29 Prettiest Half Up Half Down Prom Hairstyles for 2023

Half up half down prom hairstyles
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Cindy Marcus
Cindy Marcus Hairstylist, Editor-in-Chief

Which type are you? You’ve got great hair you want everyone to notice, but you also like it pulled back to get it out of your face. You like how it looks when your hair is down, but you want to open your face to look more approachable and fun-loving. You think it’s cute. So below, I’ve put together some photos of the prettiest half up half down prom hairstyles on Instagram right now. Enjoy the inspiration (and your prom)!

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#1: Braided Curly Half-Up Brunette Hair

A half-up braided curly brunette style could be perfect for you. This style is suitable for all face shapes and can easily be achieved with real hair. Making this an effortless style to do at home for prom. If your hair is naturally curly or if you need to add curls, start with curling first. Use a light wax or pomade to make half up half down braids and pin in the back for a half-up style. Finish with hairspray for max hold.

#2: Beautifully Braided Crown Style

A beautifully braided crown, half updo is a wonderful way to have the best of both worlds. If you want a little extra drama, invest in clip-in hair extensions for volume and fullness. It’s one of my favorite ways of achieving that “Pinterest-like” hairstyle. To maintain this style all day long, try a heavy hold Number 4 High Performance Hair Care Non Aerosol Hair Spray.

Soft Twisted Half-Down Prom Style with Loose Curls for Long, Blonde Hair
Instagram @hairby.catelynn

#3: Twisted Half-Down Style with Loose Curls

If you are looking for an unkept down do, try using a waver and twisting some pieces together at the crown. Secure the twist with pins and let the rest of your hair hang loose. To create the loose curls, separate sections of your hair and curl them with a curling wand. Finish off the look with a light hairspray to keep your curls in place. For added shine and definition, use a styling cream like a mousse or a light hair wax.

Soft and Sleek Half Updo Half Down for Straight Hair
Instagram @tee.hairstylist

#4: Soft and Sleek Half Updo for Straight Hair

Opt for a soft, sleek, half updo for straight hairstyles. Half updos for prom work for all face shapes. You can play with where your hair needs height or width and adjust it to complement your features. Create a cute little wrap in the back using elastic to make a ponytail. Then tie the hair around the elastic to hide it and pin the hair down using a bobby pin or hairpin.

#5: Two-Strand Braids for Mid-Length Waves

Try a two-strand braided style for wavy mid-length hair. A simple braiding technique to create by separating the hair into two sections. Just rotate and twist each section away from the other at first. It will create ropes and twist them around each other, creating a two-strand braid. Finish with curls and a wax spray to define waves and create hold.

Big Bouffant Half-Up Half Down Hairstyle with Curls for Prom Night
Instagram @dionneshairandbeauty

#6: Big Bouffant Half-Up Hairstyle with Curls

Get a half-up, big bouffant hairstyle with curls. Bigger is better when it comes to hair and photographs. Prom hair needs to be bigger to show off your style. This style can be achieved with foam forms or wrapped-up mesh material to create height. It also gives something to stick bobby pins in to secure hair. This will look best on face shapes that need more height or to balance your profile. Finish with curls and an extra heavy-duty hairspray.

#7: Long Beach Waves and Half-Up Braids

Go for a half-up braided style with long beach waves. Start with curling all of your hair with a wand curling iron. Spray with O&M Original Queenie Firm Hold Hair Spray for hold with flexibility. Braid the front on each side of the head and oil the back. Hair weaves the top hair through and is secure with bobby pins in a crisscross pattern. To fluff out hair, pull lightly in areas that need fullness. Finish off with more hairspray.

#8: Romantic Rooted Curls

This half-up, half-do prom hair is one of my favorites, as it gives you height and length! It’s romantic and dramatic at the same time. If you want to feel like a beautiful princess for your prom, remember that this style will last all night! If you are going for this look, shoulder-length or long hair will do.

Half-up Fishtail Braid and Twists for Prom
Instagram @ellenrosehair

#9: Half-up Fishtail Braid and Twists

Look glamorous at prom with this stunning half-up fishtail braid and twist style. Start by styling your hair into two twisted sections at the front. Pull parts of your strands back for a polished look. Then, create a fishtail braid that crosses diagonally from one side to the other. Finish by securing with a few bobby pins and add shine with Bed Head by TIGI Shine Spray for added elegance.

Half Up Dimensional Blonde with Easy Twisted Hairstyle
Instagram @jennymitchhair

#10: Dimensional Blonde with Easy Twisted Hairstyle

This dimensional blonde with easy twisted hairstyle is stunning! With an easy twist and soft waves in the back, this half-up, the half-down look takes prom night glam to a new level. Use sea salt spray for defined curls and secure with a strong-hold hairspray to get the look. Make sure you have enough bobby pins on hand. Using them backward always ensures extra grip when securing any updo. Try Got2B Glued water-resistant finishing hairspray. It will keep your hair in place all night.

Sleek Half Ponytail for Prom
Instagram @shirlystyles

#11: Sleek Half Ponytail

One of my hands-down favorites for prom night is a sleek half ponytail. Keep your look modern and fresh by styling sleek, straight hair with a mini side part. Pull back the mid-length sections into the small and secure updo. To keep flyaways under control, use an oil-absorbing product. Try Redken Hair Cleansing Cream Shampoo to eliminate frizz and polish your ends. Want to add extra shine? Sweeten things up with Garnier Fructis Glossy Finish Brilliantine for radiant results.

#12: Half-up Double Dutch Braids with Loose Waves

I love this half-up double dutch braids hairstyle. To style, create two french braids that start from the center of your hairline and run down to the nape of the neck. To finish off this look, add loose waves for a romantic vibe. Use a quality heat protectant spray. Use it before using curling tongs or a straightener to create Hollywood-style curls. For extra hold, use an anti-frizz hairspray. Try Macadamia Professional Weightless Moisture Dry/Style Finishing Spray. It’s sure to keep flyaways at bay throughout the night!

#13: Relaxed Knot on Half-Up Half-Down Hair

Try this half-up half-down style and romantic look for your prom hairstyle if you want a c. It features a relaxed knot. Start with soft curls and work with an elastic band from the front to the back of your hair. Doing this after creating a midline part will give you this beautiful, elegant look. Use hairspray or gel to secure it in place, depending on your hair type and texture. For extra hold and shine, add a small amount of smoothing serum. Try Kérastase L’Incroyable Blowdry Miracle Serum to tame flyaways!

#14: Modern French Twist with Curly Ends

This gorgeous modern french twist with curly ends is a perfect way to add glamour to any prom look. Start by curling your locks with a one-inch iron. Then create the French Twist by gathering your hair at the nape of your neck and securing it using bobby pins. Make sure to spritz mid-lengths and ends with hairspray for extra grip. Try Schwarzkopf’s OSIS+ Session Extreme Hold Hairspray for maximum hold. Finish up with another light misting of hairspray. Do this before adding some bejeweled clips or decorative combs to give this updo a sparkle!

Blonde Half-Up Hair with Loose Waves for Prom Night
Instagram @styledby_sc

#15: Blonde Half-Up Hair with Loose Waves

This beautiful blonde half-up hair with loose waves will make you look like the belle of the ball. To create the hairstyle, start by sectioning off the top part of your hair and pinning it back. Use a curling iron to add bouncy curls to the sections of the bottom layers. That will give you an effortless, romantic finish. Spritz with hairspray for extra hold and shine that will make your hair stay all night!

#16: Half-Up Twist with Pull-Through Braids

Imagine this – you’ve been looking for the perfect event updo ideas, and this style gives you hair envy! Find the right stylist to give you a few voluminous fishtail braids and curls. Finish with a texture spray, and your hairstyle will steal the show.

Easy Half-Down Overlap Style for Prom
Instagram @hairisthebride

#17: Easy Half-Down Overlap Style

Opt for this easy half-down overlap style for your next event! Half up half down hairstyles for prom are a perfect option for someone looking for a classic updo without pulling too much hair away from your face. Your hair can still be classy with an updo like this.

Creative Half Updo for Long Hair
Instagram @kmd.hairdesign

#18: Creative Half Updo for Long Hair

Go for hair that is twisted from both sides and tied in the center. This was repeated until a half-up ponytail was achieved. Lost hair is loosely curled for more texture.

#19: Gorgeous ‘Do for Curly Hair

Take advantage of the beauty of hair accessories! Put a floral finishing touch to your super dreamy locks to get more attention to your hair.

#20: Cute Curled Half Up Half Down

It’s less messy than having all your hair down, as it’s mostly gathered at the back into a curled design. In that way, you can still be neat and well-styled, but it still looks more relaxed than an updo hairstyle. The loose strands of hair down the side help to frame your face and give it a soft and romantic feel.

You will need longer hair for this prom half-up style – preferably waist length to begin with. The curls will look nicer with highlighted hair to achieve a 3-dimensional texture. It’s important to use hair spray with strong holding power so your curls can last longer. This style will be spot on if you prefer something romantic and youthful looking!

#21: Sexy Blonde Bohemian Braid

Try a sexy blonde bohemian braid for your next formal event. The Bohemian and ethereal style is popular this season, and I’m sure you can see why. These soft styles are romantic and sexy and have a lived-in vibe for a messier but put-together look. With my years of experience, I recommend having thicker hair with some length to pull it off. A dimensional color, such as blondes, brunettes, or coppers, really helps add depth, interest, and texture to the braiding.

#22: Ash Blonde Beautiful Boho Style

Effortless is what comes to mind with this beautiful ash-blonde boho style. If you are looking for something pulled off your face while keeping it down, this is a great choice. And it’s perfect for a wedding or special occasion. If your hair is on the finer side, I recommend clip-ins for fullness and length.

#23: Gorgeous Light Auburn Flowing Style

A braided texture is one of the top styles that has been trending for quite a while. The key to a look like this is a great curl set that will last all night long. Don’t skimp on the product, as that will help you texture in pulling apart the braid. Please do a trial with your hairstylist for any big event to ensure all your expectations are on point.

#24: Neatly Pulled Back

This pulled back half down, half up hairstyle was shampooed, blow-dried, styled with a large round brush, then finished with a 1 & 1/4 curling iron to complete the look. Wash and dry your hair using professional products. In this case, I used Unite product. Use a medium to large round brush to smooth your hair, apply dry shampoo teasing your crown section, and then curl it in three sections! Separate your curls with a finishing brush to soften your look!

#25: Classic Half Up with Braided Headband

I created a rope braid for this half-up half-down hairstyle with the help of NBR Hand Tied Extensions. I love a princess’ hair, and the prettiest thing about it is that her hair was able to do this without her extensions being detected. It’s versatile and looks great on Bohemian dresses and chiffon gowns.

#26: Glam Half Up Boho Braid

Boho half-up, half-down prom hairstyles are trending this year. Bring glamour to your prom with this boho chic hair styled with messy braids and twists that give your hair volume from top to bottom. Looks stunning on vintage and long flowing dresses!

Beautiful Half Up Crown Braid Prom
Instagram @hairbybritanyb

#27: Beautiful Half Up Crown Braid

A look that features a beautiful hair crown that looks even more charming with highlights. Autumn colors for your prom dress would look fantastic if you have this hair shade.

Messy Blonde Half Up Bun for Prom
Instagram @reece.birkdale

#28: Messy Blonde Half Up Bun

Try a half-up, half-down style with minimal accessories (unless you want to add more!) that you can wear with long or short hair. What makes this style stand out is the volume the curls give it. To create this look for prom night, wash your hair a day before, use some dry shampoo to take the oil or shine out of your hair, and give it some grip to enhance your curls. If your hair is long or doesn’t hold curls well, use White Sands Liquid Texture and dry it first so it can hold the style longer. Then use White Sands Infinity Hairspray to set your style, as it gives a strong hold without the appearance of sticky hairspray.

Cute Braided Half Up Half Down
Instagram @kimstokesmua

#29: Cute Braided Half Up Half Down

Go for a strong and carefree boho vibe with a pretty braid. If you don’t want to wear your hair down all day, try a gorgeous long ponytail made for prom. A show stopper when you walk into the room!


Prom Hair