Friday, January 25, 2013

Origins of the Side Ponytail

I made an astounding discovery today. The very popular on again/off again trend of the side ponytail is very likely not at cool as you might think.

It seems like every generation has had it's own version of the side ponytail. They were long and often braided or twisted in the Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman age.

Yes, that is an acceptable reference.

In the 70s, the age where multiple pigtail styles were for adults of all ages, Susanne Somers made the half side pony unforgettable.

I think we can all agree that the 80s were seriously high and more than one way. They were curly, and crimped, and teased, and really everything but timeless.

And I'm pretty certain the 80s terrified us all and turned us all off to the side ponytail for a very long time because I didn't see another one until the final season of Dawson's Creek where Jen wore a very subtle, thin, wisp of a side ponytail that you could barely notice. I'm watching it on Netfilx right now. Leave me alone.

So now, it is made popular by celebs of all kinds, as a swept to the side, low-maintenance look.

But does anyone truly know the origins of the ever-so-popular side pony? Today, I can venture a pretty good guess.

I had just finished nursing Isaac late this morning. I hadn't showered yet. My hair had been in a sloppy ponytail on top of my head, but had slid down quite a bit and some was straying out of the rubber band. I lifted Isaac, my 5 month old baby, off the boppy to burp him. He grabbed a fistful of my hair and burped his baby spit up right into it. Thankfully that fistful was yanked right out, so I didn't have the pleasure of walking around the rest of the day with spit up in my hair. 

Later, after I had showered, I found myself in a similar predicament. About to burp him with my newly washed hair hanging down my shoulders, I quickly pulled it all off to the opposite side and tied it up, out of his reach.

It was an hour later when Jelani looked at me strangely, and asked, "Is that a side ponytail?" that I had a realization.

Light bulb moment, ladies.

That gorgeous and trendy look you're all just dying to have? That elegant, swept away look found in so many of your prom and wedding photos? That look was made common by nerdy moms like me, tired of the same boring bun on top of their heads, and tired of having their hair yanked out and spit up on.

Some mom, somewhere, took a look at her disheveled, side swept hair in the mirror, and thought, "I can make this work!"

Look who's cool and trendy now.  

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