the doo rag did not originate in prisons in the seventies contrary to tv and other popular beliefs
Doo-Rags originated in prisons in the 1970's, to try and simulate the long hair of a (male) female inmate, so the (male) males, could easily tell them apart. They were originally black, but many colors are in use today.
Now banned in most prisons of today, Doo-Rags have moved into main stream black fashion, and the use no longer signifies any sexual connotations. Court cases in New York City have supported the use of Doo-rags at work, when employers complained that it was not "appropriate". Black men have even been seen in a business suit, coming from work, wearing a doo rag. Bald Black men (with no braids) also wear doo rags. A doo rag, under a baseball cap, it also gaining popularity.
The word derivation is "Hairdoo rag"
Although there are many ways to spell Do-Rag such as Doo Rag, Du Rag, Dew Rag and many other variations, when pronounced they all sound the same. There are also other names that they are called by such as Skull-Cap, Scrub-Cap, and Head-Wrap. A Do-Rag however should not be confused with the Bandanna. A Bandana is a single piece of cloth, usually 22"x22" and is folded in half than tied onto the head for covering. Where as a Do-Rag consists of several pieces of fabric, also known as panels, sewn together to form a shape that will fit snug onto the head similar to a baseball cap. There may be as few as two panels or up to five or more panels in the construction of each Do-Rag.