10 Festival Hairstyles That Were Made for Social Media

10 Festival Hairstyles That Were Made for Social Media

Written by Dahvi Shira

Your SPF is packed, your entourage is in tow, and whew, your hair looks are locked—it’s festival season! As we embark on arguably the most important time of year, we’ve got to come prepared. Whether you’re Ferris wheel-bound for Coachella or you’re shining your best pair of cowboy boots for Stagecoach, we tapped some amazing hair stylists to bring you festival season hair trends you’ll love, regardless of your festival of choice. Keep reading to find your new fave!

About the Experts:

Alexandria Paget is a hair stylist and eSalon lead colorist.
Tara Simich is the founder and director of Mermade Hair.
Roxy Reaves is the owner of Coastal Curl Salon in Oakland, CA.
Michelle Schindler is the owner of Seven and Satin Salon in Beverly Hills, CA.
Joanne Starkman is the founder and president of Innersense Organic Beauty.

Textured Bubble Braids 


Is it safe to say bubble braids are now synonymous with music festivals? What flower crowns once used to be seem to have transcended into this extremely easy look. “Not only is it super cute, but it’s perfect for staying cool in the summer with your hair up,” says Alexandria Paget, hair stylist and eSalon lead colorist.”

She advises starting with a middle part and taking inch sections at the start of the hairline to leave a section for face framing. Then comb the rest of the hair back and bring all of the hair up for a high ponytail on each side of the head. This will leave you with two high pigtails. Place another ponytail about an inch to an inch and a half down, based on your hair length. Continue this down the ponytail until you reach the end, but be sure to leave the ends out. Go back through each section and pull the “bubble” apart to give the hair more texture and volume. Finish off with a light-hold hairspray to keep in place, like the eSalon Stretch Hairspray.

Cowgirl French Braids



Shouting out braids as a festival trend is old news, but cowgirl French braids? This is one unique twisted look.

Paget suggests sectioning your hair down the middle and applying eSalon Velvet Primer (or some kind of hair balm or pomade) to smooth out strands before you style. Start at the top of each section and create inch-wide sections. Split each section in half and twist these pieces backward over top of each other. With each twist, add in another small section of hair. This will leave you with a “French twist.” Continue this twist until you reach the back of the ear. Pinch the hair off right at the back of the ear and comb out the rest of the hair to transition into a normal braid.

Fluffy Braided Pigtails



“This look is fun and flirty, combining both braids and pigtails,” Paget says, instructing users to section hair down the middle. Then, at the start of each side, start with inch sections and start a reverse French braid down the back of the head. To do this, you’ll place each strand under each other rather than over each other like a normal French braid. Continue this to the nape of the neck and secure it with an elastic. Go back through the braid and slightly pull each side of the braid out to add volume to the braid. The ponytails can be left curled or straight. Finish off with a light-hold hairspray to keep in place, like the eSalon Stretch Hairspray.

Baby Braids



It’s hard to talk about festivals without mentioning a trendsetter like Hailey Bieber. “Her effortless glossy baby braids from a few years ago are still discussed by the internet to this day,” says Tara Simich, founder and director of Mermade Hair.

To achieve the look, Simich suggests applying Mermade Hair Thermal Mist evenly on each section to protect your mane from the heat. Clamp and hold each small section (two fingers full) with a barrel waver for five seconds for soft waves. Simich suggests the Mermade Hair Double Waver—and we’re of course big fans of our Mane 1.25” Jumbo Hair Waver Styling Attachment. Regardless of whatever tool you choose, you’ll want to start closely at the root and do a simple three-strand braid, braiding away from the face and securing with clear elastics. Apply Mermade Hair Super Serum for extra glossy glazed waves.

Swirly Ponytail



“This will make everyone look twice,” she says. “Everyone will think you’re the coolest person at a festival. The secret is applying a rich hair mask like the Mermade Hair Repair Mask all over your hair, then using a thick bristle styling brush and putting the hair up in a ponytail. Then pick some random front pieces or edges out with a tail comb. Swirl them with the Mermade Hair Gel Wand, and finish off by braiding the ponytail and adding a shot of hairspray for extra hold.”

Glam Cowboy Waves



Whether you love it or try to avoid it, 2024 is the year of the country western cowboy.

Simich suggests embracing your inner Beyoncé by taking small sections with a one-inch curling tong, like our Mane 1” Curling Iron Styling Attachment, and then holding the curls together, and brushing them out with a thick bristle styling brush. Whatever you do, “don’t use a comb,” she says. “It will make the curls look too defined.”

Once you’ve nailed your waves, next comes the part that makes any festival look complete—the cowboy hat. This year there are more options than ever, so whether you want to go full-on yippee-ki-yay, or something more cowboy-adjacent, we’ve got you covered. Ardene is our go-to for affordable festival fedoras and the like (they also have a bunch of other festival-friendly clothes and accessories). If you’re looking to invest in a statement piece you can wear through festival season and beyond, Gigi Pip is home to the cowboy hat. With so many styles and colors to choose from, these well-made pieces are a surefire bet for any occasion. Lastly, don’t sleep on Rancher Hat Bar, a rising brand that actually schedules you for a call with one of their designers to craft the cowboy hat of your choice.

Half Bun



Cute, fun, and hair out of the face. Sounds like the half bun to us!

To create the half bun, Coastal Curl Salon owner Roxy Reaves suggests securing the hair in a half-up ponytail using an elastic band. Next, use the remaining ponytail to make a messy bun, twisting it until it coils, and wrapping it around the base of the elastic band. Secure it with bobby pins. Complete the style with a light mist of Innersense Beauty I Create Finish—and you’re festival-ready!

Side Braids



The best thing about braids is their versatility. Whether you want to make a statement or keep things simple, there’s always a way to do it with this popular hairstyle. “Baby side braids are a festival favorite,” says Seven and Satin Salon owner Michelle Schindler. “Two simple braids frame the face for a cute look, plus they’re easy to create.”

To get this look, she suggests sectioning out the face frame of the hair by using an inch or so of hair per side. From there, you’ll complete a three-strand braid on each side. “I love finishing the ends of the braids with either a bow or a bead,” Schindler says.

Dragon Braid



Long gone are the days when males leave the done-up festival looks to their girlfriends. As evidenced at L.A.’s pre-Coachella KCMConnect Swim Club Gifting Suite, guys were clamoring to get their hair done, too.

Innersense Organic Beauty founder Joanne Starkman said the dragon braid was her favorite look to create among men who popped by the event. “It’s intricate, elevating the traditional braid to a whole new level,” she explains.

To create the dragon braid, she suggests creating a small section at the crown, which will be the beginning of the braid. Divide the section into three equal parts, just like a traditional braid. Begin the braid in the traditional manner, and cross the right strand under the middle, then the left under the new middle strand. Add hair to the outer strands. As you continue braiding, pick up small sections of hair from the sides of the head and add them to the outer strands before crossing them under the middle. Continue to braid and add hair. As you work your way down, continue adding small sections of hair to the outer strands before crossing them under. When you reach the nape of your neck or desired length, secure the braid with a hair tie or an elastic band. Gently pull on the sides of the braid to create the “dragon scale” effect, loosening it just a bit and giving it more volume.

Long and Luscious



Charli D’Amelio always looks adorable in our eyes, but for whatever reason, the long locks she sported at Coachella in 2023 took her look to a whole new level. The effortless waves represent the carefree feeling of the festival, and the ease of a wig or long clip-ins keep the look from taking too much time or expertise to achieve. Master those effortless waves with a little help from our Mane The Three Way Multi-Use Flat Iron.

On the hunt for even more stylish braids to wear through festival season and beyond? We’ve got your looks here.