How to have a Roman hairstyle

One of the key traits of personal beauty for Roman women was their hair, and during this period they made considerable efforts to have a well-made hairstyle. Janet Stephens, an amateur archaeologist and hairdresser, has been able to recreate one these hairstyles – that of the Roman Vestal Virgins, who were priestesses of Vesta, goddess of the hearth.

At a poster session in early this month at the annual meeting of the Archeological Institute of American, Stephens showed how she recreated the hairstyle of the Roman Vestal Virgins on a modern head. It has taken her several years of research to reconstruct this lost technique.

Stephens has previously written the article “Ancient Roman Hairdressing: On (hair) pins and needles” in Journal of Roman Archaelogy, Vol. 21 (2008). On her Youtube channel she has also created several other videos recreating other hairstyles from the ancient period.