Pretty hairstyles that stay out of your eyes but also stay put
June 16, 2014 4:59 PM   Subscribe

I’m looking for ideas for pretty things to do with my hair so that it’s mostly down but stays put and doesn’t get in my eyes during physical activity. I usually use something like a Hipsy headband for this purpose, but I would love something a bit more interesting and/or sophisticated.

I'm looking for ideas that keep at least some of the hair down and flowing (so not a straight-up bun or ponytail or full updo), but still keep hair out of the eyes during moderate to vigorous exercise (usually dancing).

I’ve found some hair tutorials, but they seem to be predicated on sitting still at a lawn party, not on moving around and sweating. What kind of styles should I search for? Also, what is the secret to getting the hair to stay where you put it? Lots of bobby pins? Hairspray? I would love step-by-step tutorials (pictures or videos would be even better!). I am currently very unskilled at hair-related things, but I am willing to try anything.

Other pertinent details: my hair is very thick and a few inches past my shoulders.
posted by lettersoflead to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (10 answers total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
I Also have thick hair, past my arm pits at this point but it's been as short as a bob. Bobby pins do squat for me if I'm doing anything more vigerous than walking down the street. If you're just looking for somthing while dancing I suggest sticking with headbands and variations. I'm particular to bandanas. I keep it interesting i tie them in a few different ways. I've seen videos on how to tie them but it really all depends on your head shape and hair line. Bandanas are usually about a dollar at a craft store. Get one (wash it because it will be stiff) and then start experimenting!
Hairspray also does nothing for me when my hair is down. I only bust it out for "updos" (i.e. throwing it in a bun before work)
posted by missriss89 at 5:09 PM on June 16, 2014

I agree, bobby pins and hairspray can only get me so far. Thin elastic bands work for braided bangs (can do even if you don't have bangs) or a half up variation - these will stay in for me at the gym. Actually, I can get away with bobby pins sometimes in a half up configuration if I don't pull up a lot of hair, and cris cross the pins higher up than usual.
posted by umwhat at 5:15 PM on June 16, 2014

I'd use a half pony (braid, french braid, rope, etc) held on with a really high quality barrette or an elastic that is not one of those useless ouchless things. A french braid especially will just stay forever.
posted by jeather at 5:18 PM on June 16, 2014

Back when I had an entirely different gender presentation and had grown my very thick and coarse hair long, I used to use these expensive barrettes from France Luxe. The ones they have now are much prettier and more various than the ones I used to have. To hold all my hair up, I needed two of the barrettes in this shape. Honestly, even the cheapest ones are expensive ($12 per - although they didn't have any for under $20 back in the late nineties, weirdly enough) but they were absolutely worth it. I wore them every day for a couple of years and they were like new at the end of the process - I gave them away eventually when I decided I wasn't every going to wear my hair in an updo again.

I also used to do this thing where I would take the side pieces of my hair - what would have been cut into bangs except my hair was all one length - and twist them back along my hairline. I'd start the twist at my part, and twist the hair in along the hairline about to the level of my eyebrows, then use a barrette to hold it. Because this was less hair, I could use regular barrettes. Basically, I'd be pulling in all the hair along the upper part of my hairline, not just the stuff at the top of my head, so it would all stay out of my eyes. Most of my hair would flow freely, but it didn't get in my face.
posted by Frowner at 5:42 PM on June 16, 2014 [2 favorites]

Best answer: I've mentioned this before, but one secret to getting hair to stay put is a Ficcare, which is really the holy grail of haircare, especially for those of us with thick hair. I can vouch for the Maximas, which is a workhorse of a hair-holder (everything stays put even when jumping around, hiking, etc.) disguised as a fancy pretty clip. If you're looking for mostly-down hair, you might want to look into the little Ficcare clips, which I imagine would probably let you clip bits back in whatever hairstyle you can come up with, and would hold them securely for whatever physical activity you want to subject them to. I have never used the little ones, but I use the Maximas almost daily, with no hairspray or bobby pins or anything, and I have never had a problem with it falling out. Pricey, but I've had my two for several years with no problems, and I'm sure I've saved money given how many butterfly clips I would have bought and broken in that timeframe.
posted by ClaireBear at 5:42 PM on June 16, 2014 [3 favorites]

I have very thick, curly hair. To get height, stand upside down and brush it all forward. Then stand up and flip it back, no brushing, but just smoothing lightly with your hands.

Put your hands on your head, fingers facing each other, and thumbs at your temples. Pull that bit up. and you can either clip it or pony tail it at the crown of your head. Gel or bobby pin the fly-aways at the sides. I have some really cute bobby pins with sparkly embellisments, or those push clips in your hair color if you want.

A clip will make it stand up more than a pony, or you could do a pony and put some pins in underneath to give it some lift. I'm talking about those clips with teeth on either side. In the old days we had banana clips. Maybe you can bring them back in style.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 5:46 PM on June 16, 2014

> I have never used the little ones, but I use the Maximas almost daily

Thick, curly, won't-stay-put hair here, and I can vouch for the little ones. Yes they're stupidly expensive and I never spend that sort of money on freaking barrettes... until I did, and now I'm never going back to drug-store stuff. I wear one every day to keep my hair out of my face. I can put one in in the morning and it stays there until bedtime, where previously I was re-clipping at least once an hour.
posted by The corpse in the library at 7:36 PM on June 16, 2014 [1 favorite]

My go-to for this is the french braid headband. Even easier is a twist along the forehead, sort of like steps 1 through 5 here.
posted by BusyBusyBusy at 6:12 AM on June 17, 2014

Best answer: Oh yes! I get to tell someone about bobby pins! No wait, I know you think they're useless. I did too. Then someone (undoubtedly on here) linked to this YouTube bobby pin tutorial. Now, I wear them daily, and they stay put. (Very thick, frizzy/curly hair.) When I see women on the subway doing that multiple-crossed-bobby-pins thing, I have to restrain myself from spreading the bobby pin word. So thank you for being my outlet for today.
posted by daisyace at 6:14 AM on June 17, 2014 [9 favorites]

I have thick hair and no bangs, so hair in my face is a constant issue when I exercise. Bobby pins and clips are beyond useless for me.

I love my Buff headbands. They're basically tubes of fabric that can be worn in a lot of different ways (headband, scarf, balaclava). They're machine washable and come in all sorts of funky patterns.
posted by futureisunwritten at 8:19 AM on June 17, 2014

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