68 Wedding Hairstyles for Every Hair Type


Let's find your perfect hair-spiration

by Kate Levy, Marketing Manager

woman in white crochet lace–top wedding dress with long brown soft curls and a large pink and green flower crown
When it comes to wedding hairstyles, most folks fall into one of two groups: the I-know-EXACTLY-how-I-want-my-hair-to-look crew, or the OMFG-what-am-I-going-to-do-with-my-hair squad. And you know, I should be perfect at this. As a hairstylist who works weddings, I’ve spent hundreds of hours around brides doing wedding hair. But somehow I found myself literally cutting my own hair in the bathroom on my wedding day. Yeah, true story. #DontBeLikeMe

So in the interest of NOT being like me (seriously, do not try that at home ever), we’re here to save you some heartache by walking through how to find the best wedding hairstyles for you (and your hair!), plus how to find a stylist to help make that happen. If you’re thinking of going the DIY hair route, we got you too: check our posts here and here.

Figuring Out What Wedding Hairstyle Works For You

Trying to figure out which wedding hairstyle will work best for you can initially be a little tricky. As we know, Pinterest and the Interwebs are chock full of gorgeous images, but many of those are of hair models sporting loads of extensions, along with a stylist, killer lighting, and a fan. When you find some images you like ask yourself this: does it seem like my hair could do what’s in that picture? If you’re sporting a pixie, a super Rapunzel curled look is probably not going to happen. Or say, trying to get your tight natural curls into a super sleek chignon. On your wedding day, you should aim to look like a slightly fancier version of yourself. Don’t make this the day you’re trying out some totally new look for the first time.

How To Find A Wedding Stylist

We’ve written at length about how to find a wedding stylist. But the short version is this: start by checking our Vendor Directory, talk to your own stylist, or ask friends for a referral. Most stylists require a trial in order to book your wedding. While at first this may totally seem like one of those WIC moments and like something you don’t need, it absolutely is a must. This is as much for you as it is for your stylist. While it gives them a chance get a feel for your hair, it gives you a chance to get to know someone who is going to be with you at a potentially stressful time. You want someone you feel comfortable with, and will be able to stay calm and professional.

At your trial, bring your stylist a few options of things you like, and think about why you like those looks. Is it the curls, the colors, the accessories? Keep in mind the neckline of your dress and any jewelry you plan on wearing, along with veil or other headpieces. Even the very best stylists can’t replicate a style exactly: your hair is not the same as the person in the picture. Your stylist will create a style that works for you and your hair, which in the end will be a far more successful style than a bad copy of Pinterest.

To help you in your search for wedding hairstyles that are going to work for you, today we’ve rounded up my favorite hairstyles for short, medium to long, and curly hair, for all types of textures and thicknesses. If you’re looking for even more specific hair types, check out our favorite wedding hairstyles for black hairunique hairstylesshort hair, and curly hair.

Wedding Hairstyles For Short Hair

Calling all undercuts, pixies, bobs, and lobs! Short doesn’t mean boring, not for one second. While it can feel like it’ll be hard to make it feel different from your everyday hair, keep in mind you’re going to be all spiffed up wearing a killer outfit—this isn’t a normal day. Pro tip: Adding an accessory is the best-kept secret in bridal hair. It helps the style feel elevated and finished. Or go with a bold eye or lip to bring your look up a few notches. Check out our post on wedding hair accessories for short hair.

Woman's hair from behind, half up with messy loose braids and two large pearl combsHair by Jenny Cho Hair | Accessory Lelet NY

Kelly Osborn from behind with lavender locks, shaved into a wide mohawk and curled into a faux-hawkPhoto by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images 

Portrait of woman with warm brown skin, bright red lips, bold dark eyebrows, and very close cropped blond hairHair by Step the Barber

cotton candy pink hair, coifed to chin length, with a vintage ’50s vibeHair by Miss Rockabilly Ruby

side profile of woman with grey chin-length bob with large chunky braid in front, secured with two long, thin, metallic clipsHair by Kristin Ess

Woman with auburn hair in messy chin-length bob with two chunky, loose headband-style braids across the front, secured underneath hairVia Moooi Makers & Kappers

Woman with platinum hair in mohawk with finger waves along the sides, with long hair on top in many twists folded together tightly Via Behind the Chair

woman's chin-length hair from behind, pulled back into a loose horizontal twist, with three contrasting bobby pins as accentVia Moooi Makers & Kappers

woman with dark chin-length wavy hair with grey streaks, side-parted, wearing bright red glossy lipstick Hair by Ashley Streicher

woman with tightly coiled natural hair, smooth on one side, piled on top and side, with white floral hairpiece Photo by Winnie Au | Via Refinery29

Woman with chin-length hair in loose waves, gathered half up with baby's breathHair by Jemma McArthur

woman in ornate blue and red dress with gold appliqués, with close shaved dark hair, wearing a gold bejeweled headband with large red stone and gold tikkaPhoto by Kesha Lambert

woman with dark hair in chin-length bob with the front left half tightly braided into two thin dutch braids with dramatic partsHair by Alex Pelerossi

woman in ’20s vintage-style gold beaded dress with shoulder length hair, side parted, in loose wavesPhoto by Amy Gray | Featured on A Practical Wedding

Wedding Hairstyles For Medium to Long Hair

Hey there #longhairdontcare ladies—real talk, your hair doesn’t need to be down to the floor in order to have an amazing updo. In fact, having medium-length hair typically is one of the best lengths for updos. Sometimes if hair is really long, it can hard to achieve the tousled, romantic looks we’ve come to love. Check with your stylist a few months before your wedding to see if you need a trim or layers to get the look you want. Braids and twists are the perfect way to add dimension to your style and they look great in photos. Looking to learn how to braid your own hair too? Check out this post for the best tips on braiding hair.

Woman's hair from behind, pulled back into stacked horizontal twists with a thick horizontal fishtail braidHair by Annette Waligora

Messy twisted and braided french twist, with the front tightly pulled back, from behindHair by Riwana Capri | Via Nine Zero One Salon

Woman with medium-length dark red loose waves, gently pulled back into a half up style with twist, with gold stars and dots along the twistHair by Kristin Ess

Woman with red hair with large, voluminous curls and a dramatic side-part bang with dramatic contour makeup and nude lipHair by Cutting Loose Salon | Via Behind the Chair

woman with long dark brown ombre hair in a waterfall braid from front to back, with loose curlsHair by Lirian

woman with platinum, pink, and dark-streaked hair, piled on the side in a low twisted braidHair by Annette Waligora

woman with dark and grey-blue hair with a side roll from front to back with pearl accentsHair by Sarah Malinda

woman with honey, blond, and brown hair pulled back into four braided buns, vertically along back of headHair by Hair Romance

woman's hair gathered into two loose horizontal rolls with floral and pearl accentsHair by Whitney Burkhart

blond hair, sleeked back into a woven chignonHair by Janine

woman with wide braid crown, from behindPhoto via Black Bride

woman with dark hair with very deep side part and romantic voluminous curlsHair by Rubi Jones | Photo by Emily Soto 

woman with very long dark curly hair, with the right side pulled back into a large double orchid fastenerHair by Mona Sangha

woman with sleek dark shoulder-length hair with the right side secured with a gold and pearl leaf and flower headpiecePhoto by Sally Pinera | Via Style My Pretty

woman with a loose French twist accented with trek metal halo accessoryHair and photo by Honestly WTF | Hair accessory from LeLet 

woman with dark hair with thin twists from sides of head secured with contrasting white bands, woven among the rest of her coiffed hairHair by Dionne Smith Hair
woman with middle part and wide-braid headbandHair by Theodora Micheal

woman with sleek hair gathered into a low chignon with gold ripple accessoryHair by Kristin Ess

woman with dark hair gathered loosely into curls at the nape of her neck with gold and pearl tikka Hair by Mona Sangha

messy loose french braid from front hairline gathered into loose chignonHair by Emma Chen

woman with long dark hair loosely pulled back and cascading in loose curls down her shoulderHair by Satine Studio

woman with flower tattoos from neck down shoulder with red hair in loose horizontal braid crown and braids gathered on top of her headHair by Yulalesya Beauty

woman with a loose braid along left side of head with another layer of hair woven along underneath, gathered in the backHair by Lindsey Neavitt | Via Nine Zero One Salon

woman with long dark hair with deep side part and sleek waves cascading down shoulderPhoto by Ciara Richardson | Hair by Stephanie Brinkerhoff | Via Style Me Pretty

woman with very shiny, sleek, long dark hair with waves starting around shoulder height Hair by Sylvia Stankowski

woman with front, chin-length hair parted center and loosely curled, with long hair curled and piled on the back of her headHair by Modimel

woman with blond and orange sherbet colored hair with bright yellow and darker orange patches, pulled back into a voluminous french twist, with a loose long bang sidepartHair by Kelly O’Leary-Woodford

woman with long curled dark hair parted in the middle with ornate jeweled headband across foreheadPhoto by Jaclyn Fischer

woman with sleek dark hair pulled back into woven twist with large gold floral pinHair by Satine Studio

woman's profile with hair in a faux-hawk twist, accented with jeweled hairpieceHair by Anyahair | Photo by Nia Soy Photography

Woman with vibrant red hair loosely piled on top of her head with loose curled tendrilsHair by Kubar Katerina

Game of thrones inspired braided hairHair by Annette Waligora

woman with pink and grey hair gathered into horizontal twist across the back of her head Hair by Heather Chapman

woman with hair in loose braids and twistsHair by Jill Buck | Via Nine Zero One Salon

woman with hair loosely braided and woven on the top of her head, then gathered at napeHair by Flora Hair

Wedding Hairstyles For CURLY and textured HAIR

Where my curly girls at? Rock what nature gave ya for a wedding hairstyle that is uniquely you. Real talk, I’ve spent most of my life trying to avoid my curls, while obsessing over curly styles (isn’t that always how it works? #curlenvy), so I’m always so excited to see brides showing off their natural textures on their wedding day. If you have certain products that your curls loooove definitely bring those along for your stylist. Find a stylist who is comfortable working with varied textures so you and your wedding squad will all feel their best. Looking for a new DIY style? Try this edgy updo for curly hair or figure out how to finally get smooth curls.

woman wearing lace top, tulle bottom wedding dress, looking delighted, with tightly coiled textured hair Photo by Nick Allen

woman with loose messy curlsHair by Kelli Mason

woman with sides braided vertically to create textured curled mohawkHair by Alex Pelerossi

woman with long dark hair with loose curls cascading down shoulderHair by TEAM Hair and Makeup | Photo by Jose Villa Photography | Via Style Me Pretty

woman with short dark wavy hair, side parted, with swoop bang, with top longer than backHair by Lana

woman with curls loosely gathered at nape with gold leaf hair accessoryPhoto by Amy Gray | Featured on A Practical Wedding

woman with fade on sides and long tightly curled hair on top Hair by Step the Barber

blond curly hair gathered low at the nape of her neck, with gold leaf, pearl, and white enameled flower hair accessoryHair by Tori Schones

woman in rose garden with long cascading strapless white wedding dress with long dark, wavy hair parted down middlePhoto by Brandon Witzel | Via Munaluchi Bride

woman with long dark corkscrew curls and large bright flower crown, wearing a high-necked long-sleeved wedding dressPhoto via Emilia Jane Morgan | Hair by Kathy Collins

Woman with curly platinum hair gathered back with with gold fern hair accessoryHair by Alisha Jared

Woman smiling in white dress with wide gold choker and long dark hair styled into many thick twistsHair by Enhanced Beauty by Kori

woman in garden beneath mossy curtain, holding pink and white bouquet, with medium length hair parted on side with loose wavesPhoto by Helena & Laurent | Featured on A Practical Wedding

woman smiling with natural hair coiled on top and back of headHair by 1193 Natural Hair Salon

woman in wedding dress and cape with shoulder-length natural curly hair and bangsPhoto by Rebecca Schoneveld Bridal

woman in white lace pants and crop top from behind with short wavy blond hairPhoto by Jasmin Vant

woman covered in veil with shoulder-length natural curly hair Photo by Sonia Savio | Featured on A Practical Wedding

woman with dark hair and fade on side and short loose waves on topHair by Rachel Ranae Paz

Need more wedding hairstyles inspo? Check out updos for medium to long hair, and bridesmaid styles your friends will love. Looking to try your hand at styling? Look at these wedding hairstyle how tos: vintage updo, gold leaf pixie, finger waves, and half up/half down.

Alright, share your photos. What was your wedding hairstyle? Did you love it?


The Info:

Top image: Hair by Style Me Mim | Photo by Karo and Ben

Kate Levy

Kate is APW’s Marketing Manager. This Bay Area native built her own business as a wedding hair and makeup artist, before shifting gears to work in marketing. She’s an avid iPhone photographer, loves all forms of social media (especially Instagram, #katesskylog), and makes a really mean chocolate chip cookie. Kate is a collector of spoons, enamel pins, and reusable bags she never actually brings to the store. When not getting sucked into the ASOS app or an Instagram hashtag blackhole, Kate can be found hanging on the Peninsula with her wife, 2 cats and 2 dogs.

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  • Aimee

    Love these! Anyone have advice on what works well for thin hair? A lot of these updos are gorgeous (I love the ones with braids!) but I get the feeling they would look limp/lackluster with a smaller volume of hair.

    • hairdresser’s daughter

      I’m pretty sure many/most salons can add in some hair for you for certain parts of the updo, if you wanted to go that route. It would be especially easy with braided styles – I think they can just braid more hair in. Or, for styles like buns, there is sometimes a little foam insert used to fill it out – for ladies with hair of any thickness. My mom is a hairdresser and she has all kinds of tricks like these for achieving different styles.

    • Another Meg

      I have fine hair, and my stylist used a few tricks. Foam rolls, fake hair (which I bought at Sally Beauty with the help of some very enthusiastic retail ladies), and I think dry shampoo, which is what I use to get the second day hold with freshly washed hair.

    • Anneke Oosterink

      I have fine hair, so my hairdresser first braided a horizontal french braid on the lower back of my head. She then pinned the rest of the hair in curls onto the braid. The braid gave both volume and a sturdy base for the rest of the hair. The bun itself was mostly air :P

  • penguin

    The last picture is like my dream wedding hair – it’s similar to my undercut, although the long part of my hair is much longer. I’m wearing a flower crown, which complicates things a bit. We’re going to do like a half up half down kind of thing, so my undercut shows on one side, and the long hair is in big loose curls.

    • Another Meg

      That sounds dreamy.

  • Another Meg

    1. I just wanted to scroll through and see the pretties.
    2. My hairdo actually would have worked better with longer hair. certain parts came loose halfway through the night and I had to keep pinning them back up.
    3. Victory rolls! https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d73442d68ec47c0983e8a499c39ab87013472b6b9622d1e70941029d7ed1e942.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/00b4bc3e9c4844be489fbf3f6a51f45d55da0c53dd44f1b22da26d9a1332be0a.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/94677b9ee3d5fe5101deb2e531d5067796e9c055a226defe9709abec7bbc98b5.jpg

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