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Hair & Hairstyling Trends: The Look For Spring Hair 1998


Model w/ Bold Violet Hair Streaks In 1998 - All Rights Reserved

This article was originally written in March of 1998 when one of the biggest looks for hair for the Spring was big bold streaks of add-on color.

The streaks were created in a variety of ways ranging from permanent hair color, add-on strands and temporary color kits. Regardless of the method, the wilder and bolder the color - the better.

Although the paint-on color trend was hot for 1998 and lasted into early 1999, eventually the look that was created with hair mascaras faded away.

Streaks Of Color & Mascara For Hair

Streaks were definitely very big news. However, they were different from the subtle streaks of old. The streaks of 1998 were neither subtle or pass chunky streaks.

1998 hair color streaks were thin and fine but robust in color. Bold blonde streaks were used because they contrasted noticeably against darker hair. The obviously "fake colors" acted as accents against natural shades.

Red was the hottest new hue and it arrived in a variety of tonal blends. The magnificent red streaks were used as a color infusion to brighten up drab brunette shades or add wild color accents to blondes. If you opted for permanent streaks, hairdressers advised that red fades very quickly, especially in the sun. As a result, you were encouraged to invest in color support products like color refreshing shampoos and care products with UV filters.

Shades of red and brown used in wide bands gave great shine and punch to darker hair colors.

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Model w/ Bold Multi-Colored Hair Streaks In 1998 - All Rights Reserved

The hair fashion pundits advised being bold and stroking pink dashing look. Stroke two long strips on either side of a center part. It will give you a very wild look.

Streaks of color achieved using hair mascaras made strong statements when used with a smooth dressed style that was knotted at the nape of the neck. Shades of bright blue looked excellent against honey or golden blonde locks.

Taking the idea further, hairdressers beaded strands that were woven into the hair from the roots back to the nape of the neck.

Streaks worked great on the popular fringe (bangs) which were sizzling hot for 1997.

Hair Mascaras

Model w/ Mascara Painted Accent Hair Streaks In 1998 - All Rights Reserved

Listed below are short reviews of several of the most popular hair mascaras that were on the market for 1998.

Although a wide range of offerings were available, the most popular products were highlighted.

Hair mascaras actually were big in 1997 but continued to remain popular in 1998. Hair mascara worked best on naturally straight hair.

The advantage to the hair mascaras were that they did not do any long term or major damage to beautiful, healthy long hair and will wash out with every shampoo.


The big news at Dior for Spring of 1998 was paint on hair mascara. Dior advertised their Mascara Flash - Highlights For Hair. Dior Hair Mascara was available at Bloomingdales. The Dior hair mascara’s were paint on and shampoo out

Dior was one of the first products to hit the shops and offered a great choice of colors. They had subtle and spicy shades of Opaline, Champagne, Amber, Chestnut, Cedar and Paprika. You could be bold with Ebony, Cobalt, Garnet Red, Aubergine, Fresh Green and Blueberry. Glamour's Gold Nuggets was introduced at Christmas of 1997.

The new shades for 1998 included Disco Rose, Pop Violet, Lilac Samba, Techno Blue and Honey. The Dior hair mascara was made with the same protective properties as ordinary mascara. It contained silk proteins which left hair with a soft, supple finish.


Model w/ Bold Hair Streaks In 1998 - All Rights Reserved

Aveda announced their Mask.Hair.A which could be viewed in all its glorious packaging through Aveda ad campagins. Aveda advertised that its hair masks provided "quick hits of color" that made your hair fun.

Aveda had five shimmery shades including Amethyst, Red Garnet, Bronze, White Opal and Brown Topaz.

Each gem-of-a-wand contained naturally derived colors and resins retrieved by indigenous tribes from trees in the Amazonian rainforest.

Trevor Sorbie

One of Britain’s favorite star stylists, Trevor Sorbie has come up with HiLighters hair mascara. It was available in six colors including White Gold, Bronze and Cobalt Blue. The Sorbie product was available in various department stores in the US and across the pond.

L’Oreal Hair Mascara

The L'Oreal hair mascara product aimed to cast a magic spell with its six glossy shades called Silvery Moon, Spell Blue, Rose Hypnose, Fiery Green, Golden Miracle and Copper Mystery. L'Oreal promised that the colors were quick to apply.

The Body Shop

Head Lights was the hair mascara product introduced by The Body Shop. It allowed used to apply instant highlights or lowlights at a touch. The brush-on pearl infused colors in four shades were best applied on long hair when strands were held together and color was stroked on from the root down to the tip. Short hair can get a shinny effect by using small light strokes with the brush applicator.

Other Hair Mascara Brands

Although Dior, L'Oreal and Aveda made a big splash with their hair mascaras, other companies introduced their own versions. Lancome had a popular version as did Senscience. Ironically, hair mascaras originated from both hair and traditional make-up companies.

How To Apply Hair Mascara

Whether your hair is long or short you should always start at the root. From the root of your hair brush the fast drying color through to the very ends.

You can stroke color on individual strands or coat side sections of hair. Opt for high contrast to create a dramatic effect or subtle lights for a harmonious accent.

Use the color like a new hair accessory to complement your overall look. Hair mascara is also a great mood elevator when you want to have fun or be funky just for a little while. When your mood changes or if you hate the look just head for the shower and shampoo away.


In keeping with the hair trends of late 1997 and 1998, bright, bold add-on colors provided instantly by brush on hair mascara was a huge trend. Many of the major cosmetic and hair companies rushed to respond to the demand.

Like all fashion trends, fads and frenzies, hair mascara had its day in the sun and by the middle of 1999 hair mascaras had faded into the hair fashion twilight zone along with other trends for 1998.

The good news is that some companies continued to offer hair mascara and it is still available, although in a more limited way, then in 1998.

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Original Publication Date: 3/1998 - Revised Publication Date: 04/23/11

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