110 Cool Ways to Rock the Crimped Hair Trend


The ‘80s and early ‘90s crimped hair trend is back, making your modern looks edgier and sexier. Some say that bouncy waves are the new crimps, while others stick to the retro crimps in a layered hairstyle.  It’s best to draw inspirations from the hairstyles from the past to add some flair to their looks, or simply give you a style revamp. If you wish to add some spin to your daily looks, keep on reading for the cool ways to rock the crimped hair trend, along with our top tips to get the look.

What Is a Crimped Hair—and Where It Began?

Even though it became firstly popular during the 1970s, it made a comeback in 2007 when Chanel sent its model on the runway show wearing a crimped hair. A crimped hair got its name from its zigzag-wavy or saw-tooth look that is done on a naturally straight, relaxed, or straightened hair. In other parts of the world, crimps are also called as krinkles or deep waves.

Are you familiar of breezy beach waves and loose curls? Like curling, crimping is usually achieved with the help of crimping iron, but there are also some alternatives to get the look without the heat styling tool. Some take advantage of braiding the hair, using headbands, and removing the braids the next day just to get the look.

In 1972, the modern crimping iron was invented to give Barbara Streisand a crimped hair look. In fact, she made the crimped hair look popular, where crimping irons replaced the curling iron. Some hair trends come and go, but crimping usually return in its ten-year cycles.

Crimped Hair—and Different Hairstyles from the 90’s

In the 1990s, hair became an expression of one’s personality, individuality, and personal style. In fact, women became more daring in their hairstyle choices to make them look unique and fun. Singers Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera made the crimped hairstyle popular in the 1980s, while the flipped-out bob hairstyle introduced by actress Drew Barrymore, making the 60s-inspired look fresh.

If you’re a fan of F.R.I.E.N.D.S. television series, you might be familiar of Rachel Green, played by Jennifer Aniston. Her square-layered hairstyle in the show became popular, and even called as “The Rachel” hairstyle. Are you a big fan of high pigtails and up-dos? In the 1990s, girly up-dos were popularized by Spice Girls and Jennifer Love Hewitt.

Actress Winona Ryder made the pixie hairstyle popular in the 1990s for women, while a curtained hairstyle became popular for men, where the hair is parted in the middle and fell on the sides of one’s face just like curtains. Also, singer Gwen Stefani sported the mini-buns, or the Zulu knots and Bantu knots on her red carpets, making it mainstream.

Box braids became popular in African-American women in the 1990 because of its square, box-like shape, giving some spin to a classic braid. But sooner, a straight long hairstyle became a major trend for where flat irons became a necessity or every woman’s beauty routine, achieving a polished and sleek hairstyle.

Crimped Hair vs. Curly Hair

Whether you’ve got a naturally kinky hair, or simply want to incorporate some waves to your hair with crimps, you must know that science comes to play when we’re talking about your hair texture. The researchers found out that a curly hair is more complex than a straight hair and denser when it comes to its weight. Do you know that a curly hair is defined by more than its shape? In fact, the stiffness, weight, and thickness will depend on each individual.

If you’re wondering what makes hair curly, the answer lies on one’s genes. But technically, the curvature of your hair will depend on your follicle whether it’s symmetrical or asymmetrical. If you’re a woman with a straight hair that only means that you have a symmetrical follicle so your hair grows round and straight. On the contrary, an asymmetrical follicle causes the hair to curl. Also, researchers found out that kinky hair has uneven distribution of keratin, resulting to curled hair.

There are actually lots of kinky hair misconceptions—some say that it is hard to grow, while some believe that it is very hard and rough. For African women, a kinky hair will be challenging to manage only if you don’t know to take care of this naturally crimped texture. Do you know that a naturally crimped or kinky hair has a hard time retaining the natural oils from your scalp, leading to dry hair?

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Yes, a woman with a naturally kinky hair needs to do some extra care to nourish her strands. A naturally crimped hair looks tough, but it actually looks soft when hydrated. Also, a naturally crimped hair is easier to comb when it’s moisturized. Some women haven’t found the perfect hair care system or hair products for their hair, making their everyday looks challenging to manage.

The key is to find and discover the right hair care for your naturally crimped hair. Yes, a naturally crimped hair needs more creativity and care to look great, but sporting the crimped hair trend whether you’ve got a naturally straight hair or not only breaks those stereotypes and misconceptions about the Afro-textured hair.

Reasons to Try Crimped Hair Trend

It adds texture and volume to your thin hair.

Whether you wish to wear a high ponytail, up-do, or braid, crimped hair will add some volume to your thin hair. In fact, you can make your crown braids more attractive with a crimped hair over a flat, straight hair. Some women even call the style as a bubble braid since crimped hair gives great volume to your braided hairstyle. The key is to use the crimping iron instead of a flat iron before braiding your hair, so you’ll be able to add interesting texture and volume to your flat hair.

Hair crimping is an easy yet fashion-forward way to update your look.

If you’re not a big fan of elaborate hairstyles and romantic braids, a crimped hair will add some flair to your daily looks regardless how casual or laidback you are. If you want to rock an effortless ponytail, a crimped hair will make your casual hairstyle more glamorous. If you want to get a messy bed-head look, a crimped hair is just perfect to get the look. If you’re a big fan of vintage fashion, then a crimped hair will make your everyday hair retro inspired.

Any face shape can take advantage of a crimped hair.

Once you already know what your face shape is, it will be easier for you to make the crimped hair work to your advantage. While some face shapes like oval, oblong and such can go for an entire head of crimping, some face shapes like heart, round, and square will look better in partial crimping. The key is to know where to add volume and where to balance proportions, so you’ll get the right texture for your hair. If you like you may crimp bangs that will add some balance to your face.

A crimped hair is a great canvas to hone your creativity.

Crimped hair is versatile and stylish that will allow you to explore new hairstyles as long as you’re willing to experiment. When styled right, you can wear a crimped hair everywhere—business meetings, Sunday brunches, dinner dates, girl’s night outs, weddings, cocktail parties, formal affairs, lazy weekends, and such. Thankfully, the crimped texture will work with ponytails, space buns, braided hairstyles, pigtails, elaborate up-dos, and such.

Things You Should Know Before Crimping Your Hair

Heat styling tools—flat irons and curling irons—a crimping iron also uses heat to alter your hair’s texture, so it is best to use it n moderation to avoid damaging your hair. If you like, think of using braids to give your hair some break from harsh heat, but make sure they are not too tight, which can also lead to traction alopecia and hair loss. To be safe, save the crimped hair look for special events.

Before using a crimping iron, make sure your hair is fully dry, as you’ll only fry your hair when you apply heat while it is wet or damp. Also, don’t forget to apply a “heat protection” hair product before styling your hair, and use a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner prior to crimping your hair. If you wish to invest in a crimping iron, go for the right crimping size for you.

Crimped Hair Styling Inspirations for You

Depending on the hairstyle you’re trying to achieve, you can actually opt for a micro crimps or oversized crimps. If your hair is thin and flat, you can give some boost and volume to your looks with micro crimped hair. Most of the time, you can leave the top of your hair crimp-free that will give you a polished finish. If you want to add some volume to your braids, crimp your full hair.

Are you a big fan of sleek ponytail look? Add some utilitarian twist to your laidback hairstyle by crimping your hair. If you wish to get that bed head look, messy hair don’t care statement, and woke up like this hairstyle, then go for a crimped hair. It will add some personality to your style whether you’re just rocking a tee and jeans or your favorite sweatpants and sneakers.

If you’re not a big fan of loose and carefree hair, add some texture and bounce to your updo with a crimped hair. If you wish to channel your inner bohemian, get a free-spirited statement with a crimped hair. Do you know that the hairstyle can actually take off some years from your face? After all, a crimped hairstyle is the go to of kids and toddlers. The key is to keep everything simple and sleek.

If you want a sexy look, a crimped hair will also do the tricks for you. If you’re heading on a girl’s night out, the nostalgic hairstyle will give you a mysterious appeal and sexy spirit. To get a modern update on your crimped hair, go for bold colors and unexpected hues. Pink, purple, denim blue, red, and such will make a bold statement for you.

Who says mixing and matching is only for prints? You can actually mix and match the textures of your hair to give you a different look. Why not think of missing your straight hair with some crimps, or combine some romantic curls with your nostalgic crimps. In fact, it’s one of the modern takes on a timeless style that you can do.

If you want to bring back the 60s vibe, you may go for rolled bangs, but contrast it with some sharp edges and crimped texture on your hair that will bring out your effortlessly chic vibe. If you want a more rock and roll vibe, for a crimped hair in bold hue, and make it a bit symmetrical that will make everything edgy.

If you’re after a sleek, polished look, go for parallel crimps that will give you a more structured and professional look, and can take you from business meetings to casual weekends. To get a more fashion-forward statement, think of mixing your bold color and crimps. The key is to contrast your crimped hair with your bold pops of color to create a striking statement.

If you’re after a timeless style, go for a crimped ponytail. But to make it more modern and fashion-forward, trade your medium sized crimps larger crimps. If you can, add some interest to your braids with crimps that will work with any hairstyle. If you live in a city with a cold climate, you’re free to rock some frisky shoulder-length hair, and put it in an updo when you’re heading to the gym.

A great thing, hair crimping will also allow you to channel your fantasy. Do you dreamed of being a mythical creature? Think of fairytales, mermaid stories, snow white inspired stories, witches, and such. Yes, you can surely create the look of your favorite character with a crimped hair, adding some mystical touch to your daily looks.

If you’re tired of being a fairy god mother, then, channel your 80s punk rock with a crimped hair. If you’re a fan of retro look, then feel free to experiment with crimped hair. A great thing, the nostalgic hairstyle is also perfect for more romantic occasions. Think of weddings, garden parties, debuts, engagement parties, bachelorette parties, or even baby showers.

Just to make sure to keep your hair polished and sleek—no fly-away and bed head look that you usually go for a punk style. Instead, think of Jane Austen with grace and modesty that will give you a stunning look. If you love the style of California girls, channel the look with your crimped hair. The key is to make everything playful and fun since the California style is known for easy and carefree vibe.

Are you a big fan of Dutch braids? Then add some fresh and elegant spin to the classic hairstyle with a crimped hair. A great thing, the hair texture will add some volume to the look, giving the traditional look more modern. If you love puffy hairstyles, then take advantage of crimped hair to give you a goddess and ethereal look. This look will take you everywhere—adding some personality to your feminine style.

Do you know that varying textures will make your crimped hairstyle extra special? Just like the highlights that add some dimension to your looks, varying texture of crimped and straight hair will show off your creative personality. The key lies to strategically placing crimps and straight hair to create the romantic look. A great thing, this will look perfect for all occasions.

To make your trendy look more flattering, think of your face shape. Depending on the roundness and angularness of your facial structure, you can go for a hairstyle that grazes your eyes or highlighting your cheekbones. This way, a long, straight hair will never look the same. If you are bored with your hairstyle, go for a bold look with crimped hair. After all, this nostalgic style will give a daring vibe to your typical look.

When experimenting on your hairstyle, mix not only textures, but also different styles of braids and classic hairstyles. If you want to pull your hair back, think of a braid to update your classic ponytail, but go for a crimped hair to make a big difference. After all, crimping will add lots of volume to your basic hairstyle, making everything polished yet creative.

To make things more create, vary the sizes of your crimps. You can go for micron crimps, medium sized crimps, large crimps, and even oversized crimps that will add interest to your looks. A great thing, you’ll be able to rock an editorial worthy look that you usually see in glossy pages of high fashion magazines. More than that, the creative crimped hairstyle will take you anywhere.

Wearing modern and medieval inspired hairstyle might seem like a paradox, but you can actually create the look with some creativity and inspiration. Go for hair accessories that showcase Renaissance era, the ones you see in fairytale books and medieval novels, then, incorporate a modern crimped hair look that will breathe new life to your style.

If you want a quirky and playful hairstyle, go for exaggerated crimps that will reflect your fun personality. If you have some barely-there highlights, then you’re doubling up your statement. Remember, the crimped texture adds volume to your basic hairstyle, making it classy and elegant. If you can, add some unexpected twist to your hairstyle to channel your diverse personality.

If you don’t have much time to experiment on your hairstyle, simply opt for a crimped hair and a bold hair color that will do the tricks for you. Some women even go for loose braids that will highlight the texture of a crimped hair, while some intentionally goes for messy hairstyle that look effortless. Do you know that crimping can even help you control your frizz and fly away strands?

If you want a futuristic look, go for a crimped hair in metallic colors. Yes, metallic colors have the reputation of being futuristic, especially the silver gray shade that will take your hairstyle to the next level. A great thing, the ashy color of your metallic silver hair can also blend with the winter months, giving you a statement look on colder seasons.

If you’re looking for a stunning bridal look, trade those curls into crimps that will give you an ethereal and innocent look. To make everything extra romantic, add some bangs to your style. Do you know that crimping your hair near the roots will also give you a more voluminous hairstyle without looking over the top? You may think of an elaborate headpiece or a dainty hair clip to finish your look.

New Year and new season are the perfect opportunities to get a complete makeover. Try a stylish color, a crimped hair, a fashion-forward haircut and such. A great thing, crimped hair looks amazing from shorter to longer hair. If you’ve got some bowl cut or pixie, don’t fret as micro crimps will still work on you. If you’ve got a bob haircut, go for medium to large crimps to add some volume to your hair.

How to Crimp Your Own Hair

Before everything, make sure you already have what you need in crimping your hair. It’s best to use a good moisturizing shampoo when washing your hair. If you’re after a good volume in your crimped hairstyle, use a volume enhancing shampoo instead. Crimping iron, blow dryer, brush, hair clips and such are some of the essential styling tools you need.

Before doing the crimping, make sure your hair is clean and dry. If you want, you may even blow dry your hair. To make the crimping seamless, brush your hair and remove the knots. Depending on the type of hairstyle you want to achieve, part your hair into sections, securing the untouched side with hair clips. Before crimping your hair, apply some heat protector.

You can actually use your old-school crimper that creates super-fine kinks or opt for a crimpling iron that gives a more modern, geometric look. According to experts, the thinner your hair, the lower heat you should apply. Most of the time, five to ten seconds of time is enough to crimp your hair. Or, limit the portions of hair that you crimp to avoid extensive damage.

Do you know that 80s hairstyles were often achieved with the help of braids? You can actually try the braiding method so you don’t have to use heat. Some women just crimp the top layers of their hair for a more carefree vibe while other use a zig-zag crimpling iron just to create a more fashion-forward and modern look.

If you’re thinking of crimping your hair overnight, without the use of crimpling iron, then it’s good as you’ll lessen the chances of damaging your hair. As a rule of thumb, start with a fresh hair and wait for it to dry—it should be damp, but never wet. Follow your typical parting and divide your hair into sections.  Start braiding each section and secure the look with elastic or hair clips.

If you want a defined crimp on your hair, go for tighter braids. On the contrary, looser braids will result to looser curls. Depending on the style of crimps, you may go for partial braids, side braids, large braids, or micron braids. All you need is to sleep on the braids, but secure the look with a silk scarf to avoid getting a frizzy hair in the morning.

When you need to style your hair, remove your braids, combing your strands with your fingers. Just be careful using a brush or comb as it will likely cause your hair to get tangles. Most of the time, you’ll need a hairspray to set the crimped look and make it last all day. Feel free to experiment with ponytail, updo, or half up half down look to create the hairstyle that you want.

If you want to use a curling rod instead of braiding your hair, you still need to start with a clean hair. Start dividing your part, and twisting your hair and place it on the curling rods. If you know how to use a curling iron, simply wrap your hair around the curling rod the same way you would do with the curling iron. Remember, the tighter you wrap them is the finer your crimps.

Just like the braids, sleep with your curling rods on, allowing your hair to create the curly shape. In the morning, finger comb your hair and set your look with a hairspray. If you don’t have curling rods, simply use your headband to create crimps. All you need is to wrap your hair around your headband overnight. This might be a trickier technique, but with practice you can create the look that you want.

Crimped hair is your best choice whether you want to pull off a super high ponytail, let your crimped tresses hang loose, or rock some futuristic hairstyle. By heeding these tricks, you’ll be able to rock the ‘80s crimped hair trend in a more fashion-forward yet unexpected way.


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