GRR

Meet the hair stylist who can turn you into a vintage style icon

25th August 2022
Ellie Fazan

Whether you’re looking for iconic 1940s victory rolls, a glamorous set of 1950s curls or a chic 1960s beehive to elevate your Revival look, the talented Betty's Salon team can expertly create it all.

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Betty’s is a slice of vintage paradise, where hair and makeup artists create era-specific and iconic looks for the day. Angela Stewart is one of them, after making a drastic career change.

“Ten years before I became a makeup artist I was a civil servant,” says Angela. “I had a review of my life, and I asked myself ‘what is it that you really enjoy?’ I decided to go back to college and do fashion illustration. But then I saw an ad for professional makeup artists.” The rest, as they say, is history.

Angela is an Afro hair coach, and just returned from Prague where she’s been filming sci-fi show Foundation for Apple TV. “I’m non stop! But I always carve out time for Revival,” she says. “I’ve been doing it for a few years now and I love it. The joy you can see you're giving other people, helping to create the fantasy. I get great joy from that.”

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Describe Betty’s Salon in your own words…

Betty’s is a vortex of vintage energy and imagination. It’s where women can leave their inhibitions behind. They come dressed in something that they are not usually going to wear, they sit in the chair and they come out like goddesses. It’s magnificent.

What's the best thing about Revival?

The community spirit. Age, nationality, gender, status… all seems to get dropped as the love of all things vintage takes full focus. At this event, we are all equal.

How do you prepare for the Revival weekend?

It’s a real passion and I actively research every day. Almost everything I look at on the streets these days has something to do with vintage so reference images are easy to come by. I’m always looking to deconstruct things, to see how they are done. Or if I notice that someone has found a shortcut to a look I’ll spend time working out how. Revival has given me my real outlet for vintage styling as there isn’t always much call for it in TV and film unless you’re doing a vintage piece. It's so wonderful to really let loose and geek out on the iconic makeup and signature hairstyles of the eras.

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What's your favourite era?

The 1950s! I love the classic images of Lena Horne, Marilyn Monroe and the cross over of 1940s Victory Rolls into the British Rockabilly gals. Although as I've grown older I seem to be drawn towards the smart, mature ladies of the 1940s…

What kind of look do you create for yourself at Goodwood?

I tend to stay somewhere within Factory Girls, (I have a couple of pairs of vintage overalls) and I seem to regularly hit the 1960s for the last day [Sunday] because that's the dressiest, with my mature 1940s lady in the middle. I sort of want to call it a ‘church dress’, with a little hat and bag. Beyond the usual iconic looks of those eras, I have started to be more curious about what black people wore during that time. I always look for those images, but it’s very hard to find glamorous media shots unless it’s to do with American civil rights or Windrush.

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Why do you think vintage has made such a comeback?

It goes in cycles. At the moment everything seems quite difficult so people look back with rose tinted glasses. They might see or believe things that weren’t actually there. We see the romance of those styles and want to immerse ourselves. We forget that after the war when Rockabillies appeared, they wanted to break away from the norm which was actually quite stifling at the time, so maybe vintage comes back as a type of release from the pressures of living in present times. Personally, I like the aesthetics and the clothes. They were properly tailored to the body, as was the hair. It was about what suited you personally. It wasn’t about changing the form, it was about adding something.

What’s your top trick for styling at Betty's?

I use a little heat protector on the hair before styling. It creates a coating to protect it from the heat. It makes it damp enough to create new muscle memory for the hair so that when it dries around the curling wand, the hair curls faster and the curls last longer too. Teasing the curls into '30s, '40s or '50s styles is made simple after the curls are in place.

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Do you have any tips for people with Afro hair thinking about creating a vintage look for Goodwood Revival?

It depends on the era, but I’d say one of the easiest ways of preparing Afro hair is either  doing something that is called corkscrew or bantu knots or doing several large plaits to straighten out hair. While the hair is damp, pull it into maybe six to eight large squares, pulling it tightly and wrapping it down. This stretches out the hair without heat and this would be done the day before. You can then comb that out into an afro or carefully comb out the waves created by the corkscrew to style it so that it looks like a 1940s short hairstyle. Or it could be tweaked to look like a Marilyn Monroe hairstyle. It gives the impression that your hair has been put into big rollers.

And the pre-plaited styles can be easily rolled to create the classic Victory Roll. Afro hair tends to stay where it’s placed. The other thing, of course, is to just go with the natural afro; just wash it, allow it to dry and pick it up with an afro comb. Afro hair is so versatile, in either its straightened form, or in its natural curly form or somewhere in between.

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What do you love about the Revival?

I love the whole experience. I get to dress up, I play with hair, and see vintage cars. I hear vintage music, and see celebrities. If you've never been (and you love vintage), you should come for a day and then you'll see what I mean.

Book your hair styling appointment at Betty’s Salon by emailing enquiries@bettysatgoodwood.co.uk. Find out more here.

Photography by James Alexander Lyon and Amy Shore.

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