It’s not like the Soviet people had nothing better to do than fuss over their hair - there was maintaining your household, caring for the family, the “five-year plans” at work. The hair sort of took a backseat, frequently concealed beneath all manner of headdress, or simply with a modest headscarf. Not many had the money for salon treatments. But there was a solution. Perms! They held true for long periods, often sustained by hair curlers for prolonged effect.
However, on rare special occasions when the situation demanded it, the “workers and kolkhozniks” of the time made the effort and ritualistically sprung for a new hairstyle at a proper hairdressers. Documentary photographers sometimes happened to be nearby (for some reason), and he or she would document the whole process for us to marvel at decades later.
At the hairdressers, 1956Valentin Kukhlaev/Valentin Khukhlaev archive
At the barbershop, 1956Valentin Kukhlaev/Valentin Khukhlaev archive
A Moscow Barber, 1960sAlexander Steshanov/MAMM/MDF
At the hairdressers, 1965Vsevolod Tarasevich/MAMM/MDF
‘Golden Hands’ master Tatyana Konstantinova at a competition, 1962Maya Okushko/MAMM/MDF
At the barbershop, children’s styling. 1966Vsevolod Tarasevich/MAMM/MDF
At the barber’s, 1968Viktor Gorkin/MAMM/MDF
At the hairdressers, 1971Viktor Yershov/MAMM/MDF
At a Tallinn hairdressers, 1970sAlexander Steshanov/MAMM/MDF
Hairstyling competition, 1978Viktor Akhlomov/MAMM/MDF
Barbershop. Men’s hall, 1981Vladimir Sokolaev/MAMM/MDF
Women’s hall at the hairdressers, 1981Vladimir Vorobyev/MAMM/MDF
Women’s hairdressers, 1981Vladimir Sokolaev/MAMM/MDF
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