Egyptians wore wigs to proclaim their status as a member of the nobility. Wigs also kept lice at bay and protected a shaved person's head from the sun.
Wigs were usually decorated with gold, ribbons, beads, caps and headbands during special occasions. The headpieces were made from human and horse hair. Men and women wore wigs with long, straight hair or short curls that came in rows during the Old Kingdom. Bulky wigs were in vogue by the Middle Kingdom. Wigs for men became long and had less bulk during the New Kingdom, while women's wigs grew larger, draping over the shoulders. Slaves were not allowed to wear wigs under Egyptian law.