8 Easy Claw Clip Hairstyles That Will Upgrade Your Updo

What did we do before the invention of the claw clip? When you're having a bad hair day, the popular sharp-toothed styling tool always comes in clutch, and it can help you reclaim your confidence in a snap (even if you're not the savviest with hairstyling). Whether you're more of a classic French twist type or a messy updo fan, there are limitless ways to incorporate the classic claw clip into your routine.


Still, many of us can get into style ruts or feel frustrated with our hair — and even our favorite claw clip styles can get tired after we've worn them for weeks in a row. So Glam got creative and experimented in pursuit of the best claw clip styling tips, all of which will transform your signature look and are easy enough for anyone to master in seconds.

The end result? Say goodbye to rewinding and freezing complicated hair tutorials in utter frustration; instead, let's check out eight of Glam's easiest claw clip styles that are sure to become part of your daily haircare routine.

Classic claw clip

One of the easiest styles, the "classic claw clip," is a simple updo that's remained a perennial favorite since the first claw clip hit the scene in the late 1980s. To get started, pull back your hair as though you're preparing to tie a low ponytail. Next, twist the hair together like you would when wringing it to dry. After you've tightened the twist, simply cinch your claw clip around it and close it, keeping the hair centered vertically, like a column, at the back of the head. For some added flourish, pull or fluff the spillover strands for a more voluminous look, or clip the claw tighter for a neater style.


Troubleshooting the "classic claw clip" is easy, as it can be modified for different hair types and lengths. "Keep in mind that the thickness or density of hair will also make a difference. Smaller clips will work for fine hair, but you may need a larger clip for thicker hair. If you have loose strands, I'd suggest bobby pins over smaller clips, since you may need to fix more than one strand," Glam's model, Elise Walker, tells us. Furthermore, she says, "Having claw clips all over your head would be uncomfortable and not as polished" — so opt for small or miniature accessories, like snaps or micro-clips, in a shade similar to your hair color.

Claw clip bun

When faced with a serious time crunch in the morning, many of us opt for a classic messy bun, hat, or ponytail in our rush to fly out the door. But did you know you can use your trusty claw clip in lieu of a standard hairband for a change of pace? That's right: no more grappling with rubberbands while trying to tame flyaway strands or bumps. Just arrange your hair in your preferred style — messy or neat — and grab a claw clip to secure the hair at the rear of the bun. A small or medium claw clip works best for a cohesive look, but you can obtain this style with a classic-sized claw clip as well.


If you find yourself leaning into the "claw clip bun" a little too often, Walker has some great ideas to switch the style up without any fuss. "Space buns would be a very cute and easy alternative," she suggests. "It would be the same concept, just split the hair into two sections, twist one section at a time into a bun and secure with smaller clips since you're dealing with less hair." In addition to space buns, you can also try braiding the sectioned hair, though you'll want to set aside extra time to do so.

Half-up claw bubble

It's a serious dilemma that we've all experienced. Prepping for an important date or interview, we demand an answer from our besties: hair up or down? If you can't be sure your consultant is telling the truth, the "half-up claw bubble" could be the claw clip hairstyle for you. It provides the best of both worlds with minimal effort involved.


In order to create the base of the "half-up claw bubble," section the top half of your hair above the ears and join both sides of your hair toward the back of your head in a single strand. Next, twist the gathered hair and use a claw clip to lock it in. Take your strand and loop it through your claw clip, starting from the bottom and pulling the hair up and over the top of the clip.

To get the "bubble" effect, gently open the claw clip to expand the hair. "If you're having trouble creating a bubble, you can grab a thicker section of hair," Walker explains. "If the hair isn't fitting into the clip properly, you may need a slightly bigger clip, but keep it small enough for your hair to wrap around easily."


Knotted Half Updo

If you've ever resorted to knotting your hair in the absence of a hairclip or tie, you're already familiar with the basis of the "knotted half updo." It's similar to the "half-up claw bubble," but you'll be dividing the gathered hair into two sections instead of one strand at the back of your head. After you've separated your strands, all that's left is to tie them into a knot and repeat the process with the leftover hair. Depending on your hair's length, you can even tie a third knot, though this step is optional.


That's where your claw clip comes in. Use the clip to secure the knotted hair, and, if you desire, pull the knot ever-so-slightly for a fuller look. Having trouble building volume? Not to worry. "If your hair is freshly washed and too clean, you can use a bit of hairspray or even a dry shampoo to add a bit of texture. This would help the hair to stay in place and keep it from slipping out of the knot," Walker tells Glam. Furthermore, you can use a shine spray to add a bit of polish to the final look.

Knotted claw clip updo

The perfect beautifully messy updo often eludes us. Despite its name, obtaining that artfully disheveled look requires a delicate balance and — let's be honest — a touch of luck. Fortunately, using a claw clip can help you perfect this style in no time. Before you get started creating the "knotted claw clip updo," Walker suggests adding a detangling product if you have fine or easily-tangled hair. "I'd suggest applying a dry shampoo or hair spray in a fine mist and then brushing through hair. This will help give the hair some texture and keep it from wanting to tangle," she tells Glam. Another tip? If your hair is curly or frizzy, Walker suggests you skip brushing through it prior to styling this look.


To begin, sweep all of your hair backward like you would with a standard ponytail. Now, separate the hair into two sections, a bit like creating pigtails. Instead of fashioning them into tails, however, simply tie the two sections into a single knot. Add another knot for reinforcement, and know that you can also opt to add a third knot if you have any remaining length in your section. Once you've finished knotting the hair, fold it over and use your claw clip to hold everything in place.

French twist claw

Sleek, French chignon hairstyles are stunning, but they can be a bit tricky to master on your own. That said, there's a claw clip-based solution to just about every hairstyle headache — chignons included. The "French twist claw" is one of the most ubiquitous claw clip styles for good reason. With messy, face-framing tendrils, it evokes a sense of '90s charm, or it can be arranged in a chic, minimalist fashion for another look entirely. According to Walker, it's one of her go-to claw clip looks. "I really like the French twist style for a quick and easy way to keep hair out of my face but more fun than a ponytail," she tells Glam.


Similar to the "classic claw clip" style, you'll want to start by pulling all of your hair toward the base of your neck. After that, twist the gathered hair, starting from the bottom and working your way up. With your fingers pointing downward, grab the twisted section around its middle and twist it once again. From there, grasp the section in an upward motion until the ends of your hair disappear into the folds of the twist. Using your claw clip, clamp down around the twist vertically to hold the style together. If you'd like, you can pull a few strands out from the front of your hair for a face-framing effect.

Twisted half-up

What's not to love about this adventurous half-updo? Whether you're off to brunch with friends or at the beach catching some rays, it's a perfect way to keep your tresses looking cute and under control. Plus, it's easy to customize this claw clip style if you're after something a little different. "You can curl or crimp your hair before doing the style to add texture to the pieces that get pulled into the clip, and also after to finish the look," Walker suggests.


Whether you choose to add some textural touches or not, getting the "twisted half-up" together is a cinch. First, section your hair just above your ears and pull these sections toward the back of your head. Using a hair tie or rubberband, make a loose ponytail from the gathered hair. Next, use your fingers or the end of a comb to part a "hole" or opening directly above the base of your ponytail. After you've fashioned a hole, take your ponytail and guide it through the opening. Once you've achieved a twisted look, pick up your ponytail and use a claw clip to secure the hair near the rubber band.

Half-up bubble claw clip

Love the look of bubble hair but want to experiment with something new? The "half-up bubble claw clip" can provide you with the volume you desire while still letting loose. In addition to your favorite claw clip, you'll need a rubber band to craft this look. Furthermore, unless your hair is particularly thick, Walker recommends using lightweight rubber bands for the best results. "Any mini rubber band should be fine, but keep color in mind. Clear rubber bands will work for most hair colors, but avoid dark rubber bands if you have light-colored hair so it won't be as obvious," she tells Glam.


If you're ready to dive into the "half-up bubble claw clip," begin by pulling back the uppermost section of your hair, dividing it right above the top of your ears. With your rubber band in hand, begin tying the hair into a ponytail. On your second wrap-around with the rubber band, don't pull the hair through completely — here, you'll want to stop halfway to create the "bubble" effect you're after. For extra volume, try gently pulling the bubble at its sides, being careful not to loosen it entirely. Now that everything looks good, clasp your claw clip over the rubber band and adjust the bubble so it sits atop your clip. With claw clip looks as good as these, you can always achieve picture-perfect hair when you're in a pinch.