Home » Uncategorized » Kids' Corner » How to Make the Perfect Ballet Bun for a Show

How to Make the Perfect Ballet Bun for a Show

First of all, let me tell you one thing: I am not the world expert on how to make a ballet bun. In fact, I only made my first ever one last Saturday, so if you are a seasoned ballet mum, look away as it might get ugly for your trained eyes.

I did not do ballet myself and until last Saturday, I had never felt the urge to pin my girls’ hair so tight onto their scalp it looked like they had a facelift, aged 4 and 6. Anyhoo, moving on…

Although Beanie has been going to ballet classes since she was 4, she used to have a very short bob and I was never asked to tie her hair into a bun. Both girls go to a different ballet school now and they are part of a show in a couple of weeks.

The goalposts have changed. There will be tutus (oh so cute), there will be ballet buns (perfect ones at that), there will be lots of hairspray and there will be makeup (really? blue eye shadow and red lipstick… on a 4 year old?). Luckily Beanie has been growing her hair for about 6 months and it is now just about shoulder-length.

How to Make the Perfect Ballet Bun for a Show - instructions and video

Last Saturday, we were told to get the girls’ hair into a bun with a net. Oh gosh, I knew I would be found out as an ‘outsider’ to this ballet world sooner or later. I had no idea where to start, or where to get a net. What did it even look like? Boots and Amazon came to the rescue and I got a whole lot of paraphernalia to create that perfect ballet bun. Oh the pressure!

How to Make the Perfect Ballet Bun for a Show - instructions and video

Last Saturday morning, I spent an hour on YouTube watching tutorials, but I was left more confused afterwards: Ballet Bun for Short Hair, Classical Ballet Bun Tutorial, Ballet Bun for a Performance, How to make a correct Classical Hair Bun for Ballet, How to make a proper ballet bun thin hair… Aaargh! Why did they all have to contradict each other?

After feeling frustrated and a tad deflated (isn’t YouTube supposed to make it all nice and simple for us?), I took bits of advice from some of the videos and made the girls’ buns. Their ballet teachers did not wince or look at Beanie in disgust. Phew!

How to Make the Perfect Ballet Bun for a Show - instructions and video

Now my next challenge is actually a challenge for Hubby. On Saturday, Beanie needs her hair done for the last rehearsals in the studio, but I will not be home. How on earth is Hubby going to make a perfect ballet bun when he barely manages a ponytail… Crevette suggested filming a video to show him, so we did just that last Sunday.

How to Make the Perfect Ballet Bun for a Show - instructions and video

Here is our little video on how to make a ballet bun that will not come come apart mid-performance:

Just to recap, here are 5 tips to help you make the perfect ballet bun:

  • Do not start with wet or squeaky clean hair. It is much better to work with hair that was washed a couple of days before.
  • When making the ponytail, make it as tight as you can. It might hurt, but it will help prevent wisps of hair from escaping from the bun.
  • Gel gets really sticky. Try to get as much as you can on the hair, and as little as possible on the skin.
  • Bobby pins can make a hairdo really uncomfortable if they are positioned at an awkward angle. The trick is NOT to go straight with them. Go at an angle (‘U’ of the pin towards the centre of the bun, pins towards the outer part of the bun). Insert the pin down, and when midway, switch the angle so the ‘U’ is now facing down and the pins up. That way, the bobby pins are not stabbing the head, but they are still securing the bun. If this makes no sense, just watch the video.
  • Before using hairspray, get your girl to close her eyes and put her hands over her face so she does not get her face or eyes covered in hair spray.

Save me on Pinterest for later:

How to Make the Perfect Ballet Bun for a Show - instructions and video

Did I get this completely wrong? Have you got any other tips to make the perfect ballet bun for a show?


  1. 22/03/2017 / 11:42 pm

    Thank goodness Miss GF gave up ballet early….. I would never have been able to do a bun. I’m impressed with your perseverance! x

    • Mel
      23/03/2017 / 12:13 am

      Thanks Kate! You know what? I only did that video for my husband… and he ended up sending her in a ponytail!

  2. Sonia Cave
    27/03/2017 / 8:15 pm

    Well done, it looks great. Luckily I danced myself from 4 until 18, so at some point took that job from my mum, so I was Ok when I became the mum! Not sure hubby would have even tried!

    • Mel
      27/03/2017 / 8:26 pm

      Mine didn’t even try. He sent her in a ponytail, after all that effort!

  3. TheLondonMum
    27/03/2017 / 8:46 pm

    I’m so impressed you managed to do it! I have much longer hair and still can’t do it! lol.

    • Mel
      27/03/2017 / 9:01 pm

      He he!

  4. Janine Dolan
    05/04/2017 / 1:38 pm

    Perfection. I can’t wait to make a pony tail with my youngest. She is two now and there is no way she won’t let me touch, never mind brushing her hair.

    • Mel
      05/04/2017 / 8:15 pm

      Tell me about it… my 2-year-old runs away from me as soon as she sees the hairbrush and hairbands!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.