Building my bridesmaid side bun with pins and pads

photo courtesy of Christine Chung

My dear friend Tania got married on Saturday, and as a bridesmaid, I had the treat to get my hair done. And I mean done. Now as a beauty editor, I receive salon blowout invitations multiple times a week (although I actually have time to take advantage of these generous services only once every couple of months at most). But like a red carpet updo, wedding hairstyling is way more intense than a mere blowdry. Can you guess how many pins and shoulder pads (yes, I said shoulder pads) went into this simple side bun?

When you look at a celebrity image or read a red carpet hair tutorial on “how to get the look,” it’s usually a pretty straight-forward step-by-step involving hair curling, teasing, and pinning up (if it’s an updo). In order to protect the privacy of their clients, hairstylists rarely reveal all the architecture that goes into building the real hairdo, from extensions and supportive inserts to the mountain of pins (no, five strategically placed bobby pins and a spritz of hairspray is not enough for this epic side bun).

The mastermind of this side bun (inspired by hairstyles previously worn by Zoe Saldana and Lauren Conrad on the red carpet) was my friend Christine from Billion Dollar Hair. Using four clip in hair extensions, four black shoulder pads, and 69 bobby pins, she created this beautiful masterpiece side bun that stayed in place all night long (the wedding didn’t wrap up until around 11pm and there was a lot of dancing). If you’re in the Los Angeles/Orange County area and need special event hairstyling (wedding, prom, reunion—basically anything where you want to look super amazing), I highly recommend Christine. She will not give you ’80s prom hair or make you look like you have a helmet head. I did my own makeup for Tania’s wedding, but I could never have done this side bun on my own. Sometimes you just need to call in a professional.

p.s. Christine did the bride, mother-of-the-bride, officiant, and other bridesmaids’ hair as well and finished early!

p.p.s. My bridesmaid’s dress is from J.Crew‘s wedding collection. At first I was a bit skeptical of the graphite gray chiffon, but the neutral color went beautifully with our pastel bouquets.