Get Ready for the Red Carpet with Five Award-Worthy Hairstyles for Women


We’re well into the entertainment awards season with stunning celebrities getting as much attention for their gowns as they do for their art. Just as important as “who are you wearing?” are the hairstyles that complete the red carpet look. We know you can be just as glam as these Hollywood hopefuls, so we’ve put together five of the top award-worthy hairstyles to inspire your next event look. 

Straight and sleek


A straight, sleek style makes hair look flawless. A perfect cut and the right styling products make all the difference. 

Here’s how to get the look for your next evening out. Start with the cut. A freshly cut bob, lob or just-trimmed long hair are all great nominees for sleek hair. After a wash, gently but thoroughly towel dry. Use our Smoothing Gel or Shine Serum on damp hair to prevent frizzies and flyaways. These products resist humidity and protect hair for styling with heat. Now that your hair is prepped, dry with the dryer facing down and brushing hair from the roots. Use a flat iron for smoothing into silky strands by dividing into manageable sections, and again, work from roots to the ends of the hair. A light mist of spray will seal the look for the night. 

Loose waves


Whether big or small screen awards, one of the most popular trends we’re seeing this year is loose waves. While they may take on different levels of formality from appearing beachy and effortless to vintage, not-a-hair-out-of-place, celebs are hitting the waves.

This day-to-evening style offers terrific versatility since it works for shorter to long lengths. Just like with a straight, sleek style, loose waves require styling products designed with your endgame in mind. 

Use our styling mousse on damp hair to add volume and shine. Depending on your timing, you have a couple of options for next steps:

  1. If you’re washing at night, split the hair into sections, twist or roll into large curls and pin to airdry overnight. Braiding works, too, depending on the look you want. In the morning, remove the pins or braids, and style with your brush or fingers. Spray to set the look. 
  2. If you’re looking to speed up the process the day of your event, dry using a brush or wide tooth comb to be sure you’re getting the mousse evenly distributed throughout. Then work with a 1” or larger curling iron to start creating your waves after sectioning the hair and lightly spraying with Shaping Spray. Wrap the hair around the barrel from near the bottom of the section, but be sure to leave the ends free, if you’re looking for a more casual style. You may also want to wrap sections in different directions to get a more natural appearance. Separate the curls with your fingers and finish with spray. 

The updo


The updo tends to bring automatic sophistication to any occasion. That makes it a timeless go-to for entertainers when stepping out in front of award night cameras and fans. 

For intricate updos, you’ll likely want to make an appointment with your stylist. If you’re comfortable—and patient enough—to experiment at home, here are a few tips to get you started on a more simplistic, loose chignon. 

Begin with a middle part and comb the hair behind your ears, gathering it at the neck like a low ponytail. Starting at the nape, twist the hair all the way to the end. Use one hand to coil the twist into a bun and the other hand to hold it in place. Use a couple of large pins to secure the bun, and make any adjustments to the positioning or shape before pinning it in place with more bobby pins. For a looser chignon, use a tail comb to pull the hair out for more volume or to free up some pieces. Be sure to top with Finishing Spray so your updo will stay up as long as you do on your night out. 

The ponytail


Ariana made the ponytail glam, and a long list of other celebrities this year are changing the humble ponytail into something sensational. With or without bangs, part or no part, high or low, on day 1 or day 3 since your last wash, the ponytail is quick, easy and flattering. 

Prep with spray. For a super smooth look, flat iron next. Depending on how tight or messy you like your ponytail, comb, brush or use fingers to pull the hair back or up. Consider using two hair ties or bobby pins inserted in an “x” at the base to give the ponytail extra lift and keep it from falling as the night goes on. If you want to hide the hair ties, leave a thick strand of hair loose for wrapping the base and pinning or tucking in. 

Don’t be afraid to be creative with a ponytail style by using techniques like stacking two ponytails and joining them for a fuller look, adding in small braids, or using a sleek style at the scalp then a full, texturized look at the bottom.



Each one of the red carpet styles above can turn even more heads by adding accessories. From the return of wide-brimmed hats at music’s top awards show to elegant barrettes at the Globes, unique accessories got our attention. 

When choosing accessories to dramatize your appearance, consider your hair length and texture and the piece that works best with your hairstyle. Options include: 

  • Adding a jeweled or metallic barrette or pin to hold back one or both sides of hair from the face
  • Using a similar, wide barrette to hold a ponytail or to top off your chignon or other updos (just like Emily Blunt at the SAG Awards) 
  • Winding a cord or ribbon into braids and updos to give more visual interest and depth to the style
  • Donning a sparkling headband with hair down or in an updo to frame the face
  • Popping an embellished hairpin into the base of a ponytail or side of an updo completing the look

Girls’ night out, romantic dates, dances, weddings and more, make one of these celebrity styles your own. 

We’d love to see your event looks, so share your pics @fantasticsams on Facebook and Instagram.

Need more red carpet hairstyle inspiration? How about a new, dramatic change? Check out your local Fantastic Sams Cut & Color -- a full-service, "no-appointment-needed," hair salon with over 900 convenient locations. Find a Fantastic Sams Cut and Color Hair Salon near you. Real. Fantastic.

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