5 Quick and Easy Festival Hair Ideas (That Don’t Involve a Flower Crown)

Eunice Lucero | 13 June 2016

Rain or shine, you’re looking fly in the front row, and that’s that.

Wristbands in the mail: check! It’s music festival season, and you’re now officially in a go-flex zone for those band tees, denim cutoffs, and yes, those cute festival hair ideas you’ve had bookmarked for months. And although you’re all about looking all boho-cool and crochet-y and #FestBest, something about wearing plants on your head for three days straight, while you sweat it out to your jamz, doesn’t quite spell out summer fun.

Which is where we come in: Luckily, there are a slew of trendy hair looks out there that will keep your whole concert-going aesthetic on-point.

Bonus: Your ‘do won’t wilt in the sun!

Best yet, these styles are easy enough to master on the go as stand-alone looks—or as add-ons, depending on how your concert week progresses—which means you won’t ever end up looking like a festival fashion victim. With overthought hair. Because some say the only thing worse than missing out on the hottest summer events is looking like you gave too much of a damn. Get ready with these fun festival hair ideas:

Fun, Easy Festival Hair Ideas

festival hair ideas fishtail braid
Pancake the weave for a more folksy look.

Day 1: Loose fishtail braids

As far as best in class goes, the fishtail braid probably gets top marks for 2016. We’ve chalked this up to its relatively simple weave, which somehow still manages to elevate any simple look. It’s a cinch once you’ve muscle-memoried your way into it, and looks super chic when worn slightly loose on one side. The fishtail blends form and function: It keeps frizzies from ruining your flow, and looks oh-so-Instagrammable doing it. Also, instant waves at the end of the day!

 

festival hair ideas milkmaid braids
Pin your pigtails across your crown and secure with pins, especially where the two braids overlap.

Day 2: Milkmaid braids (Option: Start with Day 1 fishtails)

If you’re one of those awesome early pigtail braid adapters, looping your plaits into a milkmaid style should be a cinch. Simply loosen the base of your braids (for some give) and pull it across your crown, securing with pins every so often till you feel like you can head-jam with peace of mind. Not only does is this a runway-worthy, romantic look, it also keeps hair from sticking to sweaty necks and foreheads and frees up your ears for some major accessories.

 

festival hair ideas middle braid
Unicorn game strong: The middle braid is one of those rare things that marries the practicality of a half-pony with an on-trend plait. Photo credit: indigitalimages.com

Day 3: Middle braid (Option: Start with loose Day 2 braids)

If you’ve always wanted to try a mo/fauxhawk but was too chicken, the middle braid summons you. A girlier, sweeter twist on the more alternative mohawk, the look nails two trends in one: a half-updo with a braid of your choice. Create a high section on your crown and begin to plait from the root downwards, and secure with a hair tie. More time to spare? Take it further till your nape and turn it into a complete French braid, or even do multiple braids and flirt your way into cornrow territories.

festival hair ideas fake dreadlocks
Leave your ‘locs down or tie them up in a half-top-knot as the day (and humidity) progresses.

Day 4: Faux dreadlocks (Options: Start with Day 1 or Day 3 braids)

Contrary to what you may think, festival hair ideas like fake dreads are a quick way to switch things up while you’re waiting for bands mid-set. Best on freshly unfurled braids or otherwise slightly gritty hair, the look merely takes a lesson in texturizing. Start by shaking out old braids and spritzing hair with a dry shampoo to freshen up your roots and remove excess oils. (Straight-haired or fine-haired girls might need to apply a dime-sized amount of gel to your entire head for more grip as well.) Next, pinch out thin sections of hair, twisting the strands together for a few seconds, then ripping the section apart (gently!), till you create a texturized “rope” of hair. Repeat on as many sections as you like, and prepare to spread the irie love.

 

festival hair ideas bantu knots
Coil each section around its base and secure with pins or a hair tie.

Day 5: Bantu Knots (Options: Start with Days 1, 3 or 4)

Sun’s out, buns out! Squeeze out one last good hair day from your partied-out locks by coiling them up into little offbeat knobs such as bantu knots. Play with placement: Wear two on each side of your crown in a cutesy cat-ear style, or go all out and make multiple smaller knobs, either in a grid or even a top-to-bottom row. At this point your hair might have enough grip to maintain a knot on its own; otherwise, secure with hair ties or pins at the base.

Which of these festival hair ideas are you going to try?