Black History Month: Top Hair Pros Choose the Hottest Hairstyles of All Time

In honor of Black History Month, we asked top celebrity stylists and beauty pros to share their all-time favorite Black hairstyles. Jheri curls, braids, and fades—click through to see their picks.

Crystal G. Martin Feb, 26, 2014

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"I absolutely adore the 60’s bouffant! It was so chic, modern and feminine yet powerful! The 60s bouffant transcended ethnicities and was worn by actresses, singers everyday women. As a child, I would love it when my mother styled her hair like that. It pulled her look together and is just so elegant!"
Ted Gibson, celebrity stylist

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The fingers waves are my faves, too!  I’ve been doing hair since I was about 9-years-old, and  finger waves were one of my first hairtsyles that I did.  I learned so much from my grandmother—I remember her doing the press and curl."
Johnny Wright, celebrity stylist and Artistic Style Director for SoftSheen-Carson

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"I LOVE braids.  I wore them in high school in the late 70's with beads on the ends.  Then, when I got older, in my early twenties, the tinier the braids, the better.  I have had micro box braids and also, micro cornrows. I love that they turned your hair into art.  At that time, because I was younger and didn’t have as many responsibilities, I loved how long it took to get them done.  I always had a friend to do my hair and we would talk and listen to music and share some of the best stories and girlfriend moments.  And when they were done well, they lasted forever and my hair would always seems to grow so fast."
Lisa Price, creator of Carol's Daughter
 
 
 

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"I'm a 60's baby, so I was in high school in the 80s. The Jheri curl was everything to me! I was constantly changing my hair as a child, so I had a relaxer and had to grow it out—longest three months of my life!  I was working at the salon then—17-years-old making a couple hundred a week. The first day I wore  the Jheri curl to school, I had bought new Jordache jeans and a cute sweater with a zipper and matching pumps! They couldn't take me at school. I thought I was El DeBarge!"
Oscar James, celebrity hairstylist

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"I remember how MC Lyte brought the mushroom into the asymmetrical bob and then Salt n Pepa followed suit taking it up a notch and shaving the sides.  It was fun and creative and showed the wild and defiance  of the 80's. Even to this day the style shows the flare of fashion and can be updated easily."
Noel Reid Killings, celebrity stylist of Noel New York Salon and Boutique

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"I love the Afro because the look was so different and liberating. It was a style that helped us black people embrace our natural hair texture. It was revolutionary and it made a beautiful statement. In high school the bigger your the more popular you were. So I spent many evenings before going to bed having my hair braided by my sister Pam. The next day I would take my braids out and pick my fro out to the high heavens. Rather than being just a beautiful new hairstyle for Black people, the best statement it was 'I'm Black, and I'm Proud'." —Andre Walker, Oprah Winfrey's personal stylist and creator of The Gold System

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"The Fugees’ Lauryn Hill gave us the natural conscience sistah, and then when she broke out with the "Miseducation of Lauryn Hill,” an all-new hair look arrived. It was the acceptance nod for many to grow their hair into locs. Furthermore it was the official stamp of sexy natural hair.  In the late 90's I had locs and it was even more of a social movement than what they are now. I still wear my locs.  It has been the most liberating hairstyle for me and I have had almost all types of hairstyles.  Trust me."
Syreeta Scott, celebrity hairstylist and creator of Duafe hair care line

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"I'm a NYC, 70's baby so I grew up wearing cornrows. Sweet, simple, sassy—they were everything I wanted to be. Some of my best memories are sitting on the floor between my mom’s legs while she 'braided-me-up'. Proper braiding took hours, so it became hours of girl-time. And the convenience was unmatched. Humid city summers? No problem! An entire day in the water at Martha's Vineyard? No problem! Summers down-south with family?  No problem! Braids were the best answer to my curly and carefree childhood. These days I have fun with an easy, pretty side cornrow - think Zoe Saldana!" —Jodie Patterson, co-founder of DOOBOP and creator of the Georgia skincare line

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"Even though the bob has been very influential in my career, I don't consider it a 'black hairstyle.' When I think of Influential hairstyles, goddess braids come to mind. It's one of my favorite black styles. I remember wearing them as teenager and feeling so beautiful when I looked in the mirror. I was swinging them like it was a weave, hunni—couldn't tell me nothing! From Janet Jackson in Poetic Justice to present day Solange—they never go out of style."
Ursula Stephen, celebrity hairstylist and Global Ambassador for Motions South Africa



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"I love the razor cut with bangs that Janet Jackson rocked in the Pleasure Principal video. The cut moved so beautifully, especially when she danced. After the Pleasure Principal video came out everyone asked for the Janet Jackson cut—people still request it to this day!"
Larry Sims, got2b celebrity hairstylist

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