which made our ballot for top style of the night. But when Paulson won a Screen Actors Guild award three weeks later, she showed up as a dark brunette with a "combover" side part - almost reenacting Clark's style change during the Simpson trial.
We asked Hair Fans about the color change, since that was the most obvious. One week of voting ended with a sharp divide: 40 percent for Paulson returning to blonde hair, 30 percent for staying brunette, and 30 percent for "another color" (one person suggested auburn-red). But for one voter, color was not the issue - "it's the style. Not a fan of the new one." Perhaps it's best for Paulson that the Oscars do not include TV series, because who knows what her hair might look like then.
"Can I assume you'll be reconsidering Alison Brie for a Crown Award?" the Hair Fan asked. That visitor had found a big change by an actress that our voters have made a style star. Brie's mid-length hair on the TV comedy Community launched her to five Crown Awards in two years (one a tie). But after she was nominated for two more Crowns in early 2017, she had her hair cut to what her stylist described as a "cute shag bob" and an "80s revival" - a cut that more than one commenter on Instagram declared "perfect."
Did Brie become tastier with our visitors? No, they responded with disappointment - as 65 percent preferred the old style in our week-long poll (11-6). "Total downgrade!" one exclaimed. "Yes it's a cuter cut, but the long flowing layered thick shiny girlie-girl hair was to die for!!" (We live for descriptions like that.) Another accepted bangs on Brie, but asked, "Why hack the length?" This apparently puts us in the minority, because we think Brie's thick hair is so perfectly cut that she almost dares you to try to muss it. This new look isn't dropping in her eyes, thanks to those bangs - and it looks like Brie could stop any attempt to defeat it with a shake back into precise position.
The news about Nina Dobrev struck us as strange. Not that she had a new movie; she's appeared in several. Not that she appeared at the Golden Globe Awards; that's what Hollywood stars tend to do. The surprise was that Dobrev changed her hairstyle after the Golden Globes - while many celebrities like to unveil new styles when Hair Fans are most likely to pay attention. The XXX: Return of Xander Cage actress took her classic long hair to a salon days after the show, and announced on social media: "New year, new Do(brev)."
Is the lob-length look an improvement for this woman? Our voters didn't think so, as 88 percent want the long hair back (7-1). "She could have at least brushed it after she got it cut," one voter commented. But then again, our "after" picture may have been moment-of-impact at the salon. But to be honest, we were not familiar with Dobrev until she made this cut - and after seeing the "before" pictures of her (especially with waves), we can understand the disappointment.
The Golden Globe Awards are presented by the "Hollywood Foreign Press Association". And in recent years, stars born outside the U.S. have done quite well when it comes to hairstyles. Italian-born Amy Adams was voted top style of the Globes in 2015 and 2016. And in 2017, the honor moved to India - as Bollywood actress and U.S. TV star won your votes for the best look of the night.
Chopra's hair on Quantico tends to be a confusion of lengths and styles. But medium-long with a hint of waves carried the day in Hollywood, as Chopra gained 40 percent in our one-week poll. She was followed by Carrie Underwood at 20 percent, still showing she has a following after that big trim. Kristen Bell gained third place at 15 percent - yet she tied with "other." One voter suggested Lea Michele there, even though anoher indicated she was part of a "bad hair" trend as women "pulled it back severely." Mandy Moore and Globe winner Sarah Paulson brought up the rear at five percent each. And for those of you who want us to bring up Meryl Streep.... sorry, she received no votes at all.
Right photo courtesy Us Magazine.
The calendar may have flipped to 2017, but some people still are coming to terms with the 2016 U.S. election. Actress Olivia Wilde appears to be one of them. She's been known for years for long inviting hairstyles. But after the votes for President were counted, a picture appeared on social media of Wilde chopping her hair to a bit below the shoulders. The cut caused less of a stir than her hashtag about it: "No more Melania hair" - as in Mrs. Trump, the first family Wilde campaigned against.
We usually don't play politics here, except for one Crown Awards category. So we simply asked you about Wilde's shorter look. Two-thirds of our voters want Wilde to stay longer (4-2) - but a lack of votes and comments may say something. It could say most Hair Fans didn't see much of a difference. Or it could say that they're waiting to see if Melania Trump displays as many 'dos as Michelle Obama.
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