When you think of half up half down hairstyles, you instantly think of messy buns or top knots, or generally, barely up hair, right?
Well, we’re here to shop you that a half up half down can be anything from a 2 seconds way to style your hair to an intricate and very elegant half updo that will surely turn heads!
Keep on reading to discover and be inspired by the coolest, prettiest, and easiest half up half down hairstyles that any gal will feel lucky and proud to wear (and for all hair lengths too)!
I. Half Up Half Down Styles – The Hair Length & Type Top
1. Short Half Up Half Down Hairstyle
You might’ve thought that you can only sport a half up, half down with long hair. Wrong! Take it from somewhat who knows: you can easily go for a half up once your hair has passed long pixie/short bob levels.
2. Half Up Half Down Looks for Shoulder Length Hair
Already entering the area of easy-to-get, no more problems half ups. Also, we can’t decide what we like best: the stylish and put together bun, or that gorgeous shade of white blonde.
3. Looks for Long Hair with Fishtail Braid
The first of several braid ideas and inspo, gals with longer hair can play around and go for most any braiding style for the half up half down hairstyles. Above, you can see a beautiful example of wavy hair coupled with a fishtail braid. The whole brings to (my) mind a cozy late fall/winter day. Just lovely!
4. Straight Hairstyle
This shoulder-length haircut is the perfect example of how you ca sport a messy half up bun even if you have sleek and straight hair. It also stunningly showcases those lovely blonde highlights on brown hair.
5. Half Up Half Down for Wavy Hair
Simple yet effective! Just look how effortlessly stylish you can look if you simply throw your wavy hair in a half twist. Leave a few strands to frame your face and you are ready to go!
6. Center Parted & Wavy Half Up Hair
Perhaps not the best example for a center-parted front, but definitely a great model for how easy it is to do a half up. We’ve included this pic to show you how to do a single strand hair “knot” and be all done!
7. Half Up Half Down Curly Hairstyle
Curly hair is sometimes harder to style than you might think. Really curly hair can be too thick or knotted for some hairstyles, so when you’re in a rush, go for this easy-to-do half up bun. You won’t have to detangle (and hurt) your hair, will look good, and be ready in no time!
8. Half Up Half Down for Curly Hair – Really Curly
Really, really curly hair is even more difficult to wear in an updo, so we totally recommend going for this messy pony caught with a scrunchie. This style also shows that you can totally rock a fringe if you have curly hair.
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II. Half Up Half Down Styles for Special Occasions
9. Clipped Back Half Up Curls
This is one of those half up half down hairstyles that simply oozes elegance (excuse the not so elegant term). It is a clipped back, slightly bouffant half up. Notice that the half down tresses were curled inwards.
10. Half Up Half Down Hairstyle Wedding Inspiration
There are so many gorgeous half up half down hairstyles that you can wear on your big day, that I’ve selected this mix to give you more than one example. All of them are with wavy hair, but you can totally wear them if you have straight or curly, short or medium length hair too!
11. Half Up Half Down Prom Hairstyle
Looking for a hairstyle for the future Prom Queen? You’ve just found it! This half up half down ends in a beautiful flower-like braided bun. The best thing about it? It works with almost any type of dress, even edgier ones! Though you should go for a simple model on the dress, to make your gorgeous hairdo stand out.
12. Hairstyle for Homecoming
Make your Homecoming a night to remember by going with the dress of your dreams and of course, a superb hairstyle! This is yet another flower-like half up bun. However, there is just one braid which flows down the back and the bun itself is looser than the one presented above.
13. Half Up Half Down Formal Hairstyle for Special Events
Who says you can’t wear a half up to more formal events? Take an example from this beautiful hairstyle. Incorporate an elegant headscarf into a simple twisted half up and leave the rest of your hair flow in its curly or straight.
Pro Tip: Make your hair even more elegant by tossing the free strands over a shoulder, either completely or just about half of them.
14. Elegant Hairstyle
Another half up style that will fit like a charm, no matter the event! You can safely style your locks like this for formal events, and the ultra-sleek and stylish yet simple single twist will also beautifully display your ombre hair.
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III. Just Really Pretty (& Useful) Half Up Half Down Hairstyles
15. Cute Half Up Half Down Hairstyle with Scrunchies
Go with the 90s revival trend and gather up your short-to-medium hair into a messy bun with, of course, a scrunchie. You can be sure you won’t be pulling (as many) hairs when you let down your tresses.
16. Barely Up Half Up Half Down with Lob
There are many great ways to style a long bob, also known as a lob. However, for those days when you just don’t feel like it, go for this barely-there bun.
17. Casual Half Up Half Down with Barrette
Half up half down hairstyles are among the easiest and prettiest ways to show off your new (or old) hair accessories. Just look how cute that barrette looks as its accentuating both itself and the lovely brown with blonde mix.
18. Half Up Half Down with Bow
Adorable fluffy and cute dog aside, the next thing to catch your eyes is that so cute and big bow. Depending on your tastes, you can go with a smaller or a different bow-style altogether. Note the double braids it holds too!
19. Easy Half Up Half Down with Simple Twists
These twists look so complicated, but they’re really not! Once you get the hang of making them, you can add as many or as few as you want and create a beautiful half up with them. You’ll look as if you spent hours getting ready, with less than half the effort!
20. Triple Twists Beauty
As mentioned above, you can style your twists in as many ways as you’re in the mood to once you’ve mastered them. Here, you can see in an example of tighter, more compact twists styled in twin, parallel strands.
21. High Half Ponytail
We’ve reached a classic. One of the easiest but still prettiest ways to wear a half up is with a high ponytail. It will work great with any type of hair or color. Though we will admit that it’s at its most impressive when worn by ladies with long locks, like the gal above.
22. Simple Hairstyle
So effortlessly cool! Want to balance out that hastily put-together half up bun? Leave a few strands free to frame your face, throw on a cool blazer and adopt that “Don’t care!” attitude and you are all good to go!
23. Messy Half Up Half Down
The queen of messy hair! There’s not much to say about this style, perhaps just that wavy hair half caught up in a messy bun never looked this good. Total #lazyhairday goals!
24. Half Up Half Down Looks that Play with Layers
Half up half down hairstyles are a perfect way of playing with your textured hair and showcasing those layers you’ve just added.
25. Half Down Bouffant Hairstyle
26. Half Up with Hair Rose Bun
We’ve shown you several flower-like half up buns and now, we’re showing you an actual hair rose. Follow this simple tutorial and raise up your hair in a rose bun that will impress everyone!
27. Half Up Caught with a Ribbon
We cannot stress enough how big of a difference a hair accessory, especially a good one, can make on a hairstyle! Just look at this simple half up half down for short hair and you’ll understand. The simple yet elegant black ribbon elevates this style from the plain and brings it up to superb levels!
28. Half Up Half Down Looks with Bangs
Yet another example of a blonde and straight half up that plays on the nostalgia with a burgundy scrunchie. However, we want to draw attention to the layered side-swept bangs and to how well they fit in.
29. Half Up Styles with Hair Accessories
As in the example with the barrette, this picture goes to show that your hair accessory doesn’t have to be big and ultra-visible. Instead, accentuate your perfect, almost ballerina-like bun with a big hair clip, and that’s it!
30. Half Up Half Down with Headscarf
In contrast, you can make you half up all about that hair accessory instead of trying to blend it in or using it as a prop for your bun or twist. Simply pick your favorite headscarf and tie it in a knot or bow to your half up ponytail. Leave the sides hanging free for added effect.
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31. Half Up Half Down Braid Hairstyle
We’ve promised braided half up half down hairstyles, and here they are! The example above shows how you can gather up half your hair in three braided strands and then play around with them. The blonde hair with dark roots is also beautiful and perfectly showcased here!
32. Crown Braid with Fishtail
The fishtail is among the first types of braids we learn, and once you’ve mastered it, don’t hesitate to use it to make a crown braid. It will look stunning and will transport both braiding styles into the main attraction.
33. Waterfall Braid Half Up Style
Another very famous example of braid, the waterfall is not the easiest to make but will be so worth the effort! In this pic, you can also see that it will play out very well with your hair colors, even if you don’t have a blue ombre to brown like above.
34. Half Up Half Down Braided Hairstyles – The Boho Look
Channel your inner boho girl by recreating or adapting this hairstyle to fit your tastes! The multi twisted bun with twin braids half up might be a bit much for some, but we love it!
35. Braided Top
Most ideas so far suggested changes to the bun/knot of half down part of your hairstyle. However, you can also spice up the top part of your half up. You can braid it up, like above, or go a single/multiple braids as well!
36. Bump-It Style
The bump it is a cool and relaxed of pulling back your hair while also adding volume to it. You might need some hair product for it, but at least you’ll know for sure that your half up will actually stay, well, up.
37. Half Up Half Down Buns Hairstyle
Ah, the double buns, there’s no way we would have made a half up half down hairstyles list and not included them. The picture above shows just two of the many ways to wear yours, and that’s without even going into the space buns area. Love, love, love!
38. Half Up Ballerina Bun
The ballerina bun offers such a sleek and put-together look. But you can also wear it in a much more relaxed manner. Take the lovely lady above as source of inspiration for how you can make a tiny ballerina bun to smoothly finish you half up.
39. “The Hun” Hairstyle
No, there’s no horde of barbarians about to attack everyone. Nor are their hairstyles a source of inspiration (at least not in this case).
The hun comes from the half bun, which was one of the hottest upcoming Pinterest trends not so long ago. Style yours with a barrette, like above, or leave it free, it’s all up to your mood!
40. The Top Knot
The classy and one of the knots that started it all! Is there anything more emblematic in terms of half up half down hairstyles than a top knot? Or easier to do, for that matter?
41. Sleek Half Up Half Down Top Knot
The top knot is also quite versatile, perhaps more so than you’d believe. For example, you can smooth it down to give a luscious, put-together look to your locks. The brunette roots with warm brown tips help too, we’ll admit!
42. A Knotted Half Updo with Wavy Hair
This is the last top knot half up (for now), we promise, but just look how lovely it looks in this slightly messy, very wavy and natural combination.
43. Simple Half Up, Pulled Back Hair with Twists
This simple half up style makes use of simple twists and mixes them in rather complicated ways. The hair is pulled back to create this intricate ‘do, while several strands are left loose from the top to frame the face.
44. The High Voluminous Ponytail
Another classic that couldn’t miss from this list and which is also simple to achieve. Simply gather up your hair in a high ponytail and tease it up to create volume. Let loose some strand or baby hair or pull them back, it’s up to you.
45. Sleek High Half Up Half Down Wedding Style
This sleek half up is more on the professional rather than boho romantic path, but it still works great as wedding hairstyles inspiration.
Notice how the hair was pulled back on two levels to create a slight bump it style but with the lower level going under and hidden by the upper part.
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46. Voluminous, Pin-Up Style Half Up
This is a hairstyle that you can easily envision strolling by arm in arm with some victory rolls or other vintage hairstyles. Its curly wavy, it’s voluminous, and absolutely gorgeous! The nude eye makeup with bold lip is also very much on-point and a good idea that you can use without any problems.
47. Half Up Half Down Weave
So you’ve already changed your haircut or hair type with a weave haircut, but now you don’t know how to style it? You’ve come to just the right place. Check out these great weave hairstyles or go for the easier but still quite stunning half up half down with defined curls presented above.
48. Messy Half Up Top Knot for Busy Days
The actual last top knot on this list, this can be the perfect solution for those days when you just don’t have the time to style your hair and you also don’t want it falling down from its ‘do. Go for this simple top knot at temple levels and you are all good to go! Have a great day and knock’em dead!
49. African America Half Up Half Down Hairstyles
Ladies, embrace and enjoy your Afro-textured hair and make the most of it! There’s so many great ways to wear it, from twists to the different types of braids, but for a relaxed look, go fo this simple easy half up half down.
50. Beautiful Half Up Half Down with Balayage
We’re wrapping up this list of half up half down hairstyles with this absolutely gorgeous style that shines through its simplicity.
The effortless half ‘do is all the better to accentuate the beautiful warm brown to blonde balayage dye job.
Ready to Change Your Look?
This is it, these are. admittedly, just some of the best half up half down hairstyles you could be wearing right now.
All of these have the Wow! factor and are more than useful no matter the occasion or the length of your hair.
So, what will it be? A sleek ponytail? A messy top knot? An elegant bun? We’ve given you some food for thought and don’t hesitate to let us know which of these are your favorites!
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Betty has over 15 years of experience in writing and editing for hairstyle publications. Her career started soon after graduating, leading her to winning many awards and opening her own salon at a very young age. She specializes in hair coloring techniques and hair care. In her spare time, Betty enjoys running outdoors, learning new languages, and occasionally binging a Netflix series.