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Curly Hair Ponytail 101

If you’ve ever attempted any of the numerous curly hairstyles that are on Pinterest, you’re probably aware that 90% of them are a) not actually done on natural hair and b) impossible to actually see if your curl type is anything beyond wavy (2a, 2b, 2c).

If your hair is super-textured and dark? Just close Pinterest. There is no way you’ll ever see

an itty-bitty braid. And those fancy twisted buns? They all just look like a bun. Plus, so many of those intricate styles require many steps…and the dexterity of an octopus.

Since I don’t plan on growing extra limbs any time soon, I turned to a DevaCurl expert, Shari Harbinger, Co-Founder of the DevaCurl Academy to ask for some inspiration when it comes to summer curly hairstyles.

Her suggestion? Start with the classics, in this case, a ponytail. A few simple tweaks can help you change up this style, for a fresh look. Not to mention it keeps your hair off your face and neck – which is totally necessary in these hot, humid, horrible hair months (does anyone else feel like they have to wash their hair 3x as much?!).

How to get super simple curly ponytail hair

This look, might actually be a miracle. Like a divine act of some bizarre force of nature. Yes, I know it looks ordinary. But it’s not. It’s extraordinary. Do you want to know why?! All 3 feet of my crazy curly hair, is being held up in that ponytail by 1 bobby pin.

Yes. ONE.

Shari, is a magician. Here’s how she did it.

  1. Start with your hair down, then take a small section of hair below each ear, about a quarter size in thickness.
  2. Cross the two sections of hair under your nape, bringing the sections around the bulk of your hair to the top. Crisscross the pieces again, then loop one section of hair around the other (as if you were tying your shoes). Pull the hair tight to create the ponytail.
  3. Take a bobby pin and insert it into the “knot” angling it straight down and then bringing it back up (as if you were drawings a U).
  4. Tuck the remaining ends of the loose curly sections into the nape of your neck and voila. Your hair is up with one bobby pin. I know, it’s absolute sorcery.

How to make a curly ponytail look extra long

If you’re someone who is constantly using a scalp massage brush, and trying to find the perfect hair growth supplement, you probably hate how short your hair looks when it’s tied up. This trick is for you.

  1. Section your hair, by dividing horizontally ear to ear. Clip the top section up and out of the way.
  2. Use your fingers to smooth the bottom section up and into a ponytail that sits at ear height. If you need help smoothing down the curls, try adding a little bit of SuperCream to your fingertips. Secure in place with a hair tie or bungee.
  3. Release the top section of hair. Use your fingers to smooth the hair back and up to create a pony tail that sits an inch or two above the first one. Secure with a hair tie or bungee.

How to do a more defined curly hair ponytail

We’ve all seen that simple trick where you wrap a piece of hair around a ponytail to hide an elastic. That’s kind of, um, not necessary with curls. You can never see the pony tail. Or a giant claw clip for that matter.

So let’s say you want a more defined ponytail, enter this chunky braid trick.

  1. Start by sectioning out a bottom layer of your hair, just below each ear. Braid that section loosely. You want a nice chunky braid. Embrace the texture  🙂
  2. Pull the rest of your hair into a ponytail, securing with a hair tie.
  3. Tightly wrap the braid around the base of the ponytail. Secure in place with bobby pins.

Making curly hair in a ponytail last all day

So you’ve sat through all your “how to do a perfect ponytail with curly hair” instructions. Now it comes to actually making sure your hair stands up to your life. Prepping your curly hair for ponytail looks can really help you maintain it throughout the day.

Add a bit of SuperCream (or StylingCream, if your hair actually behaves on occasion) in the shower to keep your pony frizz-free. 

Spray on Flexible Hold Hairspray once your ponytail’s in place to keep it bouncy, but also make your curls stay put.

To put a mirror finish on curls and get frizz control, High Shine is where it’s at. Even if you’re throwing up day two or three hair, you can spray High Shine onto dry curls for a special finish and touch up.

If you have a new favorite look or any other curly hair ponytail styles to share (we’ll never say no to more!), join us in the comments below!



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