Yara Shahidi Wears an Inventive Double Side Part at Prada

Why choose sides?

Yara Shahidi on her way to the Prada Womenswear FW24 show.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

With the middle part versus side part debate so very contentious, it can be hard to decide where to separate your hair. Now, imagine you have to make that decision for an event where you'll be photographed from all angles.

Yara Shahidi isn't bothered. In fact, her solution to the problem is downright genius. On Thursday, February 22, the 24-year-old appeared in Milan to attend Prada's Womenswear Fall/Winter 2024-2025 show. Wearing her dark hair in a slicked back bun, she chose to insert not one, but two parts into her updo: one on each side of her head.

A post shared by Vincent Oquendo

A photo posted by makeupvincent on

The hairstyle was the creation of hair educator and designer Mitchell Cantrell, who joined forces with makeup artist Vincent Oquendo and creative director Jason Bolden for the evening's glam.

The two parts formed a sort of arrow that pointed straight to the Grown-Ish star's face, highlighting Oquendo's smoky, metallic eye. (Not that it needed the hair's help—Shahidi's major '60s lashes did the trick all on their own.) Bolden, for his part, styled the Harvard grad in an eyelet-pierced white button up shirt overlaid with a silver-y beaded black top and high-waisted black shorts.

A post shared by Mitchell Cantrell

A photo posted by mitchellcantrellbeauty on

In a video posted by Cantrell, you can see the full extent of her top's embroidery—and, most importantly, the back of Shahidi's updo. Completely slicked back (there are no signs of the wonders up front from this angle), her bun is fastened with a gold Lelet New York domed hair piece that echoes the metallic details in her Prada outfit and eyeshadow.

The celebrity hairstylist tells Marie Claire that the look was inspired by the Gianfranco Ferré prêt-à-porter show from Spring/Summer 2013. For the event, every model wore their hair with the same double-parted style—albeit choosing slick ponytails instead of Shahidi's elegant bun.

The first step in creating the look? "Create a precision part on top of the head," shares Cantrell. "Extra tip: use the start of the right brow for the left part, and the left brow for the right part."

models on the runway with double parted hair

Gianfranco Ferré models wore double-parted ponytails on the runway in 2013.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Once you have your parts, section off the hair between them, as well as the hair to the left and right. The next step (number three, if you're counting) introduces some products, so be sure to have your shopping cart ready.

“Starting in the back, you’re going to wet down the hair and apply a leave-in conditioner," adds Cantrell. “Then, apply a gel cream.”

Next, "Brush the products through the middle section of your hair with a wide-toothed brush (no boar bristles!). You’ll repeat the process with the same section from the nape of the neck to the top of the back of the head," the artist continues. "Then, brush all the hair back together and put it in a ponytail, adding edge control to the hairline. Repeat step three’s product process on all sides, brushing through and adding the sections to the back ponytail.”

Once that’s complete, Cantrell suggest grabbing a fine toothed tail comb and combing all sections into the ponytail individually, gathering flyaways as you go. Then, you’ll add a layer of edge control over the top of the entire ponytail before taking the ponytail and creating a bun, leaving the ends facing upward toward the ceiling. The final step: Adding your dome pony cuff and pins to secure the bun, polishing off any last details.

Yara Shahidi attends the Prada FW24 show at Milan Fashion Week

The final result: a double-part updo worth smiling about.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

"Behind every powerful woman is her glam team. I’m honored to be apart of yours @yarashahidi," wrote the hairstylist in his post's caption.

Honestly, the honor is all her followers'—to witness this hairstyle and be reminded that we don't always have to pick sides. If you're lucky enough to look good with hair parted any (and every) which way, flaunt it.

Freelance Writer

Sophia Vilensky is a freelance beauty writer at Marie Claire, where she writes about the latest and greatest skincare launches, hair colors, and Cardi B manicures. Her work can also be found at Byrdie, Bravo, and Us Weekly. You can find her on Instagram @sophiavilensky.