20 Best Hairstyles for a Beach Wedding

Don’t stick your head in the sand. Wear your hair with some beachy flair by using this ultimate guide to becoming a beautiful beach bride.

By The Zola Team

Couple kissing
Photo by Zola

The First Look ✨

  • An updo or a low bun offers elegance and functionality, which is perfect for keeping your hair out of your face on the beach.
  • Soft waves and curls are stunning looks that require little maintenance and are perfect for beach weddings.
  • Finally, braids and twists can be customized to compliment any look, and are super easy to take care of on the beach.

It should come as no surprise that the bride is the center of attention at any wedding. After all, why else would you wear such a stunning wedding dress? But there's another element to your wedding look that needs your attention—and that's your bridal hairstyle.

While most brides hire a hairstylist, there are instances where your budget or wedding location may get in the way of a standard hair prep appointment—and that definitely rings true for a beach wedding. As a beach bride, there are certain factors you'll need to keep in mind (like wind, sand, and how your bridal hair will hold throughout the day), but there is zero reason why you can't have the perfect bridal look—whether that's glam, boho, trendy, or beachy and breezy—for your big day.

Whether you're throwing an epic destination wedding or your beach wedding venue is closer to home, there are plenty of ways to maximize your hair's potential. Let's take a look at some must-know hair ideas that would be perfect for a beach wedding:

1. The Updo

This is one of the most common types of wedding hairstyles for a beach setting. A practical method of keeping hair out of your face, beach wedding updo hairstyles ensure that strands of hair won't be blocking that beautiful smile, or getting in your eyes. Updos are also super versatile; you can go with something more structured for an elegant look, go with a messy updo for something more casual, or incorporate elements to add visual interest to your hairstyle (like braids or twists).

Best Hairstyles for a Beach Wedding Photo Credit // Dolce Photography

2. Soft Waves

If you want to wear your hair down, soft waves can be a great option. Simple and elegant, soft waves have a romantic feel—and they also give off serious mermaid vibes, which is exactly what you're going for with a beachside wedding. This look is also super simple to create; just curl sections with a larger curling iron, spray with hairspray to lock into place, and voila! Wedding hair done. Soft curls are also great in the wind; because the curls aren't tightly woven together, the wind can pass freely through your hair—so you'll get a more intentional windswept look (as opposed to a tangled mess).

3. Beach Waves

If soft curls feel a bit romantic for you, beachy waves could be a great alternative. These waves are a bit messier and textured than soft waves. Instead of using a curling iron to curl hair, stylists wrap individual pieces around a curling iron or wand—and then spray the hair with sea salt spray, which not only adds hold, but gives this look its signature, piece-y texture.

4. Braids and Twists

From pigtails to side ponytails, whether you wear them up or down, braids and twists will almost certainly be a part of your wedding look. Especially in a beach setting, braids and twists come in handy for keeping your hair tamed and secured. Have fun experimenting with different types of twists or braids (like dutch braids and french braids) to add texture.

5. Curls

If you've got natural curls, why hide them? This beach wedding hairdo is a great fit for brides that have naturally curly hair. If you want to keep things simple, just add styling product to lock curls in place and you're good to go—or, if you want to up the glam factor, add an accessory (like fresh flowers or a beaded headband).

6. Curly Updo

Naturally curly hair looks gorgeous down. But you can also pin it up into an updo for a perfect beach wedding look! Try incorporating twists for added texture—and keep curls in place with plenty of bobby pins.

7. Classic Chignon

When it comes to bridal hairstyles, there's nothing more classic than a chignon. This hairstyle, which pulls hair into a knot at the nape of the neck—then twists hair from the front of the face over the knot to create the classic chignon shape—is a must-try for brides who want to capture classic elegance on their wedding day.

8. Side Chignon

If you want a fun twist on the classic chignon, try moving the knot a few inches to either side of your head.

9. The Low Bun

If a full-on updo or chignon feels a bit too formal for your bridal look, the low bun is the perfect solution. This bun hairstyle allows you to tie your hair back and keeps everything in place—but, because it's simple, feels a bit more casual and laid back than a more elaborate updo. The low bun also accentuates the cheekbones and helps the natural contours of your face to shine—so if you want to pull focus to those gorgeous facial features, this hassle-free hairstyle is a great way to do it.

By bringing the hair down, the low bun offers a natural lift to all facial features, enhancing your gorgeous face with an elegant and hassle-free hairstyle.

10. The Messy Bun

Because a messy bun is textured, piece-y, and laid back, it's a perfect option for a beach wedding. Add texture to the hair with a curling iron or curling wand—then twist into a loose bun, either at the base of your neck or higher on your head. If a few pieces fall out, not to worry; that's the point of the look!

11. Braided Crown

Want to capture a romantic look for your beach day wedding hairstyle? Try the braided crown. This braided hairstyle incorporates all the hair into two braids (dutch braids or fishtail braids work particularly well)—then pins them to the head in a crown shape.

12. Braided Headband

Another option for incorporating braids into your wedding hairstyle? A braided headband! For this look, two face-framing braids are pinned across the top of the head to create a headband shape.

13. Half Up

Not sure if you want to wear your hair up or down for your big day? Get the best of both worlds with a half up hairstyle! Section the top half of your hair and pull it back (for example, into a twist or a topknot)—then leave the bottom half of the hair down. To dress up the look, make sure to add soft waves to the bottom half of your hair.

14. Half Up With Braids

If you want to add visual interest to your half up hairdo, try incorporating braids into the hairstyle.

15. Fishtail Braid

If a regular braid doesn't feel special enough for your big day, try a fishtail braid, which weaves hair together for a textured, laid-back look. And if you needed more reassurance that this is the perfect look for your beach wedding? This braid is also sometimes called a "mermaid braid."

16. Flower Crown

The ultimate boho hair accessory, the flower crown is a great look for a beach wedding. Pair it with loose waves and you've got the perfect look for walking down the aisle.

Best Hairstyles for a Beach Wedding Photo Credit // Hannah Bjorndal Photography

17. Natural

Your hair is beautiful exactly as it is. So, instead of forcing your hair into an elaborate hairstyle, try rocking your natural texture on your big day.

18. Textured Pixie

If you have short hair, there are certain wedding hairstyles that won't work for your hair length—but that doesn't mean you can't do something special! If you have a pixie cut, try adding texturizing product (like pomade) to add some drama to your 'do.

19. High Ponytail

Who says ponytails can't be formal? Gather hair into a high ponytail and pull out a few face-framing tendrils for a fun, breezy look that not only looks great, but will keep your hair out of your face during your beachside ceremony.

20. Cascading Side Ponytail

If you prefer a lower ponytail, try a cascading side ponytail. Add volume and texture with soft waves or curls—and let those curls cascade down your shoulder. It's elegant, it's romantic, and it's a gorgeous look for a beach wedding.

Don't Forget to Accessorize

Your beach wedding hair offers the perfect excuse to add some flair to your 'do. If you want to keep with the beach theme, something like a starfish hairpin would be great. Otherwise, xlassic hair accessories, such as a headband, beaded hairpiece, or tiara, are also excellent for keeping your hair in place at a beach wedding. Plus, many hair accessories are attached to a wedding veil, for those of you who are keeping things traditional.

While it may not seem like the elements and your hair are a good duo, these hairstyles are the best starting point for identifying the perfect hairstyle for your beach wedding. Whatever the wind brings, you and your hair are sure to look stunning on your wedding day, especially as you walk down the sand and into the arms of your forever partner.

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