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11 Hair Tools From Your Childhood That Were the Worst

06/09/2015 04:19 pm ET | Updated Jun 09, 2016

Before YouTube, Pinterest and heat-protectant sprays, it was a very dark, very frizzy time for hair. Here's a look back at the most questionable beauty tools that ever came near our heads.

By Chloe Metzger, Allure

  • 1
    Hair Crimper Remember when the only thing in the world that mattered more than keeping your Tamagotchi alive was having crimped hair as perfect as Lizzie McGuire's (or Madonna's, depending on your age)? But no matter how slowly and precisely you clamped that 4-billion-degree iron down on your hair, you never got the same shiny, evenly spaced rows as the girls on TV. You did, however, get a patch of electrocuted frizz. See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape Photo: Courtesy of brand
  • 2
    Stretch Comb Headbands By the time you managed to slide one of these stretchy torture devices up and over your face (without jabbing your nose or eyeballs), the headband would almost always come unclipped and tangled in your hair. Cue tween rage. See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape Photo: Courtesy of brand
  • 3
    Hairagami Basically velour-covered slap bracelets, these "as seen on TV" snap tools were supposed to make elegant updos a breeze—"just fold, wrap, and snap!"—unless, of course, you had curly, short, layered, thick, or fine hair. See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape Photo: Courtesy of brand
  • 4
    Clairol Benders If you were a kid in the '80s, chances are you had a pack of these heated, bendy rods in your beauty arsenal, and chances are you stored them in your Caboodle. They were supposed to give you soft, flirty curls, like the excited model on the package, but the end result was a bunch of out-of-control squiggles darting every which way from your scalp. See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape Photo: Courtesy of brand
  • 5
    Butterfly Clips Sadly, the whole "less is more" rule never reached butterfly clips. The coolest kids had at least six of these Technicolor insects across their head, braid, or mini buns. Luckily, the trend was more of an eyesore than a safety hazard—unless you got smacked in the head with a tetherball while wearing them. Then you knew what real pain was. See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape Photo: Courtesy of brand
  • 6
    Part Pizazz These comb-and-stencil duos came in superfashionable shapes, like zigzag, square, and wavy, to spice up your rockin' '90s center part. Yes, they worked—if you had stick-straight hair that showed off your scalp—but trying to stencil the back of your own head was an acrobatic feat that never quite happened for most of us. See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape Photo: Courtesy of brand
  • 7
    Conair Quick Braid The idea: Create quick and easy ropelike braids with the flip of a switch. The reality: Spend five minutes maneuvering two tiny strands of hair under small retractable hooks, which spun dangerously in place. Awesome in theory, except when flyaways got caught and tangled into such an intricate knot that your mother had to cut the device from your hair. See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape Photo: Courtesy of brand
  • 8
    Bumpits When back-combing wasn't enough, this hair-volumizing insert gave your head the unnatural ridge you always dreamed of. Though you really could take your hair from "flat to fabulous instantly," as promised, it was almost impossible to keep the piece of plastic from sliding off your head without first back-combing, spraying, and zhuzh-ing the hell out of your hair. See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape Photo: Courtesy of brand
  • 9
    Conair Quick Wrap This bulky plastic device was a staple at every sleepover. After you threaded your hair through the hole, the device would loudly, and incredibly slowly, wrap a pastel-colored string around your hair. The only downside? If you didn't keep your hand completely steady, the wrap would turn out uneven and gapped, and it would eventually slide out. And good luck telling a bunch of 12-year-olds hopped up on Fun Dip to move slowly. See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape Photo: Courtesy of brand
  • 10
    Braidini This odd zigzag tool was supposed to make French braiding easier by helping you guide sections of hair over, under, and across your head. Fun idea, except the instructions made no sense, the tool was impossible to maneuver, and the braids always came out lopsided and loose. See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape Photo: Courtesy of brand
  • 11
    Remington Wet 2 Straight Flat Iron Teen years were rough enough without having to wait for your hair to air-dry before ironing the bejesus out of it. The solution? A scalding flatiron that basically boiled your wet hair as it straightened it, leaving you with a frizzy-but-straight triangle of fluff. Sure, the clouds of steam (smoke?) should have been a red flag, but you had bigger fish to fry, like figuring out where the heck you put your choker. See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape Photo: Courtesy of brand

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