Hair Styles for Dirty Hair: For When You Just Can’t

Sometimes you just can’t wash your hair, so it’s important to have a few hair styles for dirty hair days in your repertoire.  Whether you just need to have a few styles that are good effortless go-to’s or you’re trying to avoid wearing post workout sweaty hair all day, these styles will save you time and energy.

Hair Styles For Dirty Hair

Faux Under Cut

This one is great for when you want to look like a little extra.

Hair Styles for Dirty Hair Days

With a sleek braid on one side, and curls on the other, you can totally hide the side of your hair that lacks volume.  It’s a good idea to part your hair on the opposite side than what you’re used to, that way your hair has a bit of lift.  For the side you leave down and curled, dry shampoo is life.  This dry shampoo is my favorite because it doesn’t leave any white residue behind in your hair.  But no matter what dry shampoo you love, you should make sure you’re getting the most out of your product by following these steps.  Let’s take a look at this hairstyle done in a few different looks.

Hair Styles for Dirty Hair Days

The photo above is a style done two days post washing.  The curls are soft and fluffy because there isn’t much product buildup yet.  See below for the same style done even further after a wash.

Hair Styles for Dirty Hair Days

The curls are less soft looking and more dense due to excess product.  I could have teased them and brushed them out a bit for a softer look, but I kind of liked it, so I went with it.  Brushing out my curls would have also risked losing them because I have fine hair that was weighed down with product buildup.  Take a closer look at my hair on this day.

Hair Styles for Dirty Hair Days

I parted my hair lower, toward the ear, and away from center, so more hair falls over the part hiding the side braid.  Where you part it is up to you and your preference.  I like to part it off my natural part because it lifts my hair and makes it easier to achieve volume.  If you struggle with not being able to push off washes due to excess product and oil buildup, this post I did on pushing off washing your hair is a must read.  Extending time between washes not only will help rescue damaged hair (which is why I have to do it), but it also allows more flexibility in your schedule.  I can’t be the only woman out there who has skipped a trip to the gym because I wouldn’t have time to wash my hair.  I don’t have to do that any more, now that I have my hair on my schedule.  Now I just skip the gym because I’m lazy.

Love the look, but wondering how it’s done?  It’s really much much easier than it looks.  Remember, I’m lazy.  The caveat to this style is that you need to know how to do a french braid to get the exact look.  Simply pulling your side part into a tight slicked back pony will do the trick too if you’re short on time or not up to par on your braiding skills.  Not only is this a fairly easy style that looks overly complicated, it also takes half the time to curl your hair when you only have half of it to do.  See it step by step below.

Faux Undercut Tutorial:

Shop Recommended Hair Products For Dirty Hair Days:

Faux Hawk Updo:

This style is very versatile with minor tweaks.  Pulling the curls back further on the crown makes this style more closely resemble something like a french roll, whereas leaving the curls closer to the forehead lends itself to more a more funky mohawk look.  See it below in a few different variations.

Hair Styles for Dirty Hair Days

The above look shows curls closer to my forehead for a fun sassy take on an updo.  This look is so easy, it’s basically fool-proof.

Hair Styles for Dirty Hair Days

I toned the look way down for a wedding in Venice by simply scooching the curls back on my crown.  The wedding was at the end of our trip.  Completely exhausted, I wasn’t up for a high maintenance do.  After running through Venice in heels in the rain for 30 minutes to make it to the wedding on time, I was glad I had opted for this hairstyle.  I could not have shown up to the wedding more sweaty and though the rain stopped for a bit, the humidity was dreadful.  My hair may look slightly sweaty, in the above look, but for being too tired to wash it and rained on, I think it’s probably the best option I could have had on that day.  Running in heels and the humidity would have certainly gotten the best of any other style.

I’m not kidding when I say that this is one of the easiest hairstyles I have ever done.  If you have mastered a basic ponytail, you can do this one!

Faux Hawk Updo Tutorial:

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5 easy alternatives to washing your hair.
Slicked Back Pony Tail

Never underestimate the impact of a slicked back ponytail.  This simple hairdo is an easy solution to a heavy product day.

Hair Styles for Dirty Hair Days

I didn’t provide a tutorial for this one because I think most women know how to do this one.  Pony tails are a necessary right of passage for women.  If you’re struggling with lumps in your ponytail, be sure that to start you are using a good boar brush.  Mason Pearson is pricey, but known to be the best of the best, so I included it and a few cheaper alternatives below.  After your pony is secure, use the right tool to get rid of bumps.  Getting rid of those pesky lumps is actually pretty easy.  Take the end of your rat-tail comb or anything smooth and similarly shaped and slide it through your hair dragging the bump flat; it will lay down with the rest of your hair.  For this trick, I’ve also used a chop stick, a spoon (in a pinch), the end of a skinny makeup brush… things around my hotel room, but the easiest tool is the end of your comb.

Shop Boar Brushes and Combs:

Half Up Pony/ Top Knot

This style is definitely the style of the moment.  Get on instagram and I bet you can’t scroll past a few photos without seeing the half up top-knot on a celeb or blogger.  Any style that affixes the hair on your crown to keep you from touching it and to keep it from moving as one greasy unit (gross, I know) will get you through a heavy product build-up day.  I’ve experimented with this look out of necessity.  The hair around my crown gets the most exposure to the environment and has been bleached and dyed along with the rest of my hair, so it looks the worst.  Great.  The hair everyone can see looks the worst.  Hand to forehead, I have struggled with this for the better part of a year and I don’t think I will ever bleach my hair again!  I’ve twisted it back and secured it with hair spray and bobby pins for a more formal look and done the top-knot for casual days.

Hair Styles for Dirty Hair Days

The casual look is pretty easy if you have the right pony tail brushes.  I have to do a little teasing of the ponytail because the hair on my crown is shorter (not intentionally, but due to breakage).  Teasing it helps me to achieve the top-knot look with my thin, fine hair.  I draw the hair on my crown back in a pony, secure it with a rubber band and then tease the ponytail before I twist it down and secure the bun with hair spray and bobby pins.

Hair Styles for Dirty Hair Days

I didn’t provide the tutorial for this one because you need to play with your own hair to decide what looks best.  The shape of your head and jaw line will determine how much hair to pull back or leave down.

When all else fails, wear a hat!

Shop my Favorite Hats:

What’s your best go-to advice for dirty hair days? (Besides wash your hair!)

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Kate Thakkar

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