Ponytails Don’t Come Cooler Than Taraji P. Henson’s Braid-Accented Version

What’s a word stronger than perfect?

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Taraji P. Henson

By all accounts, Taraji P. Henson is a woman of vast and varied talents. There are the more obvious abilities, like her acting prowess, business acumen, and her incredible sense of style, but then there are the subtler talents that set the star apart from her high-profile peers. Aesthetically, Henson is so in tune with her personal tastes and preferences that she can augment any trend to fit her — never the other way around. But it goes beyond just trends, too, as evidenced by just how fresh Henson’s high ponytail looked on the Palm Springs International Film Festival red carpet on Jan. 4.

Luminous, voluminous, and infused with just enough special, hidden details to add a glamorous complexity, Henson manages to make even this millennia-old style feel exciting and innovative for the start of the 2024 award season. She worked with celebrity hairstylist Tym Wallace to bring the look to life, one of her most frequent — and impressively creative — collaborators. Together, the pair settled on a high, natural ponytail positioned right at the crown of Henson’s head. Her blunt-cut ends add impressive shape and fullness, and there’s even a tiny, delicate braid wrapped around the pony’s base.

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As an ideal finishing touch, the baby hairs around her temples were gelled and gently laid, curving just over each artfully sculpted eyebrow. Combined with her fluttery lashes, smoky eye makeup, and dazzling grass-green gown, she looks like a burst of springtime freshness here to liven up a notoriously dull stretch of winter.

The ponytail was an excellent style choice for the nature of Henson’s evening, too. Not only did she walk the red carpet at the film festival, but she participated in a panel discussion and screening of her new movie, a musical adaptation of The Color Purple. With her hair pulled back and up, she’s both glamorous and all business at the same time.

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In fact, all of her promotional obligations for the movie doubled as a showcase of stunning updos, from sleek, sculptural twists to avant-garde takes on a traditional topknot. Regardless of what look she chooses for any event, she’ll always absolutely nail it.