30 Half Up Half Down Hairstyles
On special occasions and regular days, women often ask themselves this hair question: up or down? While we’ve mostly been taught that you can’t have it all, half up hairstyles prove that hair can be pulled away from the face in high volume or intricate styles, while still showing a playful side with hair left loose and flowing. Whether it’s for your wedding hairstyle or a busy day spent running errands, these 30 half up hairstyles prove how versatile the in between look can be.
1French Braid Half Up
If you love french braids but find them a daunting style to execute on your own hair, this half up style will be your new go to. A french braid that runs down the middle section of hair is easier to manage than one that pulls all of your hair into the braid, and you don’t have to worry about the unevenness that is a common problem with double french braids. If you’ve got long bangs that you don’t have time to style, this french braid will keep them secure and out of the way.
2Fancy Pulled Back
A half up style that wouldn’t look out of place on a poised beauty like Kate Middleton, this look shows off long hair while looking more sophisticated and demure than hair that’s fully down. Rather than pulling half of hair into a plain ponytail, this style pins back sections from each side of the part, and features a subtle rolled style on the larger section, adding volume that creates a crown effect.
3Three Rosette Style
A perfect style for brides or bridesmaids, hair is twisted and pinned into three rosettes while the ends fall in long tendrils. If your hair is on the shorter side, simply create rosettes by pinning hair all the way to your ends.
4Half Up Fishtail Bun
While the casual, messy half up bun has become a staple casual style of celebrities like Ariana Grande and the Kardashians, this style features the half up bun with a much fancier execution. Tie the top section of hair in a high ponytail, then braid its entire length in a fishtail braid. Once secured, gently pull apart the fishtail to give it more volume, and wrap it around the base of the ponytail, securing with pins. The fishtail braid may be all over weddings this year, but this particular style is a more unique take on the popular plait.
Although this flower bun looks complicated, it’s as simple as braiding a three strand braid and then coiling it around itself. For added flower volume, pull the braid apart before coiling and pinning it.
6Half Up Bob
For shorter hair that’s not long enough to be braided or tied with an elastic, a half up style can be more difficult to keep in place. Invest in pins that blend in with your hair color, and a product like spray clay that gives hair plenty of sticking power.
7Messy Top Knot
This dishwater blonde hair with lazy waves and a messy, half up top knot is the ultimate example of a fashion forward style that looks like it was achieved effortlessly.
8Tri Pin Style
If you like bobby pins in bright colors that contrast with your hair, this triangle pin formation makes them the star of your style instead of something to be hidden. Pull back two sections of hair and overlap them at the back of your head, then pin in place with three bobby pins in triangular formation.
9Sleek With High Volume
A half up style with loads of red carpet flair, this look is created by teasing hair at the crown of your head to create volume before hair is smoothed and pulled back.
10Messy Pony With Skinny Braids
A quick add on to a simple messy ponytail, these skinny braids give texture and interest that make this style look intentional, even if it was thrown together last minute. Braids work well with straight or curly hairstyles, but they look especially at home in this crimped style.
11Bob With Folded Bun
For short hair that needs a quick style fix in the morning, this folded bun is just a ponytail that isn’t pulled through all the way. This is a currently trendy style that’s perfect for days when you don’t have time to wash and style in the morning.
Whether or not you’ve got Celtic roots, this pulled back style adds a unique touch to your basic, half pulled back style. Unless you’re a professional knot tier, this might not be the easiest style to execute on your own.
13Side French Braid
A sideways braid is often a little more modern looking than one that goes straight towards the back of the head, and this style wouldn’t be out of place at a wedding or on a regular day. This half up style has lots of volume in the front section, so don’t be afraid to tease and use a spray clay before you braid hair.
For short hair that doesn’t really work in a full updo, this mini bun is a polished style that fits in professional settings where a messy top knot isn’t appropriate.
This chic half up style leaves face framing layers loose, but they are styled to perfection rather than falling messily around the face. The knot at the back keeps the rest of hair secured but elegant, making this a perfect style choice for brides, bridesmaids, or wedding guests.
16Fishtail Half Updo
For shorter hair that can’t be braided into a long fishtail, this style will satisfy any braid envy you may be feeling. If your short hair has layers, you’ll need to use product to help keep hair from falling out of the braid, and don’t try this style on freshly washed hair, as it’s often too slippery to work into this kind of style.
17Bangs And Curls
Carrie Underwood’s big country hair gets a touch of glamour with this pinned back style that shows off her long curls and side swept bangs.
18Half Braided Mohawk
For a funky half up style that’s interesting and unique, braid a french braid on each side of your head, then style the top section into a pinned mohawk with lots of volume. Perfect for fashionistas who love feather earrings, turquoise rings, and flowy bohemian dresses.
19Glamour Half Up
These glamorous retro waves would look great if left all down, but this pinned back style adds emphasis to Jennifer’s face and ornate earrings.
20Twisted Top Knot
This ultra high bun is twisted into place right on top of the head, creating a style that’s somewhere in between messy and polished.
21Beehive With Bangs
A retro style with modern touches, this half up beehive is a dressy and fun look for parties and special occasions. Pair with a short, mod style dress if you really want to get in to the 60s feel.
22Half Up High Ponytail
One of Jennifer Lopez’s signature styles, this high half ponytail adds instant sex appeal, and looks best on very long thick hair.
Less volume than the beehive style, this look still adds volume at the crown of the head, while long hair left loose from a centre part gives a retro feel to the look.
24Half Up Double Buns
The perfect way to showcase your long hair and try out the trendy, double bun look that’s part of the recent obsession with everything 90s.
25Messy Fishtail Crown
A wonderful option for a bohemian wedding hairstyle, this fishtail braid is pulled apart using a technique called pancaking, that gives extra volume without losing the shape of the braid completely.
A real blast from the past, this vintage style will have you looking fit for dinner in a grand ballroom. Be sure to pair this style with modern but elegant wardrobe choices that keep you from looking like you’ve just stepped out of a time machine.
27Two Pinned Style
Sexy but simple, Jessica Simpson loves to pin her long hair away from the face without putting it up completely.
28Wrapped Up Fishtail Braid
Another unique fishtail style, this braid is wrapped at the top, meaning you can hide the elastic you’ve used to tie hair in a ponytail before braiding. For a wedding style, accessorize this braid by tying it at the end with a piece of ribbon or twine.
29Sleek and Chic
If you aren’t into crazy elaborate hairstyles that you can’t pull off on your own, try this sleek half ponytail that puts attention on your face while still showing off your fabulous new cut or color.
30Pulled Back Braids
Another great choice for a bridal hairstyle, all this look requires is a braid from each side of the head that get tied together at the back. These style looks especially nice if you’ve got dimensional color in your hair, as you can show it off both in the braids and the loose hair cascading down your back.