Friends aired for a whole decade. And in that time, the cast treated us all to some very different hairstyles. The boys had their funny and memorable hairdos (Ross’ flashback perm was a hoot, and the less said about Chandler’s ‘Flock of Seagulls’ cut the better!), but today, we’re focused on the hairstyles sported by the girls—Phoebe, Monica, and Rachel.
When most people think of the Friends girls, the classic ‘Rachel’ hairstyle immediately comes to mind. Jennifer Aniston made that look so iconic that every girl and their sister wanted to copy it. Apparently, even Courteney Cox was jealous of Aniston’s iconic hair on the show (weren’t we all?). But, it wasn’t just Rachel’s character who inspired great hairstyle ideas.
All three of the Friends gals (and even some of the female guest stars) sported some really cute looks throughout the show, and we really want to try them out! From the poofy and bouncy styles of the early 90’s to the sleek tresses of the early noughties and beyond, the Friends ladies gave us serious hair envy for the best part of 10 years. Here are 16 photos that prove why Geller and co were the ultimate in hairstyle goals.
16 The Holiday Dreadlocks
Monica may not have looked her best when she arrived in Barbados in Season 9, but she soon tamed her humidity-induced frizz by switching to this cool look. Chandler may not have been a fan (and getting them caught on the shower rails won’t have been any fun for her), but we loved Monica with dreadlocks! Her character definitely seemed to get more carefree as the show progressed, and clearly, this picture proves that Mon was past giving AF about what others thought!
There’s no denying that this Monica do is slightly more comical than it is stylish but it’s definitely cute in its own way.
Who’d have thought that the same woman who places her furniture at a perfect right angle and never fails to put a coaster under her drinks would also wear dreads with shell accessories?
15 Flicky And Flirty
Monica might have been the least laid-back personality on the show, but when it came to the hairstyles of Monica, her character was pretty flexible. At times, Monica’s hair seemed to be the only chill thing about her, especially if we take a look back at her season one tresses. Monica’s shoulder-length locks were fun and flippy, bouncy and carefree—everything (most fans would argue) that Monica is not.
Her character might have been a clean freak and super strict about most things in everyday life, but it’s not like she wore her hair in a slicked-back bun 24/7.
Mrs. Chandler Bing loved to let her hair down, if only in the literal sense! We love how flirty and light her hair was in the early seasons. (Also, we wish we could look this good in a chunky knit jumper).
14 Short And Sweet
It’s cute and pixie-like while still being choppy enough to give it a little edge.
It was around the fourth season of the show when Monica was beginning to get over Richard (Tom Selleck) and began falling for Chandler, so she obviously wanted to mark that change with a haircut. We’ve all been there. With hair this short, there isn’t much you can do in the way of styling it, but we’d often see Monica accessorize with a cute Alice band (or an eye patch). If I ever take the plunge and get a pixie cut, I only hope it looks as good as Monica’s did (my other pixie crop inspiration after Emma Watson).
13 Soft Romantic Layers
As Monica’s character relaxed a little more and became softer around the edges, so did her hair. And we think she looked particularly stunning with these soft romantic layers in the show’s 11th and final season. In my opinion, it was probably her best hair look. Period. Perhaps it took her to live with Chandler for a few years to mellow out and let her hair do what it wants. (Although, this is still Monica we’re talking about, so it had some structure to it!)
Courteney Cox’s soft layers and side-swept bangs were so pretty and romantic-looking,
especially in this Thanksgiving episode from Season 9, “The One With Rachel’s Other Sister.” Fans of the show will know that Mon didn’t have the best fashion (or hair) track record in previous Thanksgiving episodes, so this was good for her locks (if a bad day for her dinner plates).
12 No-Nonsense 90’s Bob & Bangs
Towards the later seasons of Friends, Monica’s hairstyles became more varied and playful, but early Monica was a little like the gal herself—smart and efficient. Around the time Monica’s character was dating her handsome older man, Dr. Richard Burke,
she wore her hair in a pretty but unfussy bob with piecey bangs.
I always thought that this style made Monica look older than she was, but then again, this kind of fits in with her personality—the sensible mother hen of the group or “the glue that holds us all together” as Ross sweetly points out in the season finale. Mon’s no-nonsense hair and attitude is probably also the reason why we didn’t flinch at her relationship with a man more than 20 years her senior. It just fit (well, for one season at least).
11 Rachel’s Tousled ‘Lob’
Long before her hair evolved into the classic ‘Rachel hairstyle’ we all know and love, Jennifer Aniston wore her hair in this adorable long bob style (or ‘lob’) in the very first episodes of the show way back when in 1994. This was the original–although far less iconic–‘Rachel’ do,
a tousled mess of shoulder-length beach waves. On the rest of us, this would look like we fell through a hedge backward, but on Aniston, it just kinda works.
If I was to sound like a Friends mega nerd (and I am), Rachel’s season one “I woke up like this” hair is almost like a reflection of what was going on in her character’s life. She had just run out on her wedding and was trying to make it alone in New York City. That would give most people a bad hair day for several months. How is it that she manages to look this good with bedhead hair? Seriously unfair.
10 Phoebe’s Mermaid Waves
Re-watching the first few seasons of Friends has us crushing hard on Phoebe’s kooky style, but we especially love the simple but beautiful way she wore her hair back in the early days of the show. Before graduating to a more poker straight look for Phoebe, Lisa Kudrow started out with effortless mermaid waves,
and it looked effortless since Kudrow’s hair is naturally wavy and frizzy!
Mermaid waves are quite an appropriate way to describe Phoebe’s tresses in this period of Friends because in one episode, she kind of gets mistaken for one (or a woman playing a mermaid, at least). While Phoebe is playing a set in Central Perk, she’s interrupted by guys who have a crush on her and compare her to Daryl Hannah (the blonde beauty from Splash!). If our hair looked this naturally good, we wouldn’t wear it any other way.
9 Queen Of The Updos
Rachel’s character always looked just as pretty wearing her hair up as down, and it’s pretty unfair on the rest of us. Jennifer Aniston’s naturally fine and sleek hair meant that she could pretty much manipulate her hair into any style, and it would look like she spent ages on it. For girls with thicker hair, though, trying to achieve a similar kind of effortless ‘updo’ meant breaking our hairbrushes and losing endless kirby grips all over our bedroom.
Rachel often wore this updo whilst waitressing in the early seasons of Friends, so we’re meant to believe that her character just woke up, grabbed some morning java, and put this together? It might be a simple kind of updo hairstyle, but don’t tell me you haven’t seen something similar on Pinterest or on a hair YouTuber’s channel? #RachelHairDon’tCare
8 The Iconic ‘Rachel’ Look
If you came of age in the 90’s, you probably went to a hair salon and asked for ‘The Rachel’ at least once, am I right? Or at the very least, you tried to recreate it at home with thinning scissors and lots of blow-drying. When Jennifer Aniston first burst onto our screens as Rachel Green, she didn’t just launch a great comedy character;
she started a hairstyle trend that would go worldwide and one that we’d still be wearing nearly 25 years later. Yep, wow!
So, what was all the fuss about ‘The Rachel’ haircut for? Well, perhaps it was because Aniston looked so stunning wearing it and therefore made it look ten times better than on us regular folks. But mostly, it was how versatile it was. Rachel’s square shaggy bob somehow looked cute and sexy at the same time. Bouncy enough to be girly yet face-framing and choppy enough to look bold and sophisticated. How can you not love this?
7 Pheobe’s Love Of Hair Accessories
The Friends girls each explored a more girly side to their style throughout the show, but when it came to pulling off an innocent girly look as a grown woman, Phoebe Buffay knocked it out the park every time. Probably since Phoebe was the one character with a childlike nature (other than Joey, of course), it meant that
she could get away with things like Alice bands and statement ribbons in her hair as a 30-something woman, and she always looked so darn adorable in them!
It helped that Phoebe always knew just how to style them out too, like when she color-coded them with her blue and orange dresses in season 7. The best example of her girly hair accessories, though, has to be this look from the Thanksgiving episode with Brad Pitt. Phoebe sported some blue fluffy pom-poms in her pigtails and managed to look sweet instead of tacky. How does she do it?!
6 Janice’s Crazy Curls
You’re automatically hearing her laugh right now, aren’t you? It’s okay, we are too. It never goes away. Chandler’s on-and-off girlfriend, Janice (Maggie Wheeler), had hair as big as her personality (but thankfully not as annoying as her laugh). Whenever she was in the room, other than noticing her impossibly nasally voice, laugh, and her whiny catchphrase of “Oh My God,” we couldn’t help but admire Janice’s frankly gorgeous voluminous curls.
Janice’s big hairstyle stayed pretty consistent throughout her appearances on the show, going from soft-layered curls when she first dated Chandler to her tight ringlets in the latter seasons.
Either way, her hair always looked uber glamorous and made us all take notice of her (even before she opened her mouth!). The bouncy curls of Janice Litman Garalnik was the ultimate sassy statement hair.
5 Charlie’s Flicky Bob
Joey’s beautiful paleontology professor girlfriend (and eventually Ross’) sported a hairstyle that I’m pretty sure we all had at one time in the noughties. Charlie (played by Aisha Tyler) was bang on trend when she appeared on the show with this cute flicky bob.
Hairstyles of the early 2000’s saw a lot of flirty flicks to make a regular bob more interesting. Let’s face it, anyone who had a hair straightener tried this one out.
When Charlie’s character first appears on the scene in the ninth season, Monica calls her a “hottie” a little too loudly, Rachel is jealous of her, and nobody can quite believe how Joey ended up with her (poor Joey). It’s fair to say that her flirty flicky bob, among other things, set hearts aflutter.
4 Kathy’s Super Cute Pixie Crop
Kathy (played by Paget Brewster) may not have been a huge character in the show, but who could forget her oh-so-cute haircut? It might even be the reason why Chandler fell for her in the first place. It’s a truth universally known that pixie hairstyles are not for everybody, but Kathy’s character owns this look. The deep maroon shade puts a sexy twist on a classic pixie, and we wish we could wear it half as well as this.
Kathy’s character is fairly hair-related as it goes. She offers to cut Chandler’s hair, after all, in the season 4 episode “The One Where Chandler Crosses The Line.” While trimming Chandler’s hair, Kathy runs her fingers through to make sure it’s even, and the chemistry between them is off-the-charts electric (either that or a bit of static).
3 Phoebe’s Elaborate Pinterest-Worthy Buns
Sometimes, Phoebe’s blond hair and penchant for intricate braids made her look as if she could land a side gig as Elf in The Lord of the Rings! We’re not sure how she did it, but almost every episode saw
Phoebe wearing her hair like a mythical warrior princess, and this super complicated bun we can see in this pic is no exception.
Lisa Kudrow must have had at least 5 hair stylists on the Friends set at any one time because this thing is a work of art. We’re not sure what’s going on here, but we love it. We couldn’t attempt something like this if we tried. But Phoebe being Phoebe, we totally buy that her character has the talent and patience to nail something like this every morning.
2 Phoebe’s ‘Smelly Cat’ Music Video Style
Only Phoebe Buffay could make a music video about a whiffy kitty look glamorous and only Phoebe could rock some amazing hair in the process. In the surreal and over-the-top video that Phoebe creates for her signature song ‘Smelly Cat’,
she reinvents the half-up-half-down do for a new age, and it’s too awesome for words.
It could be the wind machine or the glamorous hair jewels that make Phoebe’s locks look so epic in this scene, but whatever it is, we’re in love. She might be holding a funky cat and standing in the middle of a dirty New York back alley, but Phoebe looks like she’s ready for the Oscar red carpet with this barnet. We all favored the half-up hairstyle in our teens but never one as cool as this.
1 Phoebe’s Bridal Hairdo
When phoebe’s special day finally arrived, her hair took a rare break from looking quirky and intricate and instead looked almost Disney Princess-like.
The tumbling blond curls looked stunning on her and gave us all major wedding hair goals for our big day.
It was still Phoebe after all, though. So, classic hairstyle or not, she still defied wedding convention—her dress was a light pink instead of white and she was the only person without a coat during a street wedding in winter! Phoebe and Mike tied the knot in Season 10 which made it almost 10 years since we last saw her character with a mass of curly hair, so her beautiful bridal hairstyle feels like a nice homage to season one Phoebe. The best part about this look? This was Lisa Kudrow’s natural style. No fair!