How to Wear Our Three Favorite Hair Looks from Milan

Runway hair can be an infuriating thing. Designers tend to opt for looks that are either avant garde and completely inappropriate for normal life, or an unachievably flawless "everyday" hairstyle that takes 3 hours and a head full of extensions to recreate. This is why I'm a fan of so many Redken backstage looks. Because they're a commercial brand whose goal is, ultimately, to sell product, their hairstyles are often more realistic. Or, if they're not, Creative Consultant and lead stylist for many shows, Guido, translates it all for real girls. Here is our guide to the best hair from Milan Fashion Week Spring 2013.

Retro Pin-Ups at Dolce & Gabbana

Retro Pin-Ups at Dolce & Gabbana Spring 2013

Super posh, the Dolce & Gabbana girl was a bit more buttoned up for Spring 2013 in beautiful, classic styles that were a bit retro, with a pinned up hairstyle to match. 

"The updo today is not really a twist, not a knot, and it's all about the scarf and working around the scarf," Guido said. "In my mind it's how a Sicilian woman would just quickly pin her hair up and then tie on a scarf. You can still see the hairline which is what keeps it from looking too severe, and there's a little bit of height but its not too exaggerated. It's a very light, summery look, taking some inspiration from the sixties with a little Riviera feeling, but it's not pastiched." 

This look obviously is going to require longer hair, at least shoulder length. Here's how to recreate it:

Apply Redken aerate 08 all-over bodifying cream-mousse from roots to ends to create some volume with a little texture when you blow dry. This seems like the kind of step you can skip, but often this kind of product application is the difference between a so-so and a more perfected look. Blow dry your hair straight back so that there's no part. Tie on a silk headscarf folded about two inches thick, leaving about an inch of hair from the hairline, and knot the scarf as seen on the bottom, to the side. The last step takes a bit of creativity. Guido says to pin hair up into a rough updo that's almost a twist or a knot, and works with the hair length and type, and pin it with open fasteners (the bobby pins that aren't squeezed shut at the end). Because of this artistic license with the updo, if you're not as adept with such styles you might want to save this one for when you're getting your hair professionally styled. 

Low Messy Knots at Bottega Veneta

Low Messy Knots at Bottega Veneta Spring 2013

The low, messy knot at Bottega Vaneta is a lot less precious and easier to try yourself. As long as your hair is long enough to pin back at the nape of your neck, you're good to go. It's a great style for those with face-framing layers.

"The look at Bottega today is very soft and pretty, center-parted with a dry texture and loosely knotted with a few wisps that escape. The inspiration is a little 70s and also Victorian," Guido said.

For a super-easy start, rough dry hair with a diffuser and create a clean center part. Apply Redken powder grip 03 mattifying hair powder at the roots, and then gently backcomb random pieces. Gather your hair into a low ponytail at the nape of your neck and tie it with an elastic. Then backcomb the ponytail (Guido recommends a boar-bristle brush) and twist it into a low, messy chignon and pin with a few pins. Leave some wispy pieces out of the style in the front. Guido finished with powder refresh 01 aerosol hair powder/dry shampoo particularly around the crown for added dry, airy texture.

Boyish Bangs With a Twist at Prada

Boyish Bangs With a Twist at Prada Spring 2013

The style at Prada is definitely the edgiest we're attempting, and it works best for women with bangs or short layers in the front.

"The collection is very sophisticated, yet designed to be wearable for a woman in today's times, and Miuccia wanted to 'break the mold' of the hair to match the clothing in this same way," Guido said. "So we incorporated the idea of the woman being a little bit boyish. Designers always like when a girl's got character, but when you pull an updo like this twist straight back in front it immediately looks very elegant, so adding the wispy bangs helps to break it up a little bit."

To get the look, apply Redken thickening lotion 06 all-over body builder to slightly damp hair and roughly blow-dry. Smooth hair with a boar bristle brush and spray with quick tease 15 backcombing finishing spray, concentrating on the roots, to give hair texture, grip, and slight height at the crown. Then lightly brush again. Gather your hair up in the back and form a French twist shape by beginning to twist at the crown of the head and then rolling in. Instead of tucking in the ends like with a traditional French twist, leave the ends flipped up over the forehead to appear like bangs and secure the twist with pins. Spray the entire style with forceful 23 super strength finishing spray to maintain the shape and set the style.