Tis the season for getting together and celebrating. After spending a couple of years in mostly sweatpants and ponytails, it might take a minute to dust off the cobwebs and remember what it means to go out. Whether it’s a formal soiree or a casual gathering of friends or family, we have tips to achieve the level of glam your hair needs.
First things first—what’s in, and what’s out? “Hairstyles we will be seeing this holiday season are going to be simple but elegant,” says stylist Alex Perrin of West End Salon & SkinSpa. “Side parts have been making a comeback, so I think we will be seeing some soft vintage curls with a deep side part. I also think a classic blowout with lots of volume will be popular.”
For high-style hair, go to a full-service salon to achieve your formal look. Stylist Folashade Oloye of Cashmere Lux Hair Salon recommends, “Find a hairstylist that loves what they do, and take pictures of the style you want.” Look on YouTube, Google, TikTok, Pinterest or your favorite stylist’s social media and website for ideas. Whether it’s a fancy up-do, braiding, big-body curls or something in-between, a licensed cosmetologist can help you achieve the look you have in mind.
Stylist Kayla Preboske of YOUnique Hair Studio also encourages seeking out a stylist to get your hair party ready. “It takes stress off of you and makes it an experience of feeling pampered and beautiful before you head to your party!” She recommends calling the salon and describing what kind of style you’re looking for, so they can schedule you with the person who will best be able to replicate it.
But what do you do if your party is on an actual holiday? “One of the main concerns our clients have for the holiday season is being able to get into a salon to get styled. If your party is on a holiday, chances are that your salon may be closed, so having a DIY plan in place is always a good idea,” says Perrin.
When planning your party look, remember your hair will represent who you are to the people you meet and will also play a big role in how you feel when stepping into the social scene. Oloye says, “Textured hair in Ancient African society symbolized sacred and spiritual culture.” She continues, “Your hair is your crown. When your hair looks good, you feel good.”
If you’re on a budget or strapped for time, or your salon won’t be open on the day you need it, there are lots of do-it-yourself styles that, when done right, look like they took more work than they did. Take the bun, for example. A messy bun piled on top of your head might feel more like an around-the-house style, but for a more formal look, try a smooth bun low on the back of your head. This style, says Preboske, is “forever elegant.”
Another easy style to do at home that can work for almost any occasion is beach waves. A quick online search will result in several ideas for how to make this look happen, from sleeping in overnight hair braids or twists to using hairspray and a curling iron. “Most people know their skill level, but these can be simple styles achieved at home,” says Preboske. “I always recommend doing a practice on yourself a day or two before!”
Soft curls or a classic blowout are also easy styles to do at home. Make sure to have a large-barrel curling iron, heat protectant, and a medium- to high-hold hairspray to achieve lasting style and keep your hair healthy. “If you feel like you need help executing a look by yourself,” says Perrin, “book an appointment to have a stylist walk you through how to achieve the look at home!”
Oloye’s recommended do-it-yourself styles are “a sleek ponytail, messy bun or rocking your natural curl.” For her sleek ponytail, Oloye used a flat iron, holding spray, edge control and pre-stretched 54-inch braiding hair. The result, while relatively easy to achieve, looks sleek and glamorous and could easily work day and night, for any type of party.
If you’re invited to your first party in years or one of many, don’t stress. With the help of these at-home tips or a skilled stylist, your hair will be ready to go in no time.