Learn about Life in the 1920s

FINGER WAVING is the art of shaping or moulding hair while wet into "s"-shaped curved undulations with the fingers and comb. These waves when dried without being disturbed will fall into beautiful deep waves. Finger waving differs from marcel waving in that there are no irons used on the hair. Not only naturally curly or permanently waved hair can be finger waved, but it is equally successful on straight hair.

Preparing the Hair for Finger Waving

In preparing the hair for finger waving, the first requisite, of course, is that the hair is clean. Finger waving can be done especially well after a shampoo inasmuch as the hair must be wet to insert the wave. Some hair-dressers prefer to dry the hair after it has been washed before wetting it again for the finger wave (on the same principle that clothes are allowed to dry thoroughly before they are dampened for ironing). Most patrons prefer, however, to have a finger wave immediately follow the shampoo, and in most beauty shops the time element is so valuable that it is a far more practicable procedure.

After being washed, the hair must be thoroughly dampened with water or curling fluid and combed completely free of all snarls whatsoever. If the hair is naturally wavy or if the patron has been given a perfect permanent wave, the finger wave can be inserted when the hair has been wet with water only.

Curling Fluids

A word about curling fluids: There are numerous types and numerous brands on the market, many of which are equally good. If the hair is clean, most curling fluids do not leave a flaky sediment on the hair and scalp. On oily hair, this sediment sometimes appears even though the hair has been thoroughly washed. In such cases the fluid should be more diluted and the hairdresser should brush this flakiness out of the hair before allowing the patron to leave the beauty shop.

The curling fluid should not be too thick when used on naturally curly hair or permanently waved hair. The hair will be much softer when dry if the wave has been inserted with curling fluid which has been diluted considerably with water. On straight hair which has no wave whatever in it, use the curling fluid or waving lotion without diluting it at all. As mentioned above, straight hair can be finger waved very successfully.

Nearly all manufacturers of waving lotions suggest their own methods of applying the curling fluid and have full directions on the bottle or on the package (if it is purchased in powdered form and diluted later). The procedure of applying curling fluid on straight hair is to rub the shaker containing the fluid all over the head, rubbing the fluid in well to soften the hair. Then take a towel and wipe off the excess lotion, leaving just enough on the hair so that it is thoroughly wet all over. This shortens the drying period.

It is a waste of time to apply the curling fluid with the comb. A shaker is very inexpensive and is more efficient to use and saves considerable time.

After applying the lotion, comb the hair through to the scalp until it is free of snarls, slanting always toward the back of the head. In combing the hair after the waving fluid has been applied, always start from the bottom of the hair, taking a small section at a time, working to the top of the head, to avoid creating the snarls which would occur if one started from the top or at the parting and combed down. In combing out a finger wave whether dry or wet remember to use this same method.



The One Hour Dress
Instructions for making a flapper dress based on a genuine 1920's dress pattern.

Fingerwave Hairstyles
Lessons on how to create fingerwave hairstyles based on 1920's movie star hairstyles.

Cutting and Styling Hair
A 1920's hairdresser teaches cutting and styling techniques for Bobbed hair.

1920's Haircare and Hairstyles
Pictures of 1927 Ladies Hairstyles and haircare information from Actress Ann Harding.

Home Millinery Lessons
Simple instructions on the basics of making a hat of the period.

1920 Fall-Winter Fashions
1920 Dress information as published by the Woman's Institute Fashion Service magazine, Fall and Winter edition 1920-1921 to help women plan and develop their own clothes for the approaching Winter.

Female Motoring Fashion Advice - 1917
Fashion tips for Women driving in Automobiles