The Renaissance was a time for rebirth of learning and of Greek and Roman ideals. As a result, it is easy to see why many hairstyles of the Renaissance were similar to Greek styles, only with a little more flair.
Most women had long hair to work with. This allowed for many elaborate and beautiful hairstyles. It is possible to say that while every Renaissance style was similar, they were all different. Some women used alum, sulfur, soda, and rhubarb mixed together to lighten their hair to a blonde or gold tone.
Braids are a key element to any Renaissance style. They wore one braid down the back or a series of tiny braids intertwined and wrapped around the head elaborately. Sometimes, they were wrapped around the head to make a crown.
Curls are also important to any Renaissance hairstyle. Any loose hair is curled. Sometimes women wore a half up hairstyle where the top half was braided and the loose hair was wavy or curly.
The most important element to any Renaissance hairstyle is embellishments. A strand of pearls laid across the forehead was a popular way of adding flair. Some women used precious stones or ribbons to decorate their hair. Shimmering veils became popular as well.
As fashion became more elaborate and whimsical towards the end of the Renaissance, so did hairstyles. Women began wearing headdresses. As they say in the South, the bigger the better.
If you like these Renaissance hairstyles, they’re fairly easy to imitate. Just create a series of intertwining braids at the back of your head. When finished, pin a strand of pearls across your forehead, similar to Drew Barrymore’s in the picture below. Curl any loose hair. Add more embellishments if you want. These styles are simple yet elegant enough that they can be worn at any occasion from a wedding to a summery day!