35 Wedding Hairstyles to Pair With Open-Back Dresses

Let your backless dress shine.
Bride with open-back wedding dress and updo hairstyle
Photo: Clare Sloan
carli brennan headshot
Carli Brennan
carli brennan headshot
Carli Brennan
The Knot Fashion Contributor
  • Carli writes freelance fashion articles for The Knot.
  • Prior to The Knot, she was the style section editor at Her Campus Media and launched the Fashion Institute of Technology chapter of Her Campus.
  • Carli’s passion for the wedding industry stems from her time as a bridal consultant and her previous internship in a bridal showroom.
Updated Mar 13, 2024
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One of the most important parts of curating an outfit—whether you're a bride, guest or bridesmaid—is choosing the perfect hairstyle to go with your dress. Hairstyles for open-back dresses are extra important, because you likely will want to choose a hairstyle that lets you show off the open back of your dress. Whether you opt for a sleek updo or loose undone tresses, we've scoured the internet for 35 of the best hairstyles to pair with backless dresses. Save this page to show your hairdresser at your trial run and try a few that stand out to you so you can pick your favorite. We may be biased, but they're all winning styles.

Half-Up Waves

Half-up waves wedding hairstyle
Photo: Hana Gonzalez Photography

A half-up style is perfect for sweeping your hair out of your face, but still letting your long tresses shine. Soft, undone waves make this style the perfect effortless, yet chic hairstyle.

Textured Low Bun

Textured low bun wedding hairstyle
Photo: Aloha Tati Photography

Sweep your hair into a messy low bun for an elegant hairstyle that pairs particularly well with an open-back dress. Whether you're the bride or a guest, this style is perfect for any occasion.

Glam Curls

Glam curls wedding hairstyle
Photo: Sarah Seven

A deep, plunging backless dress is a match made in heaven with this voluminous curled hairstyle. You know what Dolly Parton says, the bigger the hair, the closer to God!

Pretty Ponytail

Textured ponytail wedding hairstyle
Photo: Nicole Little

You can't go wrong with a chic textured ponytail. This trendy style ensures your open-back dress is on full display.Plus, it's the perfect hairstyle to pair with a bold statement earring.

Textured Tresses

Textured updo wedding hairstyle
Photo: Mariela Campbell

Nothing says "special occasion" like an intricate, textured updo. This style is perfect for showing off a sexy open back dress. Add in a sparkly hair clip for an extra touch of glamor.

Regal Updo

Regal updo wedding hairstyle
Photo: Rebecca Schoneveld

Channel Old Hollywood glamour in this regal updo hairstyle that pairs perfectly with an open-back dress. Just add a sparkly tiara or headband to make the look feel extra special for your big day.

Braided Half Up

Braided half-up wedding hairstyle
Photo: Chloe Ho

This isn't your average half-up style. Get that ethereal, romantic bridal look with this stunning half-up braided hairstyle. Soft, face-framing strands keep the look feeling sweet and laid back.

Bombshell Curls

Bombshell curls wedding hairstyle
Photo: REEM Photography

Big, bouncy curls are a timeless, youthful hairstyle for any occasion. Pair your bombshell curls with a sexy backless dress for a knockout look. Whether you're a wedding guest or the bride, this style is sure to turn heads.

Face-Framing Curls

Face-framing curls wedding hairstyle
Photo: Erin Wilson Photography

Frame your gorgeous face with soft curls pulled from a textured half-up half-down style. Your hairdresser can add extra volume at the crown with texture spray and a teasing brush — the more volume the better!

Twisted Pony

Twisted pony wedding hairstyle
Photo: Carter Fish

This sleek, low pony is given a stylish update with a twist detail secured around the elastic. It's the perfect cool girl hairstyle and it leaves your back exposed just enough to show off your sultry backless dress.

Sleek Chignon

Sleek chignon wedding hairstyle
Photo: Stephanie Vegliante

If your vibe leans more classic, this chic chignon is calling your name. You can never go wrong with a timeless chignon bun. Contrast this formal hairstyle with a slinky backless dress for the perfect effortlessly chic look.

Effortless Ponytail

Effortless ponytail wedding hairstyle
Photo: Sophie Lindler

A messy, effortless ponytail is a stylish choice for a hairstyle. If you're the bride, pair this easy style with a dramatic veil for a bridal style that looks straight off of the runway.

Elegant Updo

Elegant updo wedding hairstyle
Photo: Brian D. Smith

You can never go wrong with a romantic updo for a special occasion. This versatile hairstyle works for both brides and wedding guests alike, and even bridesmaids. The flattering, face-framing strands make this a universally flattering hairstyle.

Short Strands

Short wedding hairstyle
Photo: Abbey Regnier Photography

Short haired girls, this one's for you. If your hair falls to your shoulders, keep your strands down and flowing for the big day. A simple wave adds just enough texture, plus your short length keeps your exposed back on full display.


Pearl-embellished wedding hairstyle
Photo: Hana Gonzalez Photography

The pearlcore trend isn't going anywhere, so why not incorporate it into your hairstyle? Tiny pearls are dotted all over the hair using eyelash glue for a style that's elegant and dramatic. Keeping the front pieces slicked down ensures this style has maximum impact. Be sure to pair this hairstyle with your favorite pearl jewelry.

Clipped Back

Clipped back wedding hairstyle
Photo: Staci Brucks

Give your short strands an update with an embellished hair clip. It's the perfect easy style that sweeps your hair out of your face.

Tousled Ponytail

Tousled ponytail wedding hairstyle
Photo: Lyndi Mishe Photography

This tousled, textured pony is equal parts undone and chic. It's perfect for a dreamy beach or garden wedding.

Sleek & Smooth

Sleek and smooth wedding hairstyle
Photo: Lindley Battle

If you love rocking the "clean girl aesthetic" in your daily life, this slicked back bun is the perfect special occasion style for you. If your dress features a dramatic back detail, like this oversized bow, a slicked back bun is the perfect style to let your dress take center stage.

Pearl Adorned

Pearl-adorned wedding hairstyle
Photo: Faith Risinger

File this under "dream hairstyles." We can't get enough of this gorgeous curled hairstyle adorned with a few tiny pearls. Like this bride, opt for this style for an elegant seaside wedding for all of the coastal grandmother vibes.

Va-Va Volume

Voluminous ponytail wedding hairstyle
Photo: Staci Brucks

It doesn't get better than this ultra voluminous ponytail. For even more added volume and length, try adding extensions. This style pairs especially well with a backless halter style dress, like this one from Rebdolls.

Tied With a Bow

Wedding hairstyle with bow
Photo: Sophie Kaye Photography

Bows have been everywhere in 2024 fashion, and weddings are no exception. This darling bow adorned updo is perfect for the girly brides out there. You could also get the same look with a bow adorned veil like this one from KYHA Studio.

Subtle Waves

Subtle waves wedding hairstyle
Photo: Samantha Rumfelt

These subtle waves add just enough texture to this bride's sleek bob and middle part. We love the simplicity of this hairstyle paired with a sweeping cathedral veil. Pair this cutting edge hairstyle with a modern, trend-forward dress.

Elevated Ponytail

Elevated ponytail wedding hairstyle
Photo: Alicia Padilla

Dress up your ponytail with the addition of floral pearl-adorned bobby pins and some statement earrings. Heavy face framing pieces and hair wrapped around the elastic make this style appear effortless.

Natural Curls

Natural curls wedding hairstyle
Photo: Abbey Regnier Photography

Let your natural curls run wild for a special occasion. We're loving this bride's voluminous, defined curls paired with her backless wedding dress. If you always wear your natural curls in your day to day life, embracing them for your wedding hairstyle will help you to feel like you on your big day.

Bridal Bow

Wedding hairstyle with bow
Photo: Jamie Park

Your hair bow days from when you were a kid are making a major comeback in the fashion world. This pearl-adorned bow is the perfect finishing touch on this simple backless gown. Paired with soft waves, this hairstyle is a romantic choice for a bridal look.

Pixie Cut

Pixie cut wedding hairstyle
Photo: Josie V Photography

A pixie cut pairs perfectly with an open-back dress because it leaves your back on full display. Keep your natural texture and pair this hairstyle with a sparkly earring for an extra pop.

Classic Updo

Classic updo wedding hairstyle
Photo: Clare Sloan

This classic updo never goes out of style. This hairstyle goes best with traditional, simple dresses. Pair it with hair accessories that match your dress to inject it with a personal touch.

Boho Waves

Boho waves wedding hairstyle
Photo: Swidrak & Co

Boho brides, this one's for you! This wavy, voluminous ponytail is what Pinterest dreams are made of. It's the perfect complement to a breezy, ethereal dress. Think lace, crochet or fringe details.

Edgy Bridal Hairstyle

Edgy wedding hairstyle
Photo: Hope Robinson

These soft waves are given some edge with the addition of bobby pins and a slicked back side. This hairstyle pairs well with a more edgy dress style. Depending on your style, you could opt for embellished bobby pins to add some more drama.

Twisted Top Knot

Twisted top knot wedding hairstyle
Photo: Albany Katz

Sweep all of your hair into an elegant twisted updo that's perfect for traditionalist brides. Pair it with a classic style, like a satin sheath dress, for a sophisticated look.

Braids for Days

Braid wedding hairstyle
Photo: Lyndi Mishe Photography

This Rapunzel-esque braid is a work of art! Tiny pearl embellishments add texture and style to this intricate braid. This hairstyle is perfect for ethereal brides having outdoorsy weddings—think garden, vineyard or mountain venues.

Curly Updo

Curly updo wedding hairstyle
Photo: REEM Photography

Pull your natural curls into a glam updo complete with a sparkly hair piece. This bride's gorgeous, defined curls add texture and volume to her artful updo. Brides who want to channel their inner princess for a day, this elegant style is perfect for you.

Laid Back Locks

Laid-back wedding hairstyle
Photo: Lauren Lee Photography

Shiny, smooth curls make for a universally flattering hairstyle. This one sweeps part of the hair to the back for the perfect half-up half-down style.

Glam Headband

Headband wedding hairstyle
Photo: Rebecca Schoneveld

Headbands, the beloved preppy style staple, are given a glam upgrade in metallic wire options like this one. Paired with a simple ponytail, this look is both understated and tasteful. Don't forget to add your favorite matching metallic earrings.

Structured Updo

Structured updo wedding hairstyle
Photo: Jeremy Chou Photography

Curls and twists create the illusion of lush layers in this beautiful updo. Face framing strands and curls add movement, while the updo holds everything in place for all-night comfort.

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