Of all the hairstyles we know and love, a classic ponytail is the one most synonymous with comfort and simplicity — but it doesn’t have to be boring. You can always take it up a notch with one of these easy ideas from celebrities like Constance Wu, Issa Rae and Beyoncé (to name a few) for the perfect summer hairstyle. No matter your hair type or curl pattern, there’s a ponytail out there for you and whatever event you’re wearing it to. Within just a few minutes, you’ll have the perfect updo of your dreams with these celebrity-inspired ponytail hairstyles.
These days, the ponytails are getting higher and the hair accessories are on full display. From oversized bows to delicate pearls to the comeback of the scrunchie, there are so many ways to update your go-to ponytail hairstyle. Pick and choose your favorites, and prepare to wear the most stylish ponytail of all time, whether you have long hair or are rocking a shorter hairstyle.
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Wrapped High Ponytail
Gabrielle Union proves that you don’t need impossibly long locks to rock a sky-high ponytail. To elevate a pony at the crown of your head, wrap some of your hair around the elastic, and flip out the ends.
Balloon Ponytail with Curtain Bangs
Curtain bangs continue to reign, and one of this year’s hottest twists on a traditional high ponytail is the balloon ponytail — so why not combine the two trends? Start with a high pony and tie off every two inch sections with an elastic. For a voluminous ponytail like Priyanka Chopra, make sure to fluff out sections as you go along.
Loose Low Ponytail
A loose, wavy ponytail is the ultimate romantic hairstyle. For hair like Margot Robbie‘s, tie an elastic just below the nape of your neck, and fluff out hair for a bit more volume.
Chic, elegant and simple, this half-twisted ponytail is the perfect summer wedding guest hairstyle. Wavy ends like Zendaya‘s complete the look — keep them defined with a curl cream.
High Ponytail with Flipped Ends
Channel retro vibes inspired by the queen of ponytails herself, Ariana Grande. Flip out the ends and keep the bangs out on one side for a glam take on a ’90s style.
Sleek High Ponytail
Joan Smalls looks elegant and regal with this simple high ponytail. This style is perfect for anyone who wants a simple look that still feels done up.
Long Ponytail with Laid Edges
Singer H.E.R.‘s ultra-long low ponytail takes glamour to a new level. Adding one strand of coifed baby hair makes this already sleek style look even sleeker.
Simple Low Ponytail
Whether you’re spending a Sunday running errands or hitting the town, this style is effortless and perfect for any occasion. Start with a middle part and secure hair at the nape of your neck. It also doesn’t hurt to accessorize with a puppy, like Olivia Culpo.
Low Ponytail with Side Bangs
Side bangs are back in a big way — just look at actress Annie Murphy. These bangs look amazing when paired with a low ponytail, since they help frame your face.
Straight High Ponytail
A high ponytail that starts at the crown of your head looks chic, especially when it’s pin-straight. Take a page out of Lana Condor‘s book and pair the style with statement earrings.
SHOP SLEEK SERUM
Constance Wu‘s ponytail is smooth and soft, with subtle waves. With the hair and yellow gown, it’s no surprise people compared her to Belle from Beauty and the Beast.
Mindy Kaling‘s low ponytail is taken to the next level with a side part that twists on the side. And the sleek, long pony is beyond glam.
Rachel Brosnahan got plenty of lift for her hair at the 24th Annual Critics’ Choice Awards with one method: lots of teasing. If you want to recreate this look, don’t forget to use a curling iron on your pony.
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Short Low Ponytail
Short hair? That shouldn’t stop you from rocking a ponytail like Vanessa Hudgens. This super-low style is secured with a ponytail holder at the nape of her neck.
Messy Low Ponytail
Laura Harrier‘s tousled low pony can take you from day to night. It’s super styled … but also incredibly casual? You’ll want to try this ponytail hairstyle for any and all occasions that are coming up.
‘I Dream of Jeannie’ Ponytail
Jessica Alba reaches high with this voluminous ponytail, which is giving us serious Barbara Eden circa 1960s vibes. We recommend slicking it back with a little bit of gel and using a durable ponytail holder for this look.
Jazz up your ponytail hairstyle with an overstated bow. Chloë Sevigny shows us how it’s done. Her middle part and super-straight hair gives the accessory (and her dress) all the attention.
The ponytail of the moment is mussed-up, as demonstrated by Amy Adams. A bit of teasing plus a little dry shampoo and voilà — you’ve got an effortlessly cool style.
SHOP DRY SHAMPOO
That’s right: Scrunchies are back, baby. You can get instant style with a fun hair tie straight from the ’80s and ’90s. Here, Hailey Bieber wore it with her Met Gala gown … but we support you rocking this look with sweats too.
Mandy Moore‘s simple ponytail is made red carpet-ready with a deep side part. There’s also a surprise detail: from the back, you can see that her hair stylist placed a delicate pearl in the center.
The key to a Dakota Johnson-worthy ponytail that won’t look droopy by the end of the night? “Tilt your head back while doing a ponytail,” says celebrity hairstylist Marcus Francis. “This trick makes the nape much tighter.”
Sky High Ponytail
To narrow the appearance of your face, put your ponytail way up high and fluff it up like J. Lo. This elongates your face, drawing the eye to your cheekbones.
Zoe Saldana opts for a cool twisted look — think of it as a fresh take on the braided pony. Polish it off with a dose of finishing serum to mimic her mirror-like shine.
If you have long hair and want something unique, try copying Maria Menounos‘ bubbly look. It takes a little more skill — and a lot more hair ties — to learn, but once you’ve got the technique down, you’ll be obsessed with it.
Wrapped Up Ponytail
For a seamless look worthy of Beyoncé herself, wrap a thin section of hair around the base of your ponytail to conceal the elastic. It instantly elevates the vibe of your ponytail.
Tight, full-bodied curls like Issa Rae‘s make for an incredible side ponytail. To keep the top slicked down, apply a strong gel.
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Laura Dern‘s ponytail is so low that it doesn’t even look like a ponytail from the front. The key to making this work? Ensure the front pieces are polished by finishing off the ends with a curling iron.
If you want to kick it up another notch, copy style icon Chrissy Teigen and add a braid. Mist hair with a texturizing spray before you begin to make it easier to style.
SHOP TEXTURIZING SPRAY
Take a cue from Olivia Wilde at the 2016 Met Gala and wear a tight pony to your next fancy event. Amp up the look in a similar manner with metal hardware.
Polished bangs instantly modernize a classic ponytail. To mimic Allison Janney‘s look, blow dry your fringe into place and top it off with a flexible hold hairspray to ensure it stays put without looking stiff.
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