By Susan Green
Like hats, wigs are used to cover a person‘s head. Wigs come in all shapes and sizes, from straight to curly, short to long. Wigs are also available in a variety of colors and texture.
Wigs are worn by people for many reasons aside from covering natural hair loss. Some people wear wigs to change their hairstyles and hair colors albeit temporarily. Other people however use wigs not for aesthetic purposes but as part of tradition or the mandates of their professions.
In the olden days, the use of wigs signified power and wealth. English judges and lawyers used to wear wigs in the courtroom. Remember those white curly hairs worn by judges in old English movies?
These lawyers and judges use the wigs not for anything else but as part of their official functions.
The use of wigs is basically a necessity for people who have thinning hair or have excessive hair loss. The presence of hair even though in the form of a wig, can spell more confidence for bald people. In ancient times, the Egyptians wore wigs for the same reason people wore hats, and that is to protect their heads from the sun’s heat.
Wigs are widely used by performers, whether in movies or theaters, to help them delineate different roles that they portray. The use of wigs in theaters can somehow exaggerate the characters portrayed by actors and actresses.
For women, wigs are essential fashionable accessories because it enables them to transform from dull dark-haired girls to blonde bombshells. Women who have short hairs also wear longer wigs when it suits them. Ironically, the use of wigs as a fashion accessory can be attributed not to a woman, but to male French and English leaders who wore wigs that imitated real hair. France’s Louis XIII and England’s Charles’s II spearheaded the use of wigs as a fashion accessory.
But the wigs of the olden days were not always made of human hair due to the latter’s scarcity.
Believe it or not, wig manufacturers used the hairs of animals like goats and horses to create wigs.
The use of wigs for both men and women became more popular in the 18th century when the use of wigs became a status symbol. During that time, the wig colors varied from white to pink and there were even blue wigs.
The popularity of wigs in Asia during the 19th century led to the industrialization of the wig industry where manufacturers discovered the use of synthetic hair materials for the production of wigs.
The use of wigs as a fashion statement may have lost its popularity nowadays but this hair accessory is still being used for its functional purpose namely, to cover up hair loss or thinning hair. However, the use of wigs is still being practiced in theaters.