10 utterly fabulous and fancy hairstyles for short hair

Short hair, definitely DO care! Get your glam on with these elegant hairstyles for short hair, perfect for date night, prom or wedding season.  

Let’s be honest: getting glammed up and trying out new hairstyles is probably the best part about any special occasion. Yet if you’ve got hair that’s shoulder-length or shorter, finding fancy hairstyles for short hair might seem like an impossible task.

Well it’s time to stress less, because your fairy (or should we say, hairy!? no…? moving on…) godmothers here at All Things Hair HQ are here to help. From braids to waves, tucks to twists, it’s about time you became acquainted with our favourite elegant hairstyles for short hair.

Fancy hairstyles for short hair: 10 looks you’ll be dying to try


redhead woman with her bob length hair in vintage style waves
Channel Daisy Buchanan vibes with these 20s style waves. Credit: Instagram.com/powder_room_weddings

1. Vintage waves

Consider your cocktail party look sorted ladies! Cascading vintage waves are one of the most classic fancy hairstyles for short hair, instantly giving your look movement and body for a 1920s, Great Gatsby feel. Credit: @powder_room_weddings

Editor’s tip: To get DIY vintage waves at home, prep your strands with the TRESemmé Make Waves Creation Hairspray before styling. This will help to make it easier to create your style, while also helping to lock your curls in place.

woman with shoulder length brunette hair in a half up twisted style
Create a braided effect using a simple twist method. Credit: Instagram.com/hairdreams_

2. Twisted half-updo

If you’re looking for beginner-friendly fancy hair for short hair, you can’t go wrong with this sweet, half-up twisted look.

Combining the intricate effect of a braid with the ease of a simple twist, everyone (and we mean everyone) will be able to create this uber cute style! Credit: @hairdreams_

brunette teenage girl with her hair in a twisted headband style
Add detail with this pretty headband style. Credit: Instagram.com/braidsbyallie

3. Headband twist

Following on from the twisted hairstyles theme, we’ve found another favourite look, this time in the form of this twisted headband look.

One of the quickest fancy hairstyles for short hair, you can whip up this look in next to no time by simply wrapping strands of hair around a headband of your choice. Minimal effort + maximum glam? Erm, yes please! Credit: @braidsbyallie

brunette with shoulder length hair in a half up braided crown style
Make like the royal you are with this princess-worthy crown braid! Credit: Instagram.com/dnchvllcrt

4. Half-up crown braid

Everyone loves a good half-up, half-down hairstyle for a special occasion and this half-up crown braid is one of our go-tos when it comes to fancy hair for short hair.

The best part? Since the braid is horizontal and not vertical (like French or Dutch braids) you’ll be able to rock it in an uber-short French bob or even a lob-length style. You’ll hear no complains from us! Credit: @dnchvllcrt

blonde woman with her hair in a gibson tuck updo hairstyle with a pink rose accessory
You don’t need long lengths to work a gibson tuck. Credit: Instagram.com/hairandmakeupheather

5. Gibson tuck

Whether you’re a bridesmaid, wedding guest or even the bride herself, Gibson tucks are some of the most romantic updos for short hair – not to mention a firm wedding favourite.

Neat and chic, you can spruce up this classic style with accessories of your choice (be it flowers, glitzy clips or a veil), making it one of the most versatile styles around. Credit: @hairandmakeupheather

blonde woman with her hair in a french twist hairstyle
Twist and shout! Credit: Instagram.com/hair.makeupbyjamie

6. French twist

Essentially a vertical version of a Gibson tuck, French twists are another timeless style to consider when you don’t have flowing, Rapunzel-like locks!

Now, we understand that it might seem like an intimidating style to tackle if you’re a beginner, but fear not! Our easy-to-follow 6-step French twist how-to will help break it down for you. Credit: @hair.makeupbyjamie

blonde woman with her hair in a french fishtail braid
Combine two braids in one with this stunning French fishtail combo! Credit: Instagram.com/laineymariebeauty

7. French fishtail

If you’re looking for something a bit more unique, this breathtaking French fishtail braid hybrid is sure to stun.

With a detailed fishtail braid leading into a dishevelled chignon at the nape of the neck, this captivating style is just what your Instagram feed needs! Credit: @laineymariebeauty

Editor’s tips: Fine, slippery hair? Give your strands some texture before braiding with the Toni&Guy Sea Salt Texturising Spray, to help add a tousled, gritty texture to your mane. This will make it easier to create your braids and give your style some serious staying power!

woman with blond and brunette highlighted hair in a double dutch braid updo
Double Dutch braids make for the perfect easy updo. Credit: Instagram.com/rma2808

8. Double Dutch updo

Boxer braids probably aren’t the first thing to spring to mind when you’re searching for elegant updos for short hair, but this double Dutch braided updo shows how this everyday look can be tweaked into a more evening-appropriate style.

To perfect this full, voluminous braided look don’t forget to pancake your braids after weaving, by pulling your braid gently from either side. This will instantly give you the illusion of a thicker head of hair – and who doesn’t want that?! Credit: @rma2808

woman with short dark bob hair in a braided undercut style
Who knew undercuts could look so sweet?! Credit: Instagram.com/candy__t

9. Braided undercut detail

Braided undercuts are already a red carpet favourite among stars like Cara Delevingne and Nina Dobrev. And if you’ve come here looking for fancy updos for short hair, these easy-peasy cornrows are a fabulous way to add detail to your ‘do.

To recreate the look for a more demure effect, try working some dainty flowers into the look, just like this Instagrammer has. Credit: @candy__t

blonde woman with shoulder length hair in a half up bouffant braided style
Bouffants and braids, what more could you want?! Credit: Instagram.com/hair_by_pelerossi

10. Braided bouffant

Struggling with fine hair? If hair loss or thinning is a concern for you, or you’re just looking for fancy hairstyles for short hair with masses of volume, say hello to this incredible half-up braided bouffant.

Combining Pinterest-worthy braids with ’60s-esque volume, this look is what hair dreams are made of!


Will you be giving any of these glam short hair looks a try for your next big event? We knew you would! And for more occasion-appropriate styles, check out our Formal Hairstyles page, which has all of the best looks for graduation, interviews and more.

Sign up to our newsletter and get exclusive hair care tips and tricks from the experts at All Things Hair.