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Hairstyles of China's Tang Dynasty Women

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By lilsuika   |   
© 2014 - 2020 lilsuika

References on my tumblr:…


"In early Tang, hair ornaments were rather simple, but during the reign of Emperor Taizong the buns got higher and higher and the number of styles grew." (5000 Years of Chinese Costume, 77)

"During the earlier years of Emperor Xuanzong's rule, the Tartar hat was fashionable, but in the later years...many women opted for switch buns (also called 'false buns'). In late Tang and the Five Dynasties, the high buns were often decorated with different kinds of flowers." (5000 Years of Chinese Costume, 77)

“Ponytails were also quite popular among a small number of aristocratic ladies during the years of Tian Bao (Xuangzong’s reign). (5000 Years of Chinese Costume, pg. 84)

"Common women...preferred the 'tossing-up bun', with the hair at the temples embracing the buns were made higher and higher, and were decorated with flowers, which heralded the popularity of the flowery hats of the early Song Dynasty." (5000 Years of Chinese Costume, pg. 84 )



"Women of the Tang Dynasty paid particular attention to facial appearance, and the application of powder or even rouge was common practice. Some women's foreheads were painted dark yellow and the dai (a kind of dark blue pigment) was used to paint their eyebrows into different shapes that were called dai mei (painted eyebrows) in general." (5000 Years of Chinese Costume, 77)

"...between the brows there was a colourful decoration called hua dian, which was made of specks of gold, silver and emerald feather. Some women painted their cheeks with motifs such as a moon or a coin, and their lips were also rouged." (5000 Years of Chinese Costume, 77)

"[The hua dian was] said to have originated in the Southern and Northern Dynasties. [...] In the Tang Dynasty, hua dian was either painted or made of tiny metal pieces." (5000 Years of Chinese Costume, pg. 86)

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kanjikamehameha's avatar
kanjikamehamehaStudent Traditional Artist

this is so cool, you mimicked the traditional water paintings and the features associated with beauty in ancient china really well

howler656's avatar
I'm always a sucker for hairstyles, especially the ones from ancient time periods to modern time periods. (not counting the millennial >_>)
Redtriangle's avatar
RedtriangleStudent Digital Artist
I heard from Chinese history class Tang women fashion was influenced by foreign cultures.
TheQueenOfNeckbeards's avatar
TheQueenOfNeckbeardsHobbyist General Artist
So beautiful! I love eleborate hairstyles like thesem
petesd's avatar
petesdStudent General Artist
Interesting  Infinite Doges by MysterysChannel
DaBair's avatar
DaBairHobbyist General Artist
God, some of those hairstyles must have taken a long time to style.
AbbySoto's avatar
AbbySotoProfessional Digital Artist
loving this
CrashBandicoot2015's avatar
CrashBandicoot2015 Filmographer
same Japanese women 
injayyin's avatar
japanese copy tang.
YiwoonNeoh's avatar
YiwoonNeohHobbyist General Artist
Anga300's avatar
Second row, 2nd from the right is Thugnificent lol.
Iroh345's avatar
interesting.... I can see where George Lucas got his inspiration for the princess Leia ... for Star Wars...
also where bryan konietzko   and MICHAEL DANTE DIMARTINO: got their hairstyles for the Avatar Series   
CartoonLover24509's avatar
CartoonLover24509Student Photographer
I found this picture in a video I watched…
Skip to 5:31 for the picture :)
XNeroxHeartxFujoshiX's avatar
XNeroxHeartxFujoshiXStudent General Artist
I'm in a bind and need somewhere with men and womens clothing from the Shang and Zhou Dynasties.
Any ideas?
Marchjn's avatar
Please do some with Song dynasty!
leahilluminates's avatar
Do you know what the individual styles were called? I keep running across names in my own research, but none associated with an image - so I have all kinds of things like "double-ring fairy viewing bun" and I can only guess which one they mean.
AnnaRIART's avatar
AnnaRIARTHobbyist Digital Artist
*squeals!!! what I have wanted without knowing, I used to spend hours just resketching chinese hair from wuxia series for reference, they were so intricate to draw, especially if they had jewellery. 

I wonder how they made the wigs defy gravity. I'm guessing the wigs were made of human hair from the working class >.<

 o.o they were very complicated with fashion. Did they paint their cheeks or foreheads? And would you know if the dark yellow paint on the forehead was painted into patterns or just colour blocked. 
0OBluubloodO0's avatar
0OBluubloodO0Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Women of the Tang use lead powder and clad on heavy rouge. Also the pattern on their forehead are not traditionally drawn, they are little gelatin stickers called 'hua dian'[花钿] where you peel one off and blow warm air on it to make it sticky, and then just paste it on the forehead carefully. :) 
AnnaRIART's avatar
AnnaRIARTHobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you for your information, it's very interesting =) I'm sure the lead powder cause much ill to their health and skin o.o It's such an art; the process that ancient Chinese women used to beautiful themselves. 
stephanelee's avatar
Congrats, really a great job...may I ask  if possible to provide men customs  in Qing dynasty? ;-) 
lilsuika's avatar
lilsuika Digital Artist
Perhaps sometime in the future. You can check out Qing Dynasty clothes here in the meantime:……
demcjojo's avatar
this is very useful stuff....
Yagamiseven's avatar
Really  cool
Randamu-Chan's avatar
Randamu-ChanHobbyist General Artist
Thank you!
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