1.Make an extreme side part, using your fingers to create a casual look. (Combs form a severe line that screams prom!)
2. French braid your hair, keeping as close to your part as possible. Guide the section you're working with around the side of your head to the back. When you reach the end of the braid, wrap it with a clear elastic. Twist hair on the other side of the part, bringing it to the back of the head; secure with bobby pins.
3. Fashion a loose chignon by twisting all the hair in back three or four times. Tuck in the ends; hold them in place with U-shaped pins.
4. Tease hair around the crown, and hide ends by tucking them into the nest. Spritz the whole bird sanctuary with Teflon-strength hairspray.
5. Rub your hands lightly over the braid. You're going for a "medieval princess galloping through the countryside" vibe, so your hair shouldn't appear too tidy.
(Ricky Care Black U Pins Invisipins, $2/30; rickysnyc.com.)Read MoreLess