Eighties Fashion and Big Covid Hair by @EdenBaylee

This is my first post of 2021 here, so I'd like to wish a Happy New Year to readers! 

When I was thinking of a topic to write, I came across a post on a friend’s Facebook page that made me laugh. 

The caption read: For the next time you think the 80s were cool. 

Yeah, it was the decade of big hair and outlandish fashion. 

The reason I found it funny was because I used to be a slave to fashion. My jeans had to sit above the waist, not below it. They couldn’t be too faded or too dark. They had to conform nicely around my butt and not cut off the circulation in my legs. I preferred the skinny fit over a baggy, loose pair, and if there were holes in them, they had to look as if they'd been ripped accidentally, not deliberately. The pressure of buying a pair of pants! 

I wanted "the look" with Jordache jeans. Didn't we all?

Looking back now, I pity my younger, insecure self. I was pretty shy in the eighties, and fashion gave me a sense of belonging. The eclectic style of the times embodied a mindset of “More and bigger is better.” I wore oversized blazers with shoulder pads, three-inch pumps, and chunky neon jewellery. Ironic, considering I dressed to fit in and not draw attention to myself. 
Hair for most Asian women is not big, and mine was no different. It fell naturally flat and straight as an arrow down my back—no volume, not a wave or curl to be found. My hair never took to home perms, so no bouffants for me. I did, however, experiment with hair curlers for a while. I mean, who didn’t, right? Accompanied by tons of hairspray and gel, these instruments of torture gave me curls that would last a few hours.

Problem was, it took the better part of a day to achieve the look. In the end, it wasn’t worth the hassle. 

All this preamble to say I'm relieved fashion no longer dictates what I wear; it hasn’t for a long time. Pre-Covid, I participated in fashion shows for charity or wore crazy outfits for Halloween, but that's the extent of it. Right now in Canada, it's cold and there's a pandemic. Holed up in the house with nowhere to go, I dress mainly for warmth. Most days, that means a tuque, scarf, jacket, leggings, leg warmers, and socks. Yes, I wear all of this in the house.

As for my hair … I finally got my wish. 

It’s big, and it's curly. 

Because it hasn’t been cut in over a year, it now falls below my waist. I wear it twisted up in a bun under my hat to keep it out of the way. I don’t wash it daily, and I’ve never been good at brushing it. When I remove my hat before going to bed, my hair sits atop my head like a giant beehive (think Marge Simpson)The other night, I shook it out and my husband burst out laughing. 

"You look like Medusa!" he said.

He may not have meant it as a compliment, but I took it as one. 
My big hair is four decades late, but I remain optimistic. Trends come and go, and by the time this pandemic is over, I might very well be in style again. 😉 

How are you doing? Any Covid fashion tips to share?

eden 💜


Sandra Horn said…
Thank you for a morning smile - and blush! Oh yes, I remember it well...and my hair is as out of control now as it was then, but who cares? There's no-one to look askance!
The shoulder pads! I'd forgotten about those! I cut my hair myself, and if it goes wrong, well, 1. No one sees me and 2' it'll grow again, haha. Great reminder to not be swayed by fashions...
Bill Kirton said…
To prove I'm uncool (as if that were needed) I actually liked all that stuff. Highly enjoyable blog, Eden.
Jan Needle said…
Aye, but what about the onset of the small hair decade? Or soon, maybe, the no hair decade? (the decayed hair decade)? Spare a thought for us men....
Debbie Bennett said…
My grandfather was Cantonese and I inherited the hair - dark, straight and impossible to curl. Apart from perming, so I was an 80s poodle!
Sessha Batto said…
Since the mid 70s, when I attempted a perm and all my hair snapped off at the roots, I have kept it under an inch. So lockdown is no big deal, shave it all off every six weeks or so when I start to look like Einstein's feral sister and it is all good!
I hardly remember anything about the 80s - music, fashion etc - as the whole decade seemed to me to be taken up with babies and children - only two but they occupied a lot of space! When work colleagues talked about 80s music I used to feel as if I'd just beamed down from another planet. Still if it meant missing out on the hair it wasn't all bad!
Eden Baylee said…
Hi Sandra, did you mean you blushed or were you talking about the blush make-up of the eighties? hahaha! There were some bad make-up trends back then too.

I can get into the 'out of control' hair look. It saves on time brushing it. :)

Happy Saturday!
Eden Baylee said…
Hi Maressa,

Yeah, the shoulder pads, they were awful. I don't know how they ever looked good on any woman.

You are brave cutting your own hair. :D

Fashion had its time and place for me. When the weather warms, I might just wear some fancy dress for NO reason, akin to not saving the good dishes just for company.

Have a super weekend,
Eden Baylee said…

You LIKED the 80s fashion? You must dig up pictures of yourself and show me what you wore back then!

Have a great day!
Eden Baylee said…
Haha Jan!

My apologies for not including the men here. There were plenty of big hair men too back then, especially the big hair metal bands.

As for no-hair ... I think that's always been a trend for men, heh. I like the clean shaven look over the combover, and full beards work too if you want to repurpose hair!

Have a great weekend,

Eden Baylee said…
Hi Debbie, an 80s poodle! Hilarious! :D

That's so interesting about your grandfather and how you inherited your type of hair.

The genetics of hair is so complicated and probably why the cosmetology industry continues to make a fortune!

Enjoy your weekend,
Eden Baylee said…
Hi Sessha!

Einstein's feral sister <<< OMG, I'm dying! :D

I shaved my head when I underwent chemo. Didn't want to see all my hair falling out and messing up my pillow. It was liberating, really.

The only problem was how cold it felt. I used to wrap my head in colourful scarves to keep the heat in. Hair is overrated. ;)

Have a great weekend, my friend,

Eden Baylee said…
Cecilia, I'm sure two kids kept you busy with all the important stuff! You really didn't miss much as far as fashion is concerned.

According to my husband, 80s was also the decade that music forgot. There was some awful music, but then, there were also some unforgettable one-hit wonders that still play today.

Now I get my big hair without the sprays and goop. Funny how big a tangle can become, hehehe.

Happy weekend,
D.L. Finn said…
I loved the 80s styles down to my marbled vans, Eden. I have that thin straight hair, the best I could do was puff up my bangs. I miss those high waisted pants. It was fashion fun. I'm more of a leggings sweat pants kind of gal now.
Eden Baylee said…
Hi Denise, I had to look up "marbled vans." I don't remember them as a thing, but maybe that's because they weren't big in Canada. Just goes to show how diverse 80s fashion really was.

Nowadays, like you, I'm into leggings for warmth and comfort. I don't even own a pair of jeans anymore! Thanks for dropping by and commenting. Have a great weekend,


Angus Vieira said…
Ah the eighties were probably my favorite style of life, my long hair was a different color but just as long and no longer kept me out of red neck bars, because of my strenuous job I looked pretty good in jeans and in Seattle weed and LSD were very cheap and plentiful and with enough of that all the other stylistic fads make perfect sense.
Eden Baylee said…
Angus! How are you sweetheart? Why am I not surprised you were tight with the 80s? ;)

You still have the gorgeous long hair, a lion's mane which would be the envy of both men and women.

Miss you, lovely. xox
Kirsten Bett said…
Hi Eden! Yes the eighties, my favourite decade by far. I wore my hair like a palm tree on my head... Now in Covid my grey hair - I decided to stop colouring it in my early 50s, always kept it short but love growing it now. I would like to have a trim but alas... We will see where it ends, it is just reaching my shoulders now. Thanks for the great post, Kirsten
Brian George said…
Ha ha Eden, a lovely post. Now you know how to do it the next time that fashion comes around! Even guys have those problems. As a youth I remember when we close-cropped our hair as Mods, my brother discovered that if we wore a close-fitting bobble hat straight after washing our hair, we let it dry our hair would lay flat in a nice college boy style, and with a razored-in parting we'd be up to the minute style-wise. We were really happy when skin-head crops came in! Thanks also for giving me a new word in 'tuque,' I had to look that up.
Take care over there, we are also locked in again and cold. I hate it, I miss Asia like hell at the moment.
send me your email and I'll link you to a couple of my harp playing vids.
Wendy H. Jones said…
Truly brilliant Eden, that made me laugh. I think we ahve all been a slave to fashion at some point in our life. I remember getting my first Afghan coat. What a moment. Thank you for making me laugh
robhyman said…
Thanks for the article. It was fun. I particularly liked the part about ripped jeans...can't imagine why that caught my stare!!!
Eden Baylee said…
Hi Kirsten!

I wore my hair like a palm tree on my head << I howled at this!

Funny what we did for fashion. We may all come out of Covid with brand new hairstyles!

Happy Sunday !

Eden Baylee said…
Hey Brian,

You were a Mod? Hilarious! Did you have a scooter too? I would've taken you for a rocker instead.

I think "tuque" may be regional Canada-speak, haha!

Email coming your way. ;)

Eden Baylee said…
Hi Wendy,

Happy to make you laugh!

Afghan coat, wow... I'm not sure if those were as big in Canada as in the UK. I remember seeing the Beatles wear them and they certainly looked cool!

Have a great weekend,

Eden Baylee said…

Thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment, lovely.

I'll bet you looked good in a pair of Jordache in the eighties. ;)

Mapleleafman said…
Cute, funny post, Eden. I was single for most of the '80s so there was a lot of action that made those years memorable. Remember video bars? There was one beside my apartment building.
I've read that tuques/toques are call toboggans in some parts of the States. Bob and Doug McKenzie made them famous, I guess.
My style was basically suit and tie as I worked long hours back then.
Stay safe, everyone.
Reb MacRath said…
Fun post, Helen. One that got me thinking. Let me recall...The 80s...Yes, I stopped drinking in 1980, so I can actually remember the decade. I lived in San Francisco for the first 4 years and remember being in all-health-nut mode: working out, eating well, longish hair, etc. Mid-decade, I married--badly--and paid the price by getting fat and forgetting about fashion. Well, half of the decade was glorious, at least.
Eden Baylee said…
Hi Mapleleafman, thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment. I don't remember video bars, but I never hung out in bars, so that could be why I'd have missed them.
There is no way tuques can be mistaken for toboggans! That is funny though!

Have a great week,
Eden Baylee said…
Reb, nice you remember so much of the 80s. Sounds like you had lots going on. If half of it was glorious ... that's not too bad at all! :D

Hope you have a creative week,
Grow it big enough, and you can use it as a face covering :-)
Paulie said…
Time travel! Like a previous commenter, what with getting married and having two kids in that decade I barely remember what was popular. I have a vague recollection of the music being hideous. But I do remember Jordache. I never wore those but I did have at least one pair of YSL jeans. For twice the price of Levis or Wrangler you got half the lifespan.
Eden Baylee said…
Katherine, Ha, I suppose that's always a possibility, though I hate having my hair in my face.

Have a great week, eden
Eden Baylee said…
Hi Paulie, thanks so much for leaving a comment. <3

You were a busy man with marriage and kids in the 80s, so I'm sure fashion had its rightful place in the whole scheme of things. I agree the music was (for the most part) awful, but I loved a lot of it - so campy, disco, and so many one-hit wonders that are still played today.

YSL jeans? Wow, now THAT is designer! Maybe half the lifespan but you probably got twice the compliments. :D


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