If You Still Use Hair Ties, You NEED To Read This
Ever wondered why your average elastic band missed a spot on the hair favorites list? Though a time-tested fave for updos, there’s a reason why hair ties are at the bottom of the pile for Gen Z-ers and hair experts alike. We asked celeb hairstylist Kali Ferrara to spill the tea on why stretchy ties just don’t cut it anymore and, of course, listed alternatives to ensure that your elastics remain lost… Where they belong.
Why You Need To Reconsider Using Hair Ties
Long story short: hair ties are a “no-no” because they inevitably damage your hair follicles. Though they sweep hair off your face, they mean serious trouble for your tresses due to three reasons: overstretching, receding hairlines (yup), and follicle damage.
So what exactly does overstretching mean? Well it’s all to do with your hair’s elasticity. TRESemmé defines hair elasticity as “how long a single strand of hair can stretch before it returns to its normal state.” If you’re one for tight updos, try checking out your hair’s elasticity. All you need to do is wet a strand of hair and stretch it until it snaps. An instant snap indicates low elasticity, a partial stretch equals medium, and a longgg stretch exhibits high elasticity.
We totes get why hairfluencers have elastics at arm’s reach, but using these for tight ponytails harms your cuticles – the outer layer of your strands – by stretching them past the safe limit (20-30%), which is especially harmful if your locks have low elasticity, BTW.
Now a receeding hairline may sound dramatic, but Kali Ferrara, a celeb stylist at NYC’s The Salon Project says, “An overly tight, snatched pony or bun can cause breakage on the hairline from the tension and weight of the hair.” This is referred to as traction alopecia, defined as a receding hairline caused by ongoing tension. But if a tight bun is your go-to, Ferrara suggests relying on hair care products, like Mizani’s Edge Control Taming Gel, $18, for a smooth look instead. “Using a traditional hair tie is fine, but only in moderation. For fine hair, use the thinner version, and if your hair is super heavy, use a looser band if you want a top knot or ponytail. Also, do not sleep with your hair in an elastic.”
Finally, follicle damage. Your follicles, the tunnel-shaped outer layer of your strands, consider tight updos to be their worst nightmare. Ferrara says, “The hair ties can often be too tight, causing breakage where it is wrapped around the hair.” The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) also warns that snatched updos strain your locks while damaging hair follicles.
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Our Fave Alternatives to Hair Ties
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If you’re not ready to kiss snatched ponytails goodbye, adorn your strands with these hair tie alternatives that protect and keep your hair off your face. You can easily stash these away without losing them (hands up if the hunt for missing elastics has you exhausted) or clip them onto your tote bag before you get ready for your mirror selfie.
Save coin with the Kitsch Satin Sleep Pillow Scrunchies, $8, that protect your hair follicles while keeping your look cute. These five chic scrunchies also minimize the appearance of creases and frizz.
@audreyvictoria_Who would’ve thought that sleeping damages your hair 😴 #hairtok #protectivestyles #silkscrunchies #longhair #hairtutorial♬ original sound – Sophie (:
2. Kristin Ess Claw Clip, $10
Whether your hair is long or short or your curls are in a protective hairstyle, the Kristin Ess Claw Clip, $10, is a great way to secure your strands. Made for all hair types and textures, sweep your twists and jumbo braids away from your face with a celestial sparkle.
@yaa_asare1✨Claw Clip Trend on My Type 4 Natural Hair✨ #clawclip #naturalhair #protectivestyles #clawcliphack♬ tired – Official Sound Studio
Use the Kitsch Eco-Friendly Large Claw Clip, $8, to effortlessly recreate lewks sported by the likes of Bella Hadid, Lizzo, and Hailey Bieber. Made from recycled materials, the nature-approved design comes in matte black and a marble finish. For twice the fun, opt for the Jumbo Classic Claw Clips, $12.
@kristina.mannersClaw clip hairstyle curly hair edition #curlyhair #hairtutorial #hairstyle♬ love nwantinti (ah ah ah) – CKay
4. Slip Mega Scrunchie Set, $49
Harder on the pocket but SO easy on your strands, the slip Mega Scrunchie Set, $49, should be on the top of your V-Day gift list. Designed to protect your hair from creasing, the silk set of large and skinny scrunchies sings your hair to sleep. Alternatively, mix and match the Scunci Satin Scrunchies, $4, at Walmart to keep things budget-friendly.
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Check out our next exposé on hair brushing mistakes that could be ruining your hair.
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