Long hair always seems like a good idea—that is, until you wake up to a snarled mane that looks more like a bad Halloween wig than a blowout. By the time you’ve finally finished detangling your strands, it’s probably 20 minutes after you meant to have left for work.
Keeping a mermaid mane certainly isn’t simple. Thankfully, there are plenty of easy hairstyles out there to help you look polished in no time at all. If you’re thinking about trading high maintenance length for a wash-and-wear bob, don’t call up your stylist just yet. Give us a chance to prove to you how low-maintenance owning long hair can be.
Grab a hairbrush, a few no-snag elastics, and a can of hairspray. We’re doing this thing
Pop Star Half Ponytail
We open with a hair style you’ve definitely seen on stages all over the world. This look is pop star favorite because it showcases length while ensuring a pristine hairline that can resist even the most over-the-top dance moves.
You may not be starting a girl band anytime soon, but feel free to take advantage of the stars’ tricks in your daily life. After making sure your hair is free of snaggles, back comb at the roots. Starting from either ear and creating a diagonal line, from a half ponytail. Once you’ve smoothed the top of the style, secure the ponytail tightly.
For added panache, leave your ponytail halfway through the elastic. The result is messy bun, something that will keep your style from seeming a little too “prom.”
We’re big fans of the rope braid, which looks complicated but requires very little skill. On second or third day hair, this plait is a power move that showcases your lengths while keeping them safely out of your way. For extra gloss, we even like to add a little shine serum throughout our mid-lengths and ends.
Start with a deep, straight side part. Take two medium strands of hair from directly above the hairline, twisting the front one over the back. Add a piece of hair to the strand that’s now in front, then repeat the technique until you reach the neck.
Here’s the part that’s a little tricky: Add the rest of the hair to your braid strands, then twist them both forward. Then, using the technique you already know, bring the front strand over and across the back. Repeat this part until you run out of hair, then secure and pancake the braid.
Twisted Half Updo
When we say easy, we really mean easy—no bobby pins or complicated chignons here. Pull two strands of hair from just above either ear, tying them off with a clear elastic at the back of your head. Leave the tail a little loose, giving yourself extra space to maneuver.
Now, bring the tail up and over itself in a twist. Repeat this step until both strands are entirely twisted, and you’ll be the proud owner of an updo that took no work at all.
To give this look a little more va-va-voom, tease the crown of your hair before beginning to make a half ponytail. Instead of settling for a hairband, secure the style with a matte metal clip and add a little beach wave to your ends.
Oversize Messy Bun
Building the perfect, Pinterest-worthy messy bun is truly an art form, one that we’ve studied for years. The trick to the perfect ‘do is volume: lots of it, all the time. Using texturizing spray, dry shampoo, or volumizing spray, coat your roots and mid-lengths. If you want to tease a little, we won’t stop you.
Bring the hair up to the top of your head (aim for just below your crown), using your first loop of the hair elastic to form a ponytail. On your second loop, you’ll want to pull the tail though only halfway—you’re aiming to create a loop with a tail. Fluff the loop, pinning it into a bun shape. Then, wrap the remainder of the tail around the base of the bun and pin it.
Finish with a healthy dose of hairspray, then pull out a few face-framing pieces to make the whole ‘do look a little more lived in.
The mermaid braid is an adorably named style that we can’t get enough of, particularly during the sticky summer months. Who wants to shampoo their hair every day, let alone roast under a blow dryer?
For second-day hair that’s fresh-looking, spritz dry shampoo throughout your hair. Then, create a deep side part with a braid of your choice (we’re big proponents of the fishtail braid). Tie off the plait with an elastic that matches your hair color.
Hidden Double Ponytail
Models and celebrities make voluminous, bouncy ponytails seem easy. When your mane is extra-long, its weight often keeps it from looking the way you’d like. What you don’t know is that celebrities hire hair artists to help them fake healthy, gorgeous-looking hair.
If you’re interested in a tail that’s longer-looking, start by combing the top half of your hair into a high ponytail that sits just at the back of your head. Then, create a second tail that’s hidden below the first. It should sit just an inch or two below the first, and use the remaining half of your hair. Back comb the ponytails to create the illusion of a single, cohesive style. It’s your average ponytail, just better.
When it doubt, top knot it out. If you’re dealing with flat or oily roots but love the way your ends look, it’s time to call in our favorite second day style. Create a half ponytail at your crown, securing the ponytail with an elastic.
Wrapping the hair tightly around the hairband, create a tight knot and pin it in place. If you’re looking for a more devil-may-care approach to the style, don’t be afraid to pull out a few choice pieces of hair around the face.
Long live the braided pigtail. To us, they’re the perfect on-the-go hairstyle for ladies with very long hair. After applying dry shampoo to your roots for a little volume and texture, part your hair evenly from forehead to nape (we recommend using a long-handled comb). Then, Dutch braid either side of your head. When you’re all done with the braids, be sure to pancake them
Side Swept Fishtail Braid
If you’re already a master of the fishtail, try this edgy version on for size. Sweep your hair to the side of your neck, tying it into a ponytail at the nape. Begin your fishtail, swapping sections until you run out of hair. Once your braid is totally complete, pancake the style for an ethereal vibe that’s perfect for work or play.
Crown Braid With Waves
Styling your hair doesn’t always have to be about buns and ponytails. Instead, we propose this crown braid with waves. The half-up style enables you to show off the shiny, healthy hair you’ve worked so hard to attain. What’s more beautiful than that?
Real headbands seem like a good idea until they’re digging into your scalp halfway through the day. Toss the plastic and opt for a braided version, which requires just some texturizing spray and a handful of bobby pins.
Sleek Half Updo With Bobby Pins
Bobby pins as a fashion accessory are a trend that all lazy women can get behind. Instead of dropping cash on an overpriced accessory, apply a creative eye to the pins you already have at home. Try this inexpensive trick the next time you need to dress up a basic style.
While many stylists break out their curling irons to create beachy waves, we’re here to tell you there’s a heat-free way to accomplish the same look. After washing your hair, let it air dry about 50 percent of the way before creating a crisp part and putting it into a loose braid.
Ah, the power accessory. When you’re feeling less than motivated to curl your hair, make creative use of copper wire, satin ribbon, or any other materials you might have hanging around. After slicking your long hair back into a low ponytail, tie off the style with something glam.
Vintage Finger Waves
If you’re headed to a formal event, no style will wow them quite like vintage waves. Use a large curling iron barrel and strong hold hairspray to create and set this opulent style, being sure curl all your strands in the same direction.
Loose Voluminous Waves
Here’s a laid back style that won’t take hours to create. Use a 1-inch curling iron to bring subtle body and movement to your long mane. For added punch, finish the entire style with a shine spray.
Messy Low Ponytail
The low ponytail is the perfect day two style, particularly when you’ve already taken the time to curl your hair for an event the night before. Embrace your lived-in texture by gathering all that hair at the base of your neck. Backcomb throughout the ponytail, adding texturizing spray throughout the style.
We maintain that sleek hair never goes out of style. Achieve this glossy look by putting your hair dryer down, smoothing the cuticle instead of roughing it up. Finish with a shine spray.
Half Space Bun Pigtails
Having long hair is fine and dandy until you want to exercise, eat, or otherwise get it out of your face. Space buns are an excellent choice, allowing your lengths to hang while getting the top section out of your way.
Knotted Half Updo
The knot is a clever style, one that looks undone but also chic. Start by parting your hair from ear to ear, then divide the top section in half and knot it twice. Pin the style to hold it in place. Easy as can be!
Textured Ponytail with Braid
Give us all the texture! This style is ideal for ladies who love to air dry their locks, enhancing their natural waves. If you’re feeling like the ponytail falls a little limp, add a few spritzes of sea salt spray and scrunch.
Hair Wrapped Half Pigtails
Dress up your pigtails by leaving a strand out of each one, then wrapping them around each hair elastic. It’s the simplest adjustment from a typical style, but one that seriously ups your style cred.
Slicked Back Faux Hawk
Who says girls with long hair can’t have volume? For your next night out, try this gorgeous ‘do. Backcomb your crown, adding texturizing spray as needed. Don’t forget to pin both sides back into a serious faux hawk.
Messy Twisted Updo
If you need your hair off your shoulders, look no further than this gorgeous updo. The addition of a jeweled hair accessory makes all the difference.