4 Beauty Panel members show off how to wear braids and ponytails, this year’s red carpet staples

We’re in the middle of both awards season and fashion month, and between the Golden Globes, the Grammys and New York Fashion Week, we’ve noticed two big hair trends: braids and ponytails. From the super-sleep ‘dos donned by Katie Holmes and Lorde at the Globes, to Iggy Azalea’s braided crown at the Grammys, and all the pretty updos we’ve been seeing on the runways, we tapped our Beauty Panel to find out how they wear the looks in their day-to-day lives.

Challenge 86: What’s your favourite way to wear braids or ponytails? See the answers now! »


Beauty Panel - Braids and Ponytails

Natalie Davis
Montreal | Ivory Avenue

Braids have always been a great way to style hair, especially when it’s a few days old (read: unwashed). My hair is quite short—a lob, really. It means it’s too short for a braid, so I did what I could and braided my bangs. My hair is also pretty layered, so it can be a little hard to keep the strays in place. A few bobby pins and hairspray does the trick, though! On top of looking nice, braiding my bangs is such a great way to keep them out of my face. For those who are new to braiding, believe me, it’s not as hard as it looks!

Beauty Panel - Braids and Ponytails

Marilou Moles
Ottawa | Twenty York Street

They call it the lazy girl’s guide to great hair style and while there’s no doubt to that, the ponytail is also the biggest timesaver in the winter. Since it gets so inhumanely cold outside, washing your hair everyday is no longer option even if, like mine, your hair tends to be on the oily side. So, what’s a frozen girl gotta to do?

A quick and pretty high ponytail. You can get a big volume ponytail by teasing your hair, or if you work in a more conservative environment like I do, I opted for a sleeker version. I flipped my hair upside down, blow dried from the roots with a few spritz of dry shampoo to up the volume and tied it up with a simple elastic that’s almost the same colour as my hair. To keep it smooth and elegant, I used SIBU Beauty’s Miracle Stick, a true-blue versatile product which you can use for hair, face and skin!

Products used: SIBU Beauty Miracle Stick, Klorane Dry Shampoo and Goody Elastic. 

Beauty Panel - Braids and Ponytails

Megan Joy
Toronto | Megan Joy

I have been braiding my own hair since I was a teenager, it’s always been one of my favourite hairstyles whether my hair is long or short. It’s my go-to hairstyle for messy second-day hair or when just I’m in a rush. Usually I go for the standard french braid but lately I’ve really been loving the crown braid or as some call it—the Heidi! There are about 20 different ways (or more!) to create this look depending on the length and thickness of your hair.

I find the easiest way to achieve this look is to part your hair down the middle and create two pigtail braids. Then simply pull them up over your head to create a headband-like style and bobby-pin them into place. If you have super long hair you can actually braid your hair all the way around from one side to the other. I have yet to perfect this style but if you are up for the challenge it looks incredible from the front and back!

Products used: mark. What A Line Max Liner in Electric Cobalt, Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real Mascara, M.A.C Lipstick in Pink Nouveau

Beauty Panel - Braids and Ponytails

Laurelle Alexandra
Toronto | Paint Me Pretty

I have always found it fascinating that celebrities can make something as simple as a ponytail look elegant and sophisticated. Braids and ponytails have been trending all over the red carpets lately and I really love the way a simple hairstyle looks with an elegant ball gown.

Since cutting my hair short I’ve constantly been looking up hairstyles for short hair. I have come across all sorts of braids and up do’s, but I fell in love with two simple braids with a soft curl that I thought I would give a try.

Now usually the messy look is one of the hardest looks to achieve, but because curl is involved it makes it a little easier. You don’t to make it look perfect when curls are involved, the messier the better! I split my hair into sections and started curling small pieces of my hair in no particular order. Since my hair is naturally curly, my hair holds curl extremely well, but it’s wise to use hairspray so the curl holds all day or all evening. Once all my hair was curled I took two sections from the front on each side of my head and braided a simple basic, braid and pinned it on each side. It was literally that simple. Easy, simple and very elegant. It’s the perfect hairstyle for everyday, a date, or a fancy evening out.

Products used: Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer, Cover FX Cream Foundation, Make Up For Ever’s HD Microfinish Powder, Benefit ‘Hoola’ Bronzer, NARS Blush in ‘Amour’, Cover Girl Lash Blast Mascara, Annabelle Khol Liner Black, Make Up For Ever Aqua Rouge Lipstick in 3 Medium Natural Beige, Smashbox Brow Tech in Dark Brown, Tresemme Extra Hold Hairspray

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