Charlize Theron rocking the side-swept ponytail
With each flip of those glossy pages, the literature found in fashion and beauty magazines are constructed via complementary, eccentric vocabulary established through a cerebral lexicon in the psyche of beauty buffs. In other words: even simple English sounds Greek when coupled with beauty vocabulary! This summer, the ponytail is back in full force and with my help, I’ll have you figuring out how to make sense of those confusingly written hair instructions in no time.
When speaking about ponytails most style how-tos have some description of how high the ponytail sits on the back of you head. These descriptions mostly revolve around two areas: the nape and the crown. The nape is right underneath the protrusion of the skull on the back of your head. The crown is exactly where it sounds like it would be: the area on your head where your princess crown would sit, towards the back, on the top of your head.
The first step to mastering any ponytail is to understand exactly where to place it. Low-slung means right on the nape of your neck. High means right on your crown and in between those two is the medium-height ponytail. These will help you place that pony exactly where the style intends.
Classic ponytail at Marc by Marc Jacobs
After the ponytail is placed the next set of trivia words comes in the form of how your hair looks/feels. As easy as this might sound, most people are confused about the actually look that accompanies each style. A very important distinction is between the word smooth and textured. Both these words have a broad meaning, but, let’s simplify, shall we: Smooth means that there is no wave or defined curl to your hair; textured means to have either a wave or curl to your hair. The best part about the textured look is that it can be based on your natural hair, as long as it is not pin-straight.
Most ponytails give you the ability to rock them effortlessly in the summer. Between humidity and sweating, it is often hard to keep your perfectly-styled look untouched, so, the next best thing is to have an elastic ready and to know how to transform your hair into a chic pony. Thankfully for us, a ponytail is always classic and can be turned into a modern look in seconds.
The first is a side-swept ponytail (as seen above on Charlize Theron); this usually looks best with some texture and is tied to the side, right next to the nape or your neck. Most women will need a bobby pin to keep the opposite side at bay, but if your hair is long enough that should not be a problem. Make sure to keep this one semi-loose as an “un-done” look is always more chic.
Kim Kardashian sporting the medium-height ponytail
The next is the medium height ponytail; always a classic among the socialites and prom queens, this is the epitome of chic. After a long day working or a long day relaxing on the beach, this look can really update your style. It is also very versatile as you can do a side part, middle part or all pulled back.
Model wearing the low-slung ponytail
Lastly, my favorite, is the low-slung pony that sits on the nape of your neck. I consider this my go-to pony look of all time. It has the versatility of the part but also the versatility of style with the option of adding to it. On the runway this season they took this type of ponytail and added ‘flair’ by creating a ‘waterfall’ of mini ponytails (as seen at Hervé Léger), or using a barrette to clasp it all together (similar to the looks seen at Prada). Still, this ponytail is always classic and super-easy with texture or smooth hair — it is possibly the fastest way to put yourself
together without any effort.
‘Waterfall’ ponytail at Hervé Léger
The best thing about the ponytail is its eminent possibilities. It can be taken from simple and chic to deconstructed and edgy — still looking great. In the summer you cannot beat this style, so play around and see what you can create.
– Yiannoula Choros
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