How To Make A Clean And Professional Ponytail Style For Long Hair

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Published: 21st January 2011
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I recently had a client looking for new ways to put up her very long hair, while still creating a classic and professional look. As an independent consultant, it was important that her image still conveyed the "innovative thinking" that she brought to her work.

One style I taught her was a high ponytail style that looks very grown up, created with a barrette instead of a hair elastic.

This versatile style can be dressed up or down simply by changing the hair clip you decide to use. Once you get the hang of the method, it is also very quick to do. I managed to do it in just over 10 seconds, including the time to check how I looked in the mirror.

All you need is long hair, at least past shoulder length with not too many layers and a single barrette or, if you have thick hair, a small Ficcare Maximas hair clip.

Step 1: Make a high French pleat or French twist.

You want to have very long ends coming from the top of your French twist to form the final ponytail, so unless your hair falls to the middle of your back or longer, start by gathering your hair in your initial ponytail at the center of your head.

Twist the ponytail once or twice tightly and fold upwards. This makes the basic French twist shape.

For very long hair, start your first ponytail at your hair line on your neck, twisting two times and then folding your hair tightly upwards. Continue twisting until the crease of the French twist reaches your crown.

Step 2: Hold the French pleat with your barrette or hair clip near the top of your head.

Hold your French twist tightly with one hand. With your free hand, clip a barrette with a long or high-arched clasp at the top.

Choose a hair clip that is really strong, particularly if you have long or heavy ends.

The longer your ends, the heavier your ponytail will be, so you need a properly designed barrette. I recommend any hair clip that we call a "large" barrette. These have a strongly arched clasp which contains sufficient space to tightly hold a good volume of hair.

If you have very long or heavy hair, I recommend you use a small Ficcare Maximas hair clip. These metal hair clips give a strong and reliable hold, while also looking classic and clean, perfect if you work in a conservative or professional environment.

Step 3: Arrange your ends for a cascading ponytail.

Spread your hair across the width of the barrette or hair clip so the weight is evenly distributed out the top of your French twist.

This gives your hair better movement and gives you an attractive profile

For a dressier version of this style, use a large crystal barrette, ideally made with a steel French clip. This will give a glamourous glimpse of sparkle flashing under your ponytail as you move, which is subtle and seductive.


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Melissa Hill is founder of Stone Bridge Hair Accessories UK, Britain's leading source for luxury barrettes and hair accessories. Visit Stone Bridge online to see our complete range of barrettes and hair clips for long hair.

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