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The Hippy Clothing Co. Blog
  • Urban Fashion - Hippie Clothes, Makeup & Hairstyles
  • Kate Goldstone

Urban Fashion - Hippie Clothes, Makeup & Hairstyles

modern hippie makeup example
Image credit: bellezza.pourfemme.it

Urban fashion never really goes out of style. And the hippy look is a long-term fashion staple, resurrected season after season in one form or another. It’s also a style that’s hugely popular with anti-fashionistas, people who really don’t care what the high street stores are stocking but go their own sweet way confidently and determinedly, adding spice with retro and vintage bargains. If you know what suits you and know what you like, it’s a great way to strut your unique fashion stuff.

Cool, funky Brighton, where hippy clothes are mainstream

Brighton is probably the funkiest city in Britain, a place with a seriously good independent shopping scene. We’re renowned for our sense of style down here. All you need to do is spend an hour in the famous Brighton Lanes or the North Laine – both amongst the country’s most lively and vibrant independent shopping areas - and you’ll see countless local folk pushing out the boat with a fascinating array of styles and looks. Everything from the creative excesses of our well-loved, world famous lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender scene to art students who have obviously spend a great deal of time and effort on looking strange, weird and wonderful.

What’s our most popular style? That’s the thing with Brighton & Hove. Literally anything and everything goes. But hippy fashion, gypsy fashion and Boho style score high, and have done so since the 1960s. Take The Hippy Clothing Co., the city’s best-loved hippie fashion shop. We’ve been selling hippy dresses, hippie trousers, all sort of fab hippie clothing and accessories in the Brighton Lanes since 1969 when the real deal – genuine flower children - roamed the streets in stinking Afghan coats and immense bell bottoms, tripping the light fantastic. Or just tripping!

So that side of it is simple enough: if you want to buy hippy fashion in Brighton, we’re your prime destination. But what about accessorising your look? If you fancy taking things further and getting extra-creative, what about hippy hair and makeup?

Authentic hippy makeup – Go Twiggy!

You adore hippy fashion. And you want to go the whole hog with hippy makeup, giving your look a cool contemporary twist. If this is you there are several distinct styles, perfect for inspiration.

The first, where less is more, was a big favourite with the famous 1960s model Twiggy, whose gamine, deer-like natural beauty didn’t need embellishing. She looked totally delicious completely bare-faced , the lucky thing. All you need for this relatively low-key Twiggy look is huge, dusky eyes, achieved with plenty of smoky eyeliner and lashings of mascara. Plus pale lipstick or neutral-coloured super-shiny lip gloss. You don’t even need blusher since for this look, pale and pure-looking is the way to go.

If you’re self-conscious, this is the best version for you. But if you like making an impact and love being the centre of attention, there’s a much more dramatic way to achieve hippy makeup, the glam side of hippie life.

Twiggy in minimal hippie makeup
Image credit: logsylou.co.uk/

Glam rock hippy makeup for high fashion drama

At the opposite end of the cool and classy hippy makeup scale e’ve just talked about, there’s the glam hippy. Back in the ‘60s face and body painting was synonymous with the flower power movement. An absolute riot of colour, it’s such fun to do, also involving jet black eyeliner and lots of it, just a spot of lip gloss, plenty of mascara and no blusher. All of which sounds pretty dull until you start the embellishment process… in other words, drawing amazing stuff on your face.

Twiggy in glam hippie makeup
Image credit: hair-and-makeup-artist.com

Imagine the classic beauty spot gone mad. You can use eyeliner and lip pencils to draw the outlines of flowers, abstract shapes and smiley faces on your cheekbones or forehead, then colour them in with face paints. Or even felt pens if you’re not too bothered about traditional skincare regimes. It doesn’t do any harm (unless you’re allergic – try a small test first to check you’re not going to come out in hives!) and comes off easily enough with everyday makeup remover or good old soap and water.

The Cleopatra look

If you’ve ever seen Liz Taylor in the 1963 movie Cleopatra, you’ll be familiar with the remarkable make-up she wore for the role, and the massive trend it kicked off for the 1960s Cleopatra look. Big brands like Revlon led the way with Taylor-inspired products, and it proved a huge hippy fashion hit. Oddly enough, the dramatic eye makeup style adopted by so many Taylor fans and celebs at the time is hot makeup property again, and everyone’s doing it for 2013.

Brigitte Bardot with cleopatra hippie makeup
Image credit: hair-and-makeup-artist.com

Bare-faced chic

The feminist movement enjoyed a revival in the 1960s and the feminist hippy emerged, a confident lady who had no time for makeup, preferring to stay au naturel. But there were others who embraced feminism an entirely different way, using the opportunity to make a statement about their femininity through heavy use of dramatic makeup, a badge of honour first adopted by rebellious lipstick-loving suffragettes in the early 1900s.

It looks like more or less anything goes on the hippy, boho and gypsy makeup front. Which is great news for today’s contemporary boho fans. But what about your hair? No modern hippy outfit is complete without some serious sartorial attention on the hair front.

Long and short hippy hairstyles

Think hippy hairstyles and most people picture long, plain, shiny straight hair or long, shiny curly hair. But don’t forget Twiggy and her shining short cap, style on a stick and really easy to achieve with a good cut. It’s equally hippy but perfect if your locks don’t do long, or it’d take years to get there. Unless, of course, you go for hair extensions, which are so convincing these days it’s often pretty hard to tell the difference.

1960s hair vogue cover
Image credit: styleandthestartup.com

Magical afros

If you’re lucky enough to have big hair, afro styles were huge in the late 1960s and early 1970s, particularly amongst African Americans. The more radical the ‘fro, the better. And they’re back with a vengeance all over again, whatever your skin colour.

billy preston afro
Image credit: wikipedia.org

The return of facial hair for men

This is the first time beards, sideburns and ‘tashes have been in fashion since the 1960s. If you wore a big beard a few years ago you’d have been laughed out of town. But today gorgeous blokes with massive beards are all over the fashion press like a rash.

If you’re a bloke who’s into hippy and boho style, you can’t go far wrong with a lovely big bird-nesty beard. Or a pair of seriously stylish sideburns. Or a curly-wurly Victorian-style moustache. Or all three for the full effect. Luckily facial hairstyles like this also look fabulous with today’s upper-skinny leg jeans or a sharp tweed suit, so they’re pretty versatile.

billy preston afro

Embellishing your hippy hair – Flower power and headbands

Pick up any self-respecting hippy fancy dress costume and it’ll come complete with a flower for your hair, or at the very least a leather or fabric headband. Both are signature hippy-style accessories, and both look absolutely lovely. You can even combine the two, creating your own DIY hippy headband complete with faux silk flowers. Or pin a few funky lapel badges onto your headband, another hippy classic.

Glorious henna for colourful, shining, healthy hippy hair

Long hippy hair needs to be in great condition for full authenticity, shiny and sleek. And good old henna is a great way to get the look. Henna powder, made from the leaves of the Lawsonia Inermis plant, has been used since the Bronze Age for dying and conditioning hair, probably longer. It covers grey hair beautifully and even adds a dramatic shine to dark hair with its deep, metallic sheen. But it’s about much more than that startling red you expect from henna. You can also buy blondes, browns and blacks. It costs next to nothing compared to high street DIY dye kits, is much better for your hair, lasts ages and fades naturally.

Hippy clothing in Brighton

Adore hippy clothing. Shop at the Hippy Clothing Co. site, or pop into our Brighton Lanes shop, for the best in boho chic, hippy fashion and gypsy clothes. And have fun accessorising yourself while you’re at it! We even sell henna…

  • Kate Goldstone

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