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According To Pros, The Tousled '90s Updo Will Take Over In 2023

Hannah Frye
Author:
December 12, 2022
Hannah Frye
mbg Assistant Beauty Editor
By Hannah Frye
mbg Assistant Beauty Editor
Hannah Frye is the Assistant Beauty Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.S. in journalism and a minor in women’s, gender, and queer studies from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Hannah has written across lifestyle sections including health, wellness, sustainability, personal development, and more.
woman with updo in the sun
Image by miljko / Stocksy
December 12, 2022
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If you've ever found yourself on beauty TikTok, you know it's jam-packed with micro-trends. It seems like every day there's a new makeup look or hairstyle that's considered new and noteworthy. Take the "clean girl aesthetic," for example (which actually isn't very new at all): It blew up last year and is now being replaced with a wave of shaggy, effortless looks.

While there are undoubtedly problems with both aesthetics in some way or another, there's one thing we know for sure—this new era of low-lift beauty is a breath of fresh air. And according to pro stylists, even the beloved slicked-back ponytail has met its match.

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From a pro stylist: Messy updos are coming back.

Pro stylist and founder of Trademark Beauty Joseph Maine said that 2023 will be the "return of the updo." But we're not talking about anything prim and proper—instead, the new aesthetic is all about tousled waves, bouncy curls, and a perfectly undone finish.

"For the last few years, we have seen lots of down, loose waves or tucked-behind-the-ears styles all over the red carpet," Maine says. The updos, however, followed a different trend—especially the super-sleek bun. Now we're starting to see more intricate updos take over, Maine says. But why the switch? 

Apart from the general shift toward more effortless beauty trends, the tousled updo mimics the classic Pamela Anderson–esque style that has seen a resurgence throughout 2022, especially after the limited series Pam & Tommy was released earlier this year.

"From the tousled Pam Anderson–inspired look to sculptured upstyles including finger waves, it will be a glamorous red carpet year," Maine adds.

The best part is that these looks are easier to nail (especially for those with curly or wavy hair), and they're a healthier alternative for your scalp and strands. You see, when the hair is pulled too tight, you risk damaging the scalp and potentially experiencing targeted bald spots—more formally known as traction alopecia.

All of that being said, it's not like anyone needs an official green light to style their hair a certain way, but the pros are predicting a strong resurgence of the updo. Here, we grabbed Maine's step-by-step tutorial to help you out. Have your texture spray at the ready:

1.

Start with textured hair.

Your hair doesn't have to be perfectly curled or styled for this look to work—just make sure you have some grip. If your hair is naturally soft and sleek, use a texturizing spray beforehand to add a bit of grit. This will help the style hold all day and boost volume.

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2.

Pull the top half up.

Next, create a half ponytail and leave your bangs or shortest layer out. Brush the hair straight back—don't leave your roots parted. Secure with a small elastic, and don't pull too tight.

3.

Now, the bottom half.

Flip your top ponytail that you just created forward and hold it with a clip. Then put the bottom half of your hair into a ponytail and secure it at the middle-back of your head. If you want more volume, you can tease the bottom ponytail with a fine-toothed comb.

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4.

Flip & pin.

Finally, flip the top ponytail toward your face and start pinning it down with U pins. "You don't have to think twice about where you put the pins; just make sure that all of the hair gets secured," Maine says.

Finally, do the same thing with the bottom ponytail, pinning some pieces to cover the actual elastics. After that, give your hair a good mist with hair spray, and voilà! You've nailed the effortlessly chic '90s updo. For a visual demo, feel free to watch this video from Maine's Instagram page.

The takeaway. 

As we start to see a pick-up in undone, "carefree" beauty trends, the tousled '90s updo is gaining speed. Maine predicts this style will take off even more in the year to come, which is exactly what tired, overworked strands need. You'll also need some natural styling products on hand for this one—here are a few top picks to shop.

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Hannah Frye
Hannah Frye
mbg Assistant Beauty Editor

Hannah Frye is the Assistant Beauty Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.S. in journalism and a minor in women’s, gender, and queer studies from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Hannah has written across lifestyle sections including health, wellness, sustainability, personal development, and more. She previously interned for Almost 30, a top-rated health and wellness podcast. In her current role, Hannah reports on the latest beauty trends, holistic skincare approaches, must-have makeup products, and inclusivity in the beauty industry. She currently lives in New York City.