Friday, February 18, 2011

Why They're Called "Victory Rolls"

A couple of people asked why Victory Rolls are called Victory Rolls, so I dug a little bit to find out more info on the hairstyle.

In the 1940's, many women started wearing their hair a bit longer than they had during the 20s and 30's; and a soft curled look became popular. Women got the curls using the "pin curl" method, or "rag" method.

Along came World War 2, and with it, a shortage in metals due to pretty much all metal being used for the War Effort. I even found a reference to women using pipe cleaners to curl their hair when metal bobby pins became scarce!

I guess at some point, some model or celebrity pinned their curls up on top of their head, and the look took off and women everywhere were doing it.


I have always heard that they were called "Victory Rolls" because so much of every day life was all about victory then. When I read (parts of) the book "Women and World War 2" by Doris Weatherford, I gained a new understanding of women and girls that lived through this time in history and insight into their lives - my Grandmother and her sisters were some of these strong women.
While the men were off fighting valiantly for freedom, women on the home front wanted to have a connection to the War Effort - through making do with what was available (not much), salvaging items and re-purposing, recycling, sewing, re-fashion, "Victory Gardening", etc. It kept the ladies busy, and gave them a sense that, in these ways, they were helping their loved ones fighting overseas to win the fight, and therefore, come HOME! Since all the men were off to war, it was during this time the women entered the work force and for many, the first time ever, had employment outside of the home. (Look at these hard working ladies below wearing the rolls...)


But I also read that the hairstyle got the name from the "V" shape you get from the rolls when they're pinned directly on top of your head in an upwards way. (I am not convinced. Not all victory rolls get this shape.)

I also read that women named the hair style for a fighter plane maneuver used by fighter pilots of the time, by the same name.

Another item I read said they named the style "victory" rolls to honor victorious soldiers.

So I don't know for sure why, exactly; just that it has direct connections with WW2.



Catherine said...

Thanks for posting! That book sounds really interesting. I love reading about the history of our country. :)

Mary said...

Whoda thought? Thanks.

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