Lalie Chassaigne bun

How to get
the perfect synchronised swimming bun

When you see synchronised swimmers, their hair is always immaculate… But what is their secret?

Whether you are a swimmer, parent, or maybe even a coach, getting hair up into a bun for the first time can be a stressful experience! 
How do you get it to stay in place in the water? Should you use gel? Is there a special technique?
Today, your ambassadors Virginie Dedieu and Lalie Chassaigne have something for you: here's the bun tutorial! 

Lalie Chassaigne bun

The synchro bun 

When we broach the subject of the bun in synchro swimming, everyone always has their own little secret tips for success… 

In this article, we have brought together our own tips, and those of your ambassadors, but feel free to ask other swimmers and coaches around you and share their tips with us. 

The secret to a successful bun is trial and error; the technique that works best for your team-mate might not be the best for you, so try a few different ones.

Lalie Chassaigne bun

The bun: do you have to?

You may wonder if a bun is mandatory for synchronised swimming... well the answer is no: it is not! However, regulations state that hair must be pulled back and must not fall in front of the swimmers' faces, so that it does not get in their way as they perform. So long as these criteria are met, coaches (and swimmers) are free to find the hairstyle that best suits the theme of your routine: two small buns? A ridge of three? A Dutch or French plait? 

It's up to you… we look forward to seeing your creations!

Lalie Chassaigne bun

How to achieve the perfect
artistic swimming bun

The first step to a successful bun is to wet your hair; it will be easier to style! Some swimmers then apply a mask or a hair product to their hair to make it easier to untangle… But that's up to you to try and see if it works for you! 

Then, of course, you have to brush your hair thoroughly so that you can scrape it back for the next step: the ponytail

The best thing is to pull the hair back with a comb so that everything is 
as smooth as possible: the top of the head, the sides, the bottom... there should be no lumps and bumps. The ponytail should be about halfway up the head; confer with your team-mates on the location of the bun! 

Wrap your hair band around as many times as you can to hold the hair securely in place. Once tied up, there are several techniques out there. One is to wrap the hair around the ponytail, pulling it tightly, and not letting any stick out, then secure all around the bun using hair pins

Take care, these pins need to pass through both the bun and the slicked back hair along the head and ideally under the hair band too. The next step is to cover the bun with a hair net to make sure there is no hair sticking out! 

You will also need to secure the net with more hair pins all around the bun. 

Lalie Chassaigne bun

You will need the following 
to achieve the perfect bun: 

- A hair brush
- A comb
- A hair band
- A hair net
- Hair pins
- Hair grips

Lalie Chassaigne bun

The wrapped plait technique

Another technique for doing a bun is to divide your ponytail into two sections and then plait them. Wrap one plait around the ponytail, letting the other hang over the top, then secure it with one or two hair pins, before wrapping the second plait around the first. Then secure everything with pins and a net, as explained previously. Personally, on my curly hair, this is the technique I use the most! 
You can finish by checking that the bun does not move by shaking your head a little and
moving it with your hand—gently though, you don't want to pull your bun out! :) 
If the bun moves too much, don't be afraid to add a few extra hair pins. 

The next step is gelatine so that the bun doesn't come out in the water. You can find all our tips for successful gelatine application in this article! 
You can use hair grips to smooth down all the small hairs that did not make it into the bun between two layers of gelatine. 

Lalie Chassaigne bun

How to look after
your hair 

After several training sessions and competitions, swimmers' hair can become damaged by chlorine and from the friction of the cap on the forehead, for example. This is why it's important to take good care of it! After each session in the pool, you need to thoroughly rinse and wash your hair with shampoo and conditioner suited to your hair type. It's not a bad idea to apply a mask every week or so to nourish it deep down! And no need to worry about competition time: gelatin nourishes the hair… How convenient!

Camille Adam

Camille adam

I was 9 years old when I discovered synchronised swimming. It was my mum who signed me up: I liked to do shows, I was very comfortable in the water, and fascinated by anything to do with glitter... And it quickly became very clear that synchronised swimming and I were in it for the long run! I love the type of effort that this discipline requires: 
core strength, breathing control, being able to move in every direction and dimension, moving, smiling... plus the teamwork of course—it's amazing how strong a team can be! Helping one another, support, perseverance,
perfectionism, stress management: synchro has been the best school of life for me, whether as a swimmer or as a coach.