They say everyone is great at something. But the thing you’re great at isn’t always the thing you’re passionate about, and just because you’re passionate about something doesn’t make you great at it.

Failure to come to terms with this idea is what gives birth to the William Hungs of the world. I have a soft spot for Mr. Hung and all the other off-key, off-balance, off-their-meds individuals who fully believe their talents should be showcased on national television.

On my relatively short list of talents, right after “Candy Crush Champion” but before “Head of Thrift Store Search and Rescue,” there is a glaring blank spot my mother believed would one day be filled by “Grammy-Winning Southern Songbird” — which is quite comical considering, at 5 years old, I sounded like an angry Kathleen Turner with an unexplainable aversion to the letter “r.” And if my instincts ever betrayed me, there was someone there to put me in check. A neighbor girl once overheard me and my equally tone deaf sister belting out our moving rendition of The Little Mermaid’s “Part of Your World,” and asked if we “meant to make our voices sound like that.”

Point being, my mother did not end up raising Beyonce: Part Deux, but I did inherit her crafty ability to whip Beyonce up a red-carpet-worthy dress from stage curtains, a la Scarlett O’Hara, then tame that mane into stage-ready style.

The latter of those talents has been the cause of much commotion. Take last Halloween, for instance, when I spent every last minute coiffing a friend into Amy Winehouse and painstakingly painting my sister up like the fourth member of KISS, hence my lion tamer costume missing its mark. Instead I danced the night away looking like a used car salesman with too much eyeliner who fell into a vat of glitter.

My prayer for you is that these simple DIY hairstyles are not only beneficial when a trip to the salon is out of the budget, but will also give people like me a chance to finish our own costumes — and perfect our cat-eye liner.

Gather these few essentials and style away:

  • Pick brush or comb
  • Ponytail holders
  • Bobby pins
  • Strong Hold hairspray — I recommend Kenra 25 (available at Rite Way Beauty in Anniston and Styles By Gina in Alexandria, or online)


1. Separate hair lengthwise into three sections.

2. Flatten middle section of hair and secure by sliding a few bobby pins horizontally from both directions.

3. Twist the left section of hair, pull across and secure on the opposite side.

4. Repeat with the right section of hair, securing all stray pieces.

5. Roll the remaining section of middle hair up to meet or cover the crisscrossed hair intersection, secure with bobby pins.

6. Add a flower or other embellishment, according to occasion.

7. Hairspray, hairspray, hairspray — you should be able to head bang with confidence.


1. Lean head forward and gather hair into tight ponytail on top of head, secure.

2. Find center of ponytail and evenly splay hair out from the middle.

3. Take a second hair tie and ease it over the splayed hair to create a small knot-bun.

4. Use pick comb to pull bun sections evenly to create a full topknot.

5. Wrap and secure the ends of hair around base.

6. Pin on bow or embellishment.

7. See above.