The Real Meaning Behind The Big Curls Everyone Is Wearing Right Now

Whenever I have a bad day, I click over to YouTube to watch Diana Ross' rain-drenched 1983 performance in Central Park. There's something about her in that glamorous jumpsuit, the massive crowd of devoted fans, and hair soaking wet, but still fabulous. In fact, the diva's hair has mirrored her talent throughout her entire career — always big, always bold.

Lately, stars like Rihanna, Yara Shahidi, SZA, and more are channeling The Boss by opting for the most voluminous, 'fro-tastic curls possible — and can you blame them? Diana Ross embodies glamour, from head-to-toe. If we can embody at least an ounce of it, then we'd be lucky. See some of the best Diana-inspired 'dos ahead.

Photo: ShowBizIreland/Getty Images.
First, let's take a moment to appreciate Ross' tried-and-true fro. Try as we might, but no one will ever touch this fabulousity.
Photo: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic.
There are good genes, and then there are exceptional ones. Obviously, Tracee Ellis Ross, daughter of Ross, possesses the latter.
"Rihanna and I were inspired to create this disco diva look by queens like Donna Summers and Diana Ross," Yusef Williams tells us of Rihanna's Grammys glam. "The idea was to make Rihanna look like a fluffy dream."
"I wanted her beautiful texture delicately brushed out," Nai'vasha Johnson tells us of Yara Shahidi's halo of curls at the SAG Awards. To get the look, Johnson moisturized Shahidi's hair with the Taliah Waajid Green Apple and Aloe Nutrition Leave-In Conditioner, misting from root to tip before brushing it through with a Mason Pearson. She dried the star's hair with a diffuser and used the brand's Curly Curl Cream for definition and shine.
Photo: Venturelli/WireImage.
"The movement of wearing black and standing in solidarity for all women was my inspiration," Jamika Wilson, who works with Viola Davis, told us after the 2018 Golden Globes. "Their collective choice speaks volumes; they stood tall and unapologetic for their beliefs. And I wanted to create a hairstyle equally as bold and beautiful."
Photo: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images.
At the 2017 Billboard Music Awards, Tym Wallace told us that he was inspired by Ross' character in Mahogany, so he sprayed this wig with Big Sexy Hair Spray & Play Volumizing for maximum effect.
Photo: gotpap/Bauer­Griffin/GC Images.
Garcelle Beauvais wowed at the Black Panther premiere with a voluminous low ponytail.
Photo: Johnny Nunez/Getty Images/Essence.
Pro tip: You can add a few clip-ins to the bottom of your style for added fullness when striving for an asymmetrical Afro like Yandy Smith's.
Photo: John Shearer/Getty Images.
SZA looked angelic at the Grammys — and her Botticelli waves only added to the vision.
Photo: Via @oprahmagazine.
Is it us, or is Oprah Winfrey killing the game even harder lately?
Photo: Via @kellyrowland.
We don't think anyone was ready for Kelly Rowland's gorgeous mane of blown-out curls... with just the right amount of frizz to keep it looking realistic.
Photo: Via @chrisappleton1.
"Studio 54 [vibes]," Chris Appleton captioned a look that he did on Jennifer Lopez — loose waves with a whole lot of volume at the top.
Photo: Via @ciara.
César Ramirez had three little words for this major style on Ciara: "Big Curly Sexy."

This content is currently unavailable. Check it out from your desktop or on our web app!

Like this post? There's more. Get tons of beauty tips, tutorials, and news on the Refinery29 Beauty Facebook page. Like us on Facebook — we'll see you there!
Show More Comments...