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perfect messy bun

I just got back from a weekend in Connecticut and I’ve officially kicked fall into high gear with my knit sweaters and wrap scarves.  One of my favorite fall hairstyles is a big messy bun because it’s relatively effortless to create a perfect simple updo.  This is a go-to hairstyle for me for second or third day hair and it’s so cute.  I also like to use this hairstyle when I’m on second or third day hair and my dry shampoo isn’t really cutting it anymore–it’s really fast to do!

perfect messy bun

For this hairstyle, I used my Sultra curling rod, a bun donut, bobby pins, hair ties, and Toni & Guy Sophia Webster 3D Volumizer Spray.

perfect messy bun

I started by adding some Toni & Guy Sophia Webster 3D Volumizer Spray to my hair to build it up some volume and body to my hair.  I love the smell of this stuff and how it multiplies my hair!

perfect messy bun

Next, I curled by hair via my 70s waves method to get more body and curl.

perfect messy bun

Gather your hair into a high ponytail with the hair ties and pull a donut bun onto your ponytail.  I actually ended up removing the donut because my bun was comically large since I have really long and thick hair.

perfect messy bun

Take individual pieces of hair and wrap them around the donut bun or the base of your ponytail and pin in place.  Continue adding bobby pins until all pieces of hair are wrapped up into the perfect messy bun!

And that’s it!  The key to this look is embracing the messy and undone pieces to make it look like you just threw your hair up and went about your day.  What are your go-to hairstyles that you swear by?

Shop the Toni & Guy x Sophia Webster collection here. You can save 25% with Cartwheel until 10/31/15 and all Toni and Guy products are buy one, get one 50% until 10/31!


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  1. jennyb
    October 22, 2015 / 1:04 am

    I love the messy bun but I’ve never been able to master it. I’ll give your instructions a go.

  2. Amanda
    October 22, 2015 / 4:45 am

    I’m excited to give this a go! My hair’s not quite as long as yours, but hopefully it will still be successful. I’m such a sucker for Toni & Guy products! <3 xx

  3. Hayli
    October 22, 2015 / 5:06 am

    No more buns of any sort for me, I just chopped off all of my hair….though 99 percent of the time I just did my hair down and straight or curled anyways

  4. October 22, 2015 / 8:03 am

    Cool, never thought to use accessories to achieve the messy bun look.

  5. Chelsie
    October 22, 2015 / 8:26 am

    You made this look super simple! I don’t have long enough hair for a big bun like that yet, but I’m working on growing it out!

  6. Chantal
    October 22, 2015 / 8:35 am

    Looks like I need to invest in one of those bun donuts! Thanks for sharing.

  7. October 22, 2015 / 9:04 am

    I have always wanted to do this. Thanks for the great illustration!

  8. October 22, 2015 / 10:11 am

    You are so gorgeous! Love these pretty pictures and this simple tutorial. I am absolutely impossible when it comes to hairstyling, especially my own. This looks like something even I could do 😉

  9. kristen
    October 22, 2015 / 10:57 am

    SO cute!! Your hair would look good any way! It’s so pretty!

  10. Paola
    October 22, 2015 / 11:59 am

    first of all i love your sweater, second that’s a really nice and easy DIY.

  11. October 22, 2015 / 12:16 pm

    I love a good messy bun!! So, did you not use the donut in the ones in these pics?? I’m curious because I have thick hair too! Great pics!
    Danielle Greco

    • Jennifer
      October 22, 2015 / 12:37 pm

      Yeah I ended up taking it out because the bun was MASSIVE, but still included it for people with normal-type hair. If you have thick hair I’d say potentially skip the donut bun.

  12. October 22, 2015 / 1:05 pm

    Wow – I love the bun but also love your hair down! You have beautiful hair!

  13. October 22, 2015 / 1:20 pm

    That bun makes you look gorgeous. I ‘m not so sure with my frizzy and dry hair though, if I will be able to pull this as perfectly.

  14. Carol
    October 22, 2015 / 3:38 pm

    You make it look so easy! Wish I had long enough hair to try this. My favorite style is the messy bob. Always seems to be in style and works with my face. Thanks!

  15. October 22, 2015 / 4:21 pm

    I’ve never thought to use the bun-squishy thing like that! I have a TON of hair and the little donut thingy couldnt roll with it when sock buns were in. You should do a video tutorial on this!

  16. Elle
    October 22, 2015 / 5:15 pm

    Hey there!

    Can you add a link to the exact Suave Mousse you use?
    I can’t seem to find one called ‘pro curl’ anywhere online.

    Thank you!

  17. Elle
    October 22, 2015 / 5:24 pm

    Would you mind putting a link to the actual curling rod you use? The one that your link goes to is a the Sultra The Bombshell Reverse Cone Rod 1-inch Curling Iron. This doesn’t look like the one in your pic. Please let me know. Thanks so much!!!

    • Jennifer
      October 27, 2015 / 9:38 pm

      Ooh Elle! Thanks for letting me know–I’ve fixed the link to the correct rod. Sorry about that mixup!

  18. November 9, 2015 / 8:31 pm

    Girlfriend how did you know I need this tutorial in my life?! A mom of a toddler = never being able to wear my hair down anymore. But I’m so sick of the ponytail. Thanks for this! You are GORG!

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