The Hottest Summer Hairstyles for 2012

Summer is upon us once again. You know what that means. It’s time to pack away the warm clothes and break out your summer wardrobe. It’s time to dig out the bikinis or bathing suits and perhaps stop by the salon for a bikini wax. It’s also time to take a look in the mirror and decide whether or not your current hairstyle needs a change. There are tons of great summer hairstyles out there to choose from. If you’re considering a fresh look for summer, we’ve got you covered.

What Makes a Good Summer Style

The best summer hairstyles don’t just make you look good but are just as functional as they are fashionable. No one wants to spend a nice summer day trying to get their hair looking just right. There are just so many better things you could be doing with your time. Here are some quick questions you should ask yourself before you start looking at summer hairstyles.

  • What is my hair type? Certain types of hair are harder to style than others and some styles only really work on certain types of hair. Knowing whether you have thick hair, thin hair, oily hair, dry hair or another hair type will help you find the perfect summer hair style for you.
  • What is my face shape? Knowing your face shape is just as important as knowing your hair type when you’re trying to find the best summer hairstyles for you. There are a lot of awesome summer hairstyles that only really work for certain face shapes. If you’re not sure what face shape you are or what styles compliment your shape, check out this article.
  • What do you need? Think about your lifestyle. If you’re a busy woman, you’re going to want a hairstyle that you can just wash and wear for those days when you’re running short on time. If you are the kind of woman that likes to go out and have fun but doesn’t like to spend a lot of time on your hair, you’re going to watch something fun and flirty but still low maintenance.
  • Is short hair right for you? There are a lot of great short summer hairstyles that can work for a lot of women but short hair isn’t for everyone. Take a little time to think before you make a dramatic change in your hair. Don’t be afraid to ask your stylist for advice. They want you to look good. Your looking good is good for their business, after all!
  • Is heat a concern? In some places, summers don’t really get super hot. In other places, that isn’t true. Heat can wreak havoc on your hair but it is also uncomfortable. If heat is an issue you may want to give serious thought to a shorter style for summer. You may also want to consider a hair treatment that repairs hair damaged by the heat.

If you decide short hair is right for you, we have a few great short summer hairstyles you might want to consider. If you’re going to stick with long hair, we have some great long summer hairstyles you can try out. Maybe you want to take a little off but not go completely short. Well you’re in luck. We have a few fun medium length summer hairstyles that should suit you. In other words, looking for a hot hairstyle for summer? We’ve got you covered!

Short Summer Hairstyles

Paris Hilton (image: Janet Mayer/PR Photos)

Bangs: One of the best ways to add a fresh twist to a classic short hairstyle is to add bangs. While bangs don’t work for everyone, almost anyone can pull off at least some kind of variation of the look. Whether you add bangs only to pin them to the side, choose whispy bangs, blunt bangs, short bangs or long bangs, you’ll add a little flair to any short hair style with this simple touch. Remember to ask your stylist what they think though. They might be able to help you improve on your idea.

Katie Holmes (image: fanpop.com)

The Bob: You can’t go wrong with the stylish and classic bob. The great thing about the bob is that it can be fairly versatile but it is also easy to maintain. If you don’t have time to mess around with your hair before you leave the house, run a brush through your hair and you’re good to go with the simple, no-fuss bob. Probably the greatest thing about the bob though is the fact that it can really be tailored to suit your face and to compliment your best facial features.

Emma Watson (image: healthyhair-tips.com)

The Boy Cut: A nice boy cut can be easy to maintain but can also offer style and versatility. Don’t be afraid of the boy cut! One of the reasons the boy cut is such a popular summer hairstyle is the fact that it’s easy to look after, can be dressed up or remain casual and it helps keep you cool on those hot summer days. This boy cut tends to come in and out of fashion every few years but this year it’s back and hotter than ever.

Michelle Williams (image: fanpop.com)

The Pixie Cut: Before I even start, I want to make one thing very clear. The pixie cut does not work for everyone. I, for one, could never pull off a pixie cut. If you have your heart set on it, ask your stylist what variation on the cut will work best for you. The biggest advantage of the pixie cut is that it is incredibly low maintenance, not an easy feat for a cut this stylish to accomplish. It’s also fairly versatile as you can dress it up for special events with hair accessories like a headband or demure barrette but it can also be left plain for more casual settings.

Dress Up Your Short Summer Hairstyle!

Evan Rachel Wood (image: stylebistro.com)

So you’ve chosen your cut but now you want to dress it up a little. Easy! There are lots of things you can do to make a short summer hairstyle a little more interesting. Try out these quick ideas for dressing up your short summer style.
Headbands or scarves: Headbands and scarves are a fantastic way to dress up a short style. Sit the band or lay the scarf toward the top of your head. This leaves the front of your hair loose and lovely while still dressing up the style. You can also choose to tie a scarf so that it is covering your hairline if you prefer. Choose something that has a fun pattern or is nice and colorful for a fun and flirty look.
Messy locks: A lot of people believe there isn’t much that can be done with short hair aside from adding a headband but that isn’t true. Messy short hair can look fabulous, even if you have to use a little product to make it happen. Put a dab of styling gel in your palm and work it through your hair from root to tip. Once you have the product in your hair, use your fingers to mess it up a little bit.
Make it classic: If the messy look isn’t for you, try going the other way with it. Again, you’re going to add a little product to your hair but this time you’re going to part your hair and smooth your hair over your head. You can use a side part or a center part. It really just depends on what you prefer. Just make sure you get the part straight.

Medium Summer Hairstyles

Nicole Richie (image: shorthairwithbangs.blogspot.com)

Bangs: Like with short hair, bangs can be a great way to add a little something extra to an otherwise bland hairstyle. The difference here is that you have a little more freedom to choose the perfect bangs for your style even if you’ve already gotten a medium length cut.

Heidi Klum (image: fanpop.com)

Layered: Layered hairstyles are probably the most popular option for medium length summer hair styles. A good layered style gives your hair texture and body but is still a style that doesn’t require a lot of maintenance. Layered styles are also fairly versatile, allowing you to work with your stylist to find the exact right cut for your face shape and hair type.

Jenny McCarthy (image: zimbio.com)

The Bob: Great for short hair and great for medium hair and mostly for the exact same reasons. A nice bob offers you options and versatility. It’s also fairly easy to maintain and can be altered depending on the occasion.

Dress Up Your Medium Length Summer Hairstyle!

Kate Bosworth (cupofte.blogspot.com)

All of the things you can do for short hair can be done with medium length hair but there are a few little extra things you can do with a medium length style to make it more interesting or to make it fit with your typical summer outings.
Ballerina Bun: The ballerina bun is a great option and you don’t even need to have a lot of length in your hair to do it. If there are sections of hair on the front or sides that are just a little too short to fit into the bun, you can either leave them loose for a casual look or you can pin them back for a more sophisticated look. This is also a great option you have bangs.
Loose Waves: This is an option that works for long or medium length hair. Wash your hair and then towel dry it. Work in a little bit of scrunching gel (available at most department stores or your local salon) starting at the roots of your hair and working your way to the tips until all of your hair has been evenly covered. Take your blow dryer, set it on the lowest setting and start drying. As you dry though, take sections of your hair and scrunch it up. The result will be beautiful but will require a misting of medium to strong hold hairspray depending on how cooperative your hair is,
Side Bun: This was my favorite option when I had medium length hair. Gather your hair to one side, twist it into a bun and secure it. All done! Simple, quick and stylish. You can add a neat hair tie to add a little more personality. You can also tease the roots of your hair and leave the top and sides a little loose before you put in the bun for a fun and casual messy side bun look. You can also do double side buns – one bun behind on ear and one bun beside the other – to add a little fun twist to what is becoming a very trendy look.

Long Summer Hairstyles

Selena Gomez (image: newfashionnetwork.com)

If you’ve decided to keep your hair long for summer, there are a lot of things you can do to make your long hair a little more summer friendly. Instead of talking about summer cuts for long hair, I’m going to focus on summer hairstyles for long hair, things you can do at home without seeing your stylist.

Mary J. Blige (image: eurweb.com)

Beads: Beads are a great look for summer because they have a very cool, very casual sort of summer vibe. I have just learned how to bead my hair so it’s currently my go-to look. It takes quite a bit of time but I think the result is worth it. You’ll need a wire (the wire out of a twist tie works fine) and beads. That’s it. Let me walk you through the process:

  • Bend the tip of your wire so it forms a hook. The hook must be big enough to hold a small section of your hair but still fit through the bead.
  • Slide a bead onto the end of your wire (the straight end, not the end with the hook).
  • Pull the wire through the bead and continue pulling until your hair is all the way through.
  • Slide the bead into position and continue to bead until you have all the beads you want in your hair.
  • Secure your braid with a small elastic. Silicone elastics work best.

You can do a lot with beads. You can either bead an entire section of hair, bead the ends of your hair, bead all of your hair (this will take a while) or just about anything else you can imagine. If you have trouble threading your hair through the bead, try bigger beads, decrease the size of your hook or try a smaller section of hair.

Penelope Cruz (source: becomegorgeous.com)

Braids: The great thing about long hair is the fact that you have the length to pull off a lot of styles short lengths can’t. Braids are a great example of this. While you can put braids in medium length hair you can put a wide variety of braids in long hair. I like ripping off the Bo Derek look and braiding my hair in a series of tiny braids. I don’t put elastics or beads on the end to the ends come undone just a little bit and add a funky, casual feel to what can be an overdone look. Bead work beads into your braid for an extra unique look. Just use the method we talked about above to thread a bead into the center section of your braid every so often.

Jessica Simpson (image: Frazer Harrison/Getty)

Buns: Like with medium length hair, buns are a pretty popular option for long hair. You can do a ballerina bun, a side bun, double side buns, a high bun, a messy bun, a braided bun, a double braided bun and a whole lot of other fun things. Buns are great because they’re easy to do, versatile and easy to maintain.

Jessica Biel (image: matrimoney.net)

Classic Pony Tail: Pony tails never go out of style and there’s a good reason for that. They’re simple, sleek and they help keep you cool when the weather gets hot. You can do a lot with a pony tail. You can dress it up with a fun hair accessory. You can rock a back-in-style side pony tail. You can wear a high pony tail or a low pony tail. You can keep it neat or make it messy. Versatile, easy and fashionable – nothing beats a nice pony tail for a summer hairstyle.

Gillian Jacobs (image: sheplanet.com)

Waves or Curls: Waves or curls make a great look for summer. Loose curls or waves make for a beautiful, romantic look. Tight curls are glamorous and sophisticated. If your hair doesn’t take a curl well, invest in a good styling or curling cream or gel. If you have color treated hair though, you’re going to need to be careful with the curling iron. Try a hair wrap product once a week to make sure you don’t try your hair out if you plan to curl your hair often.

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