The sock bun: 7 steps to chic hair

Say hello to the easiest updo technique ever!  

three images of a woman with brunette hair in a tight bun, wearing a blue lace outfit



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Short on time? Hair not even remotely done? We feel you. Luckily, there’s a quick and easy updo that only needs a clean sock and 10 minutes to create. Meet: the sock bun.

Guaranteed to give you an enviably polished and voluminous-looking updo, this technique turns an everyday item into a DIY hair donut and is the perfect option if you haven’t got an arsenal of styling accessories to hand!

To see how it’s done, follow our simple tutorial above and see the steps in more detail below. Your updo game = changed forever.

How to create a sock bun


Create a high ponytail.

Use your hands or a brush to gather the hair into a high ponytail.

This will form the base of your sock bun, so make sure it’s secured tightly and placed exactly where you want your bun to be.

woman with long brunette hair pulling her hair into a ponytail, eyes closed, smiling, wearing a blue lace outfit

Craft your hair donut.

Starting with a clean sock, cut the toe section off so you are left with a piece of fabric that is open at both ends.

Next, roll the sock inwards and down so it creates a donut shape. The longer your sock is, the more fabric it will have. This will leave you with a bigger donut, and therefore a bigger bun size.

woman with brunette hair in a high ponytail. holding a hair donut, wearing a blue lace outfit

Pull donut over your ponytail.

Now pull your DIY donut over your ponytail so that it sits at the base of your ‘do.

woman with long brunette hair pulling her hair into a ponytail, posing, wearing a blue lace outfit

Fan your hair.

From the center of the donut, fan the hair over the sock.

Your goal here is to cover the sock entirely with hair so none of it peaks through. Take small sections of the ponytail as you go and focus on covering a select area of the hair donut at a time until your bun is complete.

woman with long brunette hair touching her hair, looking at the camera, wearing a blue lace outfit

Wrap and pin!

Once you’ve covered your donut with your hair, carefully wrap your strands around the based until all of the donut is concealed.

Pin this in place using bobby pins, ensuring no strands are sticking out!

woman with brunette hair in a tight bun pinning it in place, wearing a blue lace outfit

Secure with hairspray.

Once your sock bun is perfectly pinned into place, make sure there are no loose ends and secure the look with hairspray.

Mist the TIGI Bed Head Hard Head Hairspray all over your tresses from back to front and run your hand over your hair to smooth it as you go.

woman with brunette hair in a tight bun spraying it with hairspray, wearing a blue lace outfit

Final look.

Ta-da! You’ve now mastered the sock bun in a matter of minutes. Feel free to reuse your DIY donut anytime you need a quick-fix updo in the future.

woman with brunette hair in a tight bun, wearing a blue lace outfit

5 Celeb Bun Ideas To Try

Feeling pretty confident about your sock bun prowess? Good! Put your styling skills to work by creating a look inspired by these celebrity updos. Whether you prefer Dove Cameron’s rock and roll spin or dig Mary J. Blige’s princess vibes, we’ve got a bold bun to suit every taste…

Hailey Baldwin side profile on the red carpet at the British Fashion Awards
Hailey Baldwin works her haute hair accessory. Credit: Rex By Shutterstock

1. Hailey Baldwin’s decorated updo

Scoring a high-fashion hat-trick with her center-parted, slicked-back and low-slung bun at the 2017 British Fashion Awards Hailey Baldwin clearly knows how to style an updo. Adding a gorgeous detailed hair band around her voluminous bun was simply the stylish cherry on top.

Actress Issa Rae at the NAACP Image Awards with a high bun hairstyle
Issa Rae slays with her slick bun. Credit: Rex by Shutterstock

2. Issa Rae’s clean lines

Proving simple is always chic, the actress’s mane agenda was a sleek and polished bun at the NAACP Image Awards. With every hair pinned perfectly into place, Issa made sure her high bun looked flawless from all angles. A girl after our own heart…

Actress Dove Cameron on the red carpet with a high blonde bun
Dove gives us a’90s grunge spin. Credit: Rex by Shutterstock

3. Dove Cameron’s messy tendrils

If you’re looking for a more relaxed finish, mimic Dove’s undone approach to this classic updo. Pulling out a section of hair from around her face not only gives the look a tousled touch, it also frames her face.

Leave your tendrils loose for a nonchalant ’90s spin or tuck them behind your ears and let your bun take centre stage.

Actress Millie Bobby Brown at the Golden Globe Awards with a hair bun and braids
Braids + bun = effortlessly stylish. Credit: Rex by Shutterstock.

4. Millie Bobby Brown’s braids

Leave it to our current beauty crush, MBB to come through with a bun-and-braid combo that’s the stuff of hair dreams. Creating an upside-down French updo, the actress opted for a no-fuss look at the front and plenty of detail under her bun. We’re in love.

Mary J Blige at wearing a high bun hairstyle on the red carpet
Bling bling! Credit: Rex by Shutterstock

5. Mary J. Blige’s sparkling accent

Craving a little extra bling? Take your style cues from Mary J. Blige.

The singer brought the wow factor to her high bun by teaming it with a gold and diamante hair accessory. Perfect for the red carpet (or a regular night out) this simple touch takes the look from 0 to 100 in seconds.


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