Prom hairstyles worn up: 10 ‘dos that are sure to bag you that prom queen title

Make picture-perfect memories with these extra special formal updos.  

With the exception of your wedding dayprom night is the most glamorous event in many of our diaries. So, naturally, the pressure is on to find truly showstopping prom hairstyles. Up looks are a prom staple for a reason, so we’re helping you narrow down your style search by showing you some of our favourites.

Below you’ll find 10 amazing formal updos that’ll have you looking picture perfect in all your prom snaps and have you looking back on your night (and your hair!) with the best memories.

10 formal updos that will see you crowned prom queen

side view of a redhead woman with her hair in a wavy 1920s style flapper updo
Let yourself be transported back in time with this gorgeous vintage look. Credit:

1. Vintage ’20s tuck

If you’re struggling to decide how you’re going to wear your hair, looking at your dress is the best place to start. Gone for a vintage gown? Pair it with a suitably old-school look like this roaring ’20s tucked updo and you’ll look like a classy flapper girl. Credit: @styles_by_reneemarie

back view of a woman with dirty blonde hair styled in a beehive messy bun updo
Bigger is always better when it comes to beehive hair. Credit:

2. Beehive bun

All about the volume? Plump prom hairstyles up by gently teasing sections of your mane for added height and fullness. Don’t forget to use a comb to smooth over the top of the hair once you’re done backcombing, as this will conceal the messier underlayers and give a neater finish. Credit: @moon_beam_dreams

Editor’s tip: Before you start backcombing, give your hair something to hold on to by blasting some of the TONI&GUY Sky High Volume Dry Shampoo into your roots.

A quick spritz of dry shampoo is all you need to add some gritty texture and hold to your hair, meaning your newly-teased volume will stick around all night.

side view of a blonde woman with her hair in a braided bun with a braided headband detail and curled front pieces of hair
Braids can be used to create all sorts of pretty details that’ll take your updo to the next level. Credit:

3. Braided bun

Nothing says prom hair better than a showstopping braid. But if it’s wow-worthy formal updos that you’re after, braided buns tick all the right boxes!

You could even take your braided bun one step further like this Instagrammer by adding a braided headband detail at the crown. Why do things by halves, right? Credit: @goldilonglocks

brunette woman with her hair in a formal braided updo hairstyle
You’d be hard pressed to find a style more elegant and romantic than a braided updo. Credit:

4. French braided updo

This pretty braided updo is essentially your classic French braid – just tweaked to make it more prom appropriate! Don’t be afraid to have a few loose pieces of hair hanging loose either as this will just add to the romantic, fairytale feel. Credit: @sabrinadijkman

woman with dark red hair styled in a neat french twist updo
Who better to look to for style tips than the Parisians? Credit:

5. French twist

Glamour pusses, look no further. The cosmopolitan French twist has an air of sass and sophistication about it, and is sure to make even the simplest LBD look a million dollars. Credit: @thewonderlabaintree

woman with chocolate brown hair with lighter golden brown highlights styled in a halo braid prom updo
Watch out, there’s a Grecian goddess in our midst! Credit:

6. Halo braid

You want to feel like a goddess for your big night, so why not take the heavenly vibes in the most literal sense with a halo braid?

Aside from looking incredible, they’re perfect for keeping all of your hair up and out of your face – good to bear in mind if your dress has a high neckline or any back detailing you want to show off. Credit: @anotherlittleworld

woman with light blonde hair in a prom updo with a rope braid headband detail
Who needs accessories when you can make your mane the statement? Credit:

7. Rope braid

Stylistically challenged and struggle to do anything more intricate than a regular 3-strand braid? Don’t worry, there are are loads of easy formal updos and this rope braid variation couldn’t be simpler.

Plus stars like Alicia Vikander and Shay Mitchell are big fans of the rope braid, so if they can rock them for the red carpet you can definitely rock them for prom. Credit: @lenabogucharskaya

back view of a brunette woman with a super shiny sleek twisted low bun
Red carpet or prom, same difference right? Credit:

8. Twisted low bun

Want to look prepped, preened and polished for the big night? This slick, high-gloss updo could be something straight off the runway, so fashionistas can end their hunt for the perfect hairdo here. Credit: @littlemiri3

Editor’s tip: Formal hair updos require bucket loads of shine, so when we’ve got an event on we reach for the VO5 Tame & Shine Spray.

It gives hair a dazzling boost of shine which is crucial for this look but also keeps your style looking pristine and flyaway-free.

back view of a brunette woman wearing a grey top with her hair in a low textured messy bun
Would you believe us if we said this DIY updo only takes 5 minutes? Credit:

9. Textured bun

When you envision a messy bun it’s probably not particularly suited to a black tie occasion, right? Well, your humble lazy day style just got a prom night glow up!

This undone but oh-so chic textured bun is low-key but lovely and perfectly fitting for a more wistful, boho look. Well played messy bun, well played. Credit: @caraclyne

back view of a woman in a salon chair with brunette to blonde ombre hair in an upside down braided bun updo
Ever since Dior gave the upside down braid the high fashion seal of approval we’ve been dying to give it a try. Credit:

10. Upside down braid

Braids and buns sound like a romantic pairing sent from heaven – and they are – but they can be edgy, too. This unconventional upside down braid was spotted on the Dior catwalk a couple of seasons ago and we love its potential for adding edge to a sweet and girly dress. Credit: @1ofakind_d


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