If a slicked-back ballerina bun—you know, the kind you can only achieve with a heavy-duty can of hairspray—isn't quite your jam, this year's red carpets should be of use to you. Messy updos are noticeably trending, and add volume, texture, and an disheveled yet chic vibe to your overall look. It's the contrast a formal outfit needs to prevent you from looking too "done up."
From Margot Robbie's ribbon-accented topknot to Meghan Markle's bouffant-like coif, these are eight that we can't stop staring at.
VIDEO: 4 Ways to Get Meghan Markle's Look Without Breaking the Bank
To create Alison Brie's textured low bun, celebrity stylist Rebekah Forecast began by prepping her hair with a conditioning and detangling primer, like Oribe Run-Through Detangling Primer ($37; nordstrom.com). Then, she applied a thickening spray ont he roots and worked mousse throughout the hair for volume. She twisted the hair with a round brush while blow-drying to create movement. After the hair was dry, she applied Oribe Gold Lust Dry Shampoo ($44; birchbox.com) throughout and Oribe Supershine MoisturizIng Cream ($52; birchbox.com) to the ends
Then, she twisted sections of the hair at the front and pinned them into place, making sure to keep volume at the crown before she pulled the hair into a loose ponytail just below the crown. Finally, she braided the ponytail and twisted it into a bun and secured it with pins and hairspray.
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Celebrity hairstylist Bryce Scarlett was the mastermind behind Margot Robbie's topknot. He started by prepping her damp hair with TRESemmé Repair & Protect 7 Pre-Styling Spray ($5; target.com) and then applied extra hold mousse to the roots to create lift. Then, he blow-dryed the hair with his hands, lifting the hair at the root and directing the air up to create volume.
After the hair was dry, he scrunched the mid-lengths to the ends of the hair with water to add moisture and boost the wave, and then diffused to add more texture. He applied TRESemmé Compressed Micro-Mist Hair Spray Hold Level 2: Smooth ($5; target.com) to add grittiness and pulled the hair into a pony on the left side of the top of the head. He twisted the hair around to create a knot and secured with bobby pins. The finishing touch was a black velvet ribbon tied around the bun.
Meghan Markle's messy buns have three main components—face-framing strands, a voluminous bun fastened at the back of her head, and a slight bouffant at the crown. All come together to give her an elegant but always effortless look.
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The messier your bun, the better in this situation. Prep your hair by either curling it or utilizing texturizing products like sprays and mousses, and then sweep your strands into a larger bun higher on your head. If you have layers that don't seem to stay put, that's at your advantage. Allow your face-framing strands to fall to achieve a look like Rita Ora's.
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A series of messy braids made up Marion Cotillard's elaborate updo. You can see that several were created around the head and then pinned in various spots. To really score her look, prep your hair with a texture powder or a powder dry shampoo to add grit and an airy texture to the hair. After braiding, pull the plaits apart on either side to make them look fuller. Then, you're all set to pin them in place.
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A ponytail definitely counts as an updo. Dakota Johnson's strands were treated with a slight wave before they were pulled up into a mid-height ponytail. The volume and texture is thanks to celebrity stylist Johnnie Sapong's decision to spray in Dove's Refresh + Care Volume & Fullness Dry Shampoo ($3; target.com) before backcombing it at the roots.
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Consider this your guide to wearing a flower crown outside of Coachella. Jennifer Lawrence's twisted, wavy updo was accented by a bouquet of flowers secured at the nape of her neck. The messy vibe created the perfect romantic base for the blooms.
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A more complex messy updo like this takes patience—and at least a few bobby pins. First, part your hair on the side, and then get to work on creating loops and securing them into place. Curl your face-framing strands for a more elegant look.
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