The ballerina bun, a hairstyle favored by classical dancers for centuries, has evolved and grown a life of its own off stage. Surely you've worn its more casual cousin, the topknot, after the gym or on no-wash days? No matter how messy (or gimmicky) the bun gets, the hairstyle's roots are always in practicality: it keeps hair off your face, takes only a couple minutes to achieve, and always looks polished.
No one knows the powers of a perfect ballerina bun like, well, a ballerina. It's necessary for keeping their hair secure (and not distracting!) through all their fouettés and grand jetés. It's practically a job requirement to know how to do a solid updo. That's why we tapped Lauren Lovette, principal dancer at the New York City Ballet, to show us how she gets the classic look. She plays the Sugarplum Fairy in The Nutcracker, which requires her to wear a tiara anchored by a high bun.
Turns out, Lauren's got a ton of hacks you'll definitely want to remember. Learn the step-by-step ahead, and once you master that, learn how to get her makeup look, too.