Hairstyles for Runners

runner adjusting her ponytail


When you're running, you want to be focused on the road ahead—not worried about the hair falling in your face. From traditional ponytails to braid variations, we've compiled this list of our favorite hairstyles for runners. Use the scales below to easily gauge the durability and simplicity of each style.

Durability scale:

  1. Wouldn't stand up against a gentle breeze.
  2. Won't last through the first mile.
  3. Not recommended for #beastmode.
  4. ACTIVE.com editorial staff-approved for running.
  5. Tougher than Chuck Norris and John Wayne combined.

Simplicity scale:

  1. Could be done in your sleep.
  2. So easy a caveman could do it.
  3. May need some practice.
  4. Caution: difficulty ahead.
  5. Superwoman skills needed.

Low Ponytail

The low ponytail is a super simple but effective way to get hair out of your eyes and off your neck. This works for most hair types and lengths, especially if you are short on time. Add a headband to catch those flyaways or bangs.
Durability: 4
Simplicity: 1

Braided Ponytail

The braided ponytail is this writer's personal favorite for a run, as it's good for handling very long hair. Pull the hair into a simple ponytail at the back of your head (not too high or it will slip down during your run) and braid all the way down the length of the ponytail. Add a headband for any flyaways or bangs.

Durability: 4
Simplicity: 2

High Bun

A high bun gets hair completely off your face and neck while adding a touch of class. Gather hair into a high ponytail and tie off with a strong ponytail holder. (Step away from the tiny clear elastic). Twist the tail very tightly and wrap around the base of the ponytail until you create a full bun. Wrap another strong ponytail holder around the bun a few times to secure. You can also place bobby pins in the bun for an extra-tight hold.
Durability: 3
Simplicity: 2

Jasmine Ponytail

Named after the beautiful Princess Jasmine from Disney's Aladdin, not only is this hairstyle highly likely to stay put, but it is also super simple to do. The Jasmine is great for ladies with longer hair or many layers. To do: gather a section of hair at the top of your head into a ponytail; tie off with a small elastic band. Gather another section of hair farther down the head, including the top section; tie off with another small elastic. Continue moving down the head, always adding the previous sections of hair. Use a strong ponytail holder for the final section.
Durability: 5
Simplicity: 2

Double Braid Into Ponytail

As long as you know how to do a simple braid, the double braid into ponytail style will be quick and effective. Simply make two medium-sized braids with on each side of your head and join them with the rest of your hair to make a ponytail at the back of your head.
Durability: 3
Simplicity: 3

French Braid

The French braid is a classic way to get your hair off your face and neck. This hairstyle can be difficult to achieve if you're new to braiding, so we recommend checking out the first part of this tutorial to learn the process.
Durability: 4
Simplicity: 3

Half French Braid Into Ponytail

This style brings together the French braid and a traditional ponytail, making it a bit quicker than the full French braid. Instead of completing the full French braid, stop at the tops of your ears and pull all the hair into a ponytail at the back of your head. If you want a lower ponytail, continue braiding farther down like this gal does.
Durability: 4
Simplicity: 3

Crown French Braid Into Ponytail

You should only attempt the Crown French Braid after you've mastered the traditional French braid, but it's great for getting longer bangs out of your face. This is the same braiding process as the top French braid, but you're only braiding a small section of hair across the front of your head near your face. Watch the beginning part of this tutorial for tips on how to do the crown braid, and then bring the braided section into a regular ponytail.
Durability: 3
Simplicity: 5

Upside-Down French Braid Into Ponytail

While this is another style for more advanced hair-istas, the upside-down French braid is a good option for those who have shorter pieces they want to get off the neck. This style requires the same process as the traditional French braid, but without the benefit of a mirror--because you have your head upside down. You can leave your hair in a ponytail or, as the gal in this tutorial shows, create a high bun.
Durability: 3
Simplicity: 5

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