These chic updates to the classic pony make the go-to style stand out
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First, mist roots with a texturizing product like Oscar Blandi Pronto Texture & Volume Spray ($25; nordstrom.com). Next, finger-comb hair into a high ponytail, secure with an elastic, and loosen a few pieces at the crown. “This gives the look a soft, undone feel,” says New York City hairstylist Nathaniel Hawkins, who created the styles on these pages. To thicken the tail, spritz it with the same texturizer you used at the beginning, then lightly tease with a brush.
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Slick strands straight back, then gather only the top portion and anchor it with an elastic band, tight and flat against the back of your head. Repeat with the middle section, securing it at the center, and finally again with the bottom, fastening it at your nape. For extra sleekness, work a few drops of a smoother like Pureology Precious Oil ($40; pureology.com) through the tail and gently over your hairline.
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Run styling cream from roots to ends (try Herbal essences Touchably Smooth Anti-Frizz Crème, ($5; drugstores), and comb it through to evenly distribute. Draw a side part, then form a tight, low ponytail and secure it with an elastic, leaving a small section in the front free. Next, take that loose piece and twist it into a long, taut coil. Wrap it around the base of your ponytail to hide the elastic, and lock the coil in place with bobby pins. Smooth more cream over the tail and hairline to tame flyaways.
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To give hair grip, apply a beach spritz like TIGI Catwalk Session Series Salt Spray ($19; tigiprofessional.com for salons), then create a deep side part. make a French braid along the hairline, using even amounts of hair for each section to maintain a uniform size all the way down. pull everything into a low side ponytail and secure with an elastic band. add luster with a light coating of shine spray. Try Got2B Oil-licious Dry Oil Hair Taming Mist ($6; drugstores).
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Gather all your hair, except for the top section—which you can push aside for now—and tie it into a low ponytail. apply a root booster, such as Shu Uemura Volume Maker Invisible Texturizing Powder ($48; shuuemuraartof hair-usa.com), at the crown, then backcomb the area until you’ve created a 3-inch “cushion,” says Hawkins. “go big because it will deflate as you’re working.” Smooth the top section over the teased area, then brush it down and over the first ponytail and secure with a second elastic. Hide the band by winding a piece from the tail around it and fasten with a bobby pin. Lock the style in place with a hairspray like Tresemmé 24 Hour Body Finishing Spray ($4.50; drugstores).