How to Do a Ponytail for Beginners

The basic ponytail never goes out of style.
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The classic ponytail is a hairstyle that works for any age. It is a flexible look that works for casual weekends and for an evening out. Although the process for creating a ponytail is straightforward, there are some ways to transform the look. The biggest decision is the position of the ponytail on the back of your head, which can be as high or as low as you want it.

Brush your hair well from roots to the tips to remove all tangles.

Stand in front of a mirror and place your hands at your temples. Lean your head back approximately 45 degrees and run your hands backward until they meet in the center of your head. Gather your hair inside your hands as you move them back.

Turn to the side and look in the mirror. Decide how high you want the ponytail to be, which is personal preference. Some individuals prefer a low ponytail at the base of the neck, while others prefer high ponytails located at the top rear of the head.

Hold the ponytail in position with one hand and comb the front portion of your hair backward using the brush. This smooths out the front portion to remove any bumps.

Pick up a rubber band and place it on the fingers of your free hand so your fingers are inside the rubber band’s hole. Some individuals use three fingers and some prefer all of their fingers inside the rubber band. Experiment until you find a technique that feels right for you.

Place the rubber band around the location where your other hand is holding the gathered hair. Wrap the rubber band from the top of the gathered hair down over the sides until it meets underneath the hair.

Keep the fingers holding the rubber band firmly pressed together and then release the hair with your other hand. Grasp the small loop of hair that now protrudes up through the center of the rubber band and pull it all the way up and through until the rubber band encircles it.

Evaluate the tightness of the rubber band to see if a gap exists between it and the hair. If a gap exists, pull the rubber band away from the hair gently with one hand. Twist the rubber band clockwise, so that it crosses over itself. Bend the rubber band back down over the ponytail and use your other hand to pull the hair through the new loop.

Hold a can of hair spray above your head at least 10 to 12 inches from your head. Press down on the nozzle to apply a light coat to the front portion of the ponytail. This keeps any shorter pieces of hair from coming loose from the ponytail.

  • To create a more polished look, cover the rubber band with a strand of hair. After you create the ponytail, grasp a 1/2-inch-thick section from the under portion. Wrap it around the ponytail, placing it over the rubber band until the entire strand is used. Secure the end of the strand under the ponytail using a hairpin.

Kimberly Johnson is a freelance writer whose articles have appeared in various online publications including eHow, Suite101 and Examiner. She has a degree in journalism from the University of Georgia and began writing professionally in 2001.