There’s a simple truth about hairstyling nightmares: Everyone has them. Sometimes morning grooming sessions get cut short when your strands refuse to obey your comb. What to do when this happens? Check out these tips from and create a backup plan for those dreaded bad hair days when your tresses just won’t behave.

Wear a hat. This is the simplest way to cover up messy hair. Just don a cute cap and go. There are trendy hat choices galore, from knit caps to summery fedoras. It may take some research and experimentation, but everyone has a special hat that compliments her features. One problem, though: This strategy might not work if your job has a dress code, so make sure to check office policy.

How about headscarves? These hair wraps can be an elegant part of your style repertoire and add a dash of color to your wardrobe. Headscarves work best with longer hairstyles and ’fros, since voluminous wraps are eye-catching and a way to celebrate those ancestral roots. (Remember: This style doesn’t work for everyone. And learning how to tie a headscarf the right way with a twist in the back can be tricky.) If you’re new to wrapping, seek assistance. And you may want to consider getting a second opinion too.

Try a wig. Hiding unruly tresses under more hair might sound odd, but celebrities use wigs all the time to change their looks. If you don’t want people to know your little secret, though, find a hairpiece that closely matches your mane. Wig price tags can range from cheap to prohibitively expensive, so before you buy these faux tresses figure out how much use you’ll get out of them. (Remember: Donning a wig involves pinning down your real tresses and protecting hair with a stocking cap or other strand-friendly covering, so budget yourself enough time in the morning.)

Plait your tresses. A neat French braid or similar style can be the perfect solution for a bad hair day. You can choose from plenty of striking styles, such as braided updos or swingy pageboys, so don’t worry about not looking girlish.

Try simple, classic hairstyles. If your mane is long enough, sweeping hair into a ponytail is the oldest trick in the book. If tresses are too short for an ample-looking ponytail, gather hair on the crown of your head to experiment with a bun or an updo—add pieces if needed to make it work. Sometimes the best solutions are also the simplest.

Ideally, bad hair days don’t happen often. But if you find yourself having too many of these confidence killers in a row, there could be underlying issues. Maybe your hair isn’t getting enough moisture or you’re detangling tresses too roughly.

But first thing is first. Get through your bad hair day; then assess what might have caused your curls to go into crisis.

Click here to read about hair growth techniques that could help improve the look of your tresses.