10 Simple Wedding Or Prom Looks With Buns And Twists

For your next formal occasion, don't drop big bucks at the salon. Instead, try one of these ten simple styles using buns and twists.

Do you crave an elegant updo for your upcoming prom, wedding, or other formal occasion? Even the most elaborate formal styles are made from simple buns and twists that anyone can do! Before making that salon appointment to have your hair styled, try your hand at these easy at-home styles.

For all of these styles, you will achieve best results if you do not wash your hair the day of styling; your natural oils will help to give your hair weight to hold the buns or twists. For many of these twists and buns, you will need bobby pins and elastic ponytail holders---make sure to use only those products that are designed for use in hair and are coated to protect your hair. For additional flourishes, decorate your buns and twists with specialty bobby pins, barrettes, ribbons, fresh flowers, or a tiara.

Shoulder-Length to Long Hair

These six hairstyles work best on shoulder-length to long hair.

-Ballerina Bun. This is a classic and romantic look for formal occasions. Brush all of your hair into a high ponytail at your crown. Smooth out any lumps and bumps before securing the ponytail. When you are satisfied with the ponytail, secure it with a coated elastic ponytail holder. Twist the ponytail until it begins to twist in on itself. Wrap the length of the ponytail around its base to form the bun. Finally, wrap the end of the ponytail over the entire bun to create the smooth shape of the ballerina bun. Use an additional elastic hairband if necessary to hold the bun in place, and secure with coated bobby pins. Use a heavy duty hair spray to keep loose hairs from flying out.

-"Princess Leia" Buns. If you want your hair to really stand out from the crowd, try this style. Part your hair evenly down the center, and brush into two side ponytails (above your ears). Secure each ponytail with an elastic hairband. Twist one of the ponytails firmly, and then begin to wrap the twist in a spiral. Keep the wrap flat against your head, rather than wrapping the bun on top of itself. Tuck the end under the wrap, and secure with bobby pins. Repeat on the other side, and spray both buns heavily with hairspray.

-Spiky Bun. Brush your hair into a high ponytail at the crown of your head, and secure with an elastic hairband. Then, divide the ponytail into three pieces. Twist each section, bring it back to the base of the ponytail, and secure with a bobby pin, allowing several inches of the tail to stick out over the bun. You can spike these tails by teasing each section and applying a little "hair glue" or gel, or just leave them loose for a soft, tousled effect.

-Chopstick Twist. This twist is tricky to explain but easy to do! If you don't get it on the first try, keep practicing. You will first need a pair of decorative hair chopsticks. Make a loose, unsecured ponytail in the center of your head, and hold this bundle of hair in your right hand. Next, place the chopstick, pointed side down, to the right side of the bundle of hair, and twist the chopstick so that it comes under the bundle of hair. Bring the chopstick up, twisting your hair around the chopstick, and make sure that the twist is very tight to begin with---otherwise, it won't stay put. To secure, stick the pointed end of the chopstick through the center of the ponytail, then work the other chopstick through the twist. Finally, use bobby pins to hold down any loose hairs.

-Double Barrette Twist. Part your hair evenly down the center. Take one half and make a loose, unsecured ponytail. Twist this section tightly, then wrap it up and secure with a barrette. Repeat on the other side. Tuck the "tails" of the twists under and secure with bobby pins, or leave them loose to "spray" over the twists.

-Ponytail Twist. This twist works best with very long hair and makes a unique but elegant updo. Make a loose ponytail at the nape of your neck. Twist the entire ponytail, and then loop it around. Fasten the loop with a barrette so that the twisted loop can dangle. Use bobby pins to secure any loose ends.

Hair of Any Length

Although most "updos" are designed for long hair, there are still plenty of fun looks you can create with shorter hair. Here are four styles using twists and buns that will work on hair of almost any length (although you do, of course, need to have enough hair to twist).

-Twin Buns. Part your hair evenly down the center, and gather each side into a tight ponytail at the nape of your neck. Secure with elastic bands. Twist each ponytail, and wrap it up into a tight, small bun. Tuck in the tails of the twists, and secure with bobby pins.

-Half Up, Half Down. This style consists of two small buns at the crown of the head, and then the rest of your hair is left loose. Make two small ponytails, evenly spaced, on opposite sides of your crown. Twist each of these so that the twist wraps upon itself, and secure with bobby pins. Style the rest of the hair as desired.

-Mini Buns. This cute, trendy look is made of many tiny buns arranged all over the head. Decide how many buns you want, and divide your hair evenly into sections. Make firm ponytails, and secure each with an elastic band. Then, twist each ponytail into a tiny bun. Wrap the end of the ponytail over the top of the twisted bun to create a smooth line. Secure loose ends with bobby pins.

-All-Over Coils. For a choppy, funky look, try this technique: simply twist small, random locks of hair, and secure with bobby pins. Apply gel to the tails so that they spike. Spray all over with a heavy duty hairspray.

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