A Brief Guide to Wedding Hairdos

Wedding hairdo for long hair
Photo: Shutterstock
In this article, I would like to discuss some of the basics of wedding hairstyles that might help a future bride explain to her stylist just what she is looking for on her big day.
Bridal hairstyles fall into three main categories, which are defined by the amount of hair and its position on the head: downstyle, partial upstyle, full upstyle. These categories are pretty self-explanatory, and each contains a range of looks within their boundaries.
The downstyles include those hairstyles where the hair is smoothed straight and silky, allowed to hang down the back in a sleek curtain. They also include those full-volume styles where the hair is curled into a massive mane, designed to offer balance to the body frame, as well as complementing the neckline and shape of the wedding dress.
Partial upstyles are traditionally popular for less formal weddings. These hairstyles take a portion of the hair and arrange it into an updo while allowing the remainder of the hair to be worn down. The partial upstyle may involve the hair on one side or the other, the hair at the crown (with the remainder falling loosely), or the more traditional look of the hair in the front sections with the back hanging freely.
Full Upstyles are precisely that - hairstyles that utilize all of the hair into a style that is generally up and off of the neck and shoulders. The full upstyle can vary greatly and can have at its base a French twist, tight bun, simple chignon, or any number of other looks. Full upstyles can be extravagantly ornate or minimally simple. It once again all depends on the gown being worn and the ability of the hairstyle to balance the features.
The following are typical downstyles that are still elegant and well-suited to wear in a formal or casual wedding environment. These are by no means the only options available in a downstyle and should simply be taken as a starting point for choosing your wedding look.
The Veronica Lake Style
Veronica Lake was an iconic beauty known for her long, flowing, and well-coiffed waves that cascaded across her face and shoulders like satin. In her heyday during the 1940s, common styling techniques included roller sets and, more often, finger waving. Much of the signature wave of the Veronica Lake look comes from the latter technique.
Using finger waves, the hair can be molded into a specific pattern that follows a pleasing line to frame the face and create balance where needed in the features. The strong vertical lines of the style make it a good choice for many people with rounder faces.
Hair for a Veronica Lake look
Photo: The Everett Collection/Canva
Full-Volume Style
While it isn't seen as often in more modern weddings, the full-volume style is popular among those brides with very wavy hair and long-layered cuts. The style typically uses a roller set to create masses of curls in the hair and is carefully combed out to keep most of the curls intact, diffused, and airy. The style itself has been referred to as a “gypsy cut” because of the luxurious and naturally romantic aspect of the particular look.
This look is especially good for those with naturally curly hair, and you can use styling tools to enhance or reshape the curl, or simply make use of the natural curl.
Partial Upstyles
These half-up hairstyles are iconic in that they are among the most commonly used for bridal wear. The looks provide a simple foundation from which to create remarkably ornate hairstyles or clean, chic looks.
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By Stacy | Updated | ©Hairfinder.com