TWISTED SISTER (UPDATED)

POST/PHOTOGRAPHY/GRAPHIC DESIGN: KRISTIN ESS

One of my favorite go-to ‘dos is my TBD oldie but goodie– Twisted Sister. It’s a fairly quick and easy updo. The problem with this particular hairstyle is it tends to fall out if your hair is super fine, extra thick or if you’re an animal on the dance floor. It’s so pretty but I wanted to do a version of this that would be extra-secure. Here’s how to get the same style with a little more security…

You will need: 2 clear elastic ponytail holders, bobby pins and some strong holding hairspray.

  1. I like to give my hair a little wave before starting most updos but this one in particular. For this I used a 1 1/4″ barrel iron.
  2. Take a small section from each side near the temple. Join the two pieces in back and wrap one of the clear elastics around it.
  3. Now “topsy turvy” the pieces(Aka: flip the ponytail over itself and feed it through the loop. That will create more of a twist than just two pieces joined together.)
  4. Repeat the process just below with two more pieces, closer to the ear.
  5. Now take the remaining hair that’s down and create a half ponytail bun. That’s where you make a ponytail but on the last loop you only pull it half way through.
  6. Now grab the tail that’s hanging out. Twist it and wrap it around the base of the bun. Get a little messy with it!
  7. Pin it in place with some large bobby pins for extra security.
  8. The final step is to tug on the topsy turvy twists until the clear elastics move down and hide themselves in the next section below. They should slide and hide pretty easily.

Check the back in a mirror for balance and spray all over using some strong holding hairspray. You know my favorite Superhold.

Here are some images of it from different angles!

THE INFINITY BUN

post, photography + graphic design: Kristin Ess

Sometimes the most simple, clean hairstyles are the most stunning. This infinity symbol shaped bun is no exception. We get so carried away with texture sometimes that we forget about the chicness of a clean bun. Thought this would be a way to mix it up and keep it from looking boring. Here’s how I did it!

  1. Grab a fine tooth comb, various bobby pins and u-pins + a ponytail holder.
  2. For this one we put the ponytail a little lower, but as you can see in the top photo on the girl with blonde hair, we put it a little higher. Your choice! Secure the elastic– you want it to be pretty tight. Don’t worry about fly aways, we’ll lock those down at the end.
  3. You’re basically going to twist the hair into a “circle 8″ shape. Start by pulling it to the left and twisting upward {toward the top of your head} as you see her doing in photo 3.
  4. Circle it around as if you’re going to make a regular bun and use large bobby pins to secure as you go. I like to put them in every inch or so. Should take about 2-3 large bobby pins to secure it on the one side.
  5. Once you get to the middle add a couple small bobby pins there to make sure you’re not pulling the other side. You’re now going to be twisting the same direction, but you’ll start rolling it downward as you come around the curve {see photo 5}
  6. Keep pinning as you go. Use smaller bobby pins as you get to the end. Personally, I find that you really only need the larger ones to secure the first side as it’s SO heavy.
  7. Secure the tail end under the bun using another small pin.
  8. Now go around and add any extra u-pins you need to lock it all in place.
  9. Last, smooth using hairspray and a fine tooth comb.

Keep this one simple. Just think about making a “circle 8″ and you”ll get it! Check the balance of your infinity bun in the mirror when you’re done. The great news is, this bun still looks really pretty if it starts to get messy! Click read more to see a couple of extra images from other angles. READ MORE…

GROWING OUT BANGS

top photos + post: Kristin Ess

If you’ve tried growing out your bangs and failed, let this post be your guide. It’s SO much fun to get bangs but definitely not as much getting them to go away. Most of my clients and I have a long chat and create a solid plan before we even take a scissor anywhere near their fringe. You really have to think about the commitment first, ya know? Growing out bangs can be a hassle but it can also be super fun if you plan it out right. Below I’ll dish out some great tips and as well as an example grow-out-plan from “model citizen”, Sienna Miller, or as I like to call her, the Baroness of Bangs…

ONE: I’m not telling you anything you don’t know when I say go out and get lots of bobby pins when you start growing out your bangs, but a very important thing you should know is that not all bobby pins are good enough. You should test them to make sure they’re really strong. My favorite ones come from the beauty supply. They usually carry the heavy duty pins and those will stay put .

TWO: Get a supplement like Viviscal to boost growth. You can either wait for them to grow at their own pace or better yet, give them a little rapid encouragement with a hair supplement.

THREE: Ask your stylist to use thinning shears (not scissors) to take weight out of your bangs. They can look bulky and haphazard if they’re not properly thinned out as they grow. When my clients say they’re ready to grow their bangs and start pushing them to the side, I use thinning shears to take the weight out both right where they part and the sides where it can get super bulky. Once you do that, it makes it much easier to part and push them.

FOUR: Become familiar with bang friendly updos. Our fun bun is one of my favorites for girls growing their bangs because you can do the fun bun and then push the bangs back into it and bobby pin them. It’s supposed to be messy and fun so there’s not much bang-hiding skill required. Styles with a twist or braid in front work wonders as well.

FIVE: Embrace the vibe of your current bangs. I love when I see someone grow out their bangs and getting all “Bardot” about it. As they get near the top of your cheekbone, add a little flick to them, put it half back and embrace that 60′s bombshell. When they get near your jaw line, create some 70′s boho waves. Enjoy them while you have them!

SIX: Make a plan like this…

Nothing is more fun than seeing your ponytails, buns and soft waves all looking EXTRA cute with fresh cut bangs.

Then let’s say you get bored with them and want to grow them out. Realistically you don’t want them to be super high maintenance every day, so find ways to wear bangs casually. This is where headbands and bobby pins come in.

As they grow out and your stylist begins to thin them out, embrace the wing! Add a little wave and little product, push them to the side and give it that piece-y, shiny, Sienna vibe!

Get inspired and do it up! (Or go to a blow dry bar and let them do it up for you!) Believe it or not there are beautiful ways to wear your hair while growing out your bangs.

If she can make it to the end, you can make it to the end, too! Don’t give up and cut your bangs out of frustration. Find some photos and pin them for inspiration!

THE HAT TRICK

POST + PHOTOGRAPHY BY KRISTIN ESS

Turns out the weather outside IS frightful in many parts of the country. Whether you’re blocking sun in Southern California or dodging hail in Wisconsin, hats are a great accessory but you have to know how to wear them! We’ve had a lot of requests for hat hairstyle ideas so I thought we could give you some of those along with some helpful tips. Here we go.

Heavy side parts + short hair: If you’re currently sporting short hair or a heavy side part, try wearing a wide-brim hat set back on your head. If you want to wear a hat with a heavy side part, setting the hat back is recommended so you can see that the heavy side part was intentional. If you wear the hat forward (like in the picture below) it just looks like one side is much heavier than the other. And for you shorties– show that hair. Set the hat back a little, exposing the “bang/fringe area” to show off that cute cropped cut without covering it up. The hat featured here is this wide-brimmed fedora from Nasty Gal.

First Timers: Best thing to do if you’re not sure if you look good in hats is start with something that looks good on nearly everyone– the felt floppy. There’s something so classic about the floppy and felt ones flex to fit pretty much anyone perfectly.  Wear it just below the hairline in the front. I would wear this to the beach or in the snow (as long as your hat is weatherproofed.) The reason I love to tell people to start out with a floppy hat is because you can wear it with pretty, simple, down hair as you normally would and feel completely comfortable. You’re not styling the hair for the hat. You simply pop the hat on top with a favorite outfit and go. Floppy hats look best with boho-inspired outfits, but here we paired this floppy hat from LovelyBird with a black wool cape for a more prim + proper look. Whether you have pin straight, curly or wavy hair, this is an easy go-t0. In this photo, we did our Every Day Waves and brushed them out.

For the pros: Cowboy and rancher-inspired hats can be a little tricky. They sit a little higher on the head than other hats and are more level, so I say take advantage of that lower space in back and make something cute happen! The back of the head doesn’t typically show much with a floppy hat or a fedora because of where the hats are placed and the angles in which they sit. If you’ve nailed the art of braiding put something interesting in the back! Here we paired a classic french braid in a U-shape with this hat from BCBG. You could also do a messy or coiled bun in back with one of these.

Keep it simple: This is my go-to trick for rainy days. I do a simple braid but one of the 3 strands is other braid, so it’s a braid within a braid. I do that and pull out a couple loose pieces around my face, pop a cute hat on and go. If you’re not sure how to do the braid within a braid, we did a post here. It’s great with a fedora. This one is from Anthropologie and is only available in-store.

Anywhere, anytime: There are so many beanies out there. We love the knit, slouchy kind because not only do they keep your ears and head warm, but they’re cuuuute. It’s hard to wear a beanie though. The best way to do it is to put it on your whole head and then pull it back to your ears. Let your “bang/fringe area” pop out and then stop. Now use large bobby pins to secure the knit beanie in place. It should fall over your ears. We love pairing it with natural waves and natural curls. If you have straight hair, give it a little texture so the beanie doesn’t constantly try to slide off. This beanie is from Forever 21 and available in stores.