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Hair Tips: Spiral Curls Dress Up A Mid-Length Bob Hairstyle


Elizabeth Banks Oceana Partner's Awards Gala Honoring Vice President Al Gore 10-05-07 All rights reserved

Actress Elizabeth Banks is a perfect hair model for medium length tresses. The actress who has made her reputation over the past ten years in a variety of films (Catch Me If You Can, Seabiscuit, SpiderMan2, The Baxter, The 40 Year Old Virgin) and TV roles (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Without A Trace, Scrubs) usually wears her buttery blonde highlighted strands chin length or a little bit longer.

Hair consumers with chin length or shorter hair sometimes express frustration at the lack of dressy hairstyles available to jazz up their styles.

Elizabeth showcased a gorgeous ringlet infused dressy hairdo at the World Premiere of "Smokin Aces". Her center parted medium length hairstyle was bursting with sass and sizzle and infused with shiny loose ringlets.

Part of the reason Elizabeth rocked this dressy hairstyle was because it worked beautifully with her highlighted strands.

Elizabeth's dressy hairstyle is easy to create on most hair types and textures. It can be modified to work well with ear length, chin length and shoulder length strands.

Steal Elizabeth's gorgeous hairstyle for any formal hair event such as a Prom, black tie event or wedding.

Elizabeth Banks World Premiere of "Smokin Aces" 1-18-07 All rights reserved

This hairstyle compliments Elizabeth's face shape which is a classic square shape. The beauty of this style is that is can be easily customized to fit any face shape or hair type.

Any hair that is either naturally curly, wavy or straight can easily be fashioned into a similar style. Tresses that are stick straight can be coiffed into a version of Elizabeth's style with the proper curling products and hot tools.

Thin or fine hair may require extensions or pin-on tresses. Super short hair lengths could be transformed into this style through long hair extensions or the temporary use of clip-on tresses.

Note: For fabulous clip-on extensions check out the Jessica Simpson HairDo extensions available at

Getting Started Notes

This spectacularly curled hairstyle combines a sleek crown with endless rows of perfectly formed fat spiral curls that appear to bubble up down from the crown.

The key to this ringlet enhanced design is to have enough hair length and thickness to allow for the creation of a series of curls which can easily cascade from the crown.

Although Elizabeth's style was designed without any parts of fringes to show off her beautiful face and gorgeous eyes, a variety of different parts and bangs could easily be incorporated into a customized version.

Steal Elizabeth's Hairstyle - Step by Step

In order to create this gorgeous curled updo on Elizabeth's chin length hair, her strands were first washed, blow dried with a diffuser to enhance her natural curls and set on curlers with a focus on creating soft ringlets from the roots to the end.

Her newly washed and dried strands were “prepared” with lots of styling products so that her strands were not so soft.

Elizabeth Banks World Premiere of "Smokin Aces" 1-18-07 All rights reserved

Regardless of the hair's texture, type or actual length, it is important to start with strands that are dressed properly with the necessary styling products.

Keep in mind that freshly washed hair may be overly soft and slippery, making it challenging to style. If you prefer to work with newly washed hair limit your use of conditioners or other products that make strands slippery soft or hard to manage.

When possible, create this style on "aged" hair that is not newly washed. Natural hair oils help the updo hold tighter and last longer.

Before you start make sure that you have all the proper tools including plenty of hairpins, a good brush and comb. If you wish to add hair accessories be sure you have them ready to be added to the style at the end.

Remember to use good styling creams, gels, sprays or similar products to give hair instant stylability. While less may be more, when it comes to creating dressy updo related styles, too little may not enough.

Creating HairStyle At Home

While this style might be accomplished at home with the help of some talented friends or family members, because the back involves the creation of lots of ringlet curls, when in doubt, ask your stylist to craft the style for you.

If you do decide to do the style at home be sure to have several practice runs before the night of the big hair event.

This updo style involves creating a lot of curls. Keep in mind that when crafted properly, the style can take some time to finish.

Instructions - Steps To Create

Elizabeth Banks World Premiere of "Smokin Aces" 1-18-07 All rights reserved

1. Begin by using a soft boar’s head brush or similar natural bristle brush to make sure that all knots and tangles are completely removed from all strands. 2. Create a messy vertical center part that extends from the hairline to the back of the crown.

3. Divide all the hair into individual sections measuring 1" to 1 1/2" in thickness.

4. Working completely around the entire head, apply a good setting product to each section of hair. 5. Roll the individual strands around self-adhesive rollers that measure approximately 1" in diameter. Note: If you prefer, use hot rollers the same size as the self-adhesive rollers. Although a curling iron is an option, it will take a lot longer to curl all the hair.

6. Allow the self-adhesive rollers to set. To help hold the set, sit under a hood dryer or use a blow dryer with a concentrator attachment and direct heat to the individual rolled sections.

Allow hair to cool before removing the curlers.

7. Once hair is completely cool, dry and set to withstand a tight curl, remove the rollers. The result should be tightly curled ringlets cascading from the top of the crown with ringlets around the face.

8. Use your fingers to carefully arrange and smooth each individual strand of curled hair. If necessary use a 1/2" barrel hot curling iron to touch up any malformed curls or ringlets. Use your fingers to pull the curls forward up higher onto the crown. Arrange the curls so that they cascade in a uniform pattern from the top of the crown. Spot curl with a 1/2" curling iron if necessary.

9. Once all of the curls have been carefully positioned spray well with a firm hold hairspray. Note: The key to this look is uniformity. Strive to make all the curls the same size and tightness. When possible it is best to work from the inside of the style out. 10. Spray well with hairspray like Phytolaque or Jessica Simpson’s favorite Phytolaque Soie made with real silk.

11. Apply a drop or two of a shine serum like Phyto's PhyoLisse, Rene Furterer's Spray Gloss or Robert Hallowell's Love That Shine Drops to the palms of your hands. Rub the serum into the palms and then lightly glide over the top of the style to add instant shimmer and shine.


This dressy style is romantic, fun and flirtatious. It works beautifully with any type of chic, edgy fashions.

Keep in mind that when this elaborately hairstyle is created according to instructions it is a versatile style that can work with just about any type of gown or fashion.

This hairdo can be toned down or glammed up depending on individual tastes. Attach any desired hair accessory. Remember to always attach accessories last after all styling products have been applied to avoid damaging delicate accessories.

If you want to talk more about this or other hair care articles on or anywhere else, please post a message on's Hair Talk Forums.

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