12 Incredibly Chic Updo Ideas for Short Hair

Updated 10/04/17

When it comes to elaborate updos, those with above-the-shoulder strands seem to have gotten the short end of the stick (literally). While their Rapunzel-esque counterparts can twist, bun, braid, and pin to their heart's content, short-haired girls face a much smaller pool of options. After all, how much can you really do when you're working with the length of, say, a J.Law-inspired chop? 

For all our short-haired sisters out there, know this: You, too, can partake in the updo game. While pixie-length hair is a bit tough to gather for an updo (we've still included one for you, don't worry!), we've searched high and low for bob-to-shoulder-length updos that won't consume your entire morning. So grab some bobby pins ($4), a scarf, and some hair ties, and get ready to transform your hair.

Keep scrolling for 12 cool bun, braid, and pinned-up ideas for short hair!

updos for short hair
Tessa Rayanne

Messy Braided Bun

This style works best on shoulder-length hair, but those with shorter strands can re-create this by simply using more bobby pins. Here's the full tutorial!

Keiko Lynn

All Tied Up

Why not add some retro flair to your look with a sleek silk scarf and major volume? Plus, the scarf hides all your bobby pins, so feel free to pin with abandon. See the full instructions here. 

Twist Me Pretty

Low Bohemian Braids

Simple and oh-so-chic, this braided 'do is perfect for the office, brunch, or an elegant occasion. Click here for the step-by-steps!

The Wonder Forest

Rolled Updo

Half roll, half braid, this might just be your new everyday hairstyle. Click over here for the instructions!


Half Bun

When all else fails, rock a cool-girl half-bun—so simple yet so effective. 


Roll Back

Remember Anne Hathaway's pixie? This simple 'do with rolled-back sections and a gold starry clip proves that, yes, even pixies can be pinned up.

Paperglass Media

Plaited Pony

Spice up an otherwise basic low ponytail by creating a slim dutch braid right down the center of the back of your head. Your followers will be in for a surprise. 

Her Given Hair

Braided Fauxhawk

A simple way to add a bit more dimension to short, natural texture is to braid the sides, creating a chic fauxhawk. 


Endless French Braid

The beauty of short hair? Among other things, we like that it has the ability to disappear—tucked out of sight—at the end of a french braid.

This is Glamorous

Messy Chignon

The short-haired girl's version of a chignon, this messy yet polished 'do can be dressed up or down (tousled side fringe is encouraged).

Steal the Look

Sporty Space Buns

Two high-placed buns can easily go straight from the gym to the office or to drinks with friends (just remember to freshen up first!). All you need are two hair elastics and a few bobby pins to secure the buns in place. For a full breakdown, check out this tutorial.

Anne Sage

Knotted Updo

In this instance, knots in your hair are totally welcome. Split your mane up into three segments, twist each section, and knot each before pinning. Take a look at the full tutorial here.

How do you like to wear your short hair? Please tell us below!

This post was originally published on November 23rd, 2014.

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