When you think of 80s style, the first things that come to mind are probably neon, spandex, and big hair.
There was much more to the 80s than just a huge can of Aqua Net, though it did play a big part.
Everyone had their favorite 80s look. Some were prep, some were punk, and others were just extreme.
So grab your Billy Idol 8-track and put on some leg warmers as we go back in time to look at some of the styles that gave the 80s their fashion identity.
80s Hair styles
For women, 80s style was, indeed, big hairstyles. Armed with hairspray and a curling iron, women could make their hair do just about anything.
Bangs were usually big and feathered back and to the sides or completely straight and blunt. Crimping irons and perms were wildly popular, but the bangs still had to be straight and blunt to contrast, and speaking of contrast, bleach blonde with dark roots was one trendy way to go. If not bleach blonde, then it was definitely a rich, deep burgundy.
Not to be outdone by the ladies, some men would also perm and tease their long tresses, hair-band style.
The men wore longer feathered hairstyles, and the exceptionally brave guys might have sported a mohawk.
Men also began to shun sideburns early in the decade, opting instead for thick mustaches and the business in front, party in back mullet.
80s Clothes Style
The hair went perfectly with the 80s clothes. Synthetic fabrics, bright colors, and anything bleach stained or paint splattered were absolute must-haves for both men and women.
Layers of band shirts, vests and blazers over either parachute pants or anything tight and stonewashed were what all the fashion-savvy individuals were wearing.
The fashionable women of the 80s loved bright colors, right down to the neon array of plastic jelly shoes.
Women wore a lot of lace, shoulder pads seemed to be in every garment but swimsuits, and women wore these bulked-up tops and jackets over some very slim and tapered bottoms.
Leggings were all the rage, especially if there was lace at the ankle. The 80s were all about layers, so the leggings were great under either spandex mini-skirts or pleated skirts, but they were equally fashionable under just a blazer…with shoulder pads, of course.
Destructed 80s jeans, usually acid-washed or bleached, were tight and tapered at the ankle, but because of brightly colored slouch socks, the cousin of leg warmers, the ankles of the pants were usually indiscernible.
For the professional man, suits with pinstripes were in, along with narrower neckties.
The suit jacket could also double as casual wear over a brightly colored polo or t-shirt, with the sleeves rolled up.
If no jacket was worn, popped collars were crucial for coolness. Another popular item during the 80s was the Hawaiian shirt, possibly under the versatile jacket. Men also discovered the comfortable tracksuit, complete with matching top and bottom.
However, men also loved tight, destructed acid-washed jeans topped off with a band shirt and jacket.
Fun, bright, and extreme are a few words to describe 80s style.
Some trends have disappeared with the decade, but some have come back in a big way, even though we never thought they would.
Skinny jeans, jelly shoes and neon are fashionable once again, but the cone bra, not so much.