A Bride's Guide to Taking Down Her Wedding Updo

Ready to let your hair down?
Ready to let your hair down?
©iStockphoto.com/Thinkstock

Your Pinterest hair obsession has morphed into a part-time job. You can explain the difference between a French knot and a fishtail braid in 15 seconds flat. And you've convinced your stylist to do an updo run-through, five different times.

It may seem extreme to some (especially grooms), but for many brides-to-be, much ado about an updo makes perfect sense. After all, your fashionable coiffure must last all day -- through a slew of photographs, a maze of congratulatory hugs and, of course, a milestone walk down the aisle.

But, as any bride knows, even the most complex updos should look effortless -- and it takes a lot of work to look that way. For every hour you've invested in your updo, plan to spend at least that many minutes taking it down.

While it seems elementary that what goes up must come down, if you devolve your updo without rhyme or reason, you could pull out your hair, damage follicles and cause long-term breakage.

You'll want to pay special attention to the veil or any other hair accessories by removing them first. Cajole a veil gently out of your updo by removing the pins or clips securing it to your hair. Move the veil in a side-to-side motion to loosen its grip and free any hair that's still attached.

Now that you're sans accessories, it's time for the real work to begin. Getting your helmet hair back to its original condition requires strategy -- and we'll share a few of our best tips on the next page.

Tips for Taking Down Your Wedding Updo

It was a good thing your updo stayed put all day, but now that you're facing a small army of bobby pins and hair products, you'll need a plan of attack.

Your fingers are your best ally. They are the most sensitive tools you possess and you'll use them to feel for the bobby pins used to secure your hair. You may be surprised at the sheer number of fasteners, especially if you're sporting a complicated updo. In that case, the bobby pins will usually be found in two layers: The first wave of pins used to secure the bulk of your hair and the second batch used to secure individual curls or smooth strands.

To take down your updo, begin at the crown of your head or the nape of your neck -- or wherever your hair has been collected -- and take out any bobby pins used to keep loose curls or wayward strands in place. Then, feel along the sides of your head, along the nape of your neck and up to the crown of your head to find and remove the rest of the clips.

Once you think you've removed them all, bend at the waist and flip your hair upside down. Gently work your fingers through your hair, loosening sprayed or gelled sections and feeling for left-behind fasteners. Don't be surprised if you find a few errant bobby pins along the way!

The next phase is removing all the product out of your hair. And this is a job for the shower, not the bathtub. You'll want a continuous supply of clean water to wash your updo away. Where to start? With a counterintuitive move, rinse your hair and then put a generous amount of conditioner in it. Amanda Furbeck at Shine write that the conditioner will help the hairspray lose its grip.

If your stylist sprinkled a volume-boosting powder on your scalp to create easy-to-work "dirty hair," then the instructions "shampoo, rinse, repeat" have never been more applicable. According to Allure, you'll need to wash -- at least twice -- to remove the powder and other products from your hair.

After your hair feels clean, condition it again. Then, if time allows, let your hair dry naturally instead of using a blow dryer. After all, it's been through enough. For today, at least.

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Sources

  • Furbeck, Amanda. "How to Undo Your Updo." Shine. Nov. 10, 2012. (Sept. 17, 2012) http://shine.yahoo.com/undo-updo-225218987.html
  • Panych, Sophia. "Say 'I Do' to a Wedding Updo." Allure. June 9, 2011. (Sept. 17, 2012) http://www.allure.com/beauty-trends/blogs/daily-beauty-reporter/2011/06/say-i-do-to-a-wedding-updo.html