I don't know what it is about updos that gives the style a bad rap—perhaps the overdone prom buns of years past or the side-swept bridesmaid looks we wish we could forget. The thing is, updos can be entirely cool, fresh, and modern. Such is the case with braided bun hairstyles, whether you already have braids in your hair or you're hoping to do it for just one night. To prove that very point, I did some Instagram stalking on the pages of my favorite celebrity hairstyles.
Turns out, updos are making a serious comeback (not that, you know, they ever really went anywhere), gracing the heads of our favorite current beauty icons. Below, find a roundup of the coolest ones we've seen as of late and get inspired for your next 'do. Many, even, you can try yourself at home, or at least bring a photo to your next salon appointment as inspiration. Either way, these will inspire you to break out of your no-updo box and opt for something oh so cool.
This eye-catching look is so relaxed and gorgeous all at the same time. Courtesy of Zazie Beetz's golden hair accessory (doesn't it look like artwork?), you can pull your braids up into a bun and immediately have a stunning style.
A slightly more complex look, this braided bun is a bit more polished, though just as cool to look at. Part your hair, pulling your braids into a twist, and secure it with a strong elastic.
Using another golden accessory, Jen Atkin braided and twisted these buns, one low, another high, to heighten the effect. All you have to do is first create the ponytail, braid it, and twist before fastening.
The stunning Laura Harrier shows off another Lacy Redway creation, this time with cornrows and a low braided bun.
Bryce Scarlett, Margot Robbie (and Moroccanoil)'s go-to stylist, whipped up this ethereal look with two braids fastened into a bun and lots of loose, romantic waves framing her face.
Susan Oludele is the mastermind behind Beyoncé's cornrows in Lemonade, Solange's awe-inspiring beaded styles, and Zoë Kravitz's box braids. She's incredible and iconic in the hair world, especially known for her braids. Here, she offers up braided Bantu knots, made even more stunning with pops of highlighted caramel shades in each.
Celebrity hairstylist Mark Townsend created this look with Dakota Johnson, thickening her ballerina bun with a braid down the middle and allowing her side-swept bangs to hang loosely across her forehead.
Redway French-braided the underside of this bun, allowing for a fun surprise when you see the back of the style. It's a simple but effective way to add some extra oomph to any bun.
The messy bun will always be a mainstay in our lives, braided or not—though we have to admit the braids make it look especially cool. With braided hair, just make sure you have an extra-strong-hold elastic, flip your head over, and secure it on top. If a few strands are left out, even better. It's a vibe.