If you think red carpet-worthy, celeb-approved hairstyles are hard to achieve without a glam team, then you’re underestimating the appeal of the slicked-back ‘do. While it sounds so simple (after all, slicking back your hair can’t be that hard, can it?), the results are always chic!
There are countless stylish ways to get the look. Whether you’re going sweet or edgy, casual or glam, there are tons of slicked-back hair ideas for you, from loose to ponytails and updos. Take a style cue from some of the most fab celebs like Gigi Hadid, Zendaya, and Beyonce below.
Demi Lovato's Slick Back Bob
Give your classic bob a modern update by slicking it back like Demi Lovato did here. It’s a great way to add instant edge to your look.
If you have long hair but want to go for a tough-chic vibe, try this style. Slicking it back and wearing it a bit messy gives it that cool edge you’re going for.
Gigi Hadid's Voluminous Slicked-Back Hairstyle
Nothing says “effortlessly chic” quite like this voluminous slicked-back ‘do Gigi Hadid is wearing. With a bit of texture spray and some easy blow-drying tricks, you’ll have party-ready hair in no time.
Zendaya's Sleek and Straight Cut with a Voluminous Crown
For a slight variation on the voluminous slicked-back hairstyle, you can keep the volume only at the crown while going super sleek at the sides as demoed by Zendaya here.
Kristen Stewart's Edgy Slicked-Back Bob
Try an edgy version of the classic bob by wearing it slicked back like Kristen Stewart here. Add lots of volume at the top while keeping the sides sleek for a punky touch.
Katy Perry's Slicked-Back Pixie
Got a pixie cut? Give it more oomph by adding pompadour-style volume at the top and slicking back the sides a la Katy Perry here.
Rihanna's Classic Slicked-Back Hairstyle
Of course, you’ll never go wrong with a classic slicked-back ‘do. Take a style cue from Rihanna by keeping it sleek straight with a brushed-back top.
Kim Kardashian's Wet-Look, Slicked-Back Hairstyle
For a truly head-turning look, channel Kim K with this wet-look, slicked-back hairstyle that is equal parts edgy, sexy, and chic. The shine and texture on this ‘do is gorgeous!
Kerry Washington's Slicked-Back Half Updo
If you want to go the sweet route, try a half updo with a slicked-back top as demoed by Kerry Washington here. Another classic style you can’t go wrong with.
Zoe Saldana's Voluminous Half Updo
For another variation on the half updo, try this look worn by Zoe Saldana. Slick back the top and sides and give it a bit of texture down the ends. Gorgeous!
Beyonce's Slicked-Back Ponytail
This slicked-back ponytail Beyonce is wearing is one of the easiest hairstyles to copy, yet it’s also one of the most effortlessly elegant!
Jessica Alba's Messy Slicked-Back Updo
Add a dose of edgy glamour to your look with this messy slicked-back updo on Jessica Alba. So fuss-free and yet so elegant at the same time!
Kelly Rowland’s Slicked-Back Curls
If you have natural curls, here’s a chic hairstyle from Kelly Rowland that you can copy. Slick back the top part then let your hair flow in tight curls down the back.
Katie Holmes' Slicked-Back Bun
Katie Holmes is all about relaxed glamour with her slightly messy slicked-back bun. This is such a versatile style that’s great for both casual events and more formal parties.
Freida Pinto's Pompadour Ponytail
Give your basic ponytail a red-carpet upgrade by copying this hairstyle worn by Freida Pinto. Slick back your tresses into a pony and add some volume at the top for a dose of edge.
Gwen Stefani's Half-Up Lob
If you’re going for a demure look, try this voluminous half-up lob worn by Gwen Stefani. The bouffant-inspired top and flipped ends add a ‘60s touch.
Gabrielle Union's Sleek High Ponytail
For an easy red carpet-worthy look, try a slicked-back high ponytail like the one Gabrielle Union is wearing here. The super-sleek silhouette looks great and will really play up your facial features.
Hailee Steinfeld's Messy, Wet-Look Half Updo
If you really want to stand out, go for a majorly edgy style with this messy, wet-look ‘do on Hailee Steinfeld. Definitely not your usual half updo, this one will showcase your tough-chic side!
Gugu Mbatha-Raw's Sleek Bun
Nothing could be more classic than this slicked-back bun Gugu Mbatha-Raw is wearing. It’s clean, simple, and not as severe as the Croydon facelift.
Jennifer Lopez's Slicked-Back Top Knot
How cool does Jennifer Lopez look wearing this tight, towering top knot? This is a celeb-favorite trend and it doesn’t look like it’s going away anytime soon.
Alicia Keys' Slicked-Back Curly Ponytail
For a fun yet chic look, play with textures and silhouettes like Alicia Keys did with her ponytail. Keep it sleek and tight at the top then let your natural curls go wild down the ends.
Bella Hadid's Croydon Facelift
There are a lot of ways to rock the slicked-back look but the Croydon facelift is perhaps the most quintessential. It is classic and elegant, and the instant facelift is not that bad, either.
Malin Akerman’s Inspiration for the ‘60s
Thinking of getting an extra short Pixie cut? Then you might like this stylish hairstyle with volumized bangs and slicked to the back sides. No doubt that this one will become your favorite featured hairstyle because everything new is well-forgotten old.
Samantha Womack’s Zingy Ponytail
Solemn yet playful: having your hair slicked to the back will always make your look more strict. However, by adding a loose slightly curly ponytail you will create an image of a serious person but with some zingy cheerful vibe.
Natalie Maines’ Rebel Style
Lots of gel and least of maintenance! That’s a true slogan for this hairstyle. This styled to spike roughly cut hair and perfectly slicked sides look extremely cool and will suit you and do the right impression from your rebel style.
Julianne Moore’s Messy Bun
How could ever a slicked-back messy bun look that glamorous on anyone? Julianne definitely knows the answer! Despite the simplicity of such hairstyle, it adds so much elegancy to the look and beautifully highlights all the face features even with a slightly thinning visual effect. If you don’t have a lot of time but still want to look stylish – go for this hairstyle with no doubt.
Hayden Panettiere’s Texturized Bun
Another great way to have your hair away from your face but yet with some volume! By styling the hair strings with a texturizing spray and separating them you will create a visual effect of extra volumized structured hair. I can not call this look truly elegant but it will for sure complement your stylish and slightly edgy look for the night.
Sarah Drew’s Extra Voluminous Bangs
Who said that sleek hair should not have any volume? Elvis Presley and Sarah Drew have definitely something in common – their passion for voluminously styled bangs. We can only imagine how much backcombing and hairspray gets used for such a hairstyle but it’s absolutely worth it: elegant yet with a rock’n’roll vibe!
Carmen Electra’s Highlighted Updo
In case you have the same gorgeous blond highlights as Carmen does, such slicked back hairstyle will only highlight the color combination on your hair. Another trick if you’re looking to make your bun visually look bigger: get a puff hair pad that matches your hair color and you will be able to hide it in your hair and style the updo as big as you want.
Ali Fedotowsky’s Casuality Twist
Instead of having your hair fully slicked to the back follow Ali’s example and leave a few small playful strings of hair on the sides. You can keep them curly or straight depending on your outfit. By having those tiny hairpieces out you will still look elegant but with a slight twist of casuality.
Josephine Skriver’s 50s Voluminous Updo
The ‘50s gifted us with such an authentic style and so many gorgeous looks that some of them are still popular even today. Looks like Josephine is a big fan of the ‘50s: extreme volume on top, perfectly slicked hair on the sides, french twist in the back. With a classy black dress, she rocks this red carpet dress code.
Sydney Sweeney’s Ballroom Dance Bun
Classy “ballroom dance” inspired hairstyle – low bun with slicked to the sides hair. Sydney’s choice for the earrings was definitely the right one: sparkly silver hoops framed her face lines and complemented a long neck and straight posture.
Selena Gomez's Boho Half-Up Waves
Selena Gomez looks absolutely darling wearing her hair in a long wavy style with a slicked-back top. We love the volume on this sweet boho-glam look, from the pompadour top to the soft wavy ends.
Yara Shahidi's Slicked-Back Curly Ponytail
Yara Shahidi plays with contrasts by wearing her hair sleek straight at the top and curly down the ends. This is an easy, quick yet stylish way to tame your natural hair.
Emma Stone's Wet-Look Hair with Flipped Ends
Emma Stone looks super neat and fresh wearing this hairstyle that’s giving us a just-got-out-of-the-shower vibe. She keeps it sleek and straight with a flip at the ends for a simple yet stylish look.
Jorja Smith's Slicked-Back Braids
Here, Jorja Smith is wearing her hair in twist braids. The top is slicked back and gathered in a half-up style while the braids fall loose at the back. Beautiful!
Paris Hilton's Wavy Pigtails
As you can see, pigtails aren’t just for little girls. Paris Hilton is wearing hers in an ultra-chic long wavy style and it’s making all of us want to wear pigtails at any age!
Angela Bassett's Sleek Center-Parted Curls
Here, Angela Bassett opts for her natural hair but keeps it sleek with a center part at the top. Love the contrasting textures on this standout look.
Olivia Munn's Half-Up Curls
Olivia Munn looks sweet and chic wearing her hair in a half-up curly style. If you’re going for a youthful, fresh, ultra-feminine vibe, this is the ‘do for you.
Padma Laskhmi's Poofy Bun
For an effortlessly glamorous look, try this poofy bun Padma Lakshmi is wearing. It has all the elegance of a classic bun but with a looser, more relaxed silhouette.