Posts Tagged ‘party hair’



Ooh la la! As mentioned many other times here on TBD, I have always found major hair styling inspiration in the perfectly undone style of French women, particularly French women in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. I mean, to be fair, I find lots of inspo in many types of women, but there’s something very special about how effortless women in France look just strolling around casually – as if they’ve carried this look on for generations. The look, of course, is totally polished – but never like they’re trying too hard. If you’re jonesing for a perfectly undone way to style your bob, try this trick (which ironically, totally and completely involves effort).  

Let’s begin with a few key tools:


  1. Spritz your THICKENING SPRAY or apply MOUSSE  on damp strands and blowdry. We used a THIS round brush for added volume.
  2. Begin curling hair in alternating horizontal sections with a curling iron. The size of the section should correlate to the size of the iron. We used THIS 1” iron on Nora’s bob. For medium lengths, use a 1 1/4″ or 1 1/2″ for long hair. Insert the iron into the section midway, roll down to the root and then gently open and close the barrel just a little as you continue to rotate it, which slowly feeds the ends into the barrel. This technique creates volume at the root, rather than just the ends. After releasing the curl, gently roll it back into place and insert a setting clip.  
  3. The sections on either side of the part are curled downward, towards the face.
  4. As we move down the side of the head in vertical sections, we alternate directions – this curl placement is up away from the face.
  5. Once you reach the crown of your head (the top few inches of hair that will fall over the back), curl these pieces horizontally back, as shown in the image. Make sure you hold the section straight up from the scalp for maximum volume before inserting the iron.
  6. Once the front of your hair and crown are curled and clipped, curl the back in the same manner, but don’t worry about clipping it in place. The back of your head has more hair than the sides, so if the underneath hair is less curly, the overall look is more uniform.
  7. Remove setting clips in the same order you put them in.
  8. Lift your hair up in sections and add in some texture spray like THIS one to give it a little lift off the root.
  9. MY SECRET: grab the DIFFUSER and set it to low heat, medium wind. Begin flipping your hair around while inserting the blowdryer from ends to roots. Just hold for a moment, then move on to the next section. The goal here is for the heat to break up any patterns, giving you a more undone look.
  10. Once you’ve diffused, you’ll be left with soft, alternating waves without a distinct pattern. Give it a light veil of hairspray if you need it!


**The finished look from the profile. A subtle, bouncy wave that’s not too curly or cutesy. This technique works great on long-haired girls too! Just make sure to use a larger curling iron. It’s a gorgeous way to fake a pro blowout.

Don’t forget to tag us @thebeautydept in your pics on INSTA when you’re flipping your soft waves back and forth!


photos/post/grahic design: Kristin Ess

I know it’s not even Halloween yet, but we wanted get an early start on holiday hair ideas this year! Hairstyles like this are great, but you should practice them once or even twice to get it down and even try putting your own spin on them, maybe with a fishtail braid or a hair accessory. Start saving these to your pin boards so you have some easy go-to tutorials for your upcoming holiday parties. This chignon might look familiar to you because I posted a similar one HERE. It got a lot of lovin’ so of course it deserves it’s own tutorial, right? This braided chignon is fairly easy if you know how to dutch braid (aka: inside out braid). Here’s how it’s done!

  1. Find a side part that feels comfortable to you. You can also center part if you want.
  2. Do an inside out braid on one side going from where your hairline meets your part and stop taking new hair just behind your ear. Then braid that down to the bottom.
  3. Repeat that process on the opposite side.
  4. Take all of the loose hair (not the braided hair) on the left side of your head, pull it in front of your left shoulder and twist back.
  5. Now take the braided hair and the twisted hair and twist those two around each other.
  6. Once you’ve twisted those two sections around each other, coil them into a loose bun and pin it using large bobbypins.
  7. Now you’ll want to go back in and modify. Here we tucked and pinned a couple extra pieces to make the chignon more secure. We more pins to the bun to make sure too much hair wouldn’t slip out. We also pulled a couple loose pieces out around the face to soften the look.
  8. After you finish your left side, do the same thing on the right. Do it to your liking. You’ll see that on the right, we decided to leave it a little looser. We only twisted the braid and the rest of the hair once on that side. With these chignons you can really do anything you want to modify, just make sure the base (in this case, the bun part) is really secure.

Once the look is finished, give it a good veil of super hold hairspray like THIS ONE or THIS ONE.  Also if you have fine slippery hair that is hard to keep secured in updos and chignons, try prepping the hair with something that will mattify it a little and give it less slip like THIS or THIS! Oh! And don’t forget to grab extra large bobbypins like THESE next time you’re at the store or shopping online.

If you try this, tag us so we can see! @TheBeautyDept on instagram!


photos/post/graphic design: Kristin Ess

Last week I had the pleasure of working with one of my absolute favorite clients, Debby Ryan, before she was whisked off to the Elton John Oscar Party. Debby is so much fun and loves to play around with various looks. She was wearing a beautiful black + white gown by Lublu and her stylist put some major jewels on her ears, so we needed to come up with a look that would compliment both of those things. We both thought it would be fun to do something we haven’t done before. Something soft and romantic, but still a little bit edgy. (The real inspiration: I I got to listen to her new music from her upcoming album and really wanted to translate that vibe into her look.) Debby has lots of layers and this particular look works really well on hair that is super layered. Here’s how we did it…

  1. Create a deep side part using a tail comb.
  2. Do an inside out braid on the side with less hair. Stop behind the ear.
  3. Clip it temporarily with a small claw clip.
  4. I know this sounds crazy, but scrunch a little mousse into the middle and ends of dry hair.
  5. Take the blow dryer to it for a few seconds. The heat will soften up the mousse. The reason I do this is because I don’t want the bobby pins slipping but I also don’t want to douse it in hairspray. Heat-softened mousse still feels light and provides the extra hold.
  6. Separate the hair on the heavier side. Everything from in front of the ear stays out, everything else goes back.
  7. Roll all of the hair in back until it starts to coil into a bun shape. (Leave those front sections out.) Allow the hairs that fall out to stay out! You want it to be a bit disheveled!
  8. Pin as you go using large bobby pins.
  9. Once you’ve secured the bun, go back to the side braid. Gently pull it apart to mess it up a little. Pull out some of the pieces around your face to soften the look.
  10. Wrap the tail of the braid around the bun and pin it under.
  11. Give the heavier side a little bump or two with the flat iron, or you can do it with your curling iron if you’re not great with flat iron waves yet.
  12. Remove the excess weight on the heavier side. I like to take pieces from down near the ear and twist them back.
  13. Pin them into the bun. Continue to do so until you think you have the right amount left out.

This is what it looks like from the other side. If you try this look, make sure to tag us (and tag Debby for that matter!) @thebeautydept and @whoisdebbyanyway. We would LOVE to see!




Happy almost New Year, pretty people! Today I’m giving you the recipe for my favorite styling product cocktail in hopes that you’ll use it to get that perfect party hair. This is such a go-to formula for me when I’m working with clients on a shoot. It’s the best way I’ve found to get texture, volume and shine all at once and you don’t even have to touch an aerosol can. The hair still feels touchable and soft but looks much more glam than normal. Below are my favorite combos of matte pastes + serums and instructions on how to use them. Enjoy and have a HAPPY NEW YEAR!

  1. Start by curling your hair with our everyday waves method.
  2. Now brush everything out. I looooove brushing curls out with the soft Conair detangler.
  3. Mix a pea six dab of paste with 3 drops of serum. Rub it around in your palms until it becomes translucent.
  4. Scrunch it in starting in the middle and working your way down to the bottom.
  5. Now use what’s left on your hands and massage it into your roots.

Best part is you can “rework” the hair all night and it will get bigger, messier and sexier by the minute. Perfect for a midnight makeout sesh. Here are my 2 favorite combos. The top is a little more pricey and sometimes hard to hunt down while the bottom combo is just as wonderful, effective and less expensive!