The 20 top celeb-inspired wedding hairdos
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"I 'Do" Hairstyles1 of 21
By Christiana Molina for ELLE
Whether you're a spouse-to-be, a maid of honor, a guest, or even a Pinterest-addicted aspiring bride, these matrimony-appropriate looks are sure to bring out your inner celebrity on the big day.
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Emmy Rossum2 of 21
Inspired by Grace Kelly's wedding-day 'do, Emmy Rossum's tiara-topped braided chignon imparts a polished elegance to the red carpet. Rick Gradone, the hairstylist behind the show-stopping look, explains how to pull off a crown today: "The sleekness of this look keeps it more elegant and contemporary, whereas softer and fuller styles make tiaras look more prom queen or pageant-like. It has to be as clean and kempt as possible."
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Alexa Chung3 of 21
"Fresh flowers add softness and romance to a wedding hairstyle," says George Northwood, who works with Chung. This charming floral crown paired with her ombre waves imparts a youthful, bohemian vibe perfect for a laid-back wedding. To keep the crown in place, Northwood recommended lightly back-combing the top of the hair. "Teasing allows bobby pins to grip to something more substantial and helps anchor the crown to the head," he explained.
Amanda Seyfried4 of 21
For a black-tie affair, only the most regal of updos will do. Renato Campora, who sculpted this one, says this look matches the unabashed drama of an ornate gown. Inspired by Botticelli, Campora crafted a flawless braided bun that coiled around to epic proportions thanks to a few extensions. But the key here, he says, is the slicked-back base: "A sleek and clean ponytail to start is essential since it's the foundation of the entire look."
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Ashley Madekwe5 of 21
Although the Revenge star's Jennifer Behr brooch looked glitzy, her loose and textured topknot added an effortless feel. In order to balance out the sizable hair ornament, Sally Hershberger's wedding-hair wizard Ruben Colon says that sideswept bangs are essential. "It makes the clip more proportional and also keeps the style looking more youthful," he says.
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Jennifer Lawrence6 of 21
With its tousled and organic framework that flows into a more carefully crafted low chignon, Jennifer Lawrence's updo provides the best of both worlds. "It is still formal, but fun and romantic," says Jen Atkin, who counts Lawrence as a client. "This look would be great for a fall wedding or for a modern bride who isn't afraid of playing with texture in her hair."
Jessica Alba7 of 21
"A ponytail is the simplest way to style the hair, making this perfect for a no-fuss bride who still wants to look elegant and polished," says Campora, who gave Alba this look for the Ralph Lauren spring 2013 show. "It allows you to move freely so it's comfortable, but this one is still timeless and classic." Campora specifically placed Alba's pony high up at the crown of the head and softly curled the tail to give it "bounce and movement like Jessica Rabbit's hair," he says.
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Julianne Hough8 of 21
Combining a braid in front and twists in the back, Julianne Hough's style looks intentionally unkempt, which makes it feel a touch casual. "This would be a good alternate option for girls who want a natural-looking updo for a daytime beach wedding instead of the standard beachy waves," says Colon. Since it relies so heavily on bobby pins, Colon recommends this look for shoulder-length hair in particular.
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Kerry Washington9 of 21
Demonstrating how to take a break from the traditional hair brooch or tiara, Kerry Washington donned a fun and playful oversize bow. Takisha Sturdivant-Drew, the coiffeur behind the half-up 'do, stressed that placement is imperative when working with a bow. "It needs to sit on the side and not directly on top of the head," she says, explaining that the latter looks too Minnie Mouse.
Lucy Liu10 of 21
"A fresh and cool braid offsets a powerful and more mature ball gown," says hairstylist Andy LeCompte, referencing Liu's voluminous dress that she wore to this year's Golden Globes. "It makes the whole style look edgy." What's more, such intricate plaits still tie in the decadence of a statement-making gown without turning it fussy. To get the look, LeCompte constructed a reverse French braid around the head on both sides of the part, "which gives hair more volume and also helps to show off the dimensions of the braid on dark hair."
Michelle Williams11 of 21
When it comes to short hair, Colon said it's all but essential to utilize accessories to give cropped looks that extra panache. "It's also a great excuse to get away with a particularly bold piece of jewelry," he says. Case in point: Michelle Williams' diamond-encrusted Fred Leighton headband that gussied up her dramatically parted, shaggy pixie cut. To get her piece-y style, Colon recommends dipping fingertips in a pomade and lightly rubbing select ends of hair for textured definition, rather than raking the product directly through the whole head (which gives a more clumpy look).
Naomi Watts12 of 21
Stylist Giannandrea created a refreshing, deconstructed take on the classic French twist that Watts wore to the Oscars. "I wanted to pull the hair away from the face without it looking too constricting or too coiffed," he says. "Its height and soft texture give the style a womanly sensibility." Giannandrea recommended using no tools other than hands to create. After rough-drying hair, use fingers to lift the front for volume and to smooth back the sides, then wind the ends into a disheveled roll in the back—while pinning stray hairs into twists.
Nicole Kidman13 of 21
This elaborate updo worn by Nicole Kidman shows off hairstylist Mara Roszak's skill: the twisted bun placed off to one side paired with the faint braid and the gilded pin give this look interest from every angle. "Nicole's dress was very sexy and glamorous and I wanted to contrast that with a cool, textured updo that was a bit tousled," Roszak says. To define wavy hair's natural texture and highlight movement before pinning it up, she recommended touching up hair on the sides and top with a one-inch curing iron.
Rachel Weisz14 of 21
"It's quite strong and confident with the slick and architectural loop, but also very feminine with the deep side part," explains hairstylist Ben Skervin of the samurai-inspired graphic bun he sculpted for Weisz. Skervin recommended using a bungee band instead of a traditional elastic when securing the ponytail "so you don't have to fiddle with pulling the tail through."
Reese Witherspoon15 of 21
Channeling an old-Hollywood vibe at the Oscars this year, Reese Witherspoon sported Veronica Lake-esque waves, which were made modern with brushed out, loose curls instead of stiff coils. "It's pure beauty and glamour and just perfect for a special occasion," says Campora, who was responsible for giving Witherspoon the vintage-inspired mane. "Hair pulled all to one side shows off the neck and earrings, and at the same time it both opens and frames the face."
Rihanna16 of 21
"These easy and sexy waves are ideal for a summer wedding or a barefoot beach wedding," suggested the creator of Rihanna's less-is-more style for the Grammys, Ursula Stephens. The trick here, she explained, is to wrap hair around a one-and-a-half-inch curling iron instead of inserting it in the clip, and starting the wrap a few inches down from the root "to give it an undone feel."
Sandra Bullock17 of 21
Bullock's sleek, pin-straight hair is understated and edgy, while the accent of a subtle brooch keeps it looking elegant. "I see this style at a big city wedding that's both minimalistic and modern," says Colon. The ornament's placement directly behind the ear is what Colon explains makes this style so new, since it's not so obvious and is only visible when Bullock turns her head. As for how to pull off such linear locks, Colon says it's all in the part: "The part is drawn precisely off-center, which softens the look and minimizes the severity of the look."
Salma Hayek18 of 21
Wearing a necklace repurposed as a headband on her mussed-up high bun, Hayek shows her creativity. Hairstylist Peter Savic embellished the billowing bun at the Oscars with Cindy Chao's Maple Leaves choker that he coiled around the base. "Hair jewelry doesn't have to be made specifically for the hair," he says. When trying to secure necklaces or garment brooches into hair Savic recommends attaching wire to the ends of the jewelry and creating a loop, which gives bobby pins something to hook and latch onto.
Stacy Keibler19 of 21
"The finger waves in front and pin curls along the bottom give this look a definite retro feel," says hairstylist Robert Vetica, who created this faux-bob Keibler wore to the Oscars. But instead of forming the pin curls on wet hair as was traditionally done in the past, Vetica crafted them on dry hair and then brushed them out, giving the look a more modern and relaxed vibe. Add a birdcage veil along the part to make your period-wedding dreams a reality.
Zoe Saldana20 of 21
Also looking back on yesteryear, Roszak referenced an über-femme era when doing Saldana's hair for a recent premiere. "I wanted the hair to have a bit of height much like the '40s styles, but with a modern 'twist,' literally!" she says. After making a side part, Roszak rolled the front sections of hair all the way around to the nape of the neck, leaving volume at the front and adding hair as she went. She secured the remaining tresses into a bun with bobby pins, then topped it off with a Jennifer Behr headband inserted backward so that it encircled the back of the head.
Zooey Deschanel21 of 21
Roszak said Deschanel's updo is flattering due to the volume at both the crown and in the back. The ticket to getting so much lift is to start with a dollop of mousse on damp hair, before blowing it out with a boar-bristle brush. After setting hair in large Velcro rollers, remove them and gently brush out the lengths. Roszak says to tease the crown with a fine-tooth comb "for a bit of a '60s-inspired bump," then pull the hair back into a mid-height ponytail. Once you back-comb the base of the pony, pin the ends underneath to create a tucked chignon.