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Easy up-dos; Need a new look? Take your pick from some of the latest, ultra-accessible styles ready for testing this weekend.

SHOW PONY "The ponytail is without a doubt a big look this season," says Akin Konizi, HOB Salons international creative director.

"Moving on from last winter where it was all about the mid-tail, this season is going to be focused on the pony at the nape of the neck."

This chic modernist look is at its peak with sleek, glossy hair so aim for straight, smooth locks before styling, like here at Balmain.

Konizi says: "Best worn simply polished, team the pony with a low side parting or opt for a more statement finish with all the hair brushed back from the face."

PERFECT PLAIT Dave Bassett, salon manager and lecturer at the College Ystrad Mynach, says plaits, like here at Ashish, are a huge look this season.

"A plait is such a simple and easy look to create which is one of the main reasons why it's a key trend at the moment," he says.

"It's an extremely versatile hair style as you can adapt it to look perfect for both a casual day-look or a super glamorous evening.

"First prepare the hair by shampooing and drying, however, don't smooth the hair as textured hair looks better.

"Then part the hair at the centre and, working along the hairline, plait the hair - any ends that come loose leave out. Secure the plaits by fastening them and spray."

BEAUTIFUL BEEHIVE Darryl Smith at Kerton Smith in Canton, Cardiff, loves this retro look with a soft, modern twist, as seen at Umberto Gianni.

"They key is to use your velcro rollers to set the hair into the beehive shape - use a bit of hairspray before you apply the rollers," he says.

"Then use a tail comb to back comb the hair, and a soft Mason Pearson brush to smooth it out.

"You also need grips and plenty of hairspray - if you want a really on-trend look, make sure you pull bits of hair out around the style for that soft, falling out style."

WAVY TWIST "This look, a twist on top of the head, is very, very cool, though a little trickier do do," say Trystan Lewis of Vadatelier in Cowbridge, of the pinned up do at Paul Costelloe.

Step 1: Start with semi-clean hair and load your hair with styling product to help you to work with it.

Step 2: The first stage of this look is to create a high ponytail. Once in position, transforming the basic ponytail into something more elaborate is a lot easier than you think.

Step 3: If your hair is naturally straight, use curling tongs or hair straighteners to put a bend or curl into your hair so it can easily be manipulated into interesting shapes.

A good trick at this point is to get super fine hairnets that match your hair colour as closely as you can. Divide the ponytail into three or four sections of the same thickness and wrap each section into a hairnet so that you have a sausage of hair.

Step 4: Once the hair is inside the hairnet, it can be manipulated into some awesome shapes, swirls, waves and peaks.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:May 15, 2012
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