Forget what you know about the classic hair bun—the tight, pulled back kind favoured by ballerinas or the effortless knots often spotted at yoga class. The airy updos on the Spring/Summer 2012 runways are a messier, rougher spin on the classic chignon. Monique Bisson-Gironi, senior stylist at Toronto’s EXIT Salon, spills her expert DIY tips for achieving the breezy, unkempt bun sported at Chanel, Derek Lam and Diane von Furstenberg
Spring/Summer 2012 shows and on the red carpet, courtesy of trendsetting funny girl Tina Fey at the 2012
Academy Awards.

We’ve seen the bun before. What’s different this season?

“The last few years, buns have been pressed, iron-straight or the ‘Beyoncé curl’—which is smooth on top of the head with a stark transition to curl from the jaw line down. This year people are tired of looking overly manufactured. The messy bun or carefree, tousled hair automatically says ‘fun, flirty, unpredictable!’”

What type of hair works best with creating this look?
“Shoulder length, wavy or curly hair works best. You need texture to create this look. The second or third day after washing makes it easier to create more texture. It’s a little trickier with longer hair but you can create more texture by tucking and hiding the length and leaving out random pieces.”

How do you achieve this look?

“Anyone can do the messy bun at home in five minutes. Start with a quick spray of Redken Powder Grip and comb hair back from the roots. The trick is to have all the ends of your hair looking smooth and the rest of your hair can be a slept-on mess! Be patient the first few times you attempt this look. It’s best to pull up smaller sections at a time. Just keep adding these smaller sections of hair to each area to build a perfectly imperfect updo."

Click here for more Spring 2012 hair trends.

Read on to find out how to go from casual updo to runway-inspired messy bun…

What products should you start with?

“With second-day hair, use a small amount of a water-based
mousse. Scrunch the mousse into the hair to create some wave to it—this will also help with texture. Then sprinkle dry shampoo at the root moving horizontally inch by inch and massage it in to soak up oil. This will give it volume. For any loose, soft hairs, use a slow-drying hairspray. Tousle and twist until the hair is perfectly out of place.”

How do achieve this look step by step?

“Flip your head over and grab a pony tail on top of your head; twist and wrap loosely, allowing random hairs to fall. Use bobby pins to secure the random sections of loose hair by pinning them into the bun toward the centre. Always stand back from the mirror and squint for your last check. If you look like you just woke up, you need to put more strands into the bun. If you look like a ballerina, you need to pull some strands out…”

Where can this look be worn?

“The beauty of the messy bun is that it compliments every look for any event. We are creating updos for brides with airy and dramatic "perfectly messy" styles—which include rhinestone
bobby pins, of course!— and we are seeing professional women wear it to a work event. The messy bun is effortless looking so it softens and calms a stark, straight-line outfit, for dinner with the boss, and dresses up a casual look, for dinner with the in-laws. The whole idea is to have just enough pieces with smooth ends and just a few ‘imperfect’ strands.”

What does this look say about your personality?

“I think this look says you understand and appreciate style, but you are not a slave to it. Nothing is sexier than a woman who looks like a
natural beauty who is fun and unpredictable. We all love when we can save time and look finished those mornings when we’re in a rush!”

Read more:
Hair trends: The blowout
Celebrity beauty: Iconic blondes
Spring beauty: Hot hair colour ideas
Spring beauty: Pretty and chic hair accessories