Good news for busy women everywhere: Turns out, great hair doesn’t require a ton of time. Similar to cooking, once you master the basics, you have the skills to whip up one good hair day after the next. Eufora Global Educator and Stylist, Mirza Botanovic, breaks down the five basic hairstyles everyone can learn.
“A ponytail is the easiest way to look put together in a hurry,” says Botanovic. The key? Placing it high on the crown of the head for a lifting effect.
Step 1. Use your cheekbones as a guide to pull hair up into a ponytail so it aligns with them. This instantly lifts the face, adds Botanovic.
Step 2. Secure tightly with an elastic and add texture with a dry texturizer (for a sexy look) or smooth strands with an iron for a sophisticated take.
This casual updo is polished-yet-playful, so it can take you from the office to dinner with ease. Plus, the dirtier your hair, the better it looks and stays in place.
Step 1. Use an elastic to secure hair into a ponytail on the crown of your head. This creates a stable foundation for the bun.
Step 2. Twist the length of the ponytail until it starts to curl up onto itself, then wrap the twist into a bun.
Step 3. Secure it in place by crisscrossing bobby pins around the base.
This look is appropriate for every occasion. Here, how to perfect the salon style at home.
Step 1. Use your towel to ring out as much moisture as possible, then power dry hair with a blow dryer until it’s 80 percent dry. To create more volume and lift at the roots, blow hair in the opposite direction of how it will lay.
Step 2. Divide hair into six sections—one on each side, two on top, and two in back—then use a round brush to blow dry each section smooth.
Step 3. After finishing a section, curl it under and set in a roll with a bobby pin or clip until it’s cooled. This will help your hair hold bounce for hours.
Step 4. Let down each section and run your fingers through for a tousled finish. Can’t seem to master the round brush? Fake it by rough drying hair with your hands then smooth it out with a large barrel curling iron.
“Braids only take a few minutes to create, yet they look like you spent much longer,” says Botanovic, who notes that making the braid loose and textured will keep it modern yet mature.
Step 1. Spritz the length of hair with a dry texture spray, like Not Your Mother’s Double Take Dry Finish Texture Spray ($7, ulta.com) to add grip and keep the braid intact. Then divide hair evenly into three sections.
Step 2. Cross the right section over the middle piece and under the left section so that the left section is now in the middle. Continue weaving so that each section is rotated through the middle all the way to the end of your hair.
Step 3. Secure with a clear elastic to keep the look clean.
Step 4. Gently tug on either side of the braid to loosen it up for an undone finish.
“This style is here to stay,” says Botanovic. “It’s youthful, carefree, and can be worn on almost any length of hair.” Here, how to get the look without taking a trip to the ocean.
Step 1. Let hair air-dry or rough-dry it with a blow dryer; whichever way gets more texture out of your hairtype.
Step 2. Then, use a 1-inch curling wand, like Bed Head Curlipops Tapered Styling Iron ($30, ulta.com) to curl sections of various widths sporadically throughout the top layer of your hair. Be sure to start the curl a few inches away from the roots and leave the ends of your hair straight for effortless, undone waves.
Step 3. Spritz a texturizing spray onto your palms, then rake your fingers through strands, making sure to break up curls.