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The 5 Best Hairstyles For Long Hair


The beauty of long hair is that the list of possible looks is endless – it’s about as long as your hair after you’ve straightened it! We talked to Katie Bailey, a hair stylist at Serendipity Salon in Geneva, Illinois, to find out about the best trends for long hair. Are you ready to love your long hair even more? Check out the looks all girls with long hair must try! 

1. Show off your buns 


The half-bun is pretty much all the cuteness of a regular bun without fully committing to putting up all of your hair. Tessa McKenna, a junior at Carthage College, explains the trendy hairdo. “It’s half up, half down, with a small messy bun on top.” Sounds easy, right? “I like this look because it’s hipster chic and you don’t need short hair to create the bun,” says Tessa. “It’s a cute up-do that looks great with curly, wavy, or straight hair.” And the best part? “It also shows the length of your hair,” Tessa adds. Long-haired lovelies can get the best of both worlds by trying out the half-bun. 

Messy Bun

Ah, the messy bun. It's the savior of late and lazy college girls across all campuses. Katie Bailey, a hair stylist at Serendipity Salon in Geneva, Illinois, highly recommends this imperfect up-do. “Styles like these are really in,” says Bailey. Easily achieved in a minute or less, the messy-bun is a quick fix for girls who wish to keep long, tangled hair out of the way. 

2. Play With Texture

Beachy Waves

“There are so many options with long hair. I think girls with long hair should definitely try adding texture,” says Bailey. Whether you achieve it through a spray, a flat iron, or a wand, adding texture can give your long locks an instant boost. And if you’re not used to using hot tools? “Use an iron with a glove,” suggests Bailey. If you’re not too keen on heat-treating your hair, a texture spray can also help you achieve this style – use a scented spray as an added bonus.

Long Layers

“I always tell people if they are looking to change a long hair look without sacrificing length, long layers and side-swept bands are a must,” explains Bailey. Asking for long layers at the salon allows you to clean up your ends and keep them healthy, without losing your beloved length. Plus, long layers can add body and volume to grown out hair. With this look, there will be no more getting in trouble with your stylist for skipping trims!

3. Add Some Color


“The nice thing about this coloring style is that there’s not a lot of up-keep – your roots can grow out long, so it lessens the amount of trips to the salon,” says Bailey. For college girls, going ombré is a great way to color-treat your hair without having to worry about the time and money to keep it looking great. Because ombré coloring focuses on using a lighter color toward your ends, your roots won’t reveal that you’re attempting to extend periods between coloring. It’ll be our little secret.


Balayage, a highlighting technique different from ombré, aims to achieve a more gradual and natural-looking effect on hair. “The sun-kissed look of a balayage is beautiful, and can extend the look of the length on long hair through the dimensions of color,” says Bailey. Be sure to check out Bailey’s work on this lovely color style for some inspo.

Related: 5 Tips For Growing Longer Hair

4. Braids For Days

Crown Braid

“Braids are so in right now, especially for prom, events, and dances,” says Bailey. The crown braid is a beautiful look that is perfect for girls with long hair. “Start with a deep part,” Bailey explains, and braid both parts individually until they meet in the back. The end look should appear like a halo or a crown around your head, as the name suggests.  

Loose Fishtail Braid

“Fishtail braids are really popular – sort of loosening them up looks really pretty,” says Bailey. This look can be created by doing a regular fishtail braid – either to the side or straight down your back – and pulling the strands a bit, so the braid is less tight and more relaxed. “Making the braid looser helps it look thicker if you have thin hair,” Bailey adds. “It’s a nice option without a lot of styling. It isn’t difficult and it doesn’t take long, so you’re not sitting in a chair forever.”

Tessa McKenna suggests pulling out a few strands from the lose braid completely in the front to frame your face. “The braid goes with almost any occasion, and you can even workout with one,” says Tessa. Keep your hair game strong during every moment of the day by playing around with a looser fishtail braid! 

5. Pony Up

Side Pony

Always throwing up your long hair in a pony? Change it up a bit! Samantha Burke, a 2016 grad from Siena College, swears by the side ponytail. “When I first came back to work in retail at the beginning of the summer, I loved throwing my hair up in a side ponytail,” says Samantha. “Not like an 80s style, but not in the middle of my head, either. Kind of in between the two.”

Not only does this look allow you to change up your regular ponytail routine, but it can also keep your hair out of the way. “It’s too short to do it now, and I really miss it! It kept the hair off the back of my neck, and looked super cute with a bow or flower clip at the top,” Samantha says. The side pony is a perfect variation of the regular ponytail for when you’re looking to accessorize and slightly change up your look (without doing too much).  

Tight Pony

A tight ponytail sounds pretty simple—and it is! Kori Sye, a 2016 grad from North Central College, explains why tight ponytails are perfect. “As a graduate student, I don’t really have time to focus on my hair,” says Kori. “I usually do a tight ponytail because my long hair is really straight, and I need to make it right so it wont get messy throughout the day.” Tight ponytails are an easy, secure way to style your long hair in the morning so you won’t have to worry about them later. Kori suggests using clips or bobby pins for more security and to keep flyaway hairs in place. You can also change up the height of your tight ponytail to add some variety!

With these long hair trends and styles under your belt, you'll have a beautiful new way to wear and love your long hair every day of the week!

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