Summer is fast approaching. Hopefully, your season will be full of fun parties, fancy dinners, and you might even have a wedding or two to attend. If you’re looking for hair inspiration for such occasions, you’re in luck! We’ve rounded up 35 elegant hairstyles that are sure to be the perfect addition to your upcoming soirees.
From sleek ponytails (high and low) to classic updos and glamorous curls, we’ve made sure to include a range of styles to cater to everyone. No matter your hair type, length, or texture, we’re sure you’ll find a lady-like look you’ll love.
Banana Clip Ponytail
Banana clips may have been popular in the ‘80s and ‘90s, but this versatile tool can create timeless looks, including hairstyles as sophisticated as the long ponytail.
Tie your hair so it’s half-up and half-down. Use an elastic to tie the top half. Then use your banana clip to secure the rest of your locks. The result? A longer-looking ponytail! For a fresh, updated version, leave out a couple of face-framing strands, ala our model, for a more fun feel.
This 70’s, Disco-inspired look works well if you’re looking for a style that’s as fun as it is elegant. Mizani artist Jamal Edmonds uses a wand with a large barrel and a paddle brush to create these voluminous, brushed-out curls. Complete the look by adorning your braids with glitter, or gold accessories, like Jamal has, for extra sparkle.
Pinning sections of your hair back is so simple yet so effective for creating an elegant look. It’s also versatile; you can pin your hair back no matter your hair type or texture. Plus, you can choose if you pin one side back with a deep-side parting for vintage vibes or both sides with a middle parting for a playful look that almost resembles pigtails. Choose ornate barrettes or snaps if you want additional sophistication.
A sleek bun works on virtually all hair types, whether textured, straight, curly, or fine. L'Oréal Professionnel artist Madison Sullivan adds braids to her bun for a more playful take on this classic style.
‘80s Style Blowout
A fresh blowout is guaranteed to add an elegant edge to your look. Go big and bold and opt for an ‘80s-style blowout, which is perfect for parties. Our video shows you how to achieve this volume with Matrix products, including the Matrix Builder Wax Spray, which adds body and dimension.
A high ponytail looks good, no matter your face shape or hair type. What’s more, this elegant hairstyle is straightforward do yourself. The most impactful high ponytails are rife with volume, so use Redken’s Root Lifter Volumizing Spray when creating yours.
A classic chignon is effortlessly elegant and is the perfect hairstyle for a soiree. Redken artist Ruth Roche explains how to create this chic knot using just a few bobby pins and elastic in this video. To secure and set the chignon, Ruth applies Redken Max Hold Hairspray 32 Neutral Fragrance (formerly known as Triple Hold 32). This high-hold spray will keep your locks in place all day long.
If you’re blessed with type 3 or type 4 hair, then why not make the most of your natural curls for your next special occasion? One editor shares how she created these five different curly hairstyles for weddings for inspiration here.
Whatever elegant hairstyle you choose, nourishing your curly locks is essential, so look for products designed for textured hair that contain hydrating properties, like Kérastase’s Curl Manifesto range.
French Twist Ponytail
The French are undeniably chic; make no mistake about it. So it’s no surprise this French twist-inspired ponytail has a classically elegant feel. This look is created by rolling and pinning your hair at the back of your head. It requires effort and patience, so you’ll want to ensure it stays in place with a liberal mist of hairspray. Biolage Professional’s Freeze Fix Humidity Resistant Spray is one of our faves.
Old Hollywood Waves
Before going in with your curling iron, you must blow dry your hair. We recommend using Biolage Professional’s new Hydra Source Blow Dry Shaping Lotion for added body and texture. This lotion is infused with aloe and hyaluronic acid and helps your hair to keep its shape for up to 72 hours–ensuring your waves stay perfectly in place.
A fishtail braid may look intricate, but it’s surprisingly painless to do, as you only need to braid two strands of hair. Mizani Artist Carla Marcelle shows how to create the fishtail braid on textured hair. Carla uses hairspray consistently while working on the braid to ensure the hair remains in place. If you want heightened glamor, add some ribbon to your braid, like Carla does, to take your style from day to night.
Created by Shu Uemura Art of Hair’s international DigitArtistic Director, Alexandry Costa, this look is inspired by minimalism and the brand’s Japanese heritage. Try adding a twist to your next half-up style for an elegant, high-fashion take on this classic half-updo. Blow dry your hair with the brand’s Tsuyu Sleek Blow Dry Oil Spray before you begin styling for a sleek and shiny blowout that’s two times faster.
Low Bun Updo
This low bun may be simple as far as elegant hairstyles go, but it delivers maximum glamour. Celebrity stylist Danielle Keasling shows us how to create this look by twisting sections of hair around a half ponytail and securing them with bobby pins. If you’re after extra volume, then make sure you spray your mane with a hairspray that adds fullness like Matrix Styling Fixer Hairspray.
Sleek Low Ponytail
Contrary to popular belief, creating a sophisticated look doesn’t need to take hours. An uncomplicated and quick contender for elegant hairstyles is a low ponytail. Use hair gel to smooth down your hair and edges for added sleekness.
Those with textured hair types will be familiar with laying their edges, which tames your baby hairs and edges for a sleeker appearance. Take laying your edges up a notch by coaxing your hair into artistic styles we like to call Galaxy Edges for their Milky Way-like swirls. You’ll need a gel to effectively smooth and sculpt; Mizani’s Artful Edges is the perfect product for recreating this look. If you want to add extra finesse, why not finish the look with some beads or hair gems like Hair.com ambassador Madison Sullivan did in the video above?
Looking for elegant hairstyles for date night? Wear your heart on your hair with a rom-com-inspired braided ‘do. Biolage Professional artists Sara Shefferly and Caryn Vanderbilt show you how to create these intricate, Insta-worthy looks in this video. If you love this romantic trend, then be sure to check out our guide to 30 heart hairstyles.
The half-up half-down hairdo is a classic for a reason. This feminine style optimizes elegance. Biolage Professional partner Sunnie Brook gives a voluminous spin to this look.
Start by curling your locks for extra-body. If you’re after even more volume, try the double ponytail trick Sunnie demonstrates in the video. Create a ponytail with the top half of your hair, then slide the elastic slightly to make a gap, split the hair in two, and weave your pony through the hole you’ve created and tighten. Voila! The result will be double the volume.
Beads and Gems
You can elevate any hairstyle to elegant heights with the right accessories. Why not try adding beads, jewels, or gems to your style next time you go out? We’re inspired by this party-ready look created by Monae Everett, who adorned a beautiful braid with pearls.
Voluminous Glam Curls
Is there anything more glamorous than big, bouncy curls? To achieve this look, it’s important to prep your hair; stylist Cynthia Dhimdis recommends using L’Oreal Professional’s Volumetry Anti-Gravity Root Spray to lift your locks. Once your hair is prepped, you can go in with your curling iron—remember, the smaller the barrel, the tighter the curl. Cynthia uses a 1.25-inch iron to create her loose curls; pick the best size for you.
A sleek, straight bob is always elegant, evocative of French chicness. Parisian model Isabeau Delatour shows how she gets her mane poker straight with the L'Oréal Professional Steampod Flat Iron & Styler. This hair straightener provides a continuous flow of high-pressure steam, giving your tresses a smooth, mirror-like shine.
Many celebrities go for the wet look when walking the red carpet. Create this mermaid-inspired look at home with a hair oil and gel. Hair.com partner Shania Christina says the trick is to drown your hair in oil. She uses Shu Uemura Art of Hair's Essence Absolue Nourishing Protective Hair Oil; this best-selling oil contains camellia oil for nourishment and shine. After her hair is saturated in the oil, Shania finishes the look with Redken’s Max Sculpting Gel. Easy peasy!
The best thing about braids? How they work on almost all hair types and textures. Recreate this intricate, art-inspired braided look for your next soiree by pinning your braid to your head.
Claw Clip Updo
A humble claw clip can do so much. Reach for yours if you’re looking for elegance with minimal effort. Ideally, your hair will be freshly washed and styled; however, this updo still looks great even when wash-day is a distant memory. All you need to do is flip your hair over, gathering it in a bun on top of your head. Then twist and tuck before securing with a claw clip. Watch our video above for the step-by-step tutorial.
Half-Up Half-Down Bun with Curls
This half-up half-down bun look is perfect for natural curlies. Matrix brand ambassador Takisha Sturdivant-Drew shows us how to achieve this playful yet elegant hairstyle. After defining your curls or coils (Takisha uses Matrix’s A Curl Can Dream product range to do this), create a messy bun with the top half of your hair.
Ballerinas are known for their poise and elegance. If you’re looking for a ladylike updo, who better to take inspiration from? Bradley Leake creates this sleek ballerina bun in seven steps. When recreating at home, use hair oil to smooth flyaways and spray your hair with a strong-hold product like Matrix’s Vavoom Freezing Spray Extra Hold.
Retro Pin Curls
Try pin curls for authentic vintage-inspired glamor. This look was first made popular in the ‘30s, so it’s a classic. Plus, pin curls are a great heatless curling method.
Never underestimate how much hair accessories can elevate your locks to luxurious heights. Think of it like adding jewelry to your outfit. Add a silk scarf to your bun to create an ultra-chic updo. The scarf provides a luxe pop of color, plus as it’s silk, it’ll be gentle and protective for your tresses.
Our braid tutorial is perfect when you need a quick, elegant fix. This simplified version of a French braid will make you look put together in no time at all. All you need for this look is some bobby pins, an elastic, and a (slightly) steady hand!
This updo is perfect for those with curly, coily, or textured hair. Hair.com Ambassador Bradley Leake creates a super-secure style showcasing your natural curls. Perfect for dancing all night long!
Snake braids have been trending all over social this spring and are ideal to try if you’re looking for inspiration for your next party. Hair influencer Audrey Trullinger switches up normal braids to create this snakey style on TikTok. Make sure you lock in your look with hairspray; Audrey uses Matrix’s Vavoom Freezing Spray Extra Hold.
Have you seen hair bows all over Instagram too? This trend is everywhere at the moment, and best of all, adding a ribbon to your ponytail is a super quick way to glam up a hairdo. Choose an oversized ribbon or bow for extra cute vibes, just like our model. You could also leave out a couple of face-framing strands for a more ‘60s feel.
Tinsel is not just for holiday glam. It’s also great for festival looks as well as more elegant affairs that incorporate the fairy-core trend. Try weaving strands of tinsel through your hair for a shimmery pop of color.
Pro Tip: match the color of your tinsel to your jewelry for a cohesive, tonal feel.
Contrary to popular belief, elegance doesn’t have to mean demure. For a fun yet chic hairdo, go for a bubble braid. Need a tutorial? Here’s how to create bubble braids in four steps. If you’re after extra sophistication, we suggest you use hair elastics in jewel tones or gold and silver for party vibes.
The halo braid is the perfect romantic hairstyle for special occasions. This updo is created by wrapping your braid around your head to resemble a crown and then securing it with bobby pins. Set your look with a hairspray so it doesn’t budge; we love Biolage Professional’s Complete Control Hairspray for intricate styles like this.
The classic beehive is back (let’s be honest, did it really ever go anywhere?). Channel your inner ‘60s siren with this ‘do. A key feature of the beehive is volume, so make sure you’re using products that add a lot of body to your tresses. Biolage Professional’s Full Density range delivers fuller, thicker-looking hair, so it’s great for this voluminous, vintage-inspired look.
Discover more inspirational hair looks and expert-backed advice on Hair.com.