Ask Chuck: Oldies but goodies, still in style?

By Charles Colson
Jan. 9, 2014 at midnight
Updated Jan. 8, 2014 at 7:09 p.m.

Charles, I bet you don't remember some of the old styles that were so popular even from the '60s. I still remember wearing my hair in the ducktail. Does this still ring a bell? It sure did look attractive on me.

Oh yes, it certainly brings back memories. Don't mark them off yet - they are still in style, especially since you said the ducktail was becoming to you. Would you believe I just recently had a request for this style because she couldn't find a hairdresser who knew what she was talking about?

I found that her hair grew to the middle at the nape line, and after trimming her hair for that style, I saw quickly that this still was a perfect style for her, personally. I reminded her that a style never goes out if it still complements you.

It was interesting how her hair fell right into place and had just that little bit of natural curl that could easily be controlled. This still is perfect for brushing it away from your face and together and up at the back above the neckline. It can easily be dressed up for evening wear by placing attractive pins and pearls along each side of the ducktail.

And believe it or not - it is quite easy to sleep on and stay in style. She was quite impressed that a hairdresser still remembered how to pin-curl hair to add body and volume to this style. I'm sure many of you will remember how popular these type styles were, especially in the '60s. Don't knock it till you try it. What goes around comes back around. Sound familiar?

Well, since we are talking about somewhat older styles, have you ever heard of the bussleback? Can hairdressers do this one also? I loved my hair styled this way.

Yes, but you need to find that right one who has been in business for a number of years. Actually, the bussleback is a variation of the ducktail style but flares up fuller in the back. It, too, requires pin-curling. This takes a little bit of time but sure does last longer than using curling irons and blow dryers. It can be done at home but just let it dry naturally if you don't have a hair dryer that dries it quickly and completely.

The bussleback is quite attractive in salt-and-pepper hair color or even hair that has been streaked evenly. Never fear, the stylist who knows about this creation knows how to dress it up also, so you won't feel you are an old lady.

Also like the ducktail style, this one lasts for three to four days without having to restyle it. I bet that sounds interesting and unbelievable to many of you. These two styles do require shorter lengths that are tapered on the sides and back to conform to the head shape. I've had several tell me their hair is no fuss, no muss for them to keep. How about it, do you have the courage to try it again? I bet the compliments will be phenomenal.

Since we are talking about styles that we think are outdated, how about one for men that is called the flattop. My husband is still looking great with one, and I know it is at least 50 years old. Is he really outdated?

Definitely not. I remember men wearing the flattop back in the early 50s. And would you believe it still looks great to this day on the guys who can wear it well?

It actually started during the Vietnam war when the young guys wore caps so much that their hair just wouldn't grow very fast. I wanted to wear it also, but my hair was naturally wavy, and the barber couldn't get it to flatten just right. It also began appearing when the guys were growing out of a crew cut.

The flattop is and was quite a popular style in which men had no problem keeping it neat at all times. It sure keeps the guys' heads cooler, and they used a wax to keep it looking perfectly flat. So never fear that your husband is out of date, and I'm quite sure he is envied by many who wish they could wear it. I believe it is easy to find a barber who will still knows what a flattop should look like. If you have any problem, just call or email me, and I'll try and locate one for you. Just think, we could have more men walking around looking quite spiffy.

Several years ago, I wore my hair in a simple cut in which I had somewhat longer lengths on the top, sides and back but had quite a short neckline that swerved to one side but seemed to really set off an attractive style. Does this bring any back memories to you? I sure would love to have it cut that way again.

Oh, yes, that cut was called the honeyhug. You are right, it was quite an attractive style and quite easy to control. It was used a number of times in contest work in which stylists were awarded trophies for the best creations.

It still would fit in today's styling techniques and looks quite well with hair that has been streaked with blonde or golden shades. It also can be dressed up for evening wear. It, however, does require hair that can be cut into a smooth neckline that easily lays flat against the neck. This style is perfect for most all ages, especially women older than 40.

All you need to do is find that right hairdresser who is educated in early styles and especially one who recognizes the name honeyhug.

Let 2014 be a year of trying new styles and colors. Don't worry - it does grow out if you don't like it. But I think its worth the gamble. Who knows, it might just take 10 years off with a younger style? Remember: Styles are like songs; there will always be oldies but goodies.

Charles Colson is a local hair stylist and registered massage therapist. You may email hair or massage questions to or call 361-575-5331.



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