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How to Get Pretty Hair in a Pinch

  • Nathan Martin

    Hair Disaster: Caught in a Downpour

    Speedy Style Solution: Two-Minute Topknot


    1. This sophisticated yet simple style is easy to pull off on the go (just find a mirror and you're golden). Simply flip your head upside down and gather your hair into a ponytail at the crown -- that's the trick to positioning the bun at the right height. Secure with an elastic.

    2. Take a one-inch section of hair from one side of the ponytail and braid it. Tie with a clear elastic like Ricky's NYC Snagless Clear Minis ($4, Repeat on the other side of the pony.

    3. Use a teasing brush to lightly backcomb the ponytail to add texture. Try Conair Slim Teasing Brush ($5, drugstores). Then twist the pony into a topknot and secure with bobby pins.

    4. Wrap the braids around the base of the bun and lock them in place with a few hairpins. Keep the mini Scunci Emergency Kit ($6, drugstores) in your bag so you always have pins, ties, and clips on hand.

  • Nathan Martin

    Hair Disaster: Your Third-Day Strands Aren't Dinner-Reservation Ready

    Speedy Style Solution: Wavy Half-Up

    1. Your lived-in hair will hold this style better than just-washed strands. Spray a dry shampoo like Herbal Essences Body Envy Dry Shampoo ($5, drugstores) directly onto your roots to soak up excess grease and add volume at the crown.

    2. To create natural-looking waves fast, loosely wrap two-inch sections of hair around a curling iron, but don't curl the ends. Alternate the direction you curl each section to give it an undone feel -- the more imperfect it looks, the better!

    3. Tease a small section at the crown and then pull back the top half of your hair and secure with bobby pins.

    4. For a romantic touch, slide on a skinny rose gold headband like Ban.Do Shine Tiny Headband in Rose Gold ($10, and let a few pieces of hair fall in front.

  • Nathan Martin

    Hair Disaster: You're Running from an Early Morning Gym Sesh to a Big Meeting

    Speedy Style Solution: Sleek Side Pony

    1. Use sweat to your advantage for a polished look. Make a deep side part with a boar-bristle brush, which is best for smoothing out bumps, and pull your sweaty strands back into a low side ponytail. We like Bumble and Bumble The Flat Brush ($95,

    2. Quickly run a flatiron over your hair to straighten any kinks. One that won't weigh down your gym bag or even require an outlet: CHI Smart Titanium Ceramic Cordless Styling Iron ($110,

    3. To add shine and tame flyaways, apply a dime-size amount of hair oil to your hands, rub them together, then gently run them over the top and length of your hair. Try Dove Pure Care Dry Oil Nourishing Treatment ($13, drugstores).