Q:

Why did George Washington wear a white wig?

A:

Quick Answer

George Washington did not wear a wig, however, he did tie his hair back and powder it white. Powdering the hair was a common style in the 1700s.

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Full Answer

Washington had naturally reddish light brown hair that he powdered white because white, gray and blonde were fashionable hair colors at the time. Many men wore white or powdered white wigs made of real hair, either to stay fashionable or because they were balding. Pomade was often used in the hair, as a sticking agent, with the powder applied over it to create an even hair color. Hair powder was usually made of rice or potato flour, coloring pigments and fragrance.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Who was George Washington?

    A:

    George Washington was a farmer, surveyor and soldier who, as commander in chief of the Continental Army, defeated the British in the Revolutionary War and, as a private citizen, became the first president of the United States. Washington set a number of precedents for American leadership, including the concept of a two-term limit for presidents.

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  • Q:

    How old was George Washington when he died?

    A:

    At the age of 67, George Washington died of epiglottitis after spending 50 years, nearly his entire adult life, serving his country. He was buried in a vault at his Mount Vernon home.

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  • Q:

    How do you make a George Washington wig?

    A:

    A simple replica of George Washington's hairstyle can be made by stapling a paper structure around the head and attaching cotton balls. Contrary to popular assumption and the fashion at the time, George Washington did not actually wear a wig himself. Instead, he tied his naturally light brown hair in a queue (a kind of braided hairstyle that was also popular in China, where it was considered a symbol of submission) and powdered it white.

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  • Q:

    Who was George Washington's best friend?

    A:

    George Washington's best friend was General Henry Knox, whom he met during his service in the Revolutionary War. Knox became Washington's Secretary of War in 1789. Washington said of Knox, "There is no man in the United States....[with] whom I have had a greater friendship."

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