Updated November 2022
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Best of the Best
GOODY Ouchless Hair Scrunchies
Ouchless Hair Scrunchies
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Most Stylish
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Its frilly design make these scrunchies functional for any occasion.


Made for all hair types. Stretchable, soft material. Pack of 8. Does not snag, reduces hair damage. Frilly design, pack comes in assorted colors. Metal-free.


Scrunchies do not have a strong hold.

Best Bang for the Buck
GOODY Tiny Terry Ponytailers
Tiny Terry Ponytailers
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Best for Kids
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Its soft material and bright colors make these hair ties ideal of children.


Pack has 42 hair ties. Reduces hair breakage. Soft, comfortable hair ties. Metal-free. Comes in assorted colors. Stretchable. Keeps hair in place.


Threads wear out easily.

Burlybands Large Hair Ties
Large Hair Ties
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Durable & Rugged
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Its thick material makes these hair ties durable and long-lasting. Ideal for thick hair.


Pack of 3. Large hair ties with thick material. Durable. Long-lasting. Flexible. Keeps hair in place. Compresses hair in strong hold. Snag-free, does not pull hair.


Its tight hold may cause breakage.

Scunci Thick Hair Elastics
Thick Hair Elastics
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Trusted Brand
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Pack of 24 elastics, its strong hold makes them ideal for thick hair.


Stretchable, soft elastics. Metal free. Reduces damage and breakage. Easy to use. Comes in assorted colors. Durable. Long-lasting. Keeps hair in place.


Elastics can come apart at the seams.

invisibobble Traceless Hair Ties
Traceless Hair Ties
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Best for Everyday Use
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Its cord design prevents snagging and pulling hair. An ideal choice for work and casual wear.


Works for all hair types. Pack of 3 plastic hair ties. Easy to use. Spiral cord design. Stretchable. Does not pull/snag hair. Stays in place.


Its elasticity can wear out after repetitive use.


We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.

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Buying guide for Best hair ties

Everyone with hair long enough to tie back eventually needs hair ties, whether they wear their hair up most days or only pull it back when washing their face or trying not to get their hair wet in the shower. You might not have put much thought into hair ties in the past, but there's more to them than many people imagine.

First, you need to consider what type or types of hair ties you require. Basic hair elastics have their place, but what about coiled hair ties, scrunchies, and snap ties? Hair ties come in a range of materials, and some are better for your hair than others, so it's something worth paying attention to. You might also want to think about colors, as well as anti-slip and damage-free properties.

While you want your hair tie to be tight enough to keep your hairstyle in place, it shouldn't be so tight that it feels uncomfortable on your scalp.

Key considerations


Basic hair elastics have a stretchy elastic center covered in a smooth fabric to help avoid snagging. In the past, these also had a metal fastener to hold the band in its circular shape, but now they're almost always secured without metal, which is better for your hair. These versatile hair ties are affordable and great for securing ponytails, the end of a braid, and other simple styles.

Terry hair elastics are much like basic hair elastics but made from stretchy cotton terry. They tend to put a little less pressure on the hair, causing less breakage. They don't always stretch particularly far, however, so they're not the best choice for thick hair.

Snap hair ties secure in place with a snap, so they aren't fixed in a circular shape. These are particularly useful for people with naturally curly hair or who wear their hair in braids or dreadlocks. They don't cause creases or frizz and are easy to snap around your hair to tie it up and unsnap to let it loose.

Coiled hair ties look much like the cord on old landline telephones. They're specifically designed to avoid creases in the hair and reduce pressure on the scalp for all-day comfort even when wearing a high, tight ponytail. They're a little bulkier than standard hair elastics, and cost more too, but they're worth it considering how comfy they are.

Scrunchies have a retro ’90s vibe, but they aren’t just fashionable—they're also great for your hair. While they won't go with every outfit, their loose elastic puts less pressure on your scalp for greater comfort and helps avoid creases.

Extra-large hair ties are made for the kinds of hairstyles that a regular-size hair elastic just won't hold, such as dreads and box braids.


Some hair tie materials are better than others when it comes to limiting damage to your hair.

Silk is the ultimate choice, but these hair ties can be expensive and aren't vegan-friendly.

Satin hair ties have practically the same effect as silk, but because they’re made of polyester, they’re cheaper.

Velvet is another soft material that causes minimal damage to the hair. It also has some natural grip to it that helps keep your hair tie in place.

Silicone is a newer hair tie material. While you should never opt for bare elastic hair ties (like rubber bands), silicone is a different matter. It holds hair in place without damaging it and is easy to keep clean.

Did You Know?
Extra-thick hair ties can help add volume and lift to a high ponytail, which is especially beneficial if you have fine hair.



You can find hair ties in practically any color you can imagine. It's up to you whether you want hair ties that stand out or blend into your hair for a nearly invisible look. Larger hair ties, such as scrunchies, are often available in patterned designs too.

Other attributes

Damage-free: Hair ties that are labeled "damage-free" are designed with your hair health in mind and should do minimal damage to the hair shafts and follicles. It's impossible to say that any hair ties are 100% damage-free since even the gentlest ties can cause some breakage, especially if you like to wear tight hairdos.

Anti-slip: It's frustrating to have a hair tie slip out of place at the wrong moment, such as when you're working out or in the middle of a meeting. Some hair ties have an anti-slip design to minimize the chances of them sliding out of your hair even if they’re relatively loose.

Did You Know?
You can find some hair ties made of 100% cotton with no plastic, meaning they're naturally biodegradable.

Hair tie prices

Standard hair ties are relatively inexpensive, but some options cost more. Since they're sold in packs of anywhere from 3 to 100, we're comparing the price per hair tie.


Basic hair ties can cost as little as $0.10 to $0.20 apiece, especially when you buy them in bulk. These are generally standard hair elastics without any fancy features.


These hair ties cost roughly $0.20 to $1 each and include some cheap scrunchies, extra-large hair ties, and off-brand coiled hair ties.


The priciest hair ties cost between $1 and $5 each and include high-end scrunchies and name-brand coiled hair ties and snap hair ties.

Did You Know?
Adjustable hair ties allow you to change the tension for better control over your style, which is ideal for natural African American hair.


  • Avoid creases. If you often wear your hair up for part of the day and down for the rest, choose traceless hair ties that don't leave a crease in your hair.
  • Consider your hair’s texture. Some hair ties work better for certain textures of hair than others.
  • Think comfort. Comfort is important when it comes to hair ties. The right one can mean the difference between your updo pulling on your scalp, even causing a headache, and feeling comfortable over long periods.
  • Clean your hair ties. Hair ties made of permeable materials soak up sweat and grease from your scalp and hair, so you should occasionally wash them by hand in hot, soapy water and leave them to air-dry.
Scarf scrunchies have added material that hangs down to give the illusion that your hair is tied up with a scarf.


Q. How many hair ties do I need?

A. How many hair ties you need depends on a range of factors. How often do you tie up your hair? How often do your hair ties break? How many hair ties do you lose? It might seem like you would never get through that pack of 100 hair ties, but it could be easier than you imagine. After all, hair ties seem to go missing as regularly as you encounter a day ending in y. It's up to you to decide how many hair ties you require, but it's always better to have spares than to realize at an inopportune moment that you can't find a single one in your home. It's likely that you'll want a range of several types of hair ties, so make sure you have enough of each.

Q. Do hair ties damage the hair?

A. All hair ties pull on your hair a little, which can cause some breakage, but the type of hair ties you use and how you use them can make a huge difference. So, don't feel like you have to give up hair ties altogether in pursuit of perfect hair. At the very least, make sure your chosen hair ties have a fabric covering since bare elastic can cause extra damage. Also, avoid any hair ties with metal parts because these are more likely to damage the hair. Specialist hair ties, including scrunchies and coiled hair ties, tend to cause less breakage than standard hair elastics. Other factors that can cause more breakage include tying your hair up when it's wet, wearing your hair tie too tight, and simply yanking your hair tie out of your hair rather than undoing it first.

Q. Is it a bad idea to wear my hair in a ponytail every day?

A. Honestly, it isn't a great idea to wear your hair in a ponytail every day, especially if you wear it high and tight. Wearing your hair in the same style daily is more likely to cause hair breakage, leading to split ends and hairs that are shorter than the rest of your do. Not to mention that tight ponytails can cause scalp pain and headaches. Although rare, wearing a tight ponytail daily can lead to a type of hair loss known as traction alopecia. To avoid such issues, try to mix it up by wearing your hair down on occasion or, if you must tie your hair back, experiment with other styles that cause less tension on your head, such as single or double braids, messy buns, or even loose ponytails. Wear your hair down to sleep, which also gives your scalp and hair a rest, and try to use quality hair ties that are specifically designed to reduce breakage.

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