How to create the perfect ponytail

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How to create the perfect ponytail
Whether you've got short or long hair, bangs or curls, click through to learn how to create the perfect ponytail everytime.

Giovanni Giannoni

"The biggest difference in what makes a ponytail perfect (or not!) is in the little details.

Smooth all the hair from the front hairline directly back and away from the face. If needed, spray a light product like L'Oreal Professionnel Densité mixed with warm water to re-work the growth pattern.

The direction of the hair should all flow away from the face to the ponytail. So when brushing hair back, it's important to brush it several times."—L'Oréal Professionnel Artist, Drew Schaefering

"The best placement for the ponytail will be somewhere between the crown of the head and the occipital bone that sticks out in back.

Look up as you brush the hair at your nape towards where you will place the ponytail. This step prevents the hair from sagging or being loose at the bottom.

Using a regular elastic band can make it difficult to keep tension on all the hair and to keep it smooth. If possible, use a bungee with hooks on the ends. You can also use a small elastic and put two bobby pins on it to create the same effect."—L'Oréal Professionnel Artist, Drew Schaefering

"Once the ponytail is secure, take a piece hair from the ponytail, spray it with L'Oréal Professionnel Infinium 2 hairspray, brush through it and wrap it around the bungee so that it's hidden. Simply tuck the ends of the hair into the base of the pony and secure with a slim hair pin.

Complete the look with L'Oréal Professionnel Infinium 3 for a nice, smooth finish.

To help with little flyaways around the hairline, spray hairspray on a toothbrush and brush them back away from the face."—L'Oréal Professionnel Artist, Drew Schaefering

"The thicker and coarser the hair, the harder it will be to get a perfect sleek ponytail. If spending time smoothing your hair for a pony isn't you, then work with your hair's natural texture and body.  

The more curl your hair has, you can get away with just using your fingers as a brush and following the same steps."—L'Oréal Professionnel Artist, Drew Schaefering

"For shorter hair, use a working spray likeL'Oréal Professionnel Infinium 3 and layer it into the hair as you brush it back. Adding more and more of the product will help you keep control of it when brushing it into your hands and not losing tension."—L'Oréal Professionnel Artist, Drew Schaefering
"Bangs? If your fringe or bangs need to be swept back for the night, wet them down and blow dry them straight back into the ponytail from the beginning. Use a stronger hold hairspray as you work with them to keep them from popping up. If that isnt an option, consider a modern pomp feel or a side swept fringe with attitude."—L'Oréal Professionnel Artist, Drew Schaefering
"My favorite, quick options for a messy pony: Use a wide tooth comb to groom hair off of the face. The wide teeth comb gives the hair a slight, roughed up base. Secure with elastic. With hands, massage the ponytail and slightly pinch a few strands upwards to rough up the texture."—L'Oréal Professionnel Artist, Pepper Pastor

"If you want to give the style a matte texture and grip, apply L'Oréal Professionnel True Gripon roots before securing ponytail, then squeeze on ends of hair and close to the elastic once pulled back.

If you want more hold and volume, applyL'Oréal Professionnel Expansion on towel-dried hair then blow-dry with fingers. This weightless mousse gives even the finest hair fullness and definition with a natural looking shine."—

There are two types of ponytails. There's the familiar, thrown-together-in-three-seconds ponytail, best known for its appearances on bad hair days, rushed mornings, the weekends and at the gym. And then there's the polished, red carpet-worthy ponytail that looks effortless but is sneakily difficult to create, you know, unless you're a professional hairstylist.

Luckily, L'Oréal Professionnel Artists Drew Schaefering and Pepper Pastor were willing to share their secrets. Click through to see their expert tips and tricks for creating the perfect pony with any kind of hair.

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