Whether you are off to a luncheon or just want to look great vacuuming, the perfect updo is easy to create in your own home. The variety of styles, many of them customizable, will have you looking sleek and chic in no time.
Classic of the classic, this sophisticated updo is perfect for day and night. Brush your hair straight back from your forehead and pull into a low ponytail slightly to the left at the nape of your neck. Hold the hair 3 inches from the tips and add some glossing wax for hold and texture. Then twist the hair up and to the right, and continue twisting with your left hand in this direction until it feels secure and the ends are pointed up. Fold the tips down beneath the twist with your right hand. Using your left hand as the stabilizer, secure the twist in place with bobby pins angled upwards and pushed far enough in that they do not show. Spray all over with hairspray.
For a younger, fresher look, keep the tips out and curl them. To create a bump in the front, tease the hair before combing it back and, right before you secure the twist, push forward gently and shape with bobby pins at the end. To create a half-down French twist, perform the same steps but leave the bottom half of your hair down. For a side part or side swept bangs, section off all the hair in front of the line created by tracing from your ear, over the crown, to the other ear and style it last. Simply smooth them to the sides and pin in place behind the ear.
Begin by straightening the hair and adding a glossing product. Make a side parting about 2 inches back and then, using the imaginary line from ear to ear over the top of the head, separate all the front hair and keep it out of the way with a clip. Take the back section of hair (top only) and tease or use rollers to create volume. Then smooth and fasten in the back with pins or a barrette. Move to the set-aside front section and part along the same line as the rest of the hair. Take the right section and sweep it low behind the ear, slip underneath the clip and fasten with bobby pins. Do the same with the other section and spray with hairspray, using a comb to get out any resulting bumps on the sides.
Curled: For this variation, curl all of your hair and then take a 1 inch section in the front and pull loosely to the top of the back of the head and fasten with pins. Pull small pieces from the sides and front and secure in the same general area until you are satisfied with the look. Spray with hairspray.
Side swept/Loose Curls: Begin by clipping the top half of the hair, from the ear up, out of the way. Curl the entire bottom half. Then use a flat iron on the top half of the hair and work each strand straight up from the crown for volume, stopping 3 inches from the tips and curling backwards. If you have bangs, pull them and any side pieces out and clip back. Gather the top half of the hair and secure with a clip at the back of the head. To create a puff in the front, take small sections of hair and pin back, working methodically from one side the other. Take the bottom of your hair and pull into a loose ponytail beneath one ear and fasten. Or you can leave the curls loose over the shoulders. Use a light shiner for gloss on the curls and side swept bangs (if you have them) and cover with hairspray.
A great twist on the matronly bun, this updo piles the hair on the top of the head with the loose curls forming an attractive cage. Before you begin, apply a lightweight mouse to give the end result structure without looking stiff. Then flip over your hair and blow-dry upside down, scrunching up your hair with your hands. Flip your hair back over and pull all of it to the top of your head as you would for a ponytail. Then take an elastic band and pull the hair halfway through, then wrap a few times around so that you have an elongated bun held in place by the elastic. Working methodically, pull out pieces in different lengths and curl them or leave them straight. Use wax product to separate the strands and add shine, and then spray with hairspray. If you do not have enough hair, try adding in some hair extensions to give body to the bun.