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How To Do A Loose Side Bun

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To ease into our newest hair and makeup series, we thought we’d start with something really basic: the messy bun. I’m willing to bet most of you with hair longer than mine probably have a good handle on the fundamentals of throwing your hair in a bun (ponytail, twist, secure, tada!). But for something a little more formal than, say, going to the grocery story, we figured it would be helpful to show you how to create a bun with a little more oomph to it that can also withstand a few hours of breaking it down to “Starships.”* So without further ado, here are our expert tips from Nichole Kreps of Harper Paige Salon (she’s that rad chick in the striped shirt up there with the cool tattoos) who created this look for our very own Sharon (who you might remember from her wedding grad post or this awesome piece from last month):

Prepping your hair: Nichole likes to start with what she calls “day old dirty hair” for the most control and staying power (if you have the kind of hair that refuses to ever hold a style, this is your golden ticket). Of course, if you don’t feel like waiting around for your hair to get dirty on its own, Nichole suggests spraying your clean hair with a texturizing spray to dirty it up. She used Oribe Texture Spray and Oribes Après Beach on Sharon for this look. Also, it’s worth noting that Sharon’s hair had some curl in it left over from a different tutorial, but you can absolutely do this on straight hair too. (Actually her hair is normally pretty straight and thick, so if you want some added texture or softness, you can always pre-curl your hair before putting it up in the bun.)

Using hair screws: This was the part of the tutorial I was expecting to be really complicated. Turns out, it’s the easiest bit. Just take a few hair screws (which are also called “spin pins” and can be found at most big box retailers) and twist them into your hair. For those of you with finer hair, you might be able to get away with just using two hair screws (place one hair screw at the top of your bun and twist toward the center, then place another one on the bottom of the bun and twist toward the center again and voila! Done.) For thicker hair, just use more hair screws. And if you’re the kind of visual person who needs to see someone actually go through the motions before you totally comprehend how it’s done (raises hand), I found this quick video tutorial on how to apply hair screws to be really helpful.

Finishing the look: To finish Sharon’s look, Nichole curled a few loose pieces of hair to hang down near Sharon’s face. But you can just as easily make the front a little more polished by tucking those hairs away. And my favorite pro tip? Nichole says you can use the roundness of your hairspray can to smooth out the top where you backcombed.

And that’s it! An easy, unfussy side bun in less than ten minutes. And the best part is that this is the kind of look you can practice a bunch of times before your wedding with relatively little effort. So rejoice, lazy hair-doers. This is the fancy occasion staple for you.

*No, really. I swear this was the most popular wedding song of 2012. Nicki Minaj will get your granny dancing, apparently.

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