15 Voluminous Hairstyles That Never Fall Flat on Style

15 Voluminous Hairstyles That Never Fall Flat on Style featured image
Aaron J. Thornton / Stephane Cardinale / Getty Images
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Straight hair has its perks. For starters, it’s perfect for slicked-back buns and sleek ponytails. However, when you want a full and thick look, a voluminous hairstyle is the way to go. Volume used to be associated with big, over-the-top styles—think heavy teasing and lots of hairspray. But today’s looks are more refined. There are many different voluminous hairstyles to choose from. Instead of a billowing bouffant, try a bouncy updo that’s retro and romantic. Or, if you prefer to wear your hair long, you can opt for soft waves with cascading layers and subtle volume throughout. Even short hair can embrace the look, thanks to blunt cuts and texturizing products.

Regardless of your length or texture, there’s a voluminous hairstyle for you. Ahead, we tapped experts for their advice on the best to try and their tips on how to get the look.

Featured Experts

  • Gretchen Friese is a trichologist at BosleyMD
  • Danielle Priano is a celebrity hairstylist
  • Sarah Potempa is a celebrity hairstylist and the co-founder of The Beachwaver Co. 
  • Shab Caspara is a trichologist and hair growth expert
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Disco Curls

Crimped hair has survived several cycles of beauty trends. You may recall the micro-fine crimped styles that ruled the ’80s and early 2000s. Fortunately, today’s version of crimped hair is much more tame. The freshest way to wear the style is disco curls, as seen on Blake Lively. Falling somewhere between a crimp and a tight curl, it feels less contrived than its predecessors. Achieving disco curls is especially easy for naturally curly textures and requires minimal upkeep. To keep your look fresh, trichologist at BosleyMD Gretchen Friese recommends using a lightweight dry shampoo after doing the initial style. “This will help absorb oils and keep your hair voluminous throughout the day,” she says.

Photo of Blake Lively with voluminous curly hair
Roy Rochlin / Stringer/ Getty Images
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Messy Updo

Fact: There is beauty in a messy updo. The top bun is one of the most common styles that is easygoing and simple to achieve. But it can also look elegant when positioned just right and paired with loose tendrils. This style uses a simple fluffy bun and billowy bang to create the appearance of fullness. If your hair texture skews more fine than thick, try using rollers to create volume before pinning it up. Next, let a few tendrils fall loosely around your bangs to frame your face.

Photo of blonde woman wearing a messy updo
Daniel Zuchnik / Getty Images
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 Tousled Pixie

Short hair can be easily lifted at the roots, and a textured pixie cut adds a lot of dimensions. To style, celebrity hairstylist Danielle Priano recommends applying a mousse to damp hair, then blow dry using your fingers to lift the hair. Then finish with texturizing spray for added lift.

Photo of short-haired woman wearing yellow sunglasses
Raimonda Kulikauskiene/Getty Images
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Layered Bob

Layers are a stylish accompaniment to any haircut and the bob is no exception. They add texture and built-in definition, making styling a breeze. Shorter bobs—think chin-length or just above the shoulder, as seen here on Ayo Edebiri—often benefit from a bit more volume at the top to help balance the look. “Using a round brush while blow drying and texture spray like SexyHair Big Fun Raiser Dry Texture Spray ($24) at the roots will help create lasting volume,” says Priano. To finish, the celebrity stylist recommends adding a light mist of touchable hairspray to ensure your style stays intact.

Ayo Edebiri with a short bob and pale pink dress on the red carpet of the Emmy Awards
Evans Vestal Ward/NBC via Getty Images
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Beachy Waves

Tousled, loose waves are a great way to make long, thin hair look and feel thicker. To create the look, celebrity hairstylist and co-founder of The Beachwaver Co. Sarah Potempa suggests sectioning the hair from top to bottom to wave the underneath layers first. She explains that this will create more volume and ensure that your waves last. Before going in with your wand, it is important to protect your hair with a good heat protectant. “Great Barrier Heat Protectant Hairspray ($28) is a nice option because it shields your hair against heat and delivers a light hold,” she adds.

blonde woman walking with long wavy hair
Edward Berthelot/Getty Images
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Voluminous High Ponytail

Over-the-top ponytails are back, big time. Whether you’re searching for a quick style to protect your natural curls or a look in between washes, a ponytail is a one-stop shop. Pro tip: Invest in a quality option, like Bellami’s The Ponytail ($195), with enough length to create several different hairstyles.

Sarah Jane Crawford wearing a high ponytail on the red carpet
Mike Marsland/WireImage/ Getty Images
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Midi Wolf Cut

Layered cuts are a great way to give your hair the illusion of volume. “By design, layers create movement and texture, which help make the hair appear fuller,” says Priano. This might explain why the wolf cut has become one of the hottest haircuts. This look depends on the layers falling just right, so be sure to research a stylist known for their scissors and cutting skills. Ideally, the layers should frame your face and drape softly around your jaw and shoulders.

Kaia Gerber posing on the red carpet in black dress
Miikka Skaffari/Stringer/ Getty Images
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Headband Hairstyle

A bouncy blowout only lasts so long. Instead of donning a ponytail on the days between washes, why not consider a headband hairstyle? Simple and chic, it keeps the hair out of your face without losing volume.

Kelly Rowland poses on the red carpet with a headband and voluminous hairstyle
Rich Polk/Getty Images
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The ’70s Shag

A shaggy haircut isn’t the easiest to pull off. It’s edgy and thrives on unfussy, low-maintenance styling. Though it appears effortless, it does require the bare minimum of upkeep to ensure it looks modern. Trims and regular haircut maintenance are at the top of the list. “Aim for a visit every three to four months to keep the cut fresh, and be sure to wash your hair every two to three days to rid it of buildup, oils, and product,” says Priano.

Miley Cyrus with blonde 70s shag hair on the red carper
Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic/ Getty Images
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Birkin Bangs

On the fence about bangs? Take a cue from trendsetter and supermodel Emily Ratajkowski. Her bold Birkin bangs and long layers have just the right amount of volume to turn heads.

Emily Ratajkowski posing on the street with long brown hair and bangs
Christian Vierig/Getty Images
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Wash-and-Go Natural Curls

Wash-and-go styles are a simple, elegant way to show off your natural curls. Yara Shahidi is no stranger to the style and lets her curls shine, whether on the screen or the red carpet. To help your curls look their best, use a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner and a lightweight curl cream to add bounce and shine.

Yara Shahidi with short coily hair on the red carpet
Aaron J. Thornton/FilmMagic/ Getty Images
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Soft Waves

Big, bouncy curls are a no-brainer for volumizing long hair. But a softer version can have a similar effect. Lengthy waves and light layers add subtle volume while creating an effortless style. Friese notes that your strands should have some weight at the bottom to add the illusion of thickness. Most voluminous hairstyles focus on adding height but don’t always balance out. She explains that to achieve the best look, you need both. “Root-lifting products, a volumizing mousse, and a round brush go a long way in styling your look. After washing, focus on lifting the hair at the roots while drying to volumize the layers throughout the crown,” she says.

Woman with long, soft, wavy hair posing in front of orange background
Stephane Cardinale Corbis via Getty Images
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Blunt Bob

A blunt bob is one of the coolest ways to wear the classic cut. It’s also ideal for fine hair. According to trichologist and hair growth expert Shab Caspara, the cut instantly makes short hair look fuller and more voluminous. “Ask your stylist to cut a blunt line at the bottom, avoiding any layers, to make your hair appear full and thick,” she says. In between visits, get creative with barrettes, headbands and hair accessories to create a unique style.

Woman with short bob wearing sunglasses and hair clips
Kirstin Sinclair/Getty Images
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Boho Braids

Boho braids have all but taken over the internet. The popular protective style features knotless braids, wavy ends, and soft tendrils to create a free-flowing look. The result is a beachy feel that mimics the effect of loose waves, adding fullness and density without frizz.

Photo of woman in black dress with long braids
John Nacion/Getty Images
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Curve Cut

Sleek, sexy and subtle, the curve cut is the perfect haircut to add just a hint of volume to your look. The secret to nailing the look lies in the C-shaped layers, but as Caspara notes, you can enhance the shape and create volume with the right wash-day products. “A thickening shampoo and conditioner, such as those in the Biotera Thick and Full collection ($26), can enhance every strand and increase fullness.”

Natasha Lyonne with short and straight red hair
MICHAEL TRAN/AFP via Getty Images

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