Tatyana Ali Reminisces on Her ‘Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’ Days and ’90s Hairstyles — Interview

For those of us old enough to have lived through some interesting ’90s hair trends, looking back at old photos can sometimes be cringeworthy. This is especially true of those photos from when you were young enough for your mom to still be styling your hair. (That is, if your mom wasn’t some kind of hairstylist.) 

Child stars have it even worse because they have to live with their vintage looks watched over and over in syndication past their prime. If they’re lucky, those looks are revered and recreated by the next generation. This could not be more true for Fresh Prince of Bel-Air star Tatyana Ali. Her character Ashley Banks was a fashion and beauty icon as she entered her teens. One swipe through fashion TikTok and you’ll see both the actress and the character has made an impression.

That’s why Bedhead by Tigi chose Ali to help the brand celebrate its 25th anniversary, which also includes new hair-care and styling products available at Ulta Beauty this month. The actress joined fellow ’90s stars such as Beverley Mitchell from 7th Heaven, as well as 2021 celebrities such as Betty Who and Tayla Parx, to chat throwback hairstyles on the brand’s Instagram.

Because we needed more from the Fresh Prince star, Allure Zoomed with Ali directly to find out what it was really like on the hit show — and if she loved those iconic bangs as much as we did.

Her Favorite (and Least Favorite) Fresh Prince Hairstyles

Ali tried basically every bang trend of the ’90s, but there are only a few that she feels stood the test of time. “It started with the grunge baby bangs, but then the straight across bang was dope,” she says. “I still think that’s dope.” 

While she’s into the style, she does say that “feathered bangs don’t have to come back.” In fact, that bang style caused her to have a bit of a painful mishap with a curling iron while she was on the show. “A hairstylist on Fresh Prince gave me the top curl and then she was doing the bottom and burnt my forehead,” she says. “It’s funny now, but it wasn’t funny at the time. I had a big burn mark on my forehead, but at least I had the bangs to cover it.”

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