It doesn’t matter whether you were a ballerina at some point in your life or enjoyed Misty Copeland’s ‘A Ballerina’s Tale.‘ There’s no denying it: the balletcore aesthetic, like the quiet luxury movement, is sleek and sophisticated. With #balletcore gaining over 700 million views on TikTok, we’ve got a hunch that this look is here to stay for the long haul and will be one of 2024’s most defining aesthetics.
And while the great ballet slipper, body-hugging bodysuit, and darling hair ribbons are one of the most obvious ways to incorporate the dainty girlish style into your everyday routine, it’s the ballerina bun that’s got us on a chokehold and proven to be one of the easiest ways to get the balletcore look when you’re off the barre without feeling like you’re in a full-on ballerina costume.
Need inspo? You’ve come to the right place. Scroll on for our top 10 favorite, incredibly drop-dead gorgeous ballerina buns of the century.
The Classic Ballerina Low Bun
To recreate this ultra-sleek look, you’ll want to grab this GranNaturals Wide Boar Smoothing Hair Brush ($13 at Amazon) that allows for a smooth slicked back look and the Bumble and Bumble Straight Blow Dry Cream ($34) – for smoothing frizz and flyaways, protecting against heat styling and humidity and adding shine.
You can do it as either a side part or a middle part. Either way, the goal is to have a chic, slicked-back look that screams sophistication.
Classic Bun With A Ballerina Bow/Band
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The Balletcore Top Knot
Is it just us, or does this top knot feel quintessentially ballet? We love how this babe embraced natural texture, spent extra time styling her edges, and added a simple but natural-looking headband for a super-sleek finish.
Add some perfectly arched brows and a sultry ‘no-makeup’ makeup look to get an understated glamorous effect.
The Intricate Ballerina Top-Knot
Leave it to Gabrielle Union to show us how to do balletcore differently. This look relies heavily on playful placement, meaning you have to add more time for brushing and securing the bun towards the front of your hairline for maximum effect.
Half-Natural, Half-Braided Ballerina High Bun
If you’ve ever wanted to do a facelift, we want to give you a sleek and sophisticated non-surgical option: the half-braided high bun.
Just ensure the bun is tight and cutely slicked back so you only have to concentrate on blinking. Now, you can use your facelift cash for crucial stuff like chocolate, $$$ scented candles, and some Nordstrom goodies. ??
Ballerina Bun With Tendrils
Ballerina buns are typically slicked back to keep hair from dancers’ eyes as they grace the dance floor.
But since most of us don’t have the poise or balance to pull a ballerina move, you can choose to do yours differently by adding face-framing pieces for a softer, more laid-back look.
Low-Braided Ballerina Bun
You don’t always have to have your natural hair slicked back to achieve a beautiful ballerina bun. You can still get that sleek and sophisticated look with braids.
@freshlengths’ low-braided bun is drop-dead gorgeous and requires using a generous amount of hair oil like the Briogeo Don’t Despair Repair! Strengthening Treatment Hair Oil ($30) from the roots to the end for a lustrous and dewy finish.
Sculptural X Futuristic Ballerina Bun
Forget the classic slick-and-tie ballerina bun you know and love: 2024’s coolest and most polished option is the sculptural bun. It puts an architectural spin on what’s been traditionally regarded as a simple ‘do.
Just look at Simone Ashley’s here – isn’t it one of the most jaw-dropping hairstyles you’ve ever seen?
Voluminously Sculptured Ballerina Bun
You could also add voluminously sculptured off-duty braided buns to create an elevated day-to-night look like Oribe did here.
Studded Ballerina Bun
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If you want to add a touch of glam to your ballerina bun, adding glittering studs or pearls is the answer. Doing this not only elevates your look but also allows you to rock the balletcore theme more luxuriously and elegantly.
Twisted Ballerina Bun
Another way to achieve an elevated and chic ballerina look is by playing with how you create the bun itself.
To create a smooth surface like @taylortells here, start with some styling on damp, towel-dried hair. We love the Pattern Styling Cream ($28) since it helps nix flyaways and frizz to give a head-turning finish.
High Braided Bun
If you have extra-long braids, a high bun placed on the crown is the best way to keep your hair out of your face and make you look like a Queen. Gather your braids at the top and wrap them around to create a polished look before securing them with a scrunchie or thin elastic band.
Super-Smooth Sock Bun
Need inspiration for a royal, black-tie affair? Look no further than the classic sock bun. To achieve it, brush your strands into a sky-high, super-smooth pony. Insert the pony through the center to form a roll-it-down bun (kinda like a donut).
Smooth your strands over the bun and secure it with an elastic band. Leave a section out, then twist it around the base to cover the elastic.