6 Lessons Dolly Parton Taught Us About Style

Getty / Jason LaVeris
“Well, the higher the hair, they say…”

Dolly Parton is queen of many things—country music, big hair, and wise cracks, to name a few. And although she frequently claims she “isn’t in style,” we have to disagree—Dolly’s big hair and Southern look has become so iconic that she’s actually created one all for herself.

1. When it comes to personal style, more can be better.

“Subtle” is not a word that comes to mind when thinking of Dolly Parton. And, while not all of us can rock a head-to-toe glitter ensemble like Dolly can (she’s a rare breed), our beloved Dolly is a constant reminder that we deserve to be front and center in the spotlight every now and then.

Dolly-ism: “I like looking like I came out of a fairy tale.”

2. Never leave the house without your hair and makeup done.

Dolly never leaves the house without her hair and makeup done—even for a quick trip to the grocery store. You never know who you’re going to run into at the neighborhood Piggly Wiggly. And if it works for Dolly, count us in.

Dolly-ism: “People always ask me how long it takes to do my hair. I don't know; I'm never there."

3. The bigger the hair...

Perhaps the only thing bigger than Dolly’s hauntingly beautiful voice are her iconic whipped-cream curls. She had them before they were in fashion, she had them after they were in fashion, and all thanks to Dolly, they will now and forever always be in fashion.

Dolly-ism: “Well, the higher the hair, they say…”

4. Don’t be afraid to contradict yourself.

Dolly might dress flashy and loud, but her personality is sweet as can be. She reminds us that while outward style is certainly one part of her personality, what you wear on the outside doesn't define who you are on the inside.

Dolly-ism: "If you want to look like the town tramp like me, you can.”

5. Be creative with your clothes.

Dolly says that her flamboyant getups often come plain, straight off the rack; she “Dollyizes” them with rhinestones and sequins. Perhaps this is a result of her upbringing—she was raised with 11 siblings. Years (and many record-breaking hits) later, she still gets resourceful.

Dolly-ism: “It takes a lot of money to look as cheap as I do.”

6. In fashion and life, never take yourself too seriously.

Dolly can sing and she can act, and she’s also pretty good at laughing at herself. We love her because she’s genuinely happy and comfortable with who she is. She wears flashy outfits, piles her hair up to the highest heavens, drops a “Dolly-ism,” and laughs all the while. Maybe that's why she's so beloved.

Dolly-ism: “I'm like the girl next door, if you happen to live next door to an amusement park."

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