The humble ponytail is a hairstyle we all know, love and have history with (if you weren’t sporting Britney Spears-inspired ponytails on the playground as a kid, please don’t talk to us).
Practical, pretty and a complete face-changer when you consider the faux face lift affect the everyday ‘do can lend to a look, the ponytail as far as we’re concerned doesn’t get near enough credit.
But we (and a slew of inspiring celeb-approved styles) are about to change your mind about this often overlooked *banger* of a hairstyle – Ariana Grande, eat your heart out.
The glam pony
Red carpet-approved, the glam ponytail has had a resurgence of late with polished, silky tresses reminiscent of Madonna’s iconic “Vogue” ponytail taking centre stage. Chris Appleton just turnt a look for Dua Lipa’s first show back on the road for her ‘Future Nostalgia’ tour, Adut Akech Bior got wavy with it and pulled her hair into a taught, elevated pony for a glam polished look, while Barbara Palvin styled her straight lengths into a sleek little number for the MTV EMA’s.
Length for days
We don’t know what’s in the water in LA, but the A-list hair stylists in Hollywood seem to be obsessed with unearthly long extensions. The craziest pony we’ve seen so far has to be the floor-length ponytail Chris Appleton created for Kim Kardashian’s 2021 Met Gala look, which incorporated a whopping 10k worth of real human hair. Literal stallion of a human Megan Thee Stallion donned a wavy pony that hit the floor, but what else do we expect from such a statuesque beauty? And TikToker Dixie D’amelio’s even given the OTT trend a go, matching her strands with a black bikini. Though we sincerely pray she didn’t actually go swimming in her extensions...
The go-to look for models, this casual interpretation of the cutesy style can be worn a myriad of ways depending on who’s wearing it. Guru of all things minimal and chic, model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley loves a low-po’ for her days off, while Taylor Hill prefers a half-up, half-down ‘do to accommodate her short strands, and Emily Ratajkowski opts for soft, face-framing layers that hang loose around her face.
The faux face lift
If you’re feeling a little blah, there’s no better wake-up call for the ol’ face than a faux face lift-inducing ponytail. Case and point? Bella Hadid’s brow-raising ringlets, Halle Bailey’s loc-lifted Met Gala look and Normani’s finely-finished B-ball court updo.
Selena Gomez was spotted rocking the faux face lift pony (not to mention a body-hugging Versace gown) for her 30th birthday party. The multihyphenate put a ‘60s spin on the look with the help of the ultimate glam squad (Hung Vanngo on makeup, Marissa Marino on hair and Tom Bachik on nails).
The double pony
If you’re confident enough, then we suggest getting cute with it and channeling your inner Ariana Grande with a set of double ponytails. The adorable ‘00s-inspired look can be worn multiple ways: round out the ends of you double-po’ for a sleek, blow-dried finish like Grande, turn your hair into a butterfly sanctuary with an abundance of hair accessories à la Lizzo, or mix it up like Rosalia, who’s paired some fluffy hair elastics with some face-framing micro-braids. The possibilities are endless!
The ‘slut strands’ ponytail
This year we’ve seen a massive resurgence of the ‘slut strands’ trend synonymous with hairstyles of the late ‘90s and early ‘00s. Celebrities have been seen wearing various interpretations of the tendril updo, and they were even announced as the unofficial hairstyle of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. But now, Kristen Stewart has picked up the proverbial torch and carried it all the way to the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, where she let two wispy strands of her blonde hair loose from her face-lifting ponytail. What direction will this trend take next?
The plaited pony
Be a show pony like Nicola Peltz Beckham and take inspiration from the elaborate hairstyles of our equine friends. She was serving dressage chic at the Victoria Beckham runway show and afterparty with a face-snatching micro plait pony tastefully finished with a handful of simple black cotton ribbons.
Briar is the Beauty Editor at BEAUTYcrew. Her 'down for anything' attitude has resulted in more than a handful of hair transformations, and she doesn't mind being used as a guinea pig for the industry's most unusual products and treatments. Her work has also appeared on Refinery29, Girlfriend and beautyheaven.