A Brief History of the Beauty Industry -The 1960’s to the 1970’s


It is said that the fashionable hairstyle for court ladies in the Heian period meant long, shiny, black hair. I guess people have always been interested in beauty. Here’s a brief look back at the social situation in the 1960’s and 1970’s and the history of the beauty trend.
  1. The social situation and the beauty trend in the 1960’s
  2. The beauty trend in the 1970’s

The Social situation and the beauty trend in the 1960’s

The Social situation

  • Celebrated the opening of the Shinkansen! Traveling has become easier.
  • The hosting of the Tokyo Olympics has drawn attention from the world.
  • The Beatles visited Japan.
  • The global economy became energized as the confusion of defeat in World War II eased.
  • The women’s liberation movement brought about a turning point for women.
  • Mary Quant introduced a mini skirt.
  • The major trends were Twiggy and short hair

The beauty trends

  • As Japan became more affluent, it became more common for women to get perms, and permed hair styles became the status symbol for adult women.
  • Set hair by hair mesh rollers after getting a perm.
  • In the late 1960s, the Sassoon cutting style arrived in Japan with the miniskirts craze.

Twiggy is super cute, isn’t she! Miniskirts and short hair are not rare today, but the style that Twiggy had seemed to be a symbol of women’s liberation at the time. We often use the term “unisex”, and I guess fashion is an inseparable part of gender theory.

The Social situation and the beauty trend in the 1970’s

The Social situation

  • In the midst of rapid economic growth, many ideological incidents by young people broke out.
    (Japan Airlines Flight 351: The Yodo-go Hijacking Incident, the Asama Sanso incident, etc.)
  • The first oil crisis hit, and the people panicked.
  • End of the Vietnam War

The beauty trends

  • Hippie culture was established.
  • Along with various fashions including bell-bottom pants, Saori Minami’s silky long hair style and surfer haircuts became the trend.
  • In the late 1970’s, the hairstyle of Ran Itō, a previous member of the 1970’s idol group Candies, became very popular.
  • Figure skater’s bobbed haircut was one of the most popular styles. It is called “Gradation bob haircut” in Japan.
Just so you know, the “Gradation bob haircut” is the style with the gradation of length on the neckline. It provides both rounded silhouette and tidy look on the ends.


It seems that with the end of World War II and the development of the global economy, men and women alike began to enjoy fashion and hair. Girls’ short hair is so common today, but I guess it all started in these early days. Bell-bottom pants are still a fashionable style, and it would be super cool if you know how to wear them.

This made me want to have my hair cut and wear my favorite skirt… and I’m going to go out dressed to the nines!

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