18 Simple Updos That Are Still Breathtaking

Updos are an easy way to bring some creativity and versatility to your look. Whether you’re going to a wedding, headed out for a night out on the town, rocking out at a concert, or simply wanting to change things up a bit, give one of these eye-catching simple updos a try!

Simple Chignon Updo

Classic Chignon hairstyleInstagram @zanashairstudio

Q&A with style creator, Zana Haydar
Salon Owner / Hairdresser @ Zana’s Hair Studio in Seven Hills, NSW

How would you describe this look and what is your favorite thing about it?

This look would be best described as the classic chignon or classic low bun.

My favorite thing about this upstyle is that it’s elegant and effortless. It’s also simple to do. With just a few steps, you can achieve this timeless look!

What tips or products do you recommend to recreate this look?

You need bobby pins, a hair donut, texturizing powder and a light hairspray.

Mold the donnut into an oval shape before pinning it into the nape. Tease the roots from the crown all the way to the hairline for volume. Spray the updo, then dry the hairstyle with a diffuser to help set it. It won’t move after that!

What type of client would you recommend this look for?

Any hair type will work with this look so long as it’s smoothed out before hand. It suits many face shapes like oval, diamond and heart, not so much round or square as there are no strands left out at the face to soften it.

I’ve done this look on brides and women who are just going out to a fancy dinner. It’s definitely something that can be dressed up or down. It’s timeless! This look will even work on a corporate working class lady for a meeting.

Classic Full Updo

Q&A with style creator, Meghan
Master Stylist @ Salon Entourage in Syosset, NY


How would you describe this look and what is your favorite thing about it?

This is an elegant but simple look. It is very tough to create such a smooth style because not everyone’s hair has a perfect texture. As a stylist, you really need to know your stuff and prep the hair as much as you can first. My favorite thing is how smooth the hairline is and how full the bun is.

What tips or products do you recommend to recreate this look?

There were a few tricks to this updo that you wouldn’t guess. I used about four to five rubber banded ponytails to get it as tight as I could. I love Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray to give it more stability. I also used a donut bun to help give it more fullness.

What type of client would you recommend this look for?

I recommend this hairstyle for someone who wants a classic full upstyle with a smooth modern twist. You could literally do this style on any hair type. Hair pieces help with thinner, finer hair.

Timeless & Simple Updo

Timeless Upstyle hairstyleInstagram @shelbywhite_hmu

Q&A with style creator, Shelby White
Hairstylist @ SW Beauty LLC in Narragansett, RI


How would you describe this look and what is your favorite thing about it?

I would describe this upstyle as classic yet romantic. It has the simplicity and softness to make it a timeless look. My favorite things about this style are the twisting sides and that anyone can wear it.

What tips or products do you recommend to recreate this look?

With every upstyle like this, I always curl set the hair to achieve the most volume. As far as products go, I love to use Kenra Working Spray as I am doing the style because it doesn’t get tacky or too stiff. It gives me the hold I am looking for and also the flexibility to move pieces and still look soft. Another go-to is Oribe Shine Spray. I am obsessed!

With any upstyle, using mette bobby pins makes a huge difference in hiding your pins.

What type of client would you recommend this look for?

I recommend this for many different clients. This was done on a mother of the bride. It gave her the hair off the face she was looking for, but nothing too over done that would upstage the bride. It is still beautiful and classic.

To achieve this look, I would definitely say that the client needs at least medium thickness and length. If they do not have this, using extensions is a great way to add both.

Assess the front of the style to the clients needs so that it frames face and makes it soft and romantic throughout the look. If the person has a rounder face, maybe add some face framing, whispery pieces to add softness.

Bohemian Bun Updo

Bohemian Bun hairstyleInstagram @kathrynhouser

Q&A with style creator, Kathryn Houser
Hairstylist / Make-up Artist @ Bellus Academy in Poway, CA


How would you describe this look and what is your favorite thing about it?

I love this bohemian bun because it is so versatile. My favorite thing about it is that you can dress it up for a formal occasion, or dress it down for everyday wear. You can achieve this look in just a few minutes!

What tips or products do you recommend to recreate this look?

This bun was created by making two pigtails with pulled apart braids that are pinned together. Make sure you zigzag the part so that you don’t see any lines when you comb it down into the bun. Definitely use a light hairspray!

What type of client would you recommend this look for?

This look is great for any face shape and for anyone who wants to have a simple, effortless style.

The Knotted Bun

This high glam bun is easy and perfect for any occasion.

High Glam Knotted Simple Updo Bun

How to Style:

  1. Start with dry hair. If just washed, use a texturizing spray to create some texture and hold.
  2. Back comb and smooth the hair around the face.
  3. Create ponytail at the very top of the head.
  4. Split the pony into two pieces and run a smoothing crème over each section. Then, tie knot over knot until you run out of hair.
  5. Wrap and pin into a bun shape.
  6. Finish with strong hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray is an easy way to add serious volume and texture to hair.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This high bun will create high drama for those with an oval face shape and any hair type.

Easy Braided Bun

This simple yet elegant braided bun is an easy updo to achieve. This is the perfect look for a night at the theater!

Elegant Braided Bun Hairstyle - Simple Updos

How to Style:

  1. Start with damp hair and add a smoothing crème from mid-lengths to ends.
  2. Dry hair flat using a paddle brush.
  3. Flat iron in one-inch sections if necessary.
  4. Pick the location of your bun and create a braid.
  5. Wrap and pin the braid into a bun.
  6. Finish with a shine serum and extra hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

Kasia’s Outshine Ultra-Light Smoothing Gloss is perfect because it’s light and you can “layer” it. Use the smoothing fluid in the hair both when it’s damp and as a finishing product to maximize your shine!

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This sophisticated bun looks great on any face shape, but is best suited for those with long, fine hair.

The Perfect Wave

This classic half-back look with a wave is a simple updo that will never go out of style.

Classic Half Updo with Waves

How to Style:

  1. Start by applying mousse to damp hair
  2. Dry hair while using texturizing spray to create volume at the crown and around the face.
  3. Using a curling wand, take one-inch sections and curl your hair. Start curling at the nape and work up towards the crown.
  4. Allow curls to cool, then lightly finger brush through them with a smoothing balm.
  5. Use bobby pins and pin half back.
  6. Finish with a medium hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

Try Kérestase Volumactive Mousse in your damp hair to create volume at the root.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This look is perfect for those with a square face shape and fine hair. The curls really help to soften up the jawline.

Curly Low Pony

This is a beautiful and versatile “updo” that works perfectly for a day to evening look.

Versatile Curly Low Pony Simple Updo

How to Style:

  1. Starting with damp hair, apply a medium hold gel from roots to ends.
  2. Rough dry hair, creating volume at roots.
  3. Curl hair in half-inch sections.
  4. Allow curls to cool, then gently finger comb the hair, pulling back into low ponytail. Keep some curls out for added texture and framing.
  5. Gently secure all but a small section at the nape of the neck into a low ponytail.
  6. Take that small section and wrap it around the ponytail holder and pin for a more polished pony.
  7. Finish with a medium hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

Hugo & Debra Naturals Styling Gel in Medium Hold is a great natural gel that not only provides great hold for your strands, but it includes quinoa and oat protein to help protect them as well.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This look works for any face shape and is best for those with some natural texture in their hair.

The Bun

This simple, timeless and elegant bun will never to go out of style. It’s a must to add to your hair routine!

Timeless Elegant Bun Hairstyle

How to Style:

  1. Apply a smoothing gloss to damp hair.
  2. Dry hair straight and smooth using a paddle brush.
  3. Pull hair into a ponytail at desired height.
  4. The easiest way to achieve this look is to use a hair donut. Pull it to the end of your ponytail, then work back towards the ponytail, pushing the hair out and around the ring. Make sure to smooth flyways along the way!
  5. Finish with a smoothing shine serum and strong hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

The Soft ‘N Style Hair Donut will makes these buns a snap!

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This simple updo is excellent for those with a wider face shape as the height of the bun will help elongate. This style works best for those with medium textured hair.

Tip:

If you have long layers, only take the hair donut out to your shortest layers, then work your longer ones in as you start rolling.

Low and Textured

This updo is simple to create and perfect for a luncheon or date night.

Low Textured Simple Updo

How to Style:

  1. Start with dry hair and create texture by using volumizing spray or dry shampoo.
  2. Back comb the hair around the face and crown, then smooth it down, leaving out a few wispy pieces for texture and framing.
  3. Create a ponytail at the nape of the neck.
  4. Section hair into four sections.
  5. Taking two sections and tie them in knots over and over until you reach the ends.
  6. Do the same with the remaining two sections
  7. Pin as desired at the nape of the neck
  8. Finish with medium hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

Alterna Bamboo Cleanse Extend Translucent Dry Shampoo is a perfect fit for anyone. There’s no color and it creates amazing texture and volume for easy, second-day looks.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This updo is perfect for those with a heart shaped face who have a little natural curl and texture.

Casually Elegant Pony

This ponytail is a great way to show off your layers in a fun yet simple “updo” that is perfect for an evening out on the town.

Casual Elegant Pony Tail Hairstyle

How to Style:

  1. Apply mousse to damp hair.
  2. Round brush your hair as you blow dry. creating volume at root.
  3. Use a texturizing balm to create definition between the layers.
  4. Pull all but one small section at nape of neck back into a ponytail, leaving front fringe out to fall forward.
  5. Take the remaining small section and wrap and pin it around the ponytail for a more polished look.
  6. Finish with a medium hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

John Masters Bourbon Vanilla and Tangerine Hair Texturizer will nourish your hair while providing the perfect definition to your layers.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

Those with medium to fine hair with layers will have an easy time creating this look. It also works great for any face shape.

Half Back

This timeless updo is as perfect for a day in the office as it is for a wedding.

Timeless Half Updo Simple Hairstyle

How to Style:

  1. Apply medium hold gel to damp hair.
  2. Rough dry hair, creating volume at root.
  3. Choose where you want your side part, then curl one-inch sections of hair from nape to crown.
  4. Back comb hair at crown and smooth it over.
  5. Twist and pin each side back.
  6. Finish with a strong hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

L’Oreal Elnett Satin Strong Hold Hairspray comes out as a really fine mist, so it won’t weigh down your curls even though it’s strong enough to hold all day.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

These curls will hold in finer hair or hair that already has some texture. This look is beautiful on any face shape!

Beautifully Side Swept

These romantic side-swept curls are an excellent choice for date night.

Romantic Side Swept Curls Hairstyle

How to Style:

  1. Apply medium hold gel to damp hair.
  2. Rough dry hair, creating volume at root.
  3. Choose where you want your side part, then curl one and a half-inch sections of hair from nape to crown.
  4. Lightly finger comb though the curls.
  5. Back comb hair at crown and smooth it over.
  6. Pin back both sides.
  7. Take remaining hair and sweep and pin it to one side.
  8. Finish with a strong hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

Aveda’s Be Curly Curl Enhancer is a great product for those with natural curl. It will keep your curl nice and soft and won’t create that “crunchy” look.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

Those with longer face shapes such as oblong or oval with textured hair will look smashing in this updo.

Textured Updo

This sassy yet simple updo is perfect for a night out with the girls!

Textured SImple Updo with Fringe

How to Style:

  1. Apply a strong hold gel to damp hair.
  2. Rough dry hair, creating volume at root.
  3. Use a strong hold styling wax to create some definition in the ends.
  4. Take one and a half-inch sections at the top half of head.
  5. Twist and pin each section to the desired location, leaving some hair out for the piecy look.
  6. If needed, use the styling wax to create additional definition to each section.
  7. Finish with a strong hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

For a strong hold that provides definition, there is nothing better than Bumble and Bumble’s Sumowax.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This look suites any face shape with a medium texture best.

Edgy Asymmetrical

Love the asymmetrical look, but don’t want to bring the clippers to your hair? This awesome updo will give you the look without the commitment!

Edgy Asymmetrical Half Updo

How to Style:

  1. Apply mousse to damp hair.
  2. Rough dry hair, creating volume at root on one side. Choose where you want your side part, then smooth the other side around your head.
  3. Use a strong hold gel and sleek back one side, using pins if necessary.
  4. On the full side, take one-inch sections and curl.
  5. Finger comb through curls.
  6. Finish with a medium hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

For a super strong hold, use the alcohol-free Kiehl’s Strong Hold Styling Gel.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

Square or round face shapes with fine to medium hair will pull this look off well.

Rockin’ Updo

This look is “updo” for short hair is perfect to rock out at a concert.

Updo with Twists for Short Hair

How to Style:

  1. Apply a strong hold gel to damp hair.
  2. Dry hair using a round brush, creating volume on top and at the crown.
  3. Use a volumizing spray and backcomb the crown and front, then smooth hair over.
  4. Take two sections on each side and twist and pin them back.
  5. Finish with a strong hold hairspray and use a texturizing balm to create piecy ends.

Recommended Products:

Use Kasia’s Hydra-Boost Volumizing and Texturizing Spray at the root and through ends to create major volume for this look.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

Any face shape with medium length hair will rock this look the easiest.

Braided Faux Hawk

This dramatic upstyle is great for any event, day or night.

Braided Faux Hawk Updo with Cornrows

How to Style:

  1. Apply strong hold gel to damp hair.
  2. Dry hair using a round brush, creating volume on top and at the crown.
  3. Use a volumizing spray and back comb the crown, front and through the back, then smooth over.
  4. Taking sections on the sides, either braid or twist up them back towards the center and pin.
  5. Finish with a strong hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

Aveda’s Pure Abundance Hair Potion instantly adds volume with a matte texture.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

For those with long face shapes and fine hair, this look will create the most dramatic effect.

Simply Beautiful Fishtail

This romantic style is easily achieved and perfect for any occasion.

Simple Romantic Fishtail Braid

How to Style:

  1. Apply volumizing mousse to damp hair.
  2. Use a large round brush to dry hair, creating volume at the root.
  3. Back comb hair throughout and smooth the top over.
  4. Pulling all of your hair to one side, divide into two sections.
  5. Take a small sub-section from the outside of one of the main two sections and cross it over to the other main section.
  6. Repeat step 5, but on the opposite side.
  7. Repeat until complete.
  8. Once the braid is complete, gently massage the braid to loosen it up a bit.
  9. Finish with a light hold hairspray.

Recommended Products:

Kenra’s Light Hold Design Spray is a perfect match for this look, creating a light yet brushable hold.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

Anyone with long locks can pull off this style, regardless of face shape.

Updos aren’t just for prom or weddings anymore. Try one of these hot yet simple updos today!