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The History of the Ponytail and Why It Will Never Go Out of Style

The History of the Ponytail and Why It Will Never Go Out of Style

The ponytail is one of the most commonly worn and long-lasting hairstyles to exist. Not only is it relatively simple to achieve, but it is also easy to dress both up and down for the perfect day to night look. 

The ponytail is sexy yet classy, playful yet professional, and has never been easier to achieve. The look requires minimal styling or any particular skill set to achieve, and there are many different types of pony to suit every face shape and hair texture. 

From wearing one at the gym to a night out to a special occasion, a perfect pony can make you feel, and look, your absolute best. There have been many iconic ponytail moments throughout history. And considering the ponytail dates all the way back pre-17th Century, it’s no wonder why. 

The Evolution of the Ponytail

In the 17th century, the male Manchu people of Northeast China grew the hair on top of their heads extremely long. They were even known to braid it while keeping the front of their heads hairless and shaved. It was later forcefully introduced to Han Chinese men during the Manchu conquest of China. The style was symbolic of submission, there even were cases of execution when the people chose not to comply. 

Some people even believe that the ponytail can be traced back to Ancient Greece. There are frescoes painted thousands of years ago in Crete that depict women with ponytails high on the backs of their heads. 

The Birth of the Modern Ponytail

The early 20th century saw the birth of the ponytail as we know it today. Tight ringlets, sausage curls, elaborate half-up half-down dos, the ponytail became a fun style symbolic of youth and playfulness. 

The ponytail gained worldwide recognition in the 1950s alongside the release of the first-ever Barbie, her bright and bubbly look being completed by her bouncy pony. 

Keeping with the general theme of rebellion in the 1960s saw the introduction of the artfully dishevelled ponytail, famous film star Brigitte Bardot pioneering the movement. The ’70s continued on with a similar theme of freedom, as hippies grew their hair long and would throw it back into a ponytail to get it out of their faces. 

The 1990s saw legendary Madonna sport a clip-on platinum blonde plaited pony as she danced around the stage on her Blond Ambition tour, giving the style a reinvention and making women everywhere yearn to sport pony’s just as high as sassy as hers. 

The Modern-Day Ponytail 

In 2021, the ponytail is symbolic of the modern woman. Its versatility as a hairstyle is celebrated by women everywhere and can look messy and flirty or sleek and professional, depending on the occasion.

It’s the perfect hairstyle if you’re in a rush (as most of us often are), and takes mere minutes to achieve. See our article Our Top 3 Ways to Wear Ponytails if you’re looking for inspiration!

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