Finding a way to look your best without being too extra is every wedding guest's internal struggle. Luckily, it's a problem that's easily solved. Our best advice would be not to overthink your glam too much, because when you do, that's when you accidentally go overboard. Just choose a look you're comfortable with, while taking the venue and your outfit in consideration, of course! To give you ideas, we collected some tried-and-tested hairstyles inspired by real wedding guests. Check them out below!
1. Loose waves
Your go-to set of loose, effortless waves is an easy option that works for both short and long tresses. The best part about this look is that it's low-maintenance—you just need a hairspray with a strong hold so the texture on your strands can last all the way through the reception and the after-party.
2. Sleek side part
If you have thick hair that needs a little taming, create a neat side part and smooth out the edges for a polished look that also frames your face. Backcomb a section near your crown to add more volume if you need it, and after that, grab a medium-sized curling wand to wave out your ends. You don't have to stop there—you can tuck one side behind your ear to show off a cool barrette or an earring!
3. Low ponytail
A simple ponytail can easily be dressed up for any occasion. Always start with a neat partition that flatters your face shape, and then pull your strands back and tie them together at your nape. You can flatten your ends straight for a sleek look or curl them if you want more texture—it's up to you! One thing you must do, however, is to hide the elastic band in your ponytail by wrapping it with a small section of hair and securing it with a bobby pin.
4. Sleek flip
A sleek flip is a foolproof choice for short hair, especially if yours is cut into a bob. All you really need are a flat iron for flipping the ends), a brush for smoothing flyaways, and some good ol' hairspray for setting all your hard work.
5. Statement hair accessory
Let's say you don't feel like doing excessive heat styling or you're running late. You'll need a look you can pull together fast while still looking like you tried. One fail-safe option is to throw on a statement hair accessory (like a headband) that can pretty much speak for itself. As long as your locks are neat and tidy, no one will know your look took you 30 seconds.
6. Braided half ponytail
If you're thinking of sporting a half-ponytail, it won't hurt to add a few dainty details to dress it up. For example, you can braid your hair before tying them behind your head to make the look less flat. Sliding on a fun headband can give you more lift, too!
7. Half ponytail with beach waves
For an event like a beach wedding, you should be resigned to the fact that the wind will mess up your hair. Hence, go for a look that'll make sure that your strands will mostly stay out of your face, like a casual half ponytail dressed up with some very location-appropriate beach waves.
8. Textured high ponytail
The struggle with ponytails is that they can make fine hair look even thinner, so if ever you choose to wear one to a wedding, you need to cheat a little. Hairstylist Jay Wee recommends avoiding tight ponytails and opting for a loose, textured style. Douse your wet hair with texturizing spray and blowdry it for volume, and then add loose waves with a curling iron. Backcomb your crown for the illusion of thicker hair before you finally gather your tresses into a high ponytail.
9. Messy updo
An updo is not only meant for the bride. The key to pulling it off is to make yours loose and slightly messy. You can do this by styling your hair in waves first before gathering them in a low bun, and once the bun is secure, slightly pull some strands around your head to loosen them up. Finish it off by pulling two small sections from the front to create face-framing tendrils.
10. Low bun
Another way to do an updo as a guest is to keep your take on it as simple as possible. Skip the waves and hair extensions entirely and just make that low bun as polished as you can and mix it with relaxed details like loose strands by the ear.