No matter who to ask about the most iconic haircuts of the ’90s, the Jennifer Aniston “Rachel” hairstyle will always be at the top of the list. The funky, feathered and voluminous short haircut the actress wore in the ’90s when she starred as Rachel Green in “Friends” made waves when it first appeared on the big screen. Everyone wanted it and since the hype continues to this day thanks to “Friends: The Reunion” – and thus also the hype about the hairstyle – the haircut is now (again) one of the most popular hairstyles for short to medium-length hair.
Demand for the Rachel hairstyle has even increased by 179 percent, according to Just My Look, while the hashtag #RachelGreen has been viewed nearly 600 million times on TikTok, with a number of fans trying out the look themselves. Celebrity fans include Selena Gomez and Bella Hadid, both of whom have worn their own version of the hairstyle. Also, the hair salons have already seen an increase in requests for a modern version of the classic style.
Jennifer Aniston – this is how her “Rachel” hairstyle from the series Friends succeeds
“The original Jennifer Aniston hairstyle was so iconic because people were just coming out of the grunge phase in the mid-’90s; they were bored with the wild, unstyled hair and no-makeup makeup,” says hairstylist Luke Hersheson. When Rachel Green appeared, she was the exact opposite of all that. She had a full-fledged haircut with many steps and volumes.” The haircut was just long enough not to look too daring and to be able to style it in a very specific hairstyle without having to cut off the whole hair. “She wore it with a lot of volume at the top, a style that was very popular at the time,” Hersheson adds.
Although the reunion show catapulted the hairstyle (and the entire ‘Friends’ crew) back into the spotlight, Hersheson says he got requests for the hairstyle even before the nostalgia fest. He attributes this to the fact that Generation Z is downright “obsessed” with the 90s and renounces millennials’ love of unkempt hair because it’s “too obvious”: “They want more of a statement look; it has to look like it has been cut properly. Our generation [Millennials] is a bit too subtle for them,” he says.
In addition to a voluminous front hair framed by the face, the Rachel cut has also been styled to provide movement to the outside. The modern version is inspired by its predecessor, but it’s less about the large volume and more about the face-framing properties of the haircut, which is universally flattering: “The modern Rachel hairstyle is a little longer – originally it went up to the shoulder – a bit softer and, above all, less clunky,” says Hersheson, who adds that the hair must remain movable for this look.
Jennifer Anistons with the iconic “Rachel” hairstyle from the Series Friends.
“If the hair is too soft, the hairstyle won’t last and it can quickly look like a bad Vokuhila – the cut works best with dyed hair (because the strands swell slightly as a result) or with hair that already has some texture by nature,” he says. The trick for it to really work is a smooth and (relatively) seised, frizz-free finish so that the cut falls as it should. The TikTokers go to work with heated curling irons to get more volume. Hersheson says it used to work with the “old school blowout,” in which a round brush and lots of hairspray provided volume.
Another point that must be noted: “Jennifer Aniston wore bright strands in the 90s, which gave dimension to the look. This type of color helps add depth to the haircut so that the eye can better perceive the volume,” Hersheson agrees. He also thinks that such a cut “does not look good on monotonous hair. But if contrasting colours are used, the perfect Rachel look succeeds.”
This article originally appeared on Vogue.Co.Uk
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