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With the overwhelming amount of images on Pinterest alone, finding the perfect wedding-day hairstyle can be quite a daunting task. So we asked hair guru Guido Palau — creator of the always gorgeous looks at top runway shows like Valentino and Dolce & Gabbana (seen above) — to divulge his top tips for getting a hairstyle you’ll absolutely love.
1. Stay true to yourself.
How do you wear your hair every day? (In a ponytail? Blown out? Half up?) Narrow your search to reflect those types of styles — that’s how you’ll feel most comfortable on the wedding day. “You want to see the bride being her prettiest self,” Guido says. “And brides are beautiful when they’re relaxed.”
2. Err on the side of simple.
“The bride should stand out — not her hairstyle,” Guido says. “Be cautious of overdoing it. Take your lead from a more subtle, understated aesthetic, which will ensure your wedding photos never look dated.”
3. Show off your best features.
Use your hairstyle to accentuate your favorite physical traits. “If you have a long swan neck, for example, make sure your hair is pulled back, maybe at the nape of the neck, to highlight that,” Guido says. Your hairstylist can help examine your features and alter a hairstyle to suit you.
4. Keep it soft.
“The perfect bride is effortless, sensual, and feminine,” Guido says. You can use your hair to achieve this: Keep a few wisps out around the ears and face, or loosen a chignon by having your hair touch your ears. “A simple bun, like the ones at Dolce & Gabbana, just get charming the longer you wear them,” Guido says. “If the hairline falls out a bit, it’s pretty. If you didn’t have these little stray wisps, it would change the whole look — it would harden it.”
5. Consider a braid. “Braids have so many connotations with femininity and fairytales that make them desirable,” Guido says. Not to mention their versatility: They can be messy, soft, romantic, or sleek, and they definitely don’t have to look perfect. “Braids are on the runway, red carpet, and real women — they’re a way of putting your hair up without looking severe, and it seems like you put a bit of thought into it,” he adds. “You just can’t go wrong.”
6. Personalize it.
Pick a flower from your garden, a favorite piece of jewelry, or perhaps your grandmother’s brooch and work it into your hairstyle — it will add a beautiful, intimate touch. Valentino has used sea shells; Dolce & Gabbana has used red roses and gold coins, among other items.
7. Snap plenty of pictures at your hair trial.
Before settling on the final hairstyle, take photos from all angles to ensure it’s photogenic all the way around. (Wedding photographer aside, you know your friends and family are going to be blowing up your Instagram hashtag!)