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Hair Metal

Hair Metal is a derisive term applied to the slick, pretty, and pop-oriented heavy metal and hard-rock bands of the late '80s. These bands expanded the approach of the loud but safe arena-rock bands, only they had a more distinctive visual image because they were living in the post-MTV era. Wearing flashy clothing, heavy makeup, and large, teased hair, the bands had an appearance that was more distinctive than their music, though both their look and their sound became a curse in the early '90s. After Nirvana brought grunge and alternative music to the top of the charts in 1991, hair metal bands quickly died, losing all of their popular support. Some tried to change their sound, while others struggled on with their trademark sound to no avail. Though some bands still survived in the mid-'90s, they had adopted a harder sound than they had in the '80s, but their fondness for pop hooks and melodies had not faded away.