Dance hairstyles are a combination of two important things – the practicality of keeping hair in the right place during the dance and the stylistic element that it plays in how a dancer looks. That’s why there are some common dance hairstyles we see repeated over and over again – and here’s how and why.
The ballet bun
Ask a non-dancer about the most common dance hairstyles and they will likely go with the ballet bun. It has that elegant and sophisticated look while being streamlined so it doesn't interfere with movement. It is also practical – the bun allows dance instructors to see the line of the neck and dancer's posture while practising and dancing.
The bun is also a simple style to master in a few steps:
- Burhs the hair so all tangles are gone then pull it tightly into a ponytail, using a strong elastic band to secure it. Brush through any lumps and hairspray.
- Twist the ponytail from the top, keeping hold of the end.
- Wrap the twist around the top of the ponytail, using hair grips occasionally to pin in place, especially at the end of the hair.
- Place a bun net over the top and remove any pins you can reach without pulling the hair loose.
- Add a few pins to keep the bun net in place.
The French plait
Another popular and practical hairstyle for dancers is the French plait. This has more detail than a simple bun but also ensures the hair is easy to manage and doesn’t get in the way. There’s also plenty of ways to adapt it and personalise it to create your own look.
The basic steps of the French plait are:
- Take a section of hair near the top of the head in thumb and forefinger and split into three equal sections.
- Start plaiting by crossing the left strand over middle, right strand over the middle.
- Hold the plait in your left hand and bring in a section from the left side and add this to the left strand.
- Move the plait to your right hand and bring a section of hair from the right side into the right strange.
- Keep doing this down the length of the head.
- Plait the rest of the hair as normal and use a band to secure it.
Other popular dancing hairstyles
For some styles of dance such as disco or jazz, a high, tight ponytail is a brilliant style. It works with both straight and curly hair and can be decorated with scrunchies and clips. Bunches are a variation of this with the hair split into two high ponytails at either side. You can have them high or low depending on the style you want.
Quiffs are another style that works for particular types of dance such as jazz and hip hop. There are loads of variations including adding to a messy bun, with a ponytail or just with hair down. They are also popular for that Spanish feel when paired with a red flower.