How-to: Ashanti and Venus Williams’ side pony

    Not just for preteens anymore, the side ponytail has been showing up everywhere.

    Side ponytails may be the easy-breezy-but-still cute hairstyle of the summer, and all kinds of stars are out to prove it, including Ashanti, who rocked the style at the premiere of her Broadway show, The Wiz. Venus Williams was also seen with a variation of the style a Pre-Wimbledon party hosted by Ralph Lauren and Sony.

    The look is easy, requires minimal product and can last for a few days with just a little upkeep. Here’s what you’ll need:

    • Gel or pomade: This is really important when you’re slicking down the base of your ponytail. Let your hair texture and type dictate what type you use, but in general try ones that are alcohol-free and not sticky.

    • A large barrel curling iron: Ponytails look best with large, soft curls so use an iron that is at least 1 1/4 inches in diameter.

    • Shine serum or glosser: These liquids are nice alternatives to spray sheens and deliver a more natural shine.



    Step 1: Begin with damp or wet hair. The thicker your hair, the easier it will be to manipulate as it gets wetter, so wet your hair with that in mind. Take a wide-tooth comb and section off a small side part so that you can either swoop the air over your forehead slightly, or leave it out for a long bang.

    Step 2: Comb the rest of the hair back, smoothing it down over your scalp as you go. Position your ponytail so that it is level with your earlobe and secure with an elastic band.

    Step 3: Take a dollop of gel and rub it between your hands before smoothing it over your hair, paying special attention to your edges and the nape of your neck (i.e. your kitchen).

    Step 4: Comb through the length of the ponytail, then smooth a small amount of shine serum over through your hair. Take a small section of your ponytail and spiral curl it with a warm iron. Go for bigger, looser curls to pull off this look. Repeat until you’ve curled the ponytail.

    Step 5: To get a more free-flowing look like Venus, just swoop the front section behind your ear and pull the length of the ponytail over your shoulder. For Ashanti’s elegant bun, pin your curls around the base of your ponytail to create the bun, then pin back the sideswoop as well.


    — Whitney Teal

    Here’s more:
    Ashanti, Angela Simmons grow to great lengths
    Rihanna, Chrisette and Halle do short ‘dos
    Keshia Knight Pulliam, LeToya Luckett bang it up

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