Feather hair extensions have become a fashion phenomenon in recent months. The trend was most recently made popular by celebrities, such as Steven Tyler and Ke$ha, but arguably first created by famed Native American princess Pocahontas. They are stylish and affordable accessories that allow young women to express their individuality on campus through the use of different colors and feather types.
The process is simple. Stylists attach the feathers to hair with micro-bead. The feather extension can last for up to four months without damage, even after repeated washings. The feathers were in such demand over the summer that even fly-fishing shops were in the money-making business by selling the feathers they normally made lures out of to salon owners who ran out of supplies.
Kristen Crandell, senior in education, doesn’t see the appeal of making the bolder statement.
“The bright ones make it look overdone,” she said. “The neutral, natural ones are cool.”
Lyndi Stucky, sophomore in open option, agreed that overdoing the trend can turn out tacky.
“One or two are cute, but if it looks like they killed the whole turkey and put it in their hair, it’s not stylish,” she said.
Environmental activists have also spoke against the recent trend.
“Would you support the slaughter of thousands of animals each week just so that you could jump on board with the latest fashion trend?” a PETA article asked.
Feather suppliers are trying to keep up with the rise in demand for their products and many more roosters are being killed in the process.
The trend won’t stop easily, though. New clients are getting feathers in their hair daily, not worrying about where the product came from.
But Crandell and Stucky both agreed it is too late now to join the fashion frenzy.
“If you haven’t already tried it you’re just attaching yourself to the trend now,” said Crandell.
The fear of looking like a poser could stop some potential newbies from flocking together on the feather bandwagon. Just like trends before, from Uggs to legwarmers, there are going to be people who don’t understand the appeal.
“If it’s you, go ahead and do it. If not, then don’t attempt. It’s all or nothing,” said Tim Sherman, senior in architecture. “Anybody who doesn’t have the full hippie ensemble doesn’t pull it off.”
There are many opinions on who should or shouldn’t wear the popular extensions, but there is no denying how much of a phenomenon the trend has become. Whether it will last another year or fade away within the month is a question up for debate. K-State student Sarah Farmer doesn’t see the trend lasting much longer.
“Within a year they will probably come out with the same idea, but with a different twist,” she said.
No one knows for sure what the next trend will be, but according to Crandell, tinsel may be the new fad. Maybe it is nearly time to say “bye bye birdie” and hello to the next big thing in hairstyling.