Pin Up Girl Hairstyles for Short Hair

Short hair still can have pin up glam.

Photo: Stockbyte/Retrofile/Getty Images

Ladies can kill two beauty birds with one stone if they want a glam look by using pin up hairstyles. These styles give your mane some retro flair, all while keeping it looking sleek, controlled and elegant. Short-haired women have a tougher time getting these styles and are a little more limited in what they can try, but they still can get a look that's every bit as chic as gals with longer locks.

Pin Up Style Basics

Pin up hairstyles are a retro-glam look. They copy the amazingly fabulous styles women wore in the 1940s and 1950s, back when movies were in their Golden Age and ladies needed practical but beautiful styles to wear as they started to take over jobs men had vacated during war. The key characteristic of these looks is sleek curls or waves. Translated into a styling routine, that means lots of setting your tresses, although how you set it is somewhat flexible. The pin up style also focuses on a lot of volume.

The Problem for Short Hair

Pin up hairstyles weren't particularly intricate, although the styling could take some time. Even so, as a short-haired gal, you are at a disadvantage in that you simply don't have as much length to style. If you plan to try out the look, it's generally better to stick to elegant, distinct waves instead of trying to struggle to create curls. If you do want curls, work on some pin curls. Pin curls are just little circles of hair you pin in place near your scalp and let set.

Getting the Look

Getting a pin up style at home can be a little tricky at first, but you'll be able to recreate the style faster and more easily with practice. A good tool to have is a flat iron. With the iron, you can smooth your tresses and, twisting your wrist a little, create a wave in the strands. This is a great technique for the front of the hair because even as you create a sleek wave, you create some lift and get the hair away from the face. You can use a curling iron, too, but it has to be small. Another super-easy technique is to use bobby pins along the hairline, loosely pulling your hair into a wave pattern. Once the style is set, you can take the pins out.


Similar to long-haired women, short-haired beauties have different hair types. For example, your hair can be ultra-fine or coarse, curly or straight, thick or thin. Pin up styles work best on hair that is straight and thick. The straightness creates sleekness, while the thickness lends itself well to the volume needed. Keep in mind that short, curly hair frizzes and puffs out the worst, so if you've got this hair type, you'll likely need the most work and hair care products to get a controlled pin up look. Even though you don't want to sacrifice the volume of the style, it's okay to use a little more product to get the hold you want -- 1940s and 1950s women often couldn't wash their hair every day because the war made "nonessentials" like shampoo troublesome to get, so if your hair looks a little oilier or product-infused, don't fret. If your hair is fine, though, stick to light sprays that won't weigh you down. If your hair is dry, a shine serum can do wonders.

Related Videos


Add to this Article



Just for you

What type are you?

Choose your Skin Tone
or Register
Beauty School iPad App


How would you like to register?

Register with Facebook
  • It's fast, easy and hassle-free
  • One-click log-in and commenting
Register with
  • Use your email to create your account