6 Steps to an Effortless Top Knot

The messy top knot is a on-trend style seems so effortless, but isn’t always so simple to do, especially if you want a nighttime-ready—rather than just rolled-out-of-bed—look. Here are five easy steps from Butterfly Studio Salon senior stylist Stacey Guerra to master it.

Step 1: Load Up on Dry Shampoo

Good news here for fans of second-day hair: This is one style you can accomplish sans shampoo. But you will need a lot of its distant relative, the always-reliable dry shampoo to get your strands ready. According to Guerra, a little grit and dirt in your hair helps to get the perfect, no-frills top knot, which requires as much dry shampoo as you can load up on in the morning.

Step 2: Create Your Regular Knot

Think of this as stage one of two of your total top knot look. Just do a top knot as you normally would (we like to pull hair back in a pony tail, twist into a bun, then secure with another elastic on top of head) and wait for the day to work some magic.

Step 3: Add Volume and Texture

Before your night out, release what Guerra refers to as your “work knot” from the day, shake out hair by flipping your head over and mussing up with your hands to create volume and texture. “The product will have prepped the hair and controlled the day’s oils.”

Step 4: Mold It Out

Next, take a fine-size amount of molding paste (Guerra recommends Oribe Rough Luxury, $36), between your palms and rub through your hair.

Step 5: Finish and Flip

Follow with hairspray for grip and a shiny finish , then flip hair back over.

Step 6: Take It to Night

Recreate your morning knot again, but this time, place it more forward, toward the front of your head. “On the crown is more for a day look, whereas more forward is nighttime-ready!” Guerra says.