13 Prettiest Half-Up, Half-Down Hairstyles To Copy Now

I will be screenshotting all of these, tyvm.
PHOTO: Instagram: chadwoodhair; kristiness

Ah, the magical half-up, half-down hairstyle. The look that says, yes, I wanted my hair in a ponytail, but no, I did not want to look like a hot mess today. The style that can be glammed up with accessories and pins or downplayed with elastics and natural texture. It is, dare I say, the most versatile hairstyle, and it doesn’t get nearly as much love as it deserves. And to change that—and get you out of your hair rut—I rounded up the 13 prettiest half-up, half-down hair ideas to copy next time you wanna try a bit. Just, like, a little bit.

  1. Half-Up, Half-Down Studded Bun

    Okay, aside from the fact that Lucy Hale’s stick-straight hair looks like it could actually cut glass (goals), her half-up, half-down baby bun is perfectly sectioned above her temples, combed back and pinned to the crown of her head, and then adorned with a dozen star pins (P.S. I’m wearing these pins right now. Am I also a celebrity?! Yes?!).

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  2. Half-Up, Half-Down Braids

    Whether you’re working with dreadlocks or braids, you can copy this super-easy style (you’re probably already wearing it right now, TBH). But to make it feel a little ~newer~, try leaving out two face-framing pieces, à la every single icon of the ’00s, and pinning or tying your hair off at the nape of your neck rather than at the crown.

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  3. Half-Up, Half-Down Braids

    I truly cannot get over how gorgeous these fairy-esque braids were at the Alice + Olivia spring 2020 show—I mean, please just look at them. LOOK AT THEM. To recreate, rake the sides of your hairline back into two braids, pinning them in place in the center of your head before tying the ends into a knot. Then stick sprigs of fake lavender through your braid, and secure the ends with bobby pins.

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  4. Half-Up, Half-Down Curls

    Alright, so Joan Smalls’ hair isn’t exactly half up—more like one-third up. Still, I’m counting it, because it’s also the perfect trick for anyone who has fine hair (hi) and can’t scoop up half of their hair without looking like they’re balding on the bottom.

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  5. Half-Up, Half-Down Bun

    If you’ve got a ton of thick hair, gathering half of it and pinning it to the top of your head isn’t exactly feasible (or comfortable). Instead, section off just the top of your hair, from temple to temple, and twist it into a bun, securing with pins or a cute scrunchie.

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  6. Half-Up, Half-Down Twists

    Yes, this half-up, half-down hairstyle looks hella complicated, but it’s honestly not: Just scoop the sides of your hair back, twist them, and pin them on top of one another straight across your head. Then weave a thin gold chain (can legit just be from a necklace) around the twists, letting the ends dangle free or bobby-pinning them in place.

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  7. Half-Up, Half-Down Curls

    Vanessa Hudgens, I cannot handle the vibes you are giving us in this photo. The makeup, the hair, the perfectly blown-out swoops...sigh. To recreate on yourself, DO NOT EVEN TRY, but also, blow out your hair with a large round brush, then wrap the two-inch section of your hairline around Velcro rollers for major volume.

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  8. Half-Up, Half-Down Pearled Twist

    Again, this half-up, half-down look is way, way easier than it appears. Yes, it’ll take a few tries, but to get this result? It’s worth it. Think of this style like a French braid but with twisting instead. Scoop the crown of your hair back, twist once, then pin in place. Scoop up the sides of your hair, twist it all together once, then pin in place. Then scoop up another layer of hair, twist together, and pin in place. Confused? Just watch the tutorial, and grab some pearl pins to get ready.

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  9. Half-Up, Half-Down Knots

    Space buns meet 2019 with Isabela Moner’s incredibly cute half-up, half-down hairstyleJust section your hair in half from temple to temple, split your hair down the middle, then twist and pin each side in two knots.

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  10. Half-Up, Half-Down Bows

    So glossy...so shiny...so pretty. This half-up, half-down hairstyle veers on the edge of a ponytail, but as someone who hates having my hair in my face, I’m down with it. Twist the sides of your hair back and pin in place at the nape of your neck before clipping on a bow.

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  11. Half-Up, Half-Down Ponytail

    Simple yet effective: Scoop your curls into a high half-up, half-down ponytail and secure on the top of your head. 

  12. Double Half-Up, Half-Down

    If you look closely, you can see that this half-up, half-down hairstyle isn’t just one section of hair scooped and pinned in back—it’s actually two. To recreate, section off the hair at your crown, lightly back-comb it, then twist and pin in place. Then scoop up the section of hair beneath, back-comb, then twist and pin in place. Add two black bow barrettes if you’re feeling faaancy.

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  13. Half-Up, Half-Down Bun

    This is pretty much the ultimate hairstyle I dream of wearing yet can never get right. The trick, as I’ve discovered, is to play with how much hair you section off on top (for me, I look best with less hair on top and more on the bottom, just like this look). And, um, to also have a cool scrunchie and an Instagrammable background.

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This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.

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