Ditch the braids: \"Aunty\" updos featuring claw clips and hair bows are where the trend is at

Ditch the braids: "Aunty" updos featuring claw clips and hair bows are where the trend is at

Aunt Agony

Text: Emily Heng

Image: Instagram | @rosiehw

Of the many experiences unique to Singapore, aunty culture is undoubtedly one of them. Stereotypically characterised as the shameless but well-meaning figure in many a Jack Neo movie, she is often portrayed to be loitering the aisles of supermarkets when she's not performing Tai Chi at sheltered HDB compounds with her tribe. The getup: Batik print polo tee. The companion: Fairprice trolley bag. The hair: gravity-defying, permed 'do held in place by a single claw clip — or, the trendy updo seen on just about every head these days, from the runway to that of your favourite celebrities.

2019's chic renditions have us sifting through mum's stash of barrettes, clips, and ribbons. Below, the best updos that will have you upstaging the aunties at your next family gathering.

1. Inlaid with quirky pins
A scraped-back bun is made fun with a scattering of lucite pins peeking enticingly through strands. Not only does it keep the focus on your (not so aunty) visage, it also adds an elegant touch to a cazh day. Wear when in the mood to channel the tai tais sipping tea at the Ritz Carlton.



2. Claw clip
The quintessential '90's accessory, claw clips are made cool once more when paired with slicked-back tresses. Choose those with a sleek silver finish (à la Alexander Wang) or tortoiseshell to jet power ensemble vibes. What's sexier than that?



3. Topknot
In the style of Aunty Rosie from everyone's favourite Channel 5 drama, Phua Chu Kang, pull that mane up in a messy topknot. Extra points for an in-style clip that is more ornamental than functional. Those loose, flyaway strands spell je ne sai quoi, a French phrase so pedestrian even the aunties you're (sorta) emulating will get. 



4. Chignon with a twist
A low chignon is chic. That said, it has nothing on this high flyer straight out of the '60's mod movement. While a predictable choice on the red carpet, the extra volume and height lend much needed glamour at the wet market.



5. Double bun bow
Much like the little black dress, the little black bow never goes out of style. Weave it between two double buns — Star Wars, style. Just because you're growing up doesn't mean your hair have to get on with it too, you know?