A ponytail isn't your only option.
If you have shoulder length hair, it can be easy to get caught in a hairstyle-rut. Basically, I'm talking about the tendency to do the same hairstyle over and over again — I'm a culprit and can shamelessly confess that I fall into this category.
So let's take a trip down memory lane. Think back to the last two weddings you attended, what hairstyle did you do? The same hairstyle? I thought so, me too.
In an effort to help you (and me) escape the hairstyle-rut, we reached out to Virtue ambassador and celebrity hairstylist, Rena Calhoun, and asked her to share a few of her favorite hairstyles for shoulder length hair. Check out the styles below.
A sleek, slick bun takes a little patience to achieve especially on shoulder length hair, but it's a good go-to if you want to create a look that is simple and chic. To recreate this style, apply a quarter sized amount (or slightly more for thicker hair) of Virtue Unfrizz Cream all over damp hair, combing it through to make sure it's evenly dispersed, then blow-dry the hair as smooth and straight as possible, to eliminate any frizz.
"Combine Virtue's 6-in-1 Styling Paste, and a couple drops of Healing Oil, and mix together by rubbing it through the palms of your hands," says Calhoun. "Create a center part with a tail comb, run your hands through the entirety of the top of your hair and use a boar bristle brush to brush it smooth into a low ponytail."
"Once you've secured your ponytail with an elastic band, take another dollop of Styling Paste and combine it with a couple more drops of Healing Oil to add shine," the hairstylist continues. "Mix the products in the palms of your hands and apply them to the ponytail while twisting the ponytail into any shape. You can do a figure eight, a more abstract shape, or a classic donut shape."
To finish, leave the ends out and secure the rest of the hair with bobby pins throughout.
If you think that doing a hairstyle on shoulder length hair is complicated, it really doesn't have to be. This textured updo gives off an effortless, playful vibe, and it's really easy to do.
"To create this style, I apply a golf ball sized amount of Virtue Curl Defining Whip to damp hair," says Calhoun. "I run the product through the hair with a wide tooth comb to create definition in each curl and minimize frizz."
Following this, the stylist scrunches the hair to define the texture and uses a diffuser on low speed and low heat to dry the hair. "To keep the look feeling soft, pull a few face framing pieces out of the front around the hairline near the parting of your choice," says Calhoun. "Starting at the temples, use just your fingers to loosely section out the top 1/3 of your hair and secure into a ponytail. Create a second and third ponytail just below the previous, grabbing a section similar in size." Now you should have a mohawk of three ponytails. Using a pea sized amount of 6-in-1 Styling Paste for some hold, twist each ponytail into a bun and secure with pins.
VIDEO: Expert-Approved Tips to Make Your Ponytail Look Fuller and More Voluminous
This style is one of my favorites, and looks great if you're going for a summery boho vibe. To create this look, start by applying a golf ball sized amount of Virtue Curl Defining Whip to damp hair. "The Curl Defining Whip is wonderful even on straight hair, it brings out all of your natural texture when scrunched in and diffused dry," says Calhoun.
To polish and define the texture of the hair, create oscillating waves or "s-waves" around the face using a one-inch curling iron. Next, part the hair in two down the center and braid each section securing with an elastic band. "Spray Virtue's Texture Spray onto each braid and gently pull apart the braids to create some volume," says the hairstylist. "Flip each braid up to the top of the head to create a crown, and secure with pins."
"Whip up this wet looking updo by applying some of Virtue's Volumizing Mousse to just the top, front section of your hair," says Calhoun. "This will create the lift and volume needed for the front."
Using your fingers, without much precision, gently lift, hold and dry the front of the hair to achieve maximum volume. Remember, this can be messy as the look is meant to look piecey and wet.
"Next, combine more Volumizing Mousse with a dollop of the Virtue Restorative Treatment Mask in the palms of your hands," says the hairstylist. "The mask will give you the heavy texture that's needed for this wet look. Run the mixture of products tightly through the sides and the back of the hair, avoiding the volume we created in the front. Use a hold clip on each of the sides of the head to keep them nice and tight and braid the back into a french braid then secure with an elastic."