‘Counting On’: Why Do the Duggars Have Long Hair?

One observation some Counting On fans have made is that the women in the Duggar family all have very long hair. We haven’t seen any of the women with very short hairstyles. This has led some fans to ask if the Duggar women have strict rules against haircuts for female family members. Here’s what we know.

Why the Duggar women have long hair

The Duggars| Ida Mae Astute/ABC via Getty Images
The Duggars| Ida Mae Astute/ABC via Getty Images

So, why do the women in the Duggar family like to keep their hair long? The main reason they all have the same hairstyle is because they feel long hair is in alignment with their religious beliefs. In their book Growing Up Duggar, the sisters explain why long hair is so important to them. “Our hairstyle is our choice and we choose longer hair based on our understanding of 1 Corinthians 11:14-15,” said the Duggar sisters.

According to Bible Gateway, 1 Corinthians 11:14-15 says in the New International Version: “Does not the very nature of things teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a disgrace to him, but that if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? For long hair is given to her as a covering.” It’s safe to assume from this passage that the Duggar men are not allowed to have long hair.

The Duggar women reportedly follow a teaching that links long hair to one’s identity

The Duggar women not only keep their hair long but also curly. They go to great lengths to get the right look. Why are long curls so important? Another reason the Duggars follow strict hair rules might have to do with Bill Gothard, a minister who is the founder of the Advanced Training Institute. This is a religious homeschool program the Duggars use for their children’s education. Gothard reportedly said women and girls should keep their hair long and curly. According to former followers of Advanced Training Institute, Gothard preferred women who had long, wavy hair. So, this is likely a big part of the reason the Duggar women tend to keep this type of hairstyle. Isabelle Hoffmann, a woman who attended the Advanced Training Institute from 1985 to 2001 wrote about her experience on the Recovering Grace Blog:

Gothard was not shy about what he found to be attractive on a woman’s head–long hair, soft curls. I heard girls reacting to that all the time. There were girls who couldn’t get their hair to hold a curl. One friend said to me, “Look how limp my hair is, and I had it all up in hot rollers just two hours ago!” Others couldn’t grow their hair long or just preferred it short. Still, they knew they weren’t living up to Gothard’s ideal.

Some fans think a haircut is in order

During a recent roundup of advice for the Duggars on Reddit, fans of Counting On made up a list of fashion advice they would like to give the family. One Reddit user who goes by the name meiyoumayo feels Jill needs to update her hairstyle and cut off some length. The advice: “Jill: Trim your hair and get some face-framing layers. I know the long-faced chick struggle well and I have walked your path before. Trust me, just get some face-framing layers and your hair will look healthier and it will really flatter your face (which is lovely).” Another Reddit user advised Jinger to stop wearing so many headbands.

Read more: Surprising Rules the Duggars Follow When It Comes to Sex and Marriage

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