Mika
March 27, 2019 11:39 am
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Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Christian Dior

From Beyonce’s braided ponytails to Ariana Grande’s signature updo, it’s clear that ponytails are having a moment. Though the style has been in high demand for the past few years, basic ponytails are out, and supersized, stylized ponytails are in. And you don’t need natural Rapunzel-length hair to get the look; weave ponytails are the best keep secret to help you fake it until you make it. You don’t even have to be a professional or aspiring hairstylist to master this hairdo. All you need are the right tools and the patience to get it done.

We must admit, there’s something about a fabulous ponytail that feels so empowering. It’s nice to conquer the world with your hair out of your way. Unfortunately, ponytails can cause a lot of tension in your hair, which may lead to hair breakage. The last thing we want to do when creating a flawless style is damaging our hair in the process. In other words, there’s definitely a right and a wrong way to do it

Whether your hair is bone-straight or kinky curly, here are some steps to help you create a weave ponytail hairstyle right from the comfort of your own home.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • The hair weave of your choice (find something that will blend with the texture and color of your natural hair)
  • Your favorite hair moisturizer
  • Hairbrush and comb
  • Stick bobby pins
  • Non-alcohol hair gel
  • Hair scrunchies
  • Hairspray

Step 1: Starting with clean hair, moisturize and detangle your tresses to prep.

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Achieving a “laid” ponytail requires brushing your hair to smooth it down. Moisturizing your hair before brushing ensures that your hair is hydrated and not brittle. Detangling also helps protect your hair against breakage and makes brushing much easier. If you have natural hair, this step is especially important—don’t skip it.

Step 2: Part your hair and decide on the placement of your ponytail.

You can wear it up, down, to the side—the choice is yours.  If you choose to part your hair, make sure your part is as straight as possible. Use a fine tooth comb to achieve a clean part to work with.

Step 3: Lay down the foundation by putting your natural hair in a sleek ponytail using styling gel.

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For this step, make sure your brush and hair scrunchies are close by. Start by applying a generous amount of styling gel to your hair while smoothing your ponytail into place. If you have thick, curly, or kinky hair, you may need a good amount of gel. When you’re done, your hair should look sleek, but it shouldn’t feel drenched. Using too much gel will increase dry time and the chances of residue accumulating in your hair.

Once your hair is gelled down, tuck your ponytail into a chignon (fold-over bun) or braid it (if your hair is thick), since you’ll be wrapping the weave around it.

Step 4: Lay out the weave (on a flat surface) and double the tracks/weft of the hair.

In layman’s terms, fold the weave in half. This makes the hair much easier to work with while cutting down on the time spent wrapping the extensions around your bun. One bundle or pack of weave should be enough for a ponytail. However, if you want your ponytail to have more volume, repeat this step (and the following steps) with additional hair.

Step 5: Secure the loose ends of the weave with stick pins at the base of your bun.

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This is where the stick bobby pins come in handy. If your hair is in a small bun, get the wefts of the weave as close to the base of your ponytail without sticking yourself in the scalp. If you’re doing the braided ponytail method, secure the wefts to the end of your braided ponytail. Two bobby pins should be enough to get the job done for either of these methods.

Step 6: Wrap the weave around your bun or braid until your hair is no longer visible.

If you’re using the bun method, it’s important to wrap as close to the base of your scrunchie as possible in order to cover it. Wrap the weave tight enough so that it doesn’t unravel, but loose enough that you aren’t causing too much tension on your real hair.

If you’re using the braid method, the same rules apply except you’ll be wrapping from the end of your braid up to your scrunchie. You can see how this looks below.

Step 7: Once you’ve run out of weave, use stick pins to secure your ponytail.

Using the stick pins in the beginning and end is the most important, but if you need extra security you can add a few halfway through wrapping the weave around your hair

Step 8: Grab a lock of the hair to mask the wefts of the weave.

Obviously, we weren’t going to leave you hanging with exposed tracks telling all of your secrets. The easiest way to cover them is by wrapping a lock of the hair (from the weave) around the tracks. You can either tuck the hair or use a pin to secure it—it’s totally up to you.

Step 9: Let your hair dry down before heading out.

It’s very important that your hair dries before you step foot outdoors. For this step, you can blow dry your hair on low if you’re in a hurry. Alternatively, you can tie your hair down with a silk or satin headscarf and let it air dry while you do your makeup, get dressed, etc. If your natural hair texture is anything but straight, I recommend using the scarf method to ensure your hair doesn’t frizz and end up a total mess.

Step 10: Now that your hair is dry, lock it in with some hairspray.

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This step is optional but beneficial in the long run (if you want your weave ponytail to last more than just a day). Use a soft hold spray—something that doesn’t make your hair crunchy or flaky.

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