The bob trend may have dominated the latter half of 2019, but it seems its rival has officially arrived — and it's already taking over. It's the long, low ponytail, and in the few months since 2020 began, it's been spotted on some of the world's biggest trendsetters — including, but not limited to, Meghan Markle and Kim Kardashian. How's that for proof it's time to slick back those short, wavy strands and add some extensions?
Before you think to yourself, "How is a normal ponytail a trend?," know that this is far from the average look. First of all, it's long. Kim K — no stranger to excessive looks — took it to perhaps its most extreme level, donning thigh-length hair with an equally jaw-dropping ensemble during Paris Fashion Week. And though hers was unquestionably the most dramatic (so far), the rest, like Meghan Markle's shiny version, hit at least mid-back.
They're also low and sleek. Each one features slicked back hair at the top, and a tightly secured pony at the nape of the neck that makes this look polished and gives it a slightly low-key vibe that contrasts against the glamorous nature of its sheer length.
But arguably the best part? It's versatile. While each 'do has a few things in common, the actual ponytail portion of the look can be customized according to preference — so whether you want to wear your hair wavy, in a braid, or covered in clips, it's all well within the realm of this growing trend.
Ahead, six versions to try for yourself.
Meghan Markle's first appearance in London since she and Prince Harry stepped down from their royal duties was exciting for many reasons, but one of the most notable was her beauty look. Markle clearly took the opportunity to do something different than her usual with a bright, glossy lip color and bronzy shades on the rest of her face. However, the real star was her ponytail, which was long (most likely thanks to extensions), sleek, and wavy — and, like Markle, positively glowing.
Nobody does a statement hairdo quite like Janelle Monáe, and her Fashion Month appearances further proved this point. The singer took the long ponytail trend one — nay, two — steps up with her look at Balmain's Fall/Winter 2020 show by braiding it and adorning it with multiple hair clips, showing that there's really no limit to what you can do with this style.
It's hard to say whose long ponytail has been most talked about this year so far, but Kim Kardashian's definitely caused a stir. It's no surprise, considering hers was also one of the longest (yes, it was thigh-length) and also accompanied a head-to-toe, caramel-colored latex look that was nearly — if not just as — buzzy as her mane.
One of the defining characteristics of the long, low ponytail is its sleekness, and Tessa Thompson's 'do for a Westworld press appearance epitomizes that. The actor's hairstylist, Lacy Redway, gave her strands a slicked-back look around her face and finished the dramatic style by wrapping a portion of her strands around the hair tie to give it an extra bit touch of polish. As one fan commented on the Redway's Instagram post, "Obviously the Duchess of Sussex has been creeping on your IG." And it's hard not to wonder if that's true — the look is certainly envy-inducing enough to copy.
Gigi Hadid has mastered off-duty style in both the fashion and beauty realms, so obviously the model took that approach with her version of the long ponytail trend. The 24-year-old was spotted in the style during Paris Fashion Week in a white Louis Vuitton ensemble and a slightly messy low ponytail (created by hairstylist Laura Polko) that served as the perfect juxtaposition against her stark outfit and simple, bright makeup.
Like Monáe, Rachel Brosnahan also put a few spins on the growing trend. Hairstylist Owen Gould created this ethereal look for the actor at the 2020 Critics' Choice Awards in January, adding both a braid and metallic thread from a craft store to update this sleek, simple look.