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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Messy French bun

My friend C. always wears one of those perfectly messy buns that makes it look like she just rolled out of bed in Montmartre. Here are her step-by-step instructions. (I say we copy her ruthlessly.) xo
Step 1: Make your hair dirty. After showering, you can massage in Aveda Pure Abundance Hair Potion. Or you can just wash your hair less often and use a dry shampoo to keep your hair from getting greasy.

Step 2: Next, pull together your hair and hold it straight up, like a Lucky Troll Doll.
Step 3: Then twist your hair down to a few inches above the crown.
Step 4: Wrap your hair around itself until it forms a loose bun, right on top of your head.
Step 5: Pin the bun in place with bobby pins. Anywhere from four to eight, depending on how thick your hair is. You want it loose but secure.

Step 6: Finally, pull loose strands of hair from the nape of your neck and around your face to make it look like you’ve worn the bun all day. Voila! The perfect bun!

(Photo by Anna Wolf for Cup of Jo)

118 comments:

kate said...

beautiful! and what a great coincidence, i did my hair in a messy bun today for work. (though my hair is a bit shorter, so it's improvized).

Helen said...

ooh lovely. i always wear my hair in a bun but it's usually a tight 'librarian bun' so this might me nice for the weekends hehe

Nathalie said...

I wish I had my long hair. Once it grows out I will be sporting this bun everyday!

Nicole said...

aww, i miss my long hair.

kyracross said...

my best friend is able to do the same thing! i always have loathed to have her hair. thanks for the post!

Peonies and Polaroids said...

My hair is always in a messy bun. It doesn't look this good though. Ever.

Ashley Marie said...

I LOVE that there are instructions for this look, so contradictory! It's true about the hair being dirty too- clean hair is usually only good to wear down and flowing.




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Kate said...

this makes me so sad that I cut my hair! :)

Nicole Marie said...

yes thank you!!

Joanna Goddard said...

yes, i think the key is having dirty hair, funnily enough! :)

Caroline, no. said...

gorgeous! but mine will never look like that! (especially after it has been cycle helmeted.)

Signorina Svizzera said...

oh yes! i always do a bun, but i often hold it with one of those "claw clips" (I don't know their real names). This has so much more...je ne sais quoi!

one little journey said...

wow i LOVE this!

Amy said...

jo, if this had a like button, i would click it!

seesaw designs said...

this just made me happy i haven't cut my hair (like i was tempted to so many times during the summer). hooray for instructions.

-angela

Melanie's Randomness said...

I rock this hairstyle everday!! people always ask me oh are you going to prom, but I dig the messy bun. =)

Dream Sequins said...

I will have to click over and figure out how to rock this look because I always covet the messy bun style but can never quite get it right. Practice makes unperfect? ;)

rap and tric said...

merci, merci. for the instructions, and the rec on dry shampoo!

Jessica / Lola Vintage Clothing said...

I can NEVER pull off the messy bun, thanks for posting this, I shall try today. :)

mart and lu said...

i have been wishing my hair to be long enough for this bun! its almost there...such a fun and relaxed look!

Brandi said...

I love this look! My hair isn't short, but it's just short enough that I can't get it up like this. Heart ache.

TheBeautyFile said...

I would copy her unabashedly!!

Closet Cravings said...

Fabulous post. Whenever I'm NOT trying to create a perfect messy bun is when I manage to do it right, but the second I actually try to achieve the look - pure fug.

I think Olivia Palermo does a good job of creating a chic bun look.

Cathi said...

I used to always wear my hair when like that when it was super long - i should try it again...it's a relaxed comfy look...thanks!

Cafe Fashionista said...

There is nothing I have ever wanted more than to perfect the messy bun. These step-by-step instructions are like a godsend! :)

Down and Out Chic said...

i am not about copying a cute hair do! as soon as my hair gets long enough (could it grow any slower?!) i'm totally trying this.

GiKo said...

I just love this style, but it is kinda difficult to create it that good! I am jalouze ;)!!

XOXO
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Anonymous said...

So pretty!

Thrush Vintage said...

Lovely! Thanks so much for the instructions!

Kelly said...

thank you for sharing this!! i know a few of us out there want to be french more and more each day...and this helps!!

Anonymous said...

Wait a minute! Isn't that Swedish bun? I always thought it was :)

Ah well... as long as you don't need a dictionary to make it on your head... :)

/Iriska

Joanna Goddard said...

haha, iriska, maybe we can call it a Euro Bun :)

Audrey said...

Oh my God!!!! Although I'm French, I definitely needed a lesson to do this because my buns never look THAT pretty... Thank you Jo !

Cynthia at A Shimmy in My Spirit said...

I love this. Makes me want to let my hair grow out again.

{lovely little things} said...

Thanks for the advice, looks so simple, but definitely an art to master!

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

Yes, let's!!

Luxe. said...

I can never get my hair to do that!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the step by step insructions. I am also intrigued by the dry shampoo.

Polly R said...

I am wearing my hair in a messy bun today! Not nearly as pretty as that one though. I can never get them quite right... or quite messy enough. And my hair is quite heavy and thick and always makes the bun slip down :(
So off I go to these instructions then!
xx

Paige said...

growing my hair out stat to do this!! i love the french more sophisticated version on the top knot!

Lauren said...

such understated class & sophistication. i love it!
xx
Lauren

Caitlin said...

Haha! I guess I have the French thing going on almost everyday. I have so much hair and it's so thick that the messy bun is always the best way to go!

plaisirs simples said...

when i had long hair my messy french buns somehow never seemed to look this good. and it was always tres disappointing!!

giulia said...

I, Giulia (aka Julie w/French accent), weel nevair 'ave zee messy bun. Jus'look, short red 'air & eet ees lurvely (Joanna says 'lurve' sometime). I am half-francaise, half-eetalienne. Where ees zee accent mark on zee kee-bored. Maman?).

[My human amie, she ees a whole bunch of stuff but mostly cranky. But she theenks you 'ar all mignon (thees means 'cute') & someday you weell not copy anyone (too much:)]

xo/julie

Now go put up your buns (as opposed to sitting on them) & get some chocolate. Yes, even if it's raining. (That's not GG, that's moi. xo Susan)

Elizabeth Claire said...

Oh my gosh. I remember in high school that I got my friend to teach me how to do a messy bun because it was so cool and all the girls were doing this.

But that messy bun in the picture is the best one ever!!!

Her name was Lola said...

Awesome. Messy French buns make me so happy!

Cheers.

Magchunk said...

Drat, my hair is just a bit too short for this! Hmm, maybe in like 8 months I'll try this out. Her bun looks lovely!

Blue Is Bleu said...

My hair doesn't quite cooperate when I try one of these... plus I chopped my hair into a bob last Dec (bah!) so it's only down to my shoulder blades right now. Booo...

Savoir Weddings said...

Ahh the messy bun - seen all over Shoreditch and perfect for messy, dirty hair too!

Michely Medeiros. said...

i sooo wish i could pull of a messy do. it just never agrees with me (sigh)

Simply Mel said...

This photo gives me such hair envy...love it!

Alicia said...

love the link!! and i'm definitely going to do this (actually, hair's already up!)

kate said...

since i'm growing my hair out, i'm washing it less, and also use a dry shampoo called Psssssst. Yep. That's its name. The can looks like it's out of 1973 too. But it works great and is pretty cheap. Plus it's just funny to say.

Christina said...

I am going to try this and post it on my blog!

Annika said...

oh thank you!
i have always coveted the messy bun look but have never been able to accomplish it...
looks so terrific!

MGU said...

This is so Fine Arts faculty!
And I am sooooo tempted by the image, given that I draw hair!

wool and misc said...

beautiful, but only washing once a week scares me.

Coquette and Dove said...

Gorgeous! Easy for me to say, I wear my hair like this everyday!!

Loved the pics, but holding it up with bobby pins?? Not in a million years with my hair, far too thick.

I use Geisha Pins from my work kit, basically they're long thick hair pins, 3 of those and it doesn't budge all day, just gets a little looser and sexier by the evening!

French lover said...

This is my go-to look! But I'm French, it's in our blood ;-)

Jazmyn Alexandria said...

Oh how I wish my hair was long enough for this!

Lilapuppy said...

Holy hell, it works! I must rock this in the SLC.

It's All Good said...

very cute! and now that Ive done the Keratin treatment in my hair, its finally wavy enough to pull such a look off, must try it!

Jo said...

Bobby pins ARE key!!

Anonymous said...

I live in Montmartre. Plus I rolled out bed this morning and pulled my hair back in a bun, but sadly, mine doesn't look nearly as cute. Thanks for the tip! I'll try this tomorrow!

Pesky Cat Designs said...

I've tried many ways to put my hair up but I feel it always looks messy in a bad way. There must be some secret to a gorgeous messy bun. Can't wait to go to the link and find out!!

miss cavendish said...

It's the bobby pins that give me pause. I can follow any of the steps except that crucial one!! My hair always feels on the verge of falling out (and probably is) when I try to pin it up . . . Advice?!

Coquette and Dove said...

Miss Cavendish, the answer is Geisha Pins...

http://www.banburypostiche.co.uk/shop/home/C-208.aspx

You're hair wont be going anywhere with these bad boys! x

mkendall said...

I wore my hair like this today, thanks to your post! Except I had to modify it to a lower bun because my hair is so thick. It hurts if I put it all on top of my head for too long.

madhatter said...

aha you are apparently the source of this messy bun blog post. I tried it and I love it!!! Thanks!

Heather said...

Yesss!! Been trying to get this look for months now. This tutorial seemed to do the trick! THANK YOU!

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Sammi said...

THANK YOU!

When I had long hair I used to try and do my hair that way, but I am too neat thanks soooo much!

Abigail Ryan said...

Ohlala... that's perfection indeed!

Geezees Geezees Custom Canvas Art said...

sweet and sexy :)

Kerri Lynne said...

love the messy bun! but i just donated a foot of hair so i'll have to wait for it to grow to have my own again! :)

Alisa said...

Oh wow, this reminds me of the eponymous french girl Anna Karina in A Woman is a Woman, remember the part where she effortlessly pulls up her hair in a bun, so french and chic!

Sara A. said...

Hey curl girls, try this with clean hair or 1-2 days post washing hair. Does not work for my crazy curly hair when dirty. For now, I'm sticking with the classic NY cheat bun.

Ash said...

Love this!!

jenn said...

so gorgeous. i like the 'lucky troll doll' tip, but my hair is too long..whenever i do hot rollers and try to start rolling my hair all the way at the end i have to strrreeetch my arms all the way out to reach the ends of my hair, haha. thank goodness i'm getting a trim when i go home to LA for tgiving :]

follow studio said...

Oh this is great! x

hazel and hunter said...

this is great! i often wear a messy bun but it never looks nearly as nice - i'll try this today!

Eri said...

I know I am behind the times, but this post is like a revelation! finally I can put my hair in a good looking bun - thank you!

Anonymous said...

I'm a dude who loves to see women with their hair worn up. It's timeless. I'm happy that so many more ladies are wearing long hair. Ron

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Naurnie said...

i have been obsessing over these hair posts. i have tried the previous two and use them all of the time! can't wait to try the buns. xxo

Hazel said...

I am loving these hair posts! I see a new obsession forming! (in a totally non frightening way of course)

cynthia, TX said...

Love this I might have give this a try!

Taylor said...

This looks fabulous and easy, but the link isn't working for me /:

vintage jewelry said...

Looking very nice. Its bit messy, but sometimes messy do looks great. I am going to try this one on my hairs by following the instructions. Thank for sharing the steps.

vicky mattison said...

I really love this messy bun but alas - the step by step instructions seem to be missing now, boo. Can you do this post again? Pleeaassee, just for me??? (oh and any more great hair tips too!) xoxo

adela sirghie said...

Love it, I wear it all the time&your explanations are great. Can I borrow the photos for my blog -with link?

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Elin Nielsen said...

Thanks for the tutorials - now I feel a little regret for having cut off my long hair last month as I never knew what to do with it! Looking forward to have the length again so I can start using your tips.

Truan said...

Love this style, so relaxed and easy!

Crystal Haines said...

lovelovelove this!!

natalie said...

Always tried to figure this out. Thanks for sharing. Will be posting this in today's 'weekend reads'.

natalie
http://streetandsuch.com

Izzy whizzy fizzy busy muzzy twizzley spoon said...

Thanx sOo much
People at school always wet them and my friend told me how to do them but it was too messy for me and made my hair so knotty I had to cut bits out but this is gr8 I wear them a lot for school now go smithy's

Izzy said...

Izzy
Wow me and the last commenter have the same first name
Thanx soo much jo or whoever u r I luv this hairstyle and have worn it every day for the past century ok maybe that's over exadderating maybe about a week

districtoflights said...

Such a great tutorial! :)

http://districtoflights.wordpress.com/

www.marymade.it said...

i love all your styles!

Kelsie said...

Wear yours in a tight bun, put on the helmet, go to your destination and it should be cute and messy. If not, loosen it up a touch. They key for you is starting with a librarian bun, because the helmet with do all the messing-up for you (:

A.E. Smith said...

try holding your hair straight out instead of straight up, the bun won't be as high, but it might work

Sarah Jane said...

Have just tried this now and it turned out perfect! THANK YOU!

Admin said...

I will share this on pinterest great job! andkon

Pamela Mallen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pamela Mallen said...

I have medium length and incredibly thick hair. I love the "messy bun" look and have tried countless tutorials. This is the first that one has actually worked! Even with tons of bobby pins, it looks amazing since they can be hidden easily.

BLichty said...

If you have very thick/heavy hair that doesn't stay pinned well, try spin pins with this! They are little miracle corkscrews that hold up even very heavy hair.

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