Chignon (hairstyle)

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Chignon Hairstyle Example

A chignon (/ʃɪnˈjɒn/; French pronunciation: ​[ʃiɲɔ̃]) is a popular type of hairstyle. The word “chignon” comes from the French phrase “chignon du cou,” which means nape of the neck.

Chignons are generally achieved by pinning the hair into a knot at the nape of the neck or at the back of the head, but there are many different variations of the style. They are frequently worn for special occasions, like weddings and formal dances, but the basic chignon is also worn for everyday casual wear. [1]

Burmese democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi is known for her chignon.[1]

History of the chignon[edit]

The chignon can be traced back to Ancient Greece, where Athenian women commonly wore the style with gold or ivory handcrafted hairpins. Athenian men wore the style as well, but they fastened their chignons with a clasp of "golden grasshoppers", according to The History of the Peloponnesian War, by Thucydides.[2] The chignon was specific to Athens, as other city states, such as Sparta and Cyprus, had their own style of hairdressing. The chignon was also popular in Ancient China, where married women wore the low, knotted hairstyle.

The chignon achieved popularity during the Victorian era; during that time, chignons were often enormous constructions including false hair or pads.[citation needed] Male writers, like Anthony Trollope, were fond of poking fun [2] at the absurdity of the fashion.

The chignon’s popularity peaked again in the 1940s when many women wore the chignon with a headscarf while working in factories to support the war effort during World War II[citation needed]. Today, women with long hair now serving in the United States military often wear their hair in chignons.[citation needed] Currently, the chignon is popular among women and men because of the ease with which it can be achieved.[citation needed]

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References[edit]