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Advice / Succeeding at Work / Break Room

The Easiest Work Hairstyle—Ever

You wake up Monday morning and realize you’ve been hitting the snooze button—for an hour. Afraid you can’t get to work on time and look pulled together, too? Think again, thanks to the return of an old favorite: the ponytail.

Nope, ponytails aren’t just for the gym—they’re totally office-appropriate now, too. This season, trends range from sleek, high up-dos to classic low ponytails and everything in between. And not only are they quite possibly the fastest, easiest way to pull together a professional look, you can skip your shampoo and blowdry—dirty hair makes them work best!

A beauty trend that actually simplifies the morning routine? Sign us up. Here are three quick, work-friendly styles to try next time you’re in a rush:

For Straight Locks

Sleek, professional, and done in two minutes flat, this classic high ponytail is the easiest way to look office-ready in no time.

  1. Before you start, brush through your hair to make sure it’s tangle-free (a boar bristle brush is great for smoothing). If your hair isn’t completely straight, run a flat iron through it to work out any kinks.
  2. Tilt your head back as you gather your hair. (This will prevent a big bump from forming under your ponytail.)
  3. Position your hair about 1-2 inches above the top of your ears and secure it with a hair tie or band.
  4. Pull a half-inch section of hair from the bottom of your head and wrap it around the ponytail to cover the hair tie. Secure the ends by pushing a bobby pin back in towards the ponytail.
  5. Use a pomade or hairspray to smooth down your hair for a polished look.
  6. For Curly Girls

    This low ponytail is a great way to add a softer feel to your look. If your hair is straight and you’ve got an extra 10 minutes, use a one-inch curling iron to add a few curls before you get started.

    1. Gather your hair (without brushing) and pull it to one side of your head. If you have bangs or side-swept layers, pull pieces out from both sides to frame your face.
    2. Gather your hair about 1 inch below the bottom of your ear and twist it twice. Secure with a hair tie or band.
    3. To give it some texture, run pomade through pieces of your ponytail, then scrunch it and spray it with hairspray.
    4. For a little after-work flair, add a decorated hair tie or small flower.
    5. For Anyone

      Adding a bump to the classic high ponytail gives it a fun touch and makes it work whether your hair is stick straight, full of curls, or anything in between.

      1. Look straight into a mirror. Use both of your thumbs to pull together a 1½-inch section of hair from the front part of your head. (Use the highest part of your eyebrow arches as a guide.)
      2. Clip that front section of hair forward and away from the rest of your hair.
      3. Gather the remaining hair and position it 2-3 inches above the top of your ears. Secure with a hair tie or band.
      4. Take the original section of hair and backcomb or tease it until you get the desired amount of lift in front.
      5. Gather that teased section of hair, pinch it with your thumb and forefinger, and secure with two bobby pins, criss-crossing them for a tighter hold.
      6. Take any extra hair from the top section (or from the bottom of your ponytail) and wrap it around the ponytail to cover up the hair tie. Secure the ends by pushing a bobby pin back in towards the ponytail.
      7. Use a strong hold hairspray to keep the top section in place.