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7 Gorgeous, No-Heat Hairstyles for When It’s Too Dang Hot Outside

Stay cool on sweltering days by ditching the heat styling tools and trying these stylist-approved air-dry 'dos instead.

Hairstyles-For-When-It's-Way-Too-Hot-OutsideTatiana Ayazo/Rd.com

Summer breeze

This style works best with short hair, especially if you have a curly or wavy texture. It keeps the hair off the neck and allows fresh air to breeze through. “The shape, which I always side part, is trendy with a sophisticated edge,” says Vernon Francois, a celebrity hair stylist who’s worked with the likes of Kerry Washington, Lupita Nyong’o, and Solange Knowles.

How to: Cleanse and condition the hair with a sulfate-free shampoo to reduce build-up and give the hair a freer look and feel. Next, create volume and shape with a little styling foam (his favorite is from Aveda). Next, use a diffuser on medium-to-low heat to give the hair a short blast. “This look is effortlessly stylish for all occasions, whether you’re grabbing coffee with a friend or heading out for date night,” Francois says. Check out these other ways to air-dry your hair so it still looks awesome.

Hairstyles-For-When-It's-Way-Too-Hot-OutsideTatiana Ayazo/Rd.com

Fishtail braid

The fishtail is one of those braids that looks incredibly complicated when, in fact, it’s super easy once you know the moves. “It’s great for all occasions—from a night out to a friend’s wedding—and is a great alternative to overdoing it on dry shampoo if you’re trying to hide dirty hair,” says Katherine James, stylist at Tarro Beauty + Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.

How to: First, pull your hair back into a ponytail and secure it with an elastic. (Speaking of, try these ponytail hacks.) Next, separate the ponytail into two equal-sized sections, and take aside a half-inch section from the left ponytail. Carry this piece over the top of the left ponytail and place it under the right ponytail. Now do the same for the other side. Continue this process until you find yourself at the end of the hair. Pinch together in an elastic and head out the door!

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Headband updo

When it’s too hot and humid to wear your hair down, the simplest solution is pull it up, but that can look more casual than you might like. To dress it up with minimal effort, Francois suggests styling with a head band. “Wearing your hair swept up and away from your face will emphasize your facial features while creating shape and volume in the back, making it perfect for a special event, like a wedding,” he says.

How to: First, treat your hair to a nourishing wash and then detangle strands using your fingers or a wide-toothed comb and a light moisturizing product. Avoid anything heavy or greasy. Next, sweep your hair up and back in a bun or ponytail and hold it in place with either one or several headbands. “Experiment with different materials, colors, and patterns for variety,” Francois says. “Finish with a little Schwarzkopf Got2B gel mixed with a couple of drops of styling serum around the hairline to lay flyaways flat and tease the texture out at the back.” Check out these natural hair masks to add shine and fight frizz.

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Messy ballerina bBun

Not all buns are created equal—and no one said they had to be neat and slicked back! Turns out, the messy bun is still in style, and it’s especially useful on days when your air conditioner just won’t cut it. “This look is a hot-day go-to because it’s simple, easy and clean, even though it’s not red-carpet sleek,” says Clare Malarkey, senior stylist and studio manager at Arrojo in New York City.

How to: Pull your hair into a tight ponytail that rests at the crown of your head. Make sure that the hair at the base of your neck is pulled back as tightly as possible. Next, backcomb your ponytail to make it messy and bring out more texture, Malarkey explains. Wrap the backcombed hair around the base of the ponytail loosely and use hairpins to secure the messy bun. Finish by applying hairspray along your hairline to pin down those baby hair flyaways.

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Half-up braid

If you’re determined to wear your hair down even when the mercury soars to new heights, a great solution is a half-up style. To dress up the look, opt for a delicate French braid to pull the front part of your hair back. Tie the ends into a top knot, which is super trendy and boho chic. “I would recommend this look for an event or date night because it looks intricate, but only takes about 5 or 10 minutes to complete!” says Malarkey.

How to: Using the high arch of your eyebrow as a guide, section off the top of your hair. End at your crown so that you can still see where the bun will be so it’s not at the very top of your head but a little farther back. Clip the hair away, close to your neckline, to allow you to work cleanly; then start a French braid at the front of your hairline. “Work back until you reach your crown and then secure the braid with an elastic,” Malarkey explains. “Wrap the ends of your hair into a small bun at your crown and pull on the strands of your braid to loosen it and add volume. “Unclip the rest of your hair and show off your natural texture. These styling tips for curly strands might change your life.

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Dutch braid

If you’re looking for something effortless with a Boho vibe, that will stay put throughout the day or evening, this Dutch braid is a classic style to try. “I love this look for a summer outdoor wedding because it has the versatility of looking formal or casual depending on how loose you make the braids,” says Malarkey.

How to: Split and section your hair down the center and then pull it into pigtails just behind the ears. On each side, section off three strands for braiding and work your way back until you meet the end of the strands. Secure with an elastic and repeat on the opposite side. “Pull the pigtail braids over your head, wrapping them around like you’re beginning a knot, and secure with bobby pins so you’re hiding the ends,” says Malarkey. “Spray with hairspray to protect against humidity, and pull out small pieces around face.” Pro tip: If your hair’s on the shorter side, follow the same steps but wrap the braids at the nape of your neck for a cute updo. “I also always recommend braiding as tightly as possible, and then pulling the braid apart once it is secured with an elastic,” she says. These are the style rules for people with fine and thin hair.

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Headband braid

This creative style is achieved without the use of a headband—your hair serves the purpose of pulling back the rest of your strands! “This look is great for the beach because it pulls your hair out of your face, but allows you to still rock the loose waves the ocean water leaves you with,” explains Malarkey. If you have bangs, this is an ideal hairstyle for you, as it allows you to pull them back as part of the braid.

How to: Starting from the front of your ears, section your hair over the top of your head. Clip the back section away so you have a clean area to begin creating the headband. Start braiding on your non-dominant side. “For a tighter result, braid the strands under versus over to give you more tension and a raised cornrow effect,” suggests Malarkey. Once you’ve completed the braid over your head, complete the tail of the braid and secure with elastic. You can either tuck the tail behind your ear and wear as a statement or pin it at the nape of your neck to hide the braid’s tail. “Unclip the back section of your hair and apply dry shampoo or sea salt mist to bring out more volume and add a beachy texture.” This is the one product you need for perfect beach waves.