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It might house a salon called A Good Hair Day, but Erinsborough has been a haven for horror hairdos over the years. Choosing a Top (or Bottom) Ten wasn’t easy with such an embarrassment of riches, but after literally minutes of debate, here’s our definitive list of disastrous ’do’s…
Back in the eighties, Ramsay Street had more mullets than a well-stocked fishmonger – and one of the most ‘impressive’ belonged to Shane. After a slow start, Shane’s ’do became bigger, longer and wider over the years, its progress far more exciting than some of his final storylines. In 1987 Shane moved out of No.24, claiming he needed some space; and with the mighty manes of Madge, Charlene and Henry all in the same house, perhaps he meant that literally…
When she arrived in Erinsborough, Danni sported a short, sharp crop that was copied by teenage girls the world over. However, her style sense went out of the window when she decided to grow her hair a couple of years later. What followed was a series of bizarre bird’s nest creations and Pebbles Flintstone style ponytails that quite unnerved us all. Given Danni’s mum Cheryl was a lotto winner, surely she could have shelled out for a tidy-up trim?
They say a shoemaker’s children are never shod, so perhaps it’s unsurprising that coiffeur Lyn spent so many years without a decent haircut. After years of ageing shampoo and set looks, complete with ornate tortoiseshell clips for that added touch of glamour, Lyn decided to go modern in 2005 with a spiky crop. Unfortunately, the result was less ‘just got out of bed’ and more ‘just got out of the lawnmower’… Ironically, it’s only since Lyn’s left hairdressing and become a power-dressing PA that she’s finally sorted her barnet out.
7. JimFor most of his time on the street, housewife’s choice Jim sported a distinguished, ‘Richard Gere in Pretty Woman’ style grey crop. Then in 1993 a midlife crisis hit, and Jim began cultivating a head of flowing Brylcreemed curls, teaming his new look with inappropriately jazzy shirts for good measure. Sadly this makeover into the oldest swinger in town proved a magnet for con-woman Fiona Hartman, and Jim’s midlife crisis turned into an end of life one. Perhaps if he’d had a trim he’d still be alive today…
Poor, poor Hannah. As if the trauma of losing her mother and grandfather within a year wasn’t enough to cope with, she had to deal with sporting some kind of hurricane-battered bush on her head for several years. In desperation, dad Phil sent her on a long trip to France, hoping some Parisian chic would rub off on his style-challenged child. Alas, when Hannah returned she was sporting a crop that looked more like a punishment than a hairstyle. Luckily, by the time she popped up in Annalise’s documentary, Hannah’s hair had grown back, and she’d even saved up enough pennies for a can of mousse.
Okay, we know she was a country girl, so perhaps wasn’t that clued up on fashion when she arrived in Erinsborough. But surely after chumming up with stylish Lassiter’s Girl Jane, Bronwyn could have picked up a tip or two? It seems not; Bronny’s procession of sideways buns and Heidi style twisted plaits continued apace for months to come. How she ever bagged curly-headed hunk Henry we’ll never know.
With so many hideous 80s mullets to choose from, it took something special to be crowned worst of the bunch. Nick had that something. His bushy mop was highlighted to within an inch of its life, creating an impressive ‘frizzy haystack’ look. And to top it off, Nick also possessed a pair of Gallagher brother, caterpillar-esque black eyebrows, adding a lovely element of contrast. He might have been an artist, but that hairdo was certainly no work of art.
We never thought we’d meet a woman who could make Cheryl Stark look subtle. Then Valda arrived on Ramsay Street, bringing with her a bleached, bubble-permed mop you could lose a small horse in. What her ‘Greenie’ granddaughter Michelle must have thought we don’t know; years of Valda’s hairspray could easily have caused a second hole in the ozone layer. When Valda revealed she was Lyn’s mother, not her auntie, the reason for Lyn’s hair horrors finally became clear – it’s all genetic you know.
While the mullet reigned supreme for Neighbours men in the eighties, the perm was the style of choice for the ladies – and no one wore it quite like Sharon. At least a foot wide on either side, complete with a frizzy fringe as dense as the Australian bush, Sharon’s hair wouldn’t have looked out of place on top of a country cottage. Given she had Bronwyn as a sister and Nick as a boyfriend, it took a hell of an effort to have the worst ’do of the bunch, but by a hair’s breadth, Sharon just about nicked it.
AND THE WINNER IS...
He’s fought off stiff competition (and with all that hairspray in the eighties, we mean stiff) but dear old Toadie is a worthy winner of our Biggest Hair Horror award. When he first arrived in Ramsay Street, he had a fairly standard teenage ponytail, complete with a then fashionable undercut. But as time went on, something very strange began to happen to Toadie’s hair. As it got longer, it got bigger, thicker and wider too, covering most of Toadie’s back as well as his head, until it virtually became a character in its own right. Whenever the scriptwriters were short on jokes, a ‘will he, won’t he cut it?’ debate could easily fill up half an episode in the mid-nineties. Eventually in 1999 Toadie’s hair fell victim to budget cuts, and was dramatically axed when Lou persuaded the Toad to lose it for charity. But while the hair may be gone, the memories will stay with us forever. Probably.
Honourable mentions go to...
Hilary Robinson, for remaining devoted to her helmet-like head of black hair for almost 20 years, resisting big and fluffy styles in favour of prim practicality…
Rosemary Daniels, for being a beacon of chic throughout the hair horrors of the eighties, before unaccountably succumbing to a bubble perm in the mid-nineties…
Afro Harold, for taking Toadie’s place in comedy corner after the charity haircut…
Sarah Beaumont, for proving back in 1998 that a fringe doesn’t always have benefits.