The evolution of the bang: from Bettie to Zooey

The Evolution of the Bang: From Bettie to Zooey
See Gallery
The evolution of the bang: from Bettie to Zooey

There’s nothing quiet about this silent movie starlet’s looks, right down to her “Dutch Boy” bob cut. Her thick thatch of bangs, cut straight across the forehead, became a popular look with flappers seeking to defy society’s vision of beauty.

Lake's side-parted style, which tumbled like a curtain over her right eye, became known as the “peek-a-boo bang,” and was even parodied by Lake herself in the movie Star Spangled Rhythm. Later, Kim Basinger's L.A. Confidential style was modeled on the look.
The “Queen of Pinups” boasted enviable curves (36-23-35, to be exact), but it’s her cropped bangs that left a lasting beauty impression.
Vidal Sassoon clipped this mod model's thick black hair—fringe and all—creating one of the most famous haircuts of the '60s and making Sassoon a household name.
The English model wore her fringe finely trimmed, and often tucked the wisps behind her ears (a trick later used by Alexa Chung).
Coolest mug shot ever? Jane Fonda sported bangs and a defiant glare in 1970, because, well, it's important to leave Barbarella alone.
Stylist Allen Edwards created this fluffy fringe for Farrah Fawcett and millions of college coeds followed suit (or rather, snip).
She's not a natural blonde, but the WKRP in Cincinnati star’s flaxen coif helped steer her career, and her halo of big bangs helped define a decade where excess was everything.
Though the most popular bang style of the ’80s required a gallon of Aquanet and just as much heat, some girls just wanna have fun with less product, like this wispy fringe sported by a pre-Bradshaw SJP.
As ditzy Kelly Bundy on Married…With Children, Applegate wore her bangs sky-high, with shellacked side wings to boot. Of her “mall hair” style, she noted, “You know, the bangs that stick straight up off the top of your head. That was ridiculous.” Maybe…but everyone was doing it.
Doherty claimed she was fired from 90210 for doing a DIY hack job on her trademark "Brenda Walsh" bangs. “I cried over a bad haircut because I got fired over it,” she told The Talk. (Fortunately, the TV gods later spared Felicity.)
An 11-year-old Portman captured hearts as Mathilda, the gun-toting girl inThe Professional whose little-girl bangs belied a vengeful spirit.
Barrymore bucked the grunge trend with her daisy hair crown and '40s-inspired bangs, creating a trend seen at 9th grade semi-formals all over the country.

In Amélie, Tautou’s wide-eyed wonderment was even more palpable thanks to her blunt bangs (documented in this adorable video.)

She's sported pink and blue hair, but it’s Stefani’s signature platinum locks and bumped bangs that made the Tragic Kingdom singer a pop icon.

Bangs may be a modern red carpet staple, but they actually have a long history (hair-story?) in Hollywood. Whether wispy or thick, feathered or blunt-cut, bangs are the go-to hair choice for celebs who need a new coif. Here, we look back at the evolution of the A-list fringe.

We're giving you the first 15 ladies but make sure to head over to Elle for the rest!

More from Elle:
7 Ways To Grow Our Your Bangs, Gracefully
Top 10 Things You Do That Are Ruining Your Hair
32 Cutest Celeb Pixie Cuts
Read Full Story