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31 Easy Ponytail Hairstyles for Every Skill Level

Photo by David Livingston / Stringer/Getty Images

It’s pretty safe to say that ponytails are like the LBD of the beauty world. Rushing to the gym? There’s a ponytail for that. Glamming up for a fun night out? Ponytail for that. Prepping for that talk about your promotion? Definitely a boss babe ponytail for that too (and every life activity in between). There’s no need to make them complex, either. There are tons of easy ponytail hairstyles—from braided ponytails to high ponytails—that are all red-carpet-worthy without the help of a pro stylist. To give you a little inspiration, we’ve got some easy ideas from hairstylist Cynthia Dhimdis to help take your ponies from basic to beautiful, plus loads of celeb inspo below.

About The Expert:

Cynthia Dhimdis is a hairstylist and content creator based in Los Angeles.

More of a visual learner? Check out our quick tutorial for more easy styles:

1. Spiky Pony

Close-up of Billie Eilish rocking a ponytail hairstyle with bangs and wearing sunglasses
Photo by Frazer Harrison / Staff/Getty Images

If there was any doubt the early ‘00s were back, this spiky pony on Billie Eilish should serve as definitive proof. Perfect for those with short hair, shag haircuts, or piece-y layers, this ponytail hairstyle puts the shorter layers to work by fluffing them up at the base of the pony. Pair with slim sunnies and simple hoops for a super wearable Y2K vibe.

2. Curly Pony

Chloe Bailey rocking a curly ponytail hairstyle and sequined dress
Photo by Frazer Harrison / Staff/Getty Images

Chloe Bailey brings the red carpet glam with this full-volume pony and daintily styled baby hairs. Whether your curls are natural or achieved with the help of hot tools (we love the SUTRA Mini Curling Wand for tight curls), placing a pony at the crown will allow your curls to cascade for maximum drama.

3. Elegant Mid-Pony

Jessica Chastain rocking a ponytail hairstyle, stone-studded dangling earrings and pink sequined dress
Photo by David Livingston / Stringer/Getty Images

This classic mid-pony on Jessica Chastain hits all the right spots with its wrapped base, gentle curl, and wispy front pieces that give an undone, romantic look. The best part? It’s as effortless as it looks. Just gather hair into a pony and secure with a hair tie, taking a one-inch piece from the pony to wrap around your hair tie before discreetly securing it with a bobby pin. Pull out a few strands in front, give your pony a quick curl (you just want a slight bend), and you’re all set.

4. Power Pony

Paris Hilton rocking a high ponytail hairstyle and sequined dress on the red carpet
Photo by Frazer Harrison / Staff/Getty Images

Let your hair strike a power pose. Paris Hilton’s sky-high pony commands attention with a slick base, long hair, and statement side bangs—the perfect accompaniment for high necklines and a swipe of bold lipstick. We’re partial to UOMA Badass Icon Lipstick in Diana for its color and its name.

5. Pretty Pearl Pony

If we’ve learned anything about hair, it’s that when it comes to embellishments, everything and anything goes. Accessorized ponytails are popping up everywhere and we’re all beyond obsessed. Sweep your strands bag into a low tail and twist. Then, add some pretty pearl accessories ( like Pink Pewter Queen Elizabeth Pearl Hair Pins) for a touch of glam from top to tail.

6. Chunky Chains Pony

Speaking of embellishments, this look created by Justine Marjan is not only insanely gorgeous, it's also a genius way to add the illusion of length to your strands without adding extensions. 

7. Modern Romance Pony

A photo of Laura Harrier sporting her black long hair in a modern romance ponytail wearing a red dress with a puffed see through sleeve in polkadots
Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

Windswept, wispy, and tousled—everything about this low whimsical pony emits all the romantic vibes. Rough dry your hair to play up texture and create a middle part. Pull your strands back into a low ponytail secured at the nape of your neck, leaving a few face-framing pieces in the front loose. Top it off with a class red lip, and babe, you’re date night ready.

8. Classically Chic Ponytail

A photo of Cara Delevingne wearing a purple suit paired in white top with her blond hair styled in a simple classic chic ponytail
Photo by Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images

This simple, slicked back pony is not only so easy to recreate, it’s perfect for just about any occasion. We’re talking secure enough for spin class and sleek enough for an important Zoom meeting, Here it’s all about smoothness and shine. Prep hair with a smoothing serum (such as PURE BRAZILIAN Daily Anti-Frizz Serum), before you blow dry. Straighten strands with a flat iron before pulling them back into a semi-high pony. Spritz with a strong hold hair spray for style that lasts from coffee to cocktails.

9. Badass Barrettes

Kerry Washington rocking a black dress, textured ponytail hairstyle, and pearl dangling earrings
Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

We love seeing polished ponies decorated in clunky jewelry, bedazzled barrettes, oversized bows and pearly pins all reminiscent of treasures you’d find digging through your grandma’s jewelry chest. To create space for all your trinkets, section your hair into a deep side part seen on Ashley here and pull your hair back into a sleep pony at the middle of your head.

10. Deep Side Part Pony

A photo of Zendaya wearing a colorblocked shorts suit in her long brown hair channeling a deep side part pony tail
Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Zendaya’s ultra-deep side part, paired with a sky-high flippy tail is the stuff ponytail dreams are made of. And that rich mahogany hair color? So perfect for the Fall season.

11. Braided Side Ponytail

A photo of Jessica Alba showing off her back braided side ponytail looking in a camera
Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images

The more we look at this braided pony, the more amazing it becomes. From the deep side part, to gorgeous wrap-around braid, to the sleek low tail one-sided tail, it’s a look we want to recreate on repeat.

12. Bubble Pony

Cynthia Dhimdis rocking a bubble ponytail hairstyle in her bedroom

Bubble ponytails might look really intricate and complicated, but we promise they’re easier to achieve than they look. Start off with your classic high ponytail (Cynthia preps with BRIOGEO HAIR CARE Farewell Frizz™ Rosarco Milk Leave-In Conditioner and uses a bungee hair tie to ensure a smooth, tight ponytail), then tie off a section of the tail every few inches. Gently pull out each section for a more voluminous, bubble look.

13. Braided Pony

Cynthia Dhimdis rocking a braided ponytail

To cop this look, tie your hair in a low ponytail. Pro tip: smooth it back with a natural bristle brush (like boar bristle) for a really smooth and clean top section. Fishtail braid the lengths, then tie off with a small hair tie. 

14. Sleek and Low Pony

Cynthia Dhimdis rocking a sleek, low wavy ponytail hairstyle

With a few easy tweaks, this classic low ponytail becomes instantly elevated. First, make sure you’re starting with a really crisp middle part. Cynthia uses a rat tail comb for this. Next, use a paddle brush to gently brush up your wavy ponytail to add soft volume.

15. Half and Half Pony

Cynthia Dhimdis rocking a half up and half ponytail hairstyle with her back to the camera

When you’re feeling indecisive (where’re all my Libras at?!), this hybrid look is for you. Not only does the half-up look give you the best of both worlds, but the actual half-up section is also half bun, half ponytail. Just split your hair into two sections, gathering the top section of hair into a bun. Secure it at the center-back of your head with a hair tie and bobby pins.

16. Textured Pony

Kerry Washington rocking a black dress, textured ponytail hairstyle, and pearl dangling earrings
Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

Let your natural curls go free with Kerry Washington’s textured pony. The trick to such an impactful look: the more volume, the better. Gently backcomb the ponytail section to boost volume instantly. 

17. Soft Waves

Constance Wu looking regal in a yellow dress, wavy ponytail hairstyle, and silver dangling earrings
Photo by Frazer Harrison /Getty Images

Between Constance Wu’s wavy ponytail and yellow off-the-shoulder dress, we’re getting total Belle vibes from the look. 

18. Cornrow Pony

A photo of Jessica Alba showing off her back braided side ponytail looking in a camera
Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images

Protective styles, like Gabrielle Union’s cornrows, are great for keeping your strands as healthy as possible, but that doesn’t mean your style options are limited. Take a note from Gabrielle, and tie all your braids up into a high ponytail. You can even wrap the hair tie with one of your braids for a polished finish.

19. Curtain Bangs

Camila Cabello rocking a white shirt with a rose print, black corsette, and high ponytail with bangs hairstyle
Photo by John Phillips/Getty Images

If your For You page on TikTok is anything like ours, then you’re definitely familiar with trendy curtain bangs, as seen here on Camila Cabello. Not only do these face-framing layers add a flirty edge to your hair down, but they’re also the perfect addition to any ponytail.

 20. Twist Back Pony

Shay Mitchell rocking a sheer black dress, gold earrings, and twist back ponytail hairstyle
Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images

For those who are braid challenged, Shay Mitchell’s twisted back take on a pony is the perfect substitution. Start with a hairline section near your part, twisting away from your face and adding more hair as you work your way down your hairline. Repeat on the other side. Meet the two sections in the back of your head, then tie it all into a low ponytail.

21. Barbie Pony

Bella Hadid looking elegant in a gold dress, hoop earrings, rose smoky eye makeup look and sleek, high ponytail hairstyle
Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

Part ‘90s throwback, part ‘70s Barbie, Bella Hadid’s ponytail is bringing all the nostalgia. It’s the flipped under ends for us.

22. Straight Back Pony

Vanessa Hudgens rocking a slick, high ponytail hairstyle and purple smoky eye makeup look
Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris /Getty Images

Vanessa Hudgens’s slicked back ponytail is all about the shine. Prep your hair with a shine serum before pulling it back into the ponytail, then finish the look with a shine spray for a reflective and sleek finish.

23. Rapunzel Pony

Jennifer Lopez rocking a sequined, coral crop top and high ponytail hairstyle
Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

How’s this for a high impact ponytail hairstyle? Grab some extensions, Jennifer Lopez’s Rapunzel style pony is going to take a little help to recreate.

24. Velvet Scrunchie Ponytail

Hailey Bieber looking chic in a baby pink dress paired with a bold eyeliner look and a high ponytail hairstyle kept together with a black velvet scrunchie
Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

Scrunchies are back and better than ever. Use a velvet version, like Hailey Bieber, to give your ponytail a fun twist. Want to add extra glam? Pop on an embellished headband for a retro look. 

25. Wrapped Up Pony

Olivia Culpo rocking a fringed, sequined silver dress and a low ponytail hairstyle paired with a smoky eye makeup look
Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Another non-hair tie option to elevate your pony? Wrap up the base with a piece of leather string. Go down a couple inches, like Olivia Culpo, or ever further down the ponytail for more drama.

26. Loose and Low Pony

Margot Robbie rocking a black and white tweed coat and low ponytail hairstyle with loose bangs
Photo by Julien M. Hekimian/Getty Images

If you’re ever in need of some style inspiration, Margot Robbie is always one to watch, starting with this romantic ponytail. The trick: Don’t overthink it. The messier, the better when it comes to an undone look.

27. Ultra High Pony

Ariana Grande posing in a silver dress paired with a high ponytail hairstyle, bold eye makeup, and diamond earrings
Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images

It wouldn’t be a ponytail hairstyle roundup if we didn’t mention the queen of the high pony, Ariana Grande. Need we say more?

28. Half Pony

Dakota Johnson wearing a nude dress, nude eye shadow makeup look, and half ponytail hairstyle
Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

Dakota Johnson’s half pony lets you have all the length of wearing your hair down while also being able to wear it up. As far as we’re concerned, half ponytails will never go out of style.

29. Side Pony

Rihanna in an all-black ensemble with a side ponytail hairstyle
Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

If anyone can make the side ponytail cool again, it’s Rihanna. The black lipstick, sunnies, and leather beret don’t hurt the effect either.

30. Pineapple Perfection

Yara Shahidi wearing a whimsical pair of earrings and pineapple, high ponytail hairstyle
Photo by Marcus Ingram/Getty Images

Prep your damp hair with a frizz fighter and curl definer, like CURL KEEPER® Curl Keeper Original, then let it air dry. Remember, hands off if you want defined curls like Yara Shahidi. Once your hair’s 100 percent dry, pile it all up on the top of your head, letting the tendrils spill over.

31. Stacked Bow Pony

Tessa Thompson wearing a nude outfit with black collar and a bubble ponytail hairstyle with a black bow on each bubble
Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

Meet stacked bows (as seen on Tessa Thompson), cousin of the bubble ponytail above. Follow the same steps to create the bubble pony, but then top each hair tie with a bow. DIY your own using black ribbon from the craft store.

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About the author
Runa Rhattacharya
Runa Bhattacharya
Runa is an NYC-based writer and Registered Nurse with over 8 years of experience covering beauty and wellness. She’s worked for publications like SELF, Cosmopolitan, and more. She’s passionate about beauty, science, and two careers that she loves!
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Article Last Updated May 25, 2022 12:00 AM