A Head of the Times: The Death of the Lolita Headdress

Once the staple of a lolita wardrobe – now rarely seen on the craniums of any discerning lolitas – though they are still out there.

A headdress is usually a rectangular or rectangle with rounded off edges trimmed with lace and usually affixed to the head by ribbons or a headband.

Relic of a bygone era
Relic of a Bygone Era?

Western Lolita’s, for the most part choose Hair-bows (and Bonnets, Hats and Mini Hats both Tricorn and Toppers) over Headdresses. There can be many types of bows, something as modest as a ribbon tied around your head into a small bow can look fantastic with a casual sweet or classic style co-ordinate. For more extravagant styles one can opt for the “Head eater” bow, a bow so large it looks like a large, frilly bird has perched on your head with intent on devouring it.

I want your brains
I believe the term: Huge like Xbox applies
A suprizingly modest bow from Angelic Pretty
Angelic Pretty bow, surprisingly modest one from them.

Brand icons Baby, the Stars Shine Bright, Angelic Pretty’s websites currently only stock 4 different designs of Headdress, Metamorphose sell around 9 different designs. The rest of their hair/head accessories line is mostly Head-bows, bow hair ties/clips, crowns, tiaras and hats.

Helicopter Loli is coming for your Soul
Hair-bow and OP: Alice and the Pirates. I haven’t worn let alone owned a headdress in years.

One of the possible reasons for this item’s demise is the “Maxi-Pad” effect. A headdress, especially one not overly adorned has a tendency to look rather like a woman’s sanitary pad or “maxi pad”.  They are such awkward things I find, a bow is just that – a bow – whether it be huge or modest but once someone puts it in your head that your headdress looks an awful lot like a sanitary pad it’s hard to see it as anything else.

So it would be safe to say:

Bows: In
Headdress: Out

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27 Responses to “A Head of the Times: The Death of the Lolita Headdress”

  1. falling_empress Says:

    For me, I don’t wear headdresses very often because it gets associated with “maid” too often and I hate when people say I look “so cute like a maid.” No please!

  2. I think bows are kind of so over the top that you look like you know what you’re doing, whereas headdresses could be seen as a serious stylish accessory?
    Also, could you note that the angelic pretty bow has bows on the bow. It could be improved with more bows on the bow bows, but it might be overkill.

  3. yourpervert Says:

    rofl @ the above comment

    I’ve always been iffy about the pads but I think round headdresses need a bit of love.

  4. I really love headdresses and I think they’re really underrated! Maybe they are “out” but I feel they are a bit more low-key than the head eating bow which makes them great for casual!

  5. Angela (archfaith) Says:

    I used to really adore headdresses, but have recently come to discover that they don’t particulary flatter my own hairstyle: really long, dark hair with no bangs. It’s sad, as many headdresses are beautiful and ornate; I wish I could wear them better, but I think I do prefer head-eating bows!

  6. I don’t wear head-dresses because they don’t suit my bang-less hair style. :(

  7. I’ve been thinking about the very same thing. Personally I love headdresses but prefer decorative hairbands now that I have shorter hair.

  8. Harlekini Says:

    I wish you would express an opinion of your own on your blog instead of expressing what everybody else says…this is OLD.

  9. I only own two headdresses among my manyyyyyy other head accessories. but I like them because they’re just something DIFFERENT to wear since I nearly always have bows or hats or other such things. one is pink and the other is black though, so neither is one of those terrible ones that could be mistaken for a PAD. 3:

  10. I still love the more restrained headdresses, as done by classic brands like Mary Magdalene and Victorian Maiden. Right now, I’m obsessed with either finding or crafting the VM floral headpieces – bows don’t suit my classic style (or my advanced age) planting half a rosebush on my noggin, that seems a-okay!

  11. Morticia Says:

    I lovelovelove headdresses! Bows are definitely not my thing.

  12. Morticia Says:

    But it’s true one sees waayy more bows than headdresses.

  13. I don’t like both Alice bows and those ridiculous large headdresses (but I never thought it looks like a pad. The writer’s comment really amuses me XD.) Smaller headdresses like MM are o.k. with me.

  14. illesbico Says:

    your site is lovely!!!

  15. Harlekini: You didn’t have to read this you know. @_@;

  16. Yeah, I noticed the death of the staple headdress recently when my friends and I were having tea. I looked around the table and all of us either had hair bows (those elastic types that Meta sells), berets or flower clips.

    There needs to be more round headdress love. I have a few. Those things look neat~

    I still love those skinny headdresses that Innocent World has.

  17. This is sad :( I love headdresses! I think it’s because it seems more unique to me… You could probably find something that resembles an Alice bow in the children’s accessories department at Wal-Mart, but good luck trying to find something that resembles a headdress. Headdress are more unique to Lolita fashion, I think.

    Also, I’ve found that to escape the “maxi-pad” look, you should aim towards headdresses that have patterns and ribbon on them (and lace, but not too much or else it looks like some odd piece of lingerie), because last time I checked, maxi-pads don’t have ribbon or patterns on them :P

  18. Whoever wants headresses Says:

    Anyone who wants a custome-meade headress please email me! Im starting my own brand! And to the lady talking about the floral headresses, I do those XD

    BTW. I dislike alice bows greatly XD Some desginers say they have to be careful because some headresse4s could end up looking like cotex XDDD

  19. I do have to say I prefer flowers and veils.

  20. You don’t know how much I disagree. First of all, I have never heard anyone say a headdress looks like a maxipad and they don’t. Also, though I don’t own a headdress, I think they look very beautiful and classical. Bows look a little more modern and “cutesie” to me, especially if they are attached as hair clips or head bands and aren’t actual ribbons. I don’t usually dress lolita myself, though I’ve become fascinated by it, but I don’t get the lolita trends that are modern, such as high platform/rocking horse shoes and the little tiaras and plastic purses… Lolita is supposed to look old-fashioned and time-less, right? In my opinion lolita is best when very old-fashioned, I don’t at all like the modern, plastic-y details. Either way, I’m glad we are all different.

    • I feel that this is so due to the prevalence and popularity of sweet lolita that through Maki and Asuka’s aesthetic rethinking of what sweet Lolita and Angelic Pretty means to lolita – the modern has be come one of the mainstays of Sweet Lolita. However in Classic lolita (Innocent World mainly, continue to make headdresses in the traditional sense of the item) this is not so much so. This article focuses mainly on the sweet and gothic lolita brands and fashion followers. Cutesy is in – Classic will remain something of a fringe style or what lolita “uesd” to look like before Angelic Pretty injected a cocktail of glitter, plastic and neon pink into the vein of the greater Lolita body.

      I personally don’t mind AP (though am amivivilantt about their cookie cutter cult followers)

      • That last line has too many errors, please excuse it – I meant to say “ambivalent”

      • I suppose you are right, there will always be the more old-fashioned and the more modern, just like with everything else. I used to mostly wear gothic clothes for years, but then suddenly, I got really fascinated with lolita clothes and somehow it has gotten so far I have actually purchased lolita clothes :) Myself, I like the style to be clean, though, lots of genuinely vintage things (maybe having a babyssb dress, but vintage blouse, apron and socks) and also I have gotten really fond of guro lolita… I don’t like the “broken doll” theme (hospital stuff), but I more like the look of a “murderous porcelain doll”, you know, looking like an angel, holding a bloody knife with a look that says “oh you’re not suspecting ME are you?” haha either way, it’s so cool that we are all so different and that there are many different clothes available out there! <3

      • oh and by “clean” i meant, the part about vintage, simple accessories instead of modern and plasticy ones… just in case that part was confuzzling ^.^

        take care!

  21. anonymous Says:

    It really is a shame they don’t produce much headdresses anymore. Of course, the scarcity makes one distinct from a sea of bows. So I guess its underexposure is good for us who want to be unique. I doubt they’d ever go out of style though. They’ve been too much a part of Lolita.

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