It’s hard to believe it’s already time to start preparing for the kids return to school! But here we are and summer break is indeed coming to a close. If you are like me, you’ve already started looking through catalogs and perusing shops for your children’s fall wardrobe. After all, the first day of school evokes our own childhood memories of excitement, butterflies (ok, terror), and the promise of a new beginning. Even if our children are oblivious, we want them to look their best. New outfit, new kicks, new haircut … and maybe even the opportunity to style said haircut.
If you’ve got a girl with long hair, their are lots of styling options. The internet is full of tutorials of some pretty rad girls styles. But I’m a realist. Unless you have a natural affinity toward hairstyling, the chances of you pulling off a perfectly clean, intricately woven braided ‘do are pretty slim. Am I right? I mean, do you want to spend the last days of summer at the beach or learning how to waterfall braid in front of YouTube? I’m guessing most moms want to do something a little special, not become a hair ninja!
In this post, I’ll show you three back-to-school hairstyles that are super easy to create but still totally adorable. All three can be done quickly as well, which is ideal for squirmy kids and busy school day mornings. Try them for the first day of school, picture day, or any other occasion!
- Detangling brush (I prefer the Knot Genie for kid’s delicate locks)
- Styling cream or gel (I love crunch-free So Cozy Behave Styling Gel)
- Small braiding elastics
- Bobby pins
Look #1: Braided Crown
This look is so sweet, and you won’t believe how simple it is to create. The basic 3-strand braid is the only skill you need. If you want to get fancy, you can swap out the 3-strand braid for fishtail or rope braids.
1. Give the child a tablet or screen of any sort to distract them. Part hair in 2 equal parts using your comb. Smooth each side with a good styling product and then tie into a ponytail at the ear with a small braiding elastic.
Note: if the hair is very long, you can tie the ponytails toward the bottom of the ear.
2. Braid both ponytails and tie the ends with another small elastic. If desired, you can tug on both sides of the braid to make it a little wider and fuller.
3. Pull both braids upward to meet at the top of the head, and fold the ends under the other to hide them. Now pin both braids in place starting from the origin of the braid by the ear, working upward to the top.
Tip: Weave the pins up and down along the underside of the braid, “sewing” it to the hair on the scalp. It is essential to pin along the entire braid and not just at the top where they cross. The weight of the braids will cause them to pull away from the scalp, creating a gap.
Look #2: Bubble Pony
Kids love this Jasmine-esque look! It makes long hair look even longer, and who wouldn’t want to look like a Disney Princess for the first day of school?
1. Gather a small section of hair at the top of the head, smooth it with a brush and styling product, then tie it into a small ponytail.
2. Pick up another section below the first and smooth it back, combining it with the first ponytail. Use another small hair elastic to tie a second ponytail a couple inches below the first. Gently pull the section of the first ponytail that is now between the two bands out into a “bubble” shape.
3. Repeat all the way down to the nape.
Note: it’s much easier to pull out the “bubbles” after each elastic is tied, as opposed to creating all the ponytails first.
4. When you have no more hair to incorporate, simply tie an elastic around the ponytail a couple inches down from the previous elastic. Then tug on this section as well to widen and fluff it out. Continue down the length of the ponytail.
Look #3: Double Buns
I’ve been seeing this look on teens and young adults and it’s even cuter on grade-schoolers! I like to place the twisted buns on opposite sides of the head and low by the nape for a Princess Leia vibe. That said, arranging them higher like mouse ears is crazy adorable too.
1. Use a comb to part hair down into two equal sections. Clip one side out of the way. Smooth the hair over to one side with your brush and apply styling product to tame frizz and flyaways. Twist the entire section all the way down to the ends.
2. Wrap the coil around into a bun and use bobby pins to secure it to the head.
Tip: cross the bobby pins for a more secure hold.
3. Repeat on the other side.