How to Make Cute and Fashionable Ponytails
Fortunately for me, and I'd venture to say many other women, ponytails are in style right now. Trust me, they don't have to be reserved for those bad hair days. If done right they are sleek, modern and sophisticated. If you're looking for ways to enliven and dress up your look, read on for some unique ideas for cute ponytails.
Ideas for Cute Ponytails
It's amazing what the right hair accessories can do for an otherwise plain ponytail. One of my favorite choices is placing a flower in the hair. You can either pin it on one side of your head, or attach it to the band, right on the top of the ponytail. It's also worthwhile to purchase some fun, fancy barrettes to dress up the hairdo. Small ones look really nice for pinning back bangs, larger ones can turn a casual ponytail into a fancy, sleek look. Consider buying some nice jeweled barrettes, they come in all shapes and sizes.
Ideas for High Ponytails
If your hair is long enough, consider taking your ponytail up a notch into a high one. Personally, I enjoy this look because it keeps my hair out of my face all day and is less likely to sprout those annoying loose strands/flyaways that lower ones are apt to do. You can opt for the straight, sleeked back look or you can choose a more voluminous curly look.
For the straight look, I recommend flat ironing the hair first. Use a little gel, hairspray, dry shampoo or mousse to add some texture. Use your fingers and pull hair straight up grabbing it from above the ears and at the nape of the neck simultaneously. Try to smooth it out with your fingers, but if you can't get rid of all the humps and bumps, grab a paddle brush to do the rest of the job. Use either a bungee hair holder or regular non-slip elastic band, but I prefer the latter. The bungee holder allows you to pin the tail exactly where you want it after you've gathered the hair. Your hair will naturally migrate when you go to put in an elastic band. Just a little f.y.i!
Hide the band with a strand of hair! Just take a piece from the bottom of the ponytail and wrap it around the band a few times and pin in place. It looks much nicer than seeing a plain, old elastic band. It helps to first add a bit of hairspray to the strand you're using first. For a high volume tail, tease it a little, starting with the strands on top of the ponytail and working your way underneath. Conversely, you can go for a more tidy look and paddle brush the hair. Then, add a bit of silk spray at the end to reign in the flyaways and add to the smooth, shiny look.
Look at the front when you're finished with the back. You can use your fingers to carefully fix any pieces that are not quite right. Perhaps the right side is a bit puffier than the left. Take your fingers and hook the strands from underneath to gently lift them up. Be very careful and methodical when you do this, however. You run the risk of making a mess up there otherwise. Finish off the look with some hairspray!
High Volume Crown Ponytail- Puff Effect
If you like the look of the high volume crown ponytail, it's relatively easy to accomplish with a bit of practice. There are two ways to achieve this look, you can experiment to see which one works better for you.
The Teasing Method
This works the best with a teasing tool, but you can use a regular comb, too. There's really nothing to it, just tease the hair on your crown until it's a bit messy. Check out the video on the right for a good demonstration. Place the ponytail at about the level of the top of your ears, or higher... not too high or too low, though. One trick is to add a bit of hairspray or dry shampoo before you tease to help you achieve the desired volume.
The Pulling Method
Just skip the teasing here put your hair into a regular ponytail. With the pointed end of a pick (or even with your pinky) carefully grab pieces at the crown and slowly tug them out, creating the puff effect.
The Side Ponytail Look
The side ponytail is hot right now, just ask Taylor Swift, Carrie Underwood, Nicole Ritchie, etc... Bear in mind though, they can go terribly, terribly wrong if not done right. You can end up looking like you're four, or worse like you're a super nerdy pre-teen. You want it to be flowing and subtle, not looking like you have a horn growing out of the side of your head. It's all about proper positioning.
Tips For a Fashionable Side Ponytail:
- The ponytail should never start above the top of the ear or it will have that "sprout" look. It should always begin below the earlobe or it's too high.
- It should never be too close to your face, either. It needs to be no closer to the side of your face than the widest part of your ear. It will be too "forward" otherwise.
- Beware middle-aged women! This look can have you looking like a school girl wannabe in minutes flat, so you need to keep it sophisticated and age-appropriate. Check out some of the ideas below...
The Low Side Ponytail
Consider making a loose and low side ponytail for a more grown-up look. The idea here is to avoid a tight, slicked back appearance. You can add a couple of loose braids to the top, like the picture on the right. Or, you can make it into a loose twist. Check out the video on the right where I demonstrate the twisted base ponytail. It looks much more refined if you hide the band, too. Either hide it with a strand or hair or a braided strand of hair.
Add some curls or waves for a more tousled look. If you're young enough to pull it off, put in a feather. Choose a flower if you're a bit more mature.
Tucked Under Ponytail
The tucked under ponytail is another modern, more grown-up style. In fact, it's verging on an updo, but it's very simple to do:
- You just need to start with a high ponytail.
- Wrap the hair in the band a couple of times, then on the third time (or the final time, depending upon how many wraps you make), don't pull the hair all the way few. Leave out a tail.
- Spread out and manipulate the ponytail to get it smooth and wide.
- Use the tail to wrap around the band, hiding the elastic. Secure in place with hair pins.
- Spray with hairspray and you're on your way!
Cute Ponytail Accessories from Amazon
Accessories, Braids and Twists
Add a small braid to the ponytail. Just grab a piece of hair from the front and braid it (hold it in your teeth to secure it for a minute). Grad the rest of your hair, add the braid and secure it into the elastic with the rest of the hair. Alternatively, you can make a small twist and do the same thing.
You can also french braid a side and incorporate that into the ponytail as well. Or, you can master a more complicated waterfall braid. Check out my video on the right for that tutorial.
Adding a nice headband can also add style to your ponytail. Make it sparkly for a fancy occasion.