How to Tie a Headscarf: 9 Elegant Ways

A headscarf can be a brilliant hair accessory when tied in the right way. Being relatively smaller in size than other head wraps, they look cute on your mane and make you look fashionable even on bad hair days. Here are some easy and quick tutorials that you can try on any fabric though silk and nylon scarves are preferable. If you have black hair, play with lighter shades for making a chic style statement, and if you are blonde, try bright, fun colors free from nudes, browns and golds.

1. How to Wear a Scarf on Your Head Simply like a Headband

This knotted headband style looks great with a top knot and bangs in front. You can try this style to tie up long or short natural hair and dreads. Use fun colors of headscarves to flaunt a chic look. It is also known as the Japanese style of wearing a headscarf.

How to Tie a Headscarf


  1. Fold a square scarf into a triangle.
  2. Fold the apex inwards.
  3. Fold it one more time to form a narrow strip of fabric.
  4. Wrap it around the back of your head.
  5. Tie a simple knot in front.
  6. Tuck the ends in.

Styling Tips

  • You can sport a 1940’s vintage look by prepping your hair in a French knot or making a puff in front. Leave the short ends free, instead of tucking them in as instructed, to replicate the look of a bow.
How to Tie a Headscarf 1940’s Style
  • You can team this with a ponytail if you are not much of a fan of buns.

2. How to Tie a Turban Headscarf

This unconventional style requires a large scarf.

How to Tie a Turban Headscarf


  1. Fold the scarf into a triangle.
  2. Put it over your head with the triangular tip covering your forehead.
  3. Tie the other two tapering ends in a knot in front above the triangular piece.
  4. Take them to the back of your head and tie another knot.
  5. Tuck the triangular flap up.

Styling Tips

  • Apart from making a style statement, you can make this wrap before going to bed to protect your hair from frictional damage while sleeping.
  • You can team this wrapping style with braids if you wish.

This tying method is useful for cancer/chemo and alopecia patients to hide their hair loss issues.

3. How to Tie Headscarf in African Style

Choose a decorative African wax print fabric like kitenge for this knot as t has a nice stiffness that helps to keep the bow in place. It is also the Cuban or Caribbean style of wearing a headscarf.

How to Tie a Headscarf African Style


  1. Wrap the scarf around your head and pass one end under another on top of your head.
  2. Make a bow just as you would tie a shoelace.
  3. Open out the ‘bunny ears’ wide like a fan.
  4. Tuck the ends inside the ‘ears’ and fan them out some more.
  5. Adjust to set the bow according to your preference.

Styling Tips

  • It suits curly hair tied in a bun, though you can tie it on straight hair too.

Other Ways of Tying a Scarf on Your Head

  1. Traditional way of tying a scarf around your head – If you are driving in a convertible or riding a bike, tying it in a knot under your neck keeps your hair from flying and saves you from cold in case it is chilly outside.
How to Tie a Vintage Headscarf

Instead of tying at the neck, you can take the ends from behind your ears and tie the knot at the nape of the neck for a peasant-style headscarf.

  1. Headscarf twist – Wrap the scarf around your head and loop one end. Pass the other end through the loop, take the ends to the back and tie a knot. You would be glad to know that actress Eva Mendes frequently sports this style.
How to Tie a Scarf around Your Head
  1. Grace Kelly/Jacky O’ style – Fold the headscarf in a triangle, put it on your head, wrap the long ends around your neck and tie a knot at one side.
How to Tie a 60’s Headscarf
  1. Beach/gypsy/pirate style – In this technique, a headscarf is folded in a triangle, wrapped around the front of the head, gathered at the back and tied in a knot, leaving the long ends free. It gives you a fashionable boho or hippie look.
How to Tie a Gypsy Head Scarf Picture
  1. Medieval headscarf – You can put a headscarf triangle on your head and make a braid with it, taking your hair along. Then, wrap the braid around your head and tuck in the free end. If you find silk scarves to be too slippery for this style, make this with infinity scarves that are stretchy and more flexible. Just start by wearing it on your head like long flowy hair. The part that sits on your head should cover it completely (barring the face, of course). Then you can braid with the flowy part.
How to Tie a Medieval Headscarf
  1. Like Rosie the Riveter – You can read about it here in tutorial number 3 (just replace the bandana with a headscarf). The technique allows you to showcase the utilitarian land girl and rockabilly looks.
How to Tie a Headscarf like Rosie the Riveter

We hope you liked our mix of modern and retro techniques of tying. You can wear them to work, at formal or casual occasions as well as parties with your hair down or tied up. With so many different ways of knotting, you can easily turn a humble headscarf into a style statement.