The time spent getting ready for a masquerade can be as much fun as the time actually spent at one. Masquerades are filled with mystery, drama and intrigue, and the image requires meticulously-applied frills, make-up and costumery. Your hair should be no less elegant. The hairstyles from various historical eras, and the movies that portray them, provide a wealth of inspiration.
Cinderella's Wicked Stepsister
In the movie "Ever After," you can find countless gorgeous hairstyles. The style worn by the evil stepsister at the ball is perfect for a masquerade. Separate a small section of hair just above the ear on either side, and leave these sections loose; gather the rest of the hair into a ponytail. Use half the ponytail to create several small braids (throw in a couple five-stranded braids if you feel ambitious). Create a bun with the other half, then coil the braids around the bun, using hair clips to secure everything into place. Come back to the two small strands and create a rope braid with each. Cross these braids over the bun and tuck them underneath to hide the ends.
This style is worn by Keira Knightley's character in the movie "Pirates of the Caribbean." Create a pompadour in the front by gathering the top front section of your hair, combing it smoothly above the head, twisting it, then folding it loosely over the top of the head. Pin this in place so it creates something of a "poof." Gather the rest of the hair into a ponytail. Twist three-quarters of the hair into a loose bun and pin it securely. Take the last quarter and create a spiral curl with a curling iron.
Chinese Braided Up-do
For an exotic jewelled look, part the hair in the middle and create two braids (one at either side of the back of the head). Make the two braids as close together as possible. Poke a hair stick (preferably a jewelled one) horizontally through the two braids at the back of the head. Coil the two braids around the stick, starting by crossing them underneath, pulling them up and behind the stick, and crossing them again. Continue crossing the braids in this way until the length of hair is completely coiled at the back of the head. Poke a second hair stick through the braids to secure them, but diagonally this time.
Classic French Accented Look
For an elegant braided look that calls back to the Renaissance, part the hair in the middle and split the hair in two. Leave two small sections of hair free from the rest, just behind the ear on either side. Create two French braids (one on either side of the head), leaving the two small sections free. Coil the two French braids around each other at the back of the head to create a braided bun, pinning it securely in place. Braid the two loose sections. Drape the right braid underneath the bun, allowing some length to hang loose, and coil the rest clockwise around the braided bun. Repeat on the opposite side, coiling the left braid counterclockwise.
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