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Nothing can make or break a look like hair accessories. Slip on the right headband and you’ve got an instantly updated, stylish ‘do—but add the wrong, over-glittery barrette? Total late 90s disaster. And since hair decor is one of this season’s biggest beauty trends, getting it right is essential. Here’s exactly how to wear fall hair accessories—and the common mistakes you should avoid.
Do: Leave that stretchy, elastic Adidas headband in your gym bag. This fall, take advantage of the phrase “hair decor” and go for something more opulent. Pearls and tasteful gemstones are more than OK, but make sure you’re pairing it with a tousled, messy, carefree look like a topknot, deconstructed bun, or just something with texture. Surprisingly, Claire’s actually tops headband game. We love the brand’s Gold Pearl and Rhinestone Zig Zag Headband ($9.50, claires.com) for messy buns.
Don’t: Avoid anything with exaggerated bows (bye, Blair Waldorf) or that perfectly matches your outfit. Another big no-no? Wearing your headbands with hairstyles that are too uniformed and perfect. Free the fly-aways!
Do: Make it interesting. The idea here is to pick either printed fabric or material with a textured finish to act as a contrast to your hair. In fact, your ponytail should hold some texture, too—so grab some hair gel to make it look a little wet. To copy this slicked back look, try picking up some leather roping, like Walmart’s Braided Faux Leather Cord ($4, walmart.com.) You can also fake it with a few silver hair ties.
Don’t: You can’t rely just on just the material to hold together the look. If you really want something that’s going to stay all day, tie off your ponytail first with a clear elastic band and then the hair accessory.
Brooches or Floral Barrettes
Do: Anything that looks elaborate (or looks like it belongs in a treasure box and/or a florist’s shop) should be paired with piece-y, messy hairstyles. Take that as your number one rule for wearing broach barrettes! The L. Erickson Round Jewel Swarovski Crystal Tige Boule Barrette ($60, nordstrom.com) may be a little pricey, but it’s a no-fail option to dress up any disheveled hairstyle.
Don’t: Resist the temptation to go overboard! Pick one piece and place it well. Pin it about two inches away from the hair part or near the hair tie of your bun or ponytail.
Minimal Hair Clips or Ponytail Holders
Do: Pick something that has clean, geometric lines and that really vibes on the ’70s. You can use these types of hair-ties or barrettes in a half-up hairstyle, to pin up all your hair into a cute coif, or to secure a ponytail. But remember, day-old hair is better because accessories tend to slide right out of freshly washed hair. Since clips that secure with hair sticks tend to be a bit tricky, we opt for easy-to-appy barrettes that have ponytail holders attached to them, like ASOS Slick Circle Hair Band ($9, asos.com)
Don’t: You can’t overthink these styles; they thrive on being a little undone. Wear your natural texture and spritz in some dry shampoo for a tiny boost of volume.
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