Nostalgic hairstyles have been Instagram and TikTok fodder for several seasons, to varying levels of lift-off IRL. From piece-y tendrils to banana clips and chunky fame-framing highlights, we’ve become infatuated by the polarising hairstyles of the past. But only one hair looks seems to have circumnavigated the fast-moving cycle of micro-trends to truly hit the mainstream – the ’90s rounded blow out.
Popularised throughout the decade by the supermodels of the era, the 90s rounded blow out is characterised by its bottom-heavy structure. The hair at the crown is rolled up and over a rounded barrel brush for ample lift at the roots, curving outward through the lengths before softly turning in and under at the ends. Kim Kardashian West has been wearing a sleek iteration for months, while Selena Gomez made her red carpet return with a thick rounded bob at last year’s American Music Awards.
Unlike a lot of directional celebrity hair trends, the ’90s rounded blow out is a surprisingly wearable, flattering look. Thanks to the bouncy, not-quite-straight but not-quite-curled aesthetic, the effect is soft on most face shapes and helps to pump up the volume on even the limpest of locks – so it suits most hair types, which only serves to cement its staying power.
It works on all hair lengths too and cuts, as best demonstrated below by Dua Lipa and her long, glossy glamour blow dry. The singer’s hairstylist Chris Appleton (who also works with Kardashian West on the regular) has championed the look for some time on his Hollywood clientele.
The sister trend to the ’90s rounded blow out sees the style inverted with ends flipped outwards rather than curved inwards. Hailey Bieber has been a big proponent of the perky style, which takes root in ’60s mod culture before it got a preppy revamp in the early ’00s. Ariana Grande and Megan Thee Stallion are fans of the playful look too.
So dust off your barrel brushes and heat up your hot rollers – this is one look that will be sticking a-round (ugh, sorry) for some time yet. Shop our essential edit to help you achieve (and keep!) the look at home below.
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