The 2000s are back, baby. As you may recall, it was an era defined by low-rise pants, fuzzy pink everything, and AOL instant messenger. (Do you remember your first screen name or are you normal?) Some of the most iconic and still-talked-about fashion moments of all time happened during this period and we're still feeling the reverb to this day. Another area of excellence from the 2000s that still informs our lives? The hairstyles.
From chunky highlights to braided antennas and, of course, spiky buns galore, the go-to hairstyles from this time were truly something special. And the queens of the cool girls like Hilary Duff, Raven-Symoné, the Olsen twins, and Jennifer Lopez (yes, she's been killing it for decades!) were serving up daily inspiration for executing all the crimps, curls, and colors.
If you're feeling nostalgic, keep scrolling for 11 2000s hairstyles we would low-key wear today, along with some updated styles to try if you don't want to throw it all the way back. Our favorites, ahead!
The Original: Crimps and Curls
The Update: Mermaid Waves
The 2000s had its fair share of wild hairstyles, but that doesn't mean they weren't insanely cute at the time. Take for example this epic combination of crimps and curls seen on Britney Spears, who had clearly adopted a more is more approach to heat styling. While the mixture may look like a bit much today, an easy update is the ever-popular mermaid hair that combines crimping and curling in a more refined way.
The Original: Chunky Highlights
The Update: Money Pieces
For reasons we can't quite explain, chunky highlights were among the most ubiquitous 2000s hair trends. Think skunk-esque streaks, with stark, light lines painted over dark hair, and vice versa. That particular style has faded, but thick blocks of color haven't gone anywhere. Instead of all-over color, though, we're seeing contrasting chunky money pieces, either bleached or dyed a vibrant hue, that frame the face. So stylish.
The Original: Aaliyah Bangs
The Update: Softened Swoop
Aaliyah's signature long, side-swept bangs defined the 2000s. The smooth and sleek look was so simple, yet so enviable at the same time. Though the cool factor of side bangs is being debated as we speak, we think the fact that the style has already held on for decades is proof that it's here to stay. Just look at today's It girls like Normani for some examples.
The Original: Spiky Loop Buns
The Update: Tousled Space Buns
"The spikier, the better," said everyone in the 2000s, probably. Back then pointy pieces were the finishing touch to so many looks, but especially buns and twisted updos. Things have smoothed out some, but you better believe there's still a time and place for buns with undone pieces poking out.
The Original: Side Bangs
The Update: Curtain Bangs
As previously mentioned, side bangs used to be everyone's jam. Aside from the Aaliyah deep side swoosh, eye-grazing lightly bumped bangs split to one side were also mega popular. There's nothing wrong with this look, but it's worth noting that splitting those same bangs closer to the middle and bending them on either side would create curtain bangs, which are seriously trending now.
The Original: Braided Antennas
The Update: Braided Antennas
Well, folks, we've got our very first trend that didn't require an ounce of sprucing. Fashion girls have been showing interest in this throwback look for a while now and nothing about it has changed. If it ain't broke, don't fix it!
The Original: Smooth Half-Up, Half-Down
The Update: Messy Half-Up, Half-Down
Leave it to queen J.Lo to inform the same trend, two decades apart. While the smooth, polished style above reigned supreme in the early 2000s, a messier take with face-framing tendrils and beachy waves is all it takes to bring this style into the present.
The Original: Ponytail Palm Hair
The Update: Baby Ponytails
Much like the spiky-hair phenomenon that took hold in the 2000s, there was also a deep passion for ponytails that sprouted from the top of our heads like houseplants. The more, the better! These days, we're seeing the same style of germinating pigtails, but you're much more likely to see them in twos than fours, sixes, or eights like in past decades.
The Original: Pinned-Back Bangs
The Update: Clipped Tresses
It feels like everything Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen have ever done has become an instant classic, but this is especially true where hairstyles are concerned. Here, the stylish twins perfectly demonstrate one of the most beloved 2000s hairstyles, where front pieces of the hair were pinned back to create these romantic-looking hairstyles. You could totally do this today, but a more on-trend take would be to place the pins right in front for a retro, preppy look with a little edge.
The Original: Pastel Wigs
The Update: Pastel Wigs
Remember when Lil' Kim invented wigs? Okay, just kidding, but in terms of dawning faux tresses, especially ones dyed in all sorts of colors and even patterns, The Queen Bee was a trailblazer. To this day, we have her hairstyling sensibilities to thank for the popularity of bright wigs of all hues, but her iconic lavender one stands out most. Wig quality has improved dramatically, so while the looks have become more refined and way less party store over the last 20 years (no shade!), the general sentiment remains the same.
The Original: Slouchy Beanies
The Update: Bucket Hats
Slouchy beanies were the headwear of choice throughout the 2000s. They were cute, comfy, and functional since they could conceal even the worst hair day. All the cool girls wore their beanies on repeat, and frankly, we wouldn't be mad at a resurgence of this trend. But if you're looking for a throwback headwear option the fashion community is wearing at the moment, you can't go wrong with a bucket hat instead.