Story: Personal grooming

'Up do', 1870s–1880s

'Up do', 1870s–1880s

These two young ladies wearing elaborate hairstyles were photographed in Whanganui in the 1870s or 1880s. Their identical hairstyles featured ringlets falling at the back and a very high bun rising from the forehead. Both the ringlets and the buns were probably supplemented with hairpieces, including 'rats' (parcels of hair or similar material, used within the bun to provide bulk). The ringlets are likely to have been produced using curling irons, invented in 1872, or by wrapping wet hair around rags and leaving it until dry.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library, William James Harding Collection (PAColl-3042)
Reference: 1/4-008029-G
Photograph by William James Harding

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Bronwyn Dalley, 'Personal grooming - Women’s hair', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 18 July 2024)

Story by Bronwyn Dalley, published 5 Sep 2013