I Like Big Buns and I Cannot Lie: A Tutorial

How to create the perfect bun for class and stage.

May 2018 – Growing up as a dancer, one learns many valuable lessons; lessons on hard work, dedication, perseverance, humility…and how to create a flawless bun. The task itself sounds daunting, especially to moms (and dads!) preparing for that first day of ballet. I too found it difficult to get hairs perfectly in place, but I came out the other side a self-proclaimed expert.

What You’ll Need:

  • Brush
  • Hairspray
  • Bobby pins
  • Hair ties
  • Donut bun
Step one: Dirty it up.

Freshly washed and dried hair is soft and slippery, making it difficult to stay in place. I recommend a dry shampoo, sea salt spray or regular hairspray to add some texture. Note- you don’t want tangled hair, just a little extra support with product.

Step two: Tie it back.

Determine the desired height of the bun and tie hair up with a decently thick hair tie. If you or your dancer has thicker hair, plan on using more than one hair tie. My favorite brand is Goody: Ouchless Hair ties in Black.

Pro tip: Lay down on the bed and let hair fall over the edge. Smooth and make sure all “bumps” are out with hands or with a “boar bristle” brush. Then tie back. This takes less time and is easier on the arms- especially for those with long hair.

Step three: Donut please.

Not that kind of donut! Actually, buns are now easier than ever to create with a little thing called a donut bun. You’ve seen them virtually everywhere. They come in an array of colors and sizes for all hair types so that they can blend in naturally. These spongey donuts have been a game-changer in the dance world.

How it works: Pull pony tail all the way through donut bun so that it is around the base on the pony tail. Next, brush hair around the entire donut bun so that it is completely smooth. Secure with hair tie (or two depending on the thickness of the hair). Circle the remaining hair around the donut and secure with bobby pins as you go.

Alternate Solution: If you have fine or shorter hair, a donut isn’t completely necessary. Skip step three, twist your pony tail and spray with hairspray. As you circle your twisted tail around the base of your hair tie, bobby pin as you go to secure in place.

Step four: Spray it!

Make sure your hard work lasts by spraying your beautifully crafted bun in place.

And just like that, you have mastered the perfect bun! Like most things, practice makes perfect, and if you follow these tips I promise success. Soon you or your dancers’ hair will be turning heads at the barre.

Thanks for stopping by,


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