What is pouf?


The pouf is a hairstyle deriving from 18th-century France. It was made popular by the Queen of France, Marie Antoinette (1755–1793) in 1774, first sporting it when she attended her husband Louis XVI's coronation, triggering a wave of young French woman to wear their hair in the same manner. Marie Antoinette acquired the hair style which was a creation from the famed hairdresser of the day Leonard Autie. From then on it quickly became widespread amongst noble and upper-class women in France during the time. It was highly creative and artistic and women could literally wear their moods through strategically placed decorations and ornaments. Ships, animals and hundreds of other novelty items could be seen on these poufs. Other decorations included pearls, headdresses/hats, hair jewellery, and plumage, such as ostrich feathers. It also became popular in other countries throughout Europe and the United Kingdom during the same era, with Georgiana Cavendish, the Duchess of Devonshire the most notably famous, for her hair in Great Britain. From 1789, upon the outbreak of the French Revolution, the pouf became more of a political weapon for women who supported the revolution in turning against their former Queen's most popular fashion statement. As the 18th century came to an end, and the beginning of the 19th century, new fashions came along for hair and the pouf, after the execution of Marie Antoinette, became history. The pouf returned in both the 20th and 21st century with the more modern name "beehive", revived by stars such as Dusty Springfield, Cilla Black, Amy Winehouse and Adele

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Some articles on pouf:

Rose Bertin - Marie Antoinette
... In the mid-18th century, French women had begun to "pouf" (raise) their hair with pads and pomade and wore oversized luxurious gowns ... Bertin used and exaggerated the leading modes of the day, and created poufs for Marie Antoinette with heights up to three feet ... The pouf fashion reached such extremes that it became a period trademark, along with decorating the hair with ornaments and objects which showcased current events ...
Pouf - Popular Culture
... There was a brief revival of the pouf in the form of the 1960s Beehive hairstyle ... Today we can see the influence of the pouf in wedding, prom, formal and commercial hairstyles where larger, teased hair has come into vogue ... Television personality Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi sported a pouf in the first season of Jersey Shore ...

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