Tinker Bell Circa 1953

The Wall Street Journal published a cute piece on the stylish hairstyles of young female Disney characters: “Dishing on Disney Hairdos.”  The article drops names like hair-stylist-to-the-stars, Ken Paves, as being the inspiration behind many of these styles.

But the significance of these changing hairstyles goes deeper than just how well the characters’ styles mirror those of real-life starlets.  They indicate a positive change in how girls can and should perceive themselves.

What do I mean?  Look at the pics of Cinderella, Snow White and Tinker Bell from the last century.  Their hair is prefectly coiffed, even while they’re busy cleaning for their ugly step sisters, flying around Never Never Land or running away from an evil step mother.  God forbid that they should appear messy and dirty!

But fast forward a few decades and you see characters like Rapunzel and Merida with long, messy, frizzy hair.  They don’t look any less beautiful but rather real, energetic and truly animated.  In fact, one of the reasons I wanted to see Merida was her hair!  She looked so much like my daughter Laila whose own long, curly, full-of life hair can’t possibly remain coiffed thanks to the fun, high paced, even crazy life she leads.

Let’s hope Tinkerbell in the upcoming “Secret of the Wings” can loosen her chignon a tad 😉

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