Eighties Hair

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
Ah, the 80s, when Aqua Net, Jhirmack, and Vidal Sassoon thumbed their noses at gravity.[1]

"Feathered hair and a mullet... this hair came to play!"
"We see a variety of hair styles in rock groups these days, huh? One must never underestimate the power of a good hairdo. I'd like to write a song about hairdos - not about the people under them; then the 'dos have the power by themselves."

You are flipping through channels. Suddenly a woman comes into view that has huge bangs.[3] You can not help it. You shout "Eighties Hair!" Be it the Jheri curl, wanton crimping, the feathered and volumized big hair, or the mullet, hair from The Eighties sticks out.

Also a reaction to Michael Knight, Angus MacGyver, etc.

This trope even exists in Anime, which normally has its own kind of crazy hair.

When this occurs in material that is supposed to be set in the future (relative to the time it was created) you have an example of No New Fashions in the Future.

A Sub-Trope of Fashion Dissonance and Bigger Is Better.

Compare Giant Poofy Sleeves, Mega Twintails, and Seventies Hair.

Examples of Eighties Hair include:

Anime & Manga

  • Bubblegum Crisis is a rather glaring example... especially since it's supposed to be set Twenty Minutes Into the Future.
    • Handwaved as it's noted that the Eighties has come back in fashion - Priss's band plays "oldies", aka Hair Metal/Glam Metal.
  • In Wedding Peach Abridged, Limone mocks Pluie's "hideous devil mullet."
  • Bleach is notorious for this. Grimmjow's release is a rather glaring example. Kubo never did get over the eighties, did he?
    • During the fight with Ulquiorra, Ichigo begins sporting a mullet as well. Thankfully, it doesn't last very long.
      • And guess what? Aizen has a mullet now too.
      • After using Final Getsuga Tensho, Ichigo gets one again.
      • Many fans think that the mullet is a symbol of power now.
    • After the timeskip, Renji manages to get a mullet that comes out of his pony tail.
  • To some extent, Keiichi from Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, in certain scenes. The show is set in the early eighties, so it makes some sense.
    • Rika, definitely. In certain scenes, it becomes quite apparent how much hair that little nine year old has. This is even apparent in the sound novels, where most other characters' bodies and hair are more realistic.
    • What about those motorcycle guys?
  • Every Yuu Watase Bishounen ever is all mullet.
  • Bastard!! is a crowning achievement in 80s cheese, complete with giant feathered hair on most characters.
  • Every Gundam show set in the UC era, due to the fact that the most notable of UC shows were made in the eighties. Gundam Unicorn, set during UC 0096, keeps this for the sake of continuity, even though it started in 2010.
    • It does get considerably better in the 0100s, with Mobile Suit Gundam F91 and V Gundam having much less 80s hair, having been made in the 90s.
    • G Gundam though featured some main characters like Kyoji who sport arguably mullets.
  • Saint Seiya first aired in 1986. It shows! Sideburns abound, seriously. Also a glaring example (in the anime) of You Gotta Have Blue Hair, which, when combined with this trope, is a little weird.
    • It gets more than a little weird during the Sanctuary/Golden Cloth arcs, where Phoenix Ikki has a decently sized mullet hanging down, but when he donned the Phoenix Cloth's helm, his mane was suddenly drawn as flowing halfway down his back.
  • Folken from Vision of Escaflowne has a mullet.
    • So does Giovanni Gallo from Heat Guy J (which was made by the same people behind Escaflowne.)
  • Dancougar is another fantastic example. Especially notable is Ryo, who looks like part of a Hair Metal band. Then again, before becoming a Super Robot pilot, he kinda was.
  • Slayers stars a main character with a headband and some impressively huge bangs, even for an anime. Not much of a coincidence since the original novels began in the 80's.
  • The original Dirty Pair is an extremely notorious perpetrator of the Poofy Hair syndrome, especially Kei. And especially Yuri.
  • Due to the eras when they were in vogue, anime with character designs by Akemi Takada and Atsuko Nakajima were all over this trope. Their early-to-mid '90s designs were no exception.
  • Fist of the North Star. "You're already mulleted."
  • Deunan and Athena from the 1988 Appleseed OVA.
    • Being drawn shortly later, Ghost in The Shell also suffers from it. Most adaptations of the manga avert it, except for Togusa, who always keeps rockin' his mullet.
  • Quite a few of the Yu-Gi-Oh! guys have mullets, as mocked in Yu-Gi-Oh the Abridged Series
  • In the Karaoke Christmas Special of Detective Conan, Tatsuya and his bandmates exhibit this.
  • Oh Saiyuki you and your love of mullets.

Comic Books

  • Teen Titans: Starfire and that...thing she's got attached to her scalp.
    • Her hairstyle has changed recently, it's wavy more-so then curly; it's incredibly long and thick, but it looks like normal hair nowadays. Her Tiny Titans and Teen Titans depictions show her with straight hair; though they've both temporarily been shown with the original style as a Mythology Gag.
  • Tony Stark (Iron Man), especially during the second Michelenie/Layton run e.g. the Armor Wars, could be found with a Jheri curl during the 80s.
  • Even though it was during the 90s, Superman had a mullet after his resurrection.
  • The comic book sequel to The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, The Good The Bad And The Uglier, presumably wasn't able to acquire permission to use a likeness of Clint Eastwood in the role of Blondie. As a result, he's hilariously replaced with a near-perfect likeness of Solid Snake, complete with a charmingly anachronistic mullet. Lampshaded in that the first scene in the comic shows Blondie walking into a barber's shop for a haircut, but it's a ruse - he leaves his boots under the barber's smock and escapes through the back door to surprise the sniper watching him through the window. When the barber offers him a complementary shave and haircut, he frustratingly declines.
  • Sally Acorn, and pretty much every original character from the Sonic the Hedgehog Archie Comics.
  • When Todd McFarlane drew Spider-Man in the late 80s he not only gave Spidey a new look but made his new bride Mary Jane over by changing her hairstyle from her old hairstyle, (long and straight with bangs), to full on big, permed out Eighties hair. This is arguably justified. Since MJ is a fashion model and actress, it only makes sense for her to take to the latest styles (even if the look doesn't age well as real-world years go by).
  • The female X-Men Storm and Rogue got big hair when Marc Silvestri became penciler in the late Eighties. Also extra-dimentional Longshot joined the group bringing his trademark mullet with him.
  • She Hulk, at least until her mini before Civil War.
  • George Pérez seems to like this. Just look up his designs of Wonder Woman and Scarlet Witch, for example.
  • Infamously, the Beyonder. Although the fact that he had no experience with the world and, therefore, no taste was certainly deliberate in his clothes, etc.


  • The Wedding Singer invokes this trope.
  • Of all things, Watchmen. Yes, it was set in the 80s, but Ozymandias's... floppy... side-banged... thing is the only really Egregious example, and it stands out all the more strongly because of it. He still manages to induce all kinds of Perverse Sexual Lust anyway, because it looks damn good on him.
  • A View to a Kill was the only Bond film to truly suffer this, from Stacey's feathery bangs to Mayday's box cut. To say nothing of the ladies' makeup...
  • Hobgoblins, taken to extremes.
  • Evidently, viewers of Labyrinth were too distracted by...something... to remember that Jareth's hair is a damn good example of eighties hair.
    • But notably subverted with the protagonist, Sarah, in every scene but the masquerade ball.
  • Adventureland, being set in the 80s, has a few good examples.
  • Eriq LaSalle's character in Coming to America and his entire family all have Jheri curls, leading to a hilarious moment when his family stands up... and they all leave behind "juice" stains on the couch.
  • Who could forget Sarah Connor's massive femullet in The Terminator?
  • Joan Cusack's hair in Working Girl defies the laws of physics.
  • Played for laughs in Joe Dirt, where the eponymous Joe Dirt has an ass-ugly mullet. Its actually a wig his mother put on him as a baby, on account him being born without the top of his skull. The bones apparently grew and got infused with it, leaving poor Joe stuck with it.
  • Some of boxer "Irish" Mickey Ward's sisters in The Fighter as evidenced in this clip.
  • Heather Graham in the 1988 teen comedy starring the two Coreys, License To Drive.
  • Almost everyone in The Lost Boys has Eighties Hair, especially the eponymous vampires.
  • In the flashbacks to the 80s in The Wood, the common hairstyles for black men during the 80s are shown, such as the Jheri curl and the high top fade (basically Will's hair in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air).

Live-Action TV

  • Life On Mars (Seventies Hair) and Ashes to Ashes.
  • Several episodes of Quantum Leap that take place in the '80s feature, appropriately enough, Eighties Hair; this is complicated by the fact that the show started airing in the late eighties, so some episodes that don't take place in the eighties feature it as well.
    • "The Leap Back" takes place mostly in 1999, yet Sam's wife and Al's girlfriend both have pretty standard '80s Hair. (The episode itself first aired in Fall 1991.)
  • 21 Jump Street was a huge offender. It's impossible to watch an episode without screaming, "EIGHTIES HAIR!!!!!"
  • Averted in UFO (a '70s sci-fi show set in the future world of 1980) as everyone wore wigs.
  • Ryan Stiles in Whose Line Is It Anyway? sports an endearing mullet.
  • Diana the smoking hot alien leader from V switched from a elegant look in the two miniseries to classic eighties poofy hair when the series was launched. Not coincidentally she became much less hot as a result.
  • Jimmy from Out of Jimmy's Head. Of course, it's slightly justified since it was the style at the time.
  • Seen in Friends whenever there are flashbacks to their childhood. Most notable example is "The One With All The Thanksgivings, with Ross and Chandler sporting ridiculous A Flock of Seagulls haircuts.
    • Some of the hairstyles during the first season are also very 80's-ish (most notably Matt LeBlanc's). At the same time, many of the other hairstyles during that season seem stuck in a weird middle-ground between the 80's and 90's. By Season 2, the series would finally have 90's hair and fashions down pat.
  • Many regular and guest characters on Doctor Who in the 80s.
    • River Song (introduced in 2008) is known for her bushels of wild, curly hair.

Eleventh Doctor: Oh, here comes the hair...

Moseby: And by the way, it's afro, Jheri curl, then fade.

  • Sally Knyvette, who played Jenna Stannis in Blakes Seven, actually had to add extra hair to make her own seem fuller; fortunately, she was allowed to drop it in Season 2.
    • Contrary to popular jokes about B7 being all about jumpsuits and perms, Gareth Thomas and Steven Pacey didn't actually sport perms. Both of them have quite fluffy, curly hair in real life. Only Jan Chappell sported some truly awful perms, especially around the first season.
    • Soolin's hairdos in Season 4 scream early Eighties.
  • Many aliens on early episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
    • What about Troi? Here's her in the show and here's her in the movies. Notice a difference?
  • MacGyver - Richard Dean Anderson is one of the few men who can pull off a mullet and have it look good.
  • Parodied in a skit by The Vacant Lot in which all the cast members go back in time and return with a period-authentic hairdo. All of them get admitted to an exclusive present-day nightclub except for Rob Gfroerer, who travelled back to The Eighties and returned with Mike Score’s hairstyle from A Flock of Seagulls.
  • The Comeback: Lisa Kudrow's character has 80s hair, which is lampshaded when she brings out a poster of herself from the 1980s with the exact same hair and then mentions how much her hair has changed.
  • Some female televangelists had big 80s hair. Examples include Rexella Van Impe, Jan Crouch, and Beth Moore. Even when it's short hair, it tends to look like Pat Benatar. The only time they truly drop the 80s look is when they're trying to distance themselves from their sordid, seedy past, for instance Melissa Scott, and even then she seems to have adopted Sarah Jessica Parker's early, bookish look.
  • Jennifer in the last couple of seasons of Family Ties.
  • Murphy and Corky Sherwood on the first few seasons of Murphy Brown.
  • Back when she was in high school, Emily Prentiss was a goth with massive '80s Hair. Take a look here.


  • Fashion Magazines were, of course, all over this trope.
  • A really funny one is the cover of the December 1985 issue of Playboy. Barbie Benton is wearing a sable coat, and her hair is still several times thicker than the fur. That's how you can tell you have proper eighties hair.


  • Hair Metal
  • All over 80s music videos, of course, but perhaps most memorably in Whitesnake's "Here I Go Again", where singer David Coverdale's luxurious locks compete heroically with then-girlfriend Tawny Kitaen's.
  • In "Stop to Love" by Luther Vandross, backup singer Lisa Fischer has the most epic mohawk weave you'll ever see outside anime.
  • The Visual Shock and Kote Kei variants of Visual Kei, owing to similar roots with Hair Metal.

Professional Wrestling

  • "The Nature Boy" Ric Flair had AWESOME 80s hair, and most wrestlers hung onto their mullets well past their sell-by-date. (Michael Cole had a mullet well into the "Attitude" Era.)
  • Dolph Ziggler is currently sporting a frizzy blond mullet with no apparent irony. Combined with his exaggeratedly "healthy" tan, he looks a great deal like the late Curt Hennig, a.k.a. "Mr. Perfect" (and, coincidentally, has a theme song with the title of "Perfection").
    • He has now trimmed back his 'do (and may be undergoing a Heel Face Turn to boot).

Video Games

  • Fanboys initially complained massively about Solid Snake's minor redesign for Metal Gear Solid 2 because of his (admittedly fairly tasteful) mullet.
    • This would wind up being the least of their problems...
    • When asked what he thought of it, David Hayter replied, "I try not to think of it as a mullet."
    • Kind of justified, as Metal Gear started in the Eighties and was highly influenced by late-Eighties science fiction, and has a Eighties mentality about it that verges on Zeerust in later games like Metal Gear Solid 4.
  • Demyx of Kingdom Hearts fame has a strange mullet mohawk hairstyle. This among other characteristics leads to the point where he's usually compared to another '80s hair icon.
  • The Emperor from Final Fantasy II has this in spades in both that game and Dissidia Final Fantasy. Even more so, though, in the latter game, due to the voice acting sounding remarkably like David Bowie... and The Emperor's hairstyle looking much like Jareth's. In fairness to the Emperor, though, he was originally invented and designed in The Eighties, so he comes by it honestly.
  • Paul Lee from Backyard Hockey.
  • General Lionwhyte from Brutal Legend has extremely wild 80s hair; in fact, it gave him the power to fly.
  • The player characters of Pokémon Black and White, surprisingly. One has a huge ponytail, the other a mullet. The trucker caps don't help.
    • It's surprisingly rampant in Gen V. Both Professors Juniper sport this, N's hair looks like a particularly long mullet in official art, Grimsley is rocking the Flock of Seagulls look, and even Emmet and Ingo have Nagaideburns.
  • Princess Peach from Super Mario Bros..
  • Sill of the Rance Series has a pink afro in some of the older games.

Web Comics

Web Original

  • 80's Chick that looked like a female version of Linkara sported huge wild hair.
  • Aurora, Diamond, and Vindicator, all from the Global Guardians PBEM Universe, loved this look.
  • During The Nostalgia Chick's review of Jem, the Makeover Fairy gave herself, the Chick, and Nella an 80s makeover, complete with 80's hair.

Western Animation


  1. If you're curious, that's Alexis and Krystle from Dynasty, members of Poison, and New Kids on the Block
  2. who, ironically, did not suffer from Eighties Hair
  3. British English: a huge fringe