If you've ever been on Pinterest, then you know that bobby pins have a booming second life as statement accessories. Triangles, chevrons, starbursts — crafty DIY mavens have been pinning up a storm creating shapes made of bobbies as accents to their styles. While cute, we think those shapes can read a little too twee IRL — and Nielsen agrees. If you want to keep things chic, he says to "stay away from blatant shapes, and think of it more as an accessory and not a statement piece." For this look, Nielsen created a soft, dry, airy texture to Cece's hair and accented it with a row of golden pins. Spray Oribe Foundation Mist all over damp hair, and then apply Surfcomber Tousled Texture Mousse section by section to hair's mid-lengths and ends. Blowdry hair using your fingers. Create a center-part using a brush with mixed bristles — Nielsen likes Laight & Mercer Dry Hairbrush — and then pull hair back into a low ponytail, securing it at the nape of your neck (or the occipital bone). Create a loose, three-strand braid with the hair in the ponytail, secure it with a clear elastic, and then twist it around and pin it into a textured bun. For the pin accent, Nielsen says that the pins aren't really securing anything so it's more about placement here. He warns that it might take a bit of trial and error to get it how you like it, but to try to keep things symmetrical and equally spaced. Place the first pin about a finger-width away from the hairline. Pinch a small amount of hair (about a finger-width wide) on one side of your hair, and then place the bobby pin downwards, following your hairline and grabbing onto the pinched section of hair. The pin should be ridge side up, but placed into the hair so the side of it is against your head — not the blade, like you might be used to. After you place the first one, take your second pin and push it in starting at about midway down the first pin — so they almost overlap. Your starting point for the next pin will be halfway down the previous pin, and so on for all of them. Nielsen says each pin should be sticking up a little, not pushed all the way down — you want them to be apparent. You'll use about five or six pins total, stopping when you hit the bun.
In addition to its striking look, this pin contraption does double-duty by functioning as a stylish way to hold hair back and away from your face. Start by spraying hair from mid-lengths to ends with Bumble and bumble Classic Hairspray to give hair hold and shine. Create a side-part and tuck hair behind your ears. On the opposite side of your part (the one with more hair), apply a no-crease clip, like this one from Kenig + Alcone, to hold the hair in place while you pin. Place your finger just below the clip, and push the hair flat against the head. Stick your first pin right behind the ear. The pin should go in horizontally, with the majority of it hidden underneath the hair. Your second pin should go in at a 45-degree angle, interlocking into the bottom of the first pin. Your next pin should also go in at a 45-degree angle, mirroring the previous pin. Ideally, it should interlock with the ends of the previous pin. Your next pin should go through the eye of the previous pin, again at a 45-degree angle but in the opposite direction. Continue this pattern until you get to the opposite ear, and then place your final pin horizontally behind the ear, just as you did with your first one, making sure it interlocks with the end of the previous pin. Once all your pins are in, gently remove the no-crease clip. The closer the pins are, the more intricate and labor-intensive your "Pinband" will be, says Nielsen. "It's more grown-up — chicer and rock-'n'-roll," he explains. "That Saint Laurent thing — it looks expensive and cool. The front looks sleek and tethered, but then there's all this intrigue in the back. You don't have to deal with a headband, but you still get that juxtaposition of textures — controlled and styled at the top, but soft and loose at the ends. It's not overdone and it looks polished, but also somewhat effortless."
Love the Old Hollywood-glamour side-sweep, but hate how hard it is to actually keep your hair to the side? This trick is for you. The Bobby Spine discreetly holds your hair in place without requiring you to obsessively run your fingers through it à la Kristen Stewart, or keep your head at an angle the entire night. Not to mention, it looks pretty badass. Create a deep side-part. At the back of your head, backcomb the hair at the root. This is to give your pins a "place to live," says Nielsen. "A half-way house for pins," if you will. Use a paddle brush to gently brush over the backcombed hair — over, not through it — to make it look smooth, but still keep that texture underneath. Your hair should be brushed to the side and over one shoulder. Starting at the nape of the neck, push in a pin at the very base of the head in an upward direction. It does not need to be perfectly straight — it's okay if it's a bit off-center. Nielsen says to use your hands to hold the hair to the side as you're pushing in your pins: This will ensure it stays in place for your final look. Push in the second pin near the end of the first, again in an upward angle and making sure to interlock them. Continue to crisscross pins up the back of the head. Nielsen says they don't need to be perfectly parallel — it's okay if they're at a bit of an angle up the back of the head. When you get to the top of the head, take your final pin and place it in a downward direction (rather than upward, like all the others), interlocking into the previous pin and thereby locking all of the pins in place. This technique "allows you to secure a style and make sure it will last," explains Nielsen. "This gives you the rigidity of a structured style but it still has movement, and you don't need to lacquer the hair [with product] to achieve it."
This little contraption is like a hairstyle MacGyver — you're using two accessories to create a completely different accessory. Nielsen took a clear elastic and pulled two bobby pins through it to create a hair bungee, then used that DIY bungee to create a looped-through bun. Hairstylists love bungees because they give a really secure grip on your style, but they are also notoriously hard to get into your hair on your own. According to Nielsen, this trick gives you the security of the bungee but is much easier to get into the hair.
Once your bungee is ready, gather
your hair into a ponytail. At the base of the ponytail, secure your first pin.
Hold the pin in place with your finger, and then take the other pin, stretch it
slightly, and wrap it and the attached elastic around the base of the ponytail multiple
times, until it’s secure. Then, push the pin into the base of the ponytail.
Create another DIY bungee, and then
lift up your ponytail and hold it against your head, placing the first pin
in about an inch or two above the ponytail. You don't want it to be too close
to the ponytail's base, or else you won't get the loop you need for the
finished look. Instead of wrapping the elastic around the hair multiple times,
this time you’re going to just lay it over the top of the ponytail, pushing in the
second pin on the opposite side. This will secure the ponytail against the head
about midway up the tail, leaving the rest of it loose.
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