Whether we’re talking busy weekdays and lazy weekends, our hair can quickly become the very bane of our beauty routine. Spending time on styling or—let’s be honest—just taming our locks to look presentable is touch-and-go at best. That’s when easy, and dry shampoo come in. For us, messy buns are the saviors of all days running late or skipping showers. The trick is perfecting the “undone done” look without going too disheveled or slipshod.
But unlike the paradoxical reality of beachy waves, which actually require a laundry list of products and hot styling tools (and no beaches in sight), messy buns don’t have to be a 12-step process. You can master the messy, yet polished bun in steps you can count on just one hand and with just a few elastics or pins. Cute hair accessories—bun cuffs, pins, and headbands—are the quickest way to ramp up the style of a basic messy bun in seconds, and the messy bun has even been after.
Meghan Markle stepped out publicly with Prince Harry rocking a low messy bun pumped with volume and framed with loose pieces around the face. Find inspiration in these gorgeous and doable messy bun hairstyles that keep you looking pretty and polished on any day Here.
Everything in This Slideshow
Two-Minute Braided Bun
This hairstyle looks as ready for a wedding reception as a workday, which is seriously impressive considering it takes about two minutes, two hair elastics, and maybe two pins!
Double Dutch Braided Topknot
We love the way the braid sits so prettily on top of a Dutch braid, as opposed to a French braid. These double Dutch braids make any messy bun, topknot or low bun, look awesome. You can secure the two braids with clear elastics before pulling hair into a bun to make sure they don’t fall apart in the process!
This chic half bun works well for second-day hair with some dry shampoo to hold up the bun all day long. We recommend using pins for secure this to ensure it doesn’t lose volume or height.
Looped Ponytail Bun
This easy style looks effortless without looking drab, and it works great for ladies with naturally straight hair that can’t hold up a high bun as well as coarser, curlier hair. Simply secure hair in a low ponytail, loop the ends through the elastic once more (but only halfway), and then wrap a single section of the excess around the base, securing with a pin. Leaving some of the excess ponytail hanging out adds to the laidback feel of this look.
A pop of color is perfect for any last-minute topknot in the spring or summer, and a small silk scarf looks both poised and stylish. After securing the bun, wrap the scarf around it and tie. Find a similar scarf.
Low Bun for Short Hair
This tutorial works on lob-length hair by using a technique that starts with just a low pony! A few pins later, and you’re set. This look is very similar to the messy bun that Meghan Markle has been wearing for royal public appearances.
French Braid Twist Bun
If you have a knack for French braiding, this stylish bun is the easiest way to look polished on any day.
This ultimate big bun looks put-together and preppy with its adorably bow-like style.
This best-selling bun cuff looks stunning on this low, messy French twist-esque bun. A bun cuff allows you play around with how you cinch and hold your hair, and this cuff works amazingly for buns, ponytails, and half-up styles. This style gathers hair into a loose twisted bun before securing.
The Perfectly Loose Low Bun
This style looks polished, but un-fussy. It’s loose in the way that looks effortless, but won’t
Reverse Braided Topknot
A reverse braid is a little harder to master, but it sure comes in handy once you learn it! This messy topknot gets instantly more polished thanks to the upside-down Dutch braid.