Elevate Your Next Updo With A Chic Hair Comb

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For those days when you're not so impressed with your outfit, try a decorative hair comb. It's part ornamental, part functional, and really does help shift your focus from 'blah' to 'oooh!' According to clinical psychologist Dr. Jennifer Baumgartner, who wrote "You Are What You Wear: What Your Clothes Reveal About You," jewelry can "restore the pulse of a boring outfit..." And author Shakaila Forbes-Bell writes in "Big Dress Energy" that "expressive accessories" give "people a deeper insight into who you are" and helps you "appear more individualistic."

Women have been using hair combs to emphasize their individuality, and even their social status, for thousands of years. During the golden age of Hollywood when fancy updos were the thing to wear, hair combs were the trend of the moment. So this imagery is probably what we reference — women in fancy gowns with perfectly styled hair, and a decorative hair comb placed just so.

Of course, hair combs have come a long way since then. They still carry the romantic imagery of the past, but no longer need to be worn with lavish outfits. Psychologists call this "complicating the message." That is, creating different associations for objects, like hair combs with established cultural meanings, making them more modern and interesting. So in the name of "complicating the message," check out some trendy options for a chic hair comb.

Try a halo comb

Halo combs fit the crown of your head and typically look like backward tiaras. They can be fussy or simple in design, yet always seem to feel dramatic. These regal-like combs elevate even the messiest of buns or braided updos and give them that special something. Because they feel theatrical, they're good for exuding bohemian flair, especially when worn with casual clothing.

Wear one with flowers

If you want to ooze romance, try a floral hair comb. You can enhance the romantic allure with a flowy dress or top, or you can go modern with more structured pieces. Fanciful floral combs can also add interest to, or shall we say, complicate the message of, your favorite bridal looks.

A bow comb is a fun idea

A bow hair comb may be a good alternative to a bow barrette, particularly if you have a difficult time closing the latter in your thick hair. With a high or low bun, it can be worn formally, but it could also be fun with a hoodie and jeans or leggings. It's a great way to energize any casual outfit and will probably make you feel like you're ready for a party. For tailored options, you can choose a more structured bow, and still have the same festive feel.

Pour on the pretty with pearls

Pearl jewelry is pretty and classic. But wearing a hair comb with a bunch of pearls is another level of fancy, and satisfyingly flamboyant. Top an easy breezy updo with pretty pearl pieces to make a statement, especially if the rest of your outfit is simple. 

Look for unique decorative accents

Here's a maximalist hair comb look to try. This piece with its unique, decorative accents manages to be both decadent and sleek. The organic, mismatched shapes and the iridescent colors add interest to this mermaid-like hairstyle and may even trigger curiosity about what the comb is made of.