10 hairstyles for long-haired travellers

Has this ever happened to you?



Not to worry! I love having my hair open and flowing about but especially on travel days it just gets plain annoying. When I meet up with a friend or a relative I haven’t seen in a while, their opening line is like 90 % of the time either one of these two:

  1. “Haha, funny to see you in Finland for once.”
  2. “Wow, your hair has got super long!”

I’ve been a part of the #longhairdontcare club my whole life so I’m constantly trying to find new ways to tame my mane, especially when I ditched hairspray years ago and now only use dry shampoo. Here are some of my trusty hairstyles – some of them might require some practice, but I’d rather spend ten minutes in front of a mirror in the morning than plucking out stray hairs from my mouth all day (sadly, it still happens. What’s up baby hair!)

1. The half bun


Kitties!! Barcelona, Spain

Effort: 5 min

Great for: nights out, sightseeing, hiking

It’s one of those styles that I always said I’d never do, and then I tried it and never wore anything else ever again. It’s just such an easy, simple way to get the hair out of your face while still letting most of your hair be wild&free.


2. The pigtails

Windswept on the Baltic coast in Hel, Poland

Effort: 5 min

Great for: travel days, hiking, sleeping at the airport

If you know how to braid your hair, you know how to do it twice. Two pigtails is my ultimate low-maintenance hairstyle for when, you know, I want to have a hairstyle. It’s also one of the few hairdos that can handle the stress of a travel day without breaking apart, unlike a regular single braid. (Trust me – I have too much experience on overnight layover. One day I will be rich enough to afford direct flights.)

3. The double buns

What happens to focus when you ask your boyfriend to take a picture. Sapa, Vietnam

Effort: 10 minutes

Great for: travel days, sports

There have been so many trends that when I first see them, I’m like uhh, why would you do that to yourself. And after a few months when the hype has passed and the style is slowly but surely fading into the “so last season” territory, I usually try it on and fall headfirst into the pit of forgotten trends. I guess I’m a reverse hipster? This was one of those styles but you know what, those double buns are damn cute and cool as heck, and with enough bobby pins they can withstand most sports activities. (Tested in zumba. Worked. Was pleased.)


4. The Halo

Dorset, the UK

Effort: 10 min

Great for: sports, hiking, sightseeing

It’s the hairstyle that made my boyfriend call me a loaf of bread. It’s not an easy style – in fact I’ve never managed to do it as perfectly as I did the first time, what’s up with that? If you do master it, though, it’s perfect for getting all that hair out of your face but also being a bit more showy than a regular bun. Might be good for travel days and sleeping at the airport as well, but only if you can get it to stick well (and don’t mind bobby pins poking you in the neck the whole time).


5. The side-do

London, the UK

Effort: 1 min

Great for: sightseeing, nights out

My hair likes to defy laws of physic and instead of growing towards the ground, they choose to head right over my face. If I try to leave my hair completely undone, the slightest movement will have half of my face covered. If you want your hair to look loose but still be rid of that hair on your face, just tuck it behind your ears with a few bobby pins.

6. The double French braid with loose ends

Dinner’s coming soon, makes me happy. Siem Reap, Cambodia

Effort: 10 min

Great for: hiking, sightseeing

I guess you’ve guessed by now that braids are my game? This is actually one of my favourite travel hairstyles since it gets the hair out of your face and neck (how good does that even feel when it’s +40 degrees out) but still looks like I’ve got my hair down, which is cool because that’s how I like to wear it. You’re gonna have to learn how to do French braids and then learn to do it twice, but I promise, it’s gooood.


7. The messy bun

The Berlin Wall, Germany

Effort: 3 min

Great for: travel days, hiking

What can I say? The messy bun is a classic low-maintenance hairdo. It’s probably the easiest thing to do with your hair – putting my hair up on a messy bun is pretty much the first thing I do after I get home.

8. The formal bun

Cham Island, Vietnam

Effort: 5 min

Great for: sightseeing, sports

The more formal bun is actually my go-to hairstyle when I go to work as a housekeeper. Since you’re not pulling all your hair up but instead trying to maintain some form in it, it requires more bobby pins than a regular bun, but I also like it better since I feel it suits the shape of my face better.

9. The low ponytail

Come at me, I am thou master. Phu Quoc, Vietnam

Effort: 1 min

Great for: travel days, sightseeing, sleeping at the airport

I hate regular ponytails. Because my hair is so long, putting it up on a ponytail actually feels like the weight of my hair is pulling my scalp and I can never get it on comfortably. Besides, I just don’t have a face that goes well with ponytails (how is this even possible??). The low ponytail, however, is a quick and easy fix if you need to get your hair out of the way like right now.

Variation: double French braids with a ponytail at Åland Islands, Finland

10. The hat hair

Eye see you. Athens, Greece

Effort: 0 min

Great for: literally anything

If you travel without a hat, you have already failed. Hats are the best thing you can have. It’s the ultimate bad-hair day saviour and great for covering up the last five days of roadtripping. Beanies all the way for autumn and winter; snapbacks during the summer.

Lover. Kalaw-Inle trek, Myanmar

This post may not be my usual jazz… But lately I’ve noticed I’ve talked about a lot of sad, depressing things like getting robbed and the death of the Great Barrier Reef, so hey – why not do something easy and nice? Let me know how you liked this post and if you’ve got any tips of your own!

5 thoughts on “10 hairstyles for long-haired travellers

  1. luin tämän jutun eilen ja seurauksena näin viime yönä unta, että olin lähdössä johonkin reissuun kolmeksi kuukaudeksi, mutta en ollut vielä pakannut yhtään vaikka lähtö oli muutaman tunnin päästä. vähän alkoi jo paniikki iskeä. mutta pistin tukan vaan kahdelle tuommoiselle nutturalle kuten kohdassa 3 ja sitten olinkin jo ihan tyytyväinen ja valmis 🙂 tuo kolmonen oli siis jollain tavalla varsin vaikuttava kampaus.

  2. I don’t have long hair anymore, but did most of these traveling when I did. The one thing I really miss is a side bun that I called the “con bun” because I developed it while doing gaming conventions for work. It was the perfect thing for three (or more) days past a wash when my hair was about 50% dry shampoo. And I really liked the way it looked with my side shave.

      1. No dry shampoo? That’s terrible! Somebody should ship you some. Although.. I had to majorly back off of it, I was using it to abusive levels and I think it was causing some breakage for me due to my hair being overly dry.

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