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a downton-inspired updo

This looks incredibly complicated but I did this with my own two hands! It's a series of twists, knot-braids, and tiny ponytails tugged into a delicate twist secured with only two bobby pins. I wanted to share because it reminds me of those beautiful, effortless yet complex Edwardian hairstyles of my favorite show: Downton Abbey!! And sorry there is no photo guide along with the steps, or better yet a DIY video...but I'll try to make some sense of the steps below!

Step 1.  Split hair at a center part. Take two tiny top layers and tie into a "knot" (I learned how to do it here - it's easier than a braid). I did only two of these little knots. It does a great job of securing the front, especially if you have shorter layers here.

Step 2. Using little clear rubber bands, take the remainder of the hair and, going downward, tie bands to form little ponytails underneath each other. This will create 3-4 little ponytails on top of each other. Take the ends and flip inwards (exactly like this). You'll be left with one ponytail, as the ends of the previous ones are now underneath your hair.

Step 3.  You should start to see the intricate twist starting to form! Take the ends of your ponytail and form a braid. Secure with one last little clear band. The plait should be hanging loosely like a ponytail, towards the top of the neck. Take the braid and twist it into the rest of the twists above by simply tucking in loose ends. I have long enough hair to wrap it around 1-2 times. Hide all the hairs in the tail of the braid with bobby pins....I used two!

Ta-da! It's definitely a relaxed feel, not too tight or uncomfortable. And suddenly your hair is as elegant as Lady Mary Crawley. Use a light spritz of extra-hold hairspray and you should be good!

Takes about 5-8 minutes.

ciao, xo