bad jokes, hosting drama, and all-around cultural tone-deafness, there’s one thing that remains a bright spot in the increasingly-confused Oscars production: stellar beauty looks. That’s because no matter who’s snubbed or what unbelievable onstage kerfuffles might transpire, there’s never a shortage of iconic hair looks, from Halle Berry’s famous pixie to Angelina Jolie’s casual bombshell blowout.
But Hollywood’s biggest beauty pageant isn’t just pretty to look at — it feeds our hairstyling inspo (and wedding-prep Pinterest boards) for years to come. Remember Michelle Williams’ perfect side-swept updo and bangs at the 2006 awards? It looks just as fresh today. Think you can’t bring versatility to a buzzcut? Check out Danai Gurira at the 2018 awards. Afraid headbands are best left in the seventh grade? Lupita Nyong’o proves otherwise. We could go on — and we do, ahead, with 12 of the most impactful, timeless, and copied hairstyles in Oscars history.
Julia Roberts, 2001
Coiffed updos can be tricky: Thanks to the popularity of bouffants in the ’50s and ’60s, the sculpted style can easily feel retro. But with a deep part and just a bit of volume at the crown, Roberts ushered in a take on the style that proved to be timeless (and just as memorable as her black-and-white Valentino gown).
Photo: David McNew/Getty Images.
Halle Berry, 2002
In the annal of perfect pixies, Berry’s remains a standout, thanks to piece-y styling and subtle highlights that picked up the golden and burgundy hues of her gown.
Michelle Williams, 2006
The timeless pairing of
matte red lipstick with a mustard-yellow dress tends to get the credit for this iconic beauty look, and for good reason… but Michelle’s hair! The bafflingly undone, yet Oscar-worthy updo, thanks in part to perfectly-shaped bangs and face-framing pieces, is one for the books. Photo: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images.
Jennifer Aniston, 2009
When it comes to effortless beauty, Aniston might be the reigning queen of Cali-cool. But even she kicks it up a notch for Hollywood’s biggest night. Here, the star upped her third-day beach wave game with a sleek little hairline braid.
Photo: Dan MacMedan/WireImage.
Viola Davis, 2012
The celebrated actress made a major statement on the 2012 red carpet by ditching her
wigs and showing off her natural hair. “Hair by Mae Alice Davis, my mama,” she said. She later told us of her decision to wear her natural hair publicly that year: “It was liberating to be on that carpet on my terms.” Photo: Gregg DeGuire/Getty Images.
Angelina Jolie, 2012
This was the year Angelina Jolie’s leg got all the attention — and its own
Twitter account. But we were (and remain) firmly focused on the full-bombshell hair. Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images.
Lupita Nyong’o, 2014
We remember Lupita’s first red carpet season like it was yesterday. A standout among so many noteworthy looks from her debut? This Oscars moment, in which she arrived like a princess wearing the most sparkling of Fred Leighton headbands — something that made us run out to
(well, give or take a few figures). cop our own Photo: Jeff Vespa/WireImage.
Zendaya Coleman, 2015
Seeing Zendaya’s gorgeous waist-long locs on the red carpet was a breath of fresh air, and a welcome moment of representation (despite the
ignorant comments). “My wearing my hair in locs on an Oscar red carpet was to showcase them in a positive light, to remind people of color that our hair is good enough,” she shared on Instagram. Photo: Jeff Kravitz/WireImage.
Jennifer Lopez, 2015
If there’s one hair look J. Lo does well, it’s the grown-up pony. Her trademark style is always perfectly-coiffed: pulled back tight and cascading straight down to the center of her back.
Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images.
Chrissy Teigen, 2016
Sure, Chrissy Teigen’s Rapunzel-like braid looks cool from the front, but check out the
detail: a cluster of smaller, uneven plaits join a single voluminous braid down her back. Photo: Todd Williamson/Getty Images.
Emma Stone, 2017
When you’re up for the biggest award in your field — and countless photographers will be taking your picture — it’s about landing on a hairstyle that looks modern, yet feels timeless. Stone’s stylist
Mara Rozak created a deep-cut lob that was both a nod to ’30s Hollywood glamour and a style we all wanted to bookmark for later. Photo: Jeff Kravitz/WireImage.
Danai Gurira, 2018
Between her roles on
The Walking Dead and Black Panther, fans know Danai Gurira as an on-screen badass. The star carried that symbol of strength straight to the Oscars red carpet last year when wearing a meaningful style created by Vernon Scott, who looked to traditional, ancestral tribal African designs as his inspiration. Photo: VALERIE MACON/AFP/Getty Images.
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