The hairnet, although today thought of as a cafeteria mom’s must-have, has a very significant ‘hair story’ in women’s history. During World War Two in the 1940s, women joined the workforce in droves, taking over jobs traditionally done by men. By mid-1943, nearly 90 per cent of single women and 80 per cent of married women were employed in critical work for the war effort. Of course the elaborate long hairstyles of the time proved hazardous on the job. Enter “the snood” — a fancier version of the hair net that preserved the hair and its curls while still looking very feminine.
Now back to modern day…with the current return to more elaborate up-do styles for everyday wear, we now can turn back to the hairnet as a tool to structure and sculpt an up-do for uncontrollable layers in need of taming. Versus the technique of countless bobby pins and extra strong hair spray, the hairnet makes a classy comeback as an understated, sexy tool with a subtle, added texture.
The new hairnet is the stealth hair accessory. It remains unseen on the runway during Fashion Week. It is the blushing bride’s little secret during her breezy beach wedding. It offers a mysterious yet chic peak from your best friend’s Sunday tea chignon. In other words…it’s not your grand mama’s (or the cafeteria mama’s for that matter) hairnet.
I always keep a few in my Essentials Pin Kit (available at www.straightpinstudiola.com). There’s a reason why these are the lingerie behind a fine hair ‘do.’
• A simple, effective way to use your hairnet is to first place a bobby pin at one end of the hairnet, normally by the knot.
• Next, put hair into a ponytail and place bobby pin into the base of the ponytail. Pull the hair net over the ponytail and cover completely. You can then twist and mold the ponytail into many shapes easily.
• Once you have your desired shape, pin into place. —Lucie Doughty