The Best Hair Looks From The 2016 BAFTAs

The 2016 BAFTA Awards served up some serious hair trends. We’re talking trendy topknots and swoon-worthy hair accessories and the whole shebang. What with the Grammys and Oscars up next, and the ongoing Fashion Weeks, there is enough style inspiration to keep even the most discerning fashion lover busy for weeks to come.

Let’s jump right to it, shall we? I’ve picked my seven favorite looks from the evening. Enjoy!

Alicia Vikander


Alicia Vikander is known for keeping her looks on the Red Carpet rather subtle, so her sophisticated makeup from the 2016 BAFTAs has everyone talking. I, for one, would like to draw the attention to her hair. Side swept hair pulled over one shoulder is a great way to let a busy pattern on your outfit shine through, while also bringing the drama with the hair. The asymmetrical look adds just a touch of edginess and is also a neat way to show off jewelry. We usually see these styles in extremely slick, straight hair so I love the wavy, voluminous shape that Alicia has going on.

Julianne Moore

Julianne’s coppery mane is one of the most instantly recognizable in Hollywood, and while it is absolutely stunning in its usual loose form, I must admit the topknot makes for a very attractive style as well. It’s true that celebs usually tend to experiment with fashion and style a lot more than most regular folks –it comes with the territory, I suppose– but even so, many A-listers usually find a look that works for them and tend to commit to it. So, whenever a major star with a signature look breaks the mold, it does make for an interesting experience.

Julianne’s topknot has this adorable, playful vibe- I think most people spend so much time getting their chignons and topknots to be absolutely perfect that they forget to have fun with the look. And sure, the bun in most of its iterations is something of a formal hairstyle, but there is no reason you can’t enjoy both the process and the creation. I love how Julianne’s hair has been secured into this perky, almost pointy bun. It’s neat without being overly structured and it takes years off the face. It works wonders at emphasizing the jawline and cheekbones, and don’t you just love it when different elements of your look play well together?

Kate Winslet

Kate Winslet is, without a doubt, the Queen of the Red Carpet Updo. Nobody does a chignon or a French twist quite like Kate, which is why everyone was surprised to see the English actress break from tradition and sport loose waves for a change. Nominated for her performance as Joanna Hoffman in the Steve Jobs biopic, Kate looked absolutely stunning with her hair styled in loose, shoulder-skimming waves.

The waves have an almost piece-y structure to them: there is a lot of definition going on here, and it really works because it doesn’t compete with the volume or the body or cause the hair to lose its bounce. Kate’s hair color is also marvelous: the spun-gold base transitioning at the mid-lengths into strawberry blonde tips is genius for spring-summer, while the darker roots help tie the look together. If you’re hesitant to try dark roots in light hair because it is “so 90s” do reconsider: darker roots allow you to tie your hair in with your brows/lashes, are a great way to add some depth at the crown and can help make the transition to lighter hair more natural. Not to forget, you don’t have to rush for touch-ups as often. Dark roots in light hair were once considered tacky, but as long as you take good care of your hair and make sure it is healthy and shiny and well styled, the color shifts are completely acceptable. They work exceptionally well in beachy waves and other tousled styles, adding a touch of effortlessness to the look.

Laura Bailey

Longtime readers of my blog will know that few things make me as happy as braided hairstyles on the Red Carpet. While it is true that we usually get to sample some exciting braided hairdos during the Fashion Weeks, we don’t see nearly as many braids on celebrities walking the carpet as I would like. And while there is a lot to be said for the crown braid and the fishtail braid, it’s time we saw something different.

Which is why Laura Bailey’s braided ‘do from the 2016 BAFTAs was such a hit. We have two braids moving from the front to the back, meeting close to the nape and flowing into a ponytail.  As with most braided hairstyles, this one will require some patience and practice.

Let’s deconstruct the look: we’ve got two Dutch braids, each starting at the hairline, roughly above the arch of an eyebrow and moving backwards. Braid each plait till the back of your head, stopping a couple of inches above the nape of your neck. If you want to create a slightly stiff, faux hawk like structure, bring the two braids close together at the back, creating a ‘V’ on the crown and then pin them into place where they meet. You can secure them with transparent elastic ties for extra hold. Then blend the two braids into one and continue till the nape, where you will then secure your hair into a ponytail. Conversely, you can also continue the two braids separately till the nape and then tie them together and secure your hair into a ponytail.

It’s a very tactile look, and you can play up the texture by tugging on the loops of the Dutch braids to flatten them out a bit. The technique –called ‘pancaking’– is useful for adding volume to braids, making them ‘sit’ more evenly and keeping them comfortable for longer wear. It is an especially neat trick if you have fine hair and need help adding volume, height and grip to your braided dos.

Rooney Mara

If updos are Kate Winslet’s signature style statement on the Red Carpet, ‘sleek and slicked back’ defines Rooney Mara to a T. Rooney’s personal style usually veers towards the ethereal, and she carries it off very well. There’s an element of pixie-meets-punk to her looks and the BAFTAs 2016 version of it may just spark off a major hair trend for 2016: the metallic hair accessory.

The thick, shiny headband is just the thing you need to vamp up even the simplest of hairdos. There is no way a stunner like that will go unnoticed and what’s more is, it will only take you a moment to pull it on. Whether you choose to jazz up a basic ponytail or add a little grit to a delicate braided bun, metallic hair accessories are going to be all the rage this year. Choose a silver piece for that chrome-plated, sci-fi chic vibe or a pewter or gold for some molten magic.

Just remember to make like Rooney and keep other aspects of the look subtle: you don’t want anything on/ near your face to compete with the headband, so we’re talking low-key makeup and minimalistic earrings and necklaces, if any.

Saoirse Ronan

Saoirse’s been having a great year so far and her styling is really on-point. Coupled with the pale pink lipstick, her ponytail from the 2016 BAFTAs has this distinctly disco vibe to it.

The look is very simple, and easy to style as well, but don’t let that fool you: often the easiest hairstyles are the most effective. The trick to taking the girl-next-door hairstyle to the girl-in-the-spotlight look is in making an actual effort to truly style it as a look, instead of just cobbling it together.

Instead of any old ponytail, what we have here is a messy, voluminous ponytail set off with a pompadour-esque accent at the front. You can easily use one of those ‘bumpit’ hair puff accessories or make the pouf on your own, either by just gathering a little hair together and pinning it into place or using a hairspray and teasing up a storm. Saoirse’s style is a lot more natural, and you will only need to backcomb about an inch of your hair to recreate the look.

When you’re done securing the ponytail, do remember to take a section of your hair and wrap it around the base to hide any hair ties or bands you may have used.

Sarah-Jane Crawford

Loving the curls and the color: the deep mahogany lightening into a russet-brown is deliciously dark and vampy, and yet breezy enough as we make the transition into spring.

If you’re sporting a shoulder-length bob (or shorter) and want to try out a retro-inspired hairdo like Sarah-Jane’s, there are two secrets to getting the look right. One, you must pin the hair back on one side for that typical vintage glam effect. And two, you must get the curls just right. Simply going at it with a curling iron is not going to be enough.

So, how do you create that cloud of springy curls? I recommend using foam rollers overnight for long-lasting curls (bonus points for heat-free styling). Wind up the rollers only as high as your ears: retro curls typically start at the mid-lengths and you want to keep the top relatively smooth. If you have longer hair and can’t possibly manipulate foam rollers like so, a small curling iron can also do the trick.

When you remove the rollers, run your fingers through your hair very gently: you want to tackle any tangles and snags without actually breaking the curls. And now, for the secret step: take a one inch section, pull a very tiny segment of it very straight and then push the rest of the section back upwards against the pulled bit. Repeat all over the head. Then, cup larger sections of your curls in your palm and scrunch them upwards. These two steps create a lot of volume and the whole effort basically akin to backcombing your curls by teasing them against the hair shaft.

Once your curls are ready, create a high side part and flip some hair over while pinning the other side back behind the ear. You can use a bejeweled clip for some extra glamour. Remember to spritz on a stronghold hairspray to keep the look in place.

Next up: the best looks from the 2016 Grammys.