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3 Ways to Wear Half-Up, Half-Down Hair Without Looking 12 Years Old

Blame it on Ariana Grande’s signature ‘do or our love for nostalgic beauty trends—the half-updo, our go-to grade school style, is officially back. We’ve recently spotted hair idols like Blake Lively and Rihanna making it look surprisingly cool again. Whether you want to switch up your go-to top knot or your hair isn’t long enough for a full pony, try these three quick, half-up-half-down styles for grown ups.

The Cool-Girl Top Knot

We’ve seen this half-up-meets-messy-bun hybrid everywhere lately. Since getting your top knot in the right shape is key to this look, make like Vlogger Sazan Barzani and spritz a texturizing spray like Oribe’s throughout, then twist the top section of your hair into a bun and secure with an elastic. Next, use bobby pins to sculpt your bun. Finish by teasing the sides of your loose hair with a teasing comb to create just the right amount of messiness.

The Teeny, Tiny Pony

For a flirtier look, go for a quarter-up, which will make it easier to get a high pony and create more volume on both top and bottom. To get the look, follow vlogger Andrea’s lead and tease your hair at the crown (Spornette’s Little Wonder will do the trick) then secure a small, top section with a clear elastic. Instead of slicking the updo portion back and down against your scalp, leave it loose to maintain volume.

The Formal-Friendly Half Twist

The red carpet is proof that half-up, half-down styles are perfect for special occasions. Vlogger Mimi of Luxury Hair shows how a few simple twists can look surprisingly intricate. Start with curled hair, then grab small sections from the top of your hair on each side (as you would for a French braid), twisting each at the back of your head to create the “half up” section. Work your way down and secure your twists with a hair elastic and you’re ready for your step and repeat!

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