July 30, 2021

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10 Best Scrunchies to Dress-up and Protect Your Hair in 2021

5 min read
three scrunchies on a pink background

Christine Giordano

The easiest (and comfiest) addition to any outfit or hairstyle, scrunchies in every size, style, and material have found their way back into beauty routines. The accessory reclaimed its trending status with multiple red carpet appearances (Lizzo, we see you and your bedazzled scrunchie) and endless styling possibilities.

“They’ve helped people and it feels fun and exciting to play with them again,” said Siobhan Quinlan, attributing feelings of nostalgia, fun, and even hair health benefits for scrunchies resurgence. Quinlan, the creative director at Art + Autonomy Salon, says she personally has a ton of scrunchies and wears one every night while she sleeps to prevent dents in her hair.

With materials such as silk, velvet, and quick-drying elastane (aka what’s used in workout clothes) the modern scrunchie is equally as beneficial as it is fashionable. The typical makeup of the product is gentler on your hair than the common elastic hair tie that can harm hair, tugging on it and causing damage or breakage to strands. Scrunchies, Quinlan describes, are looser, especially when made with softer, higher-cost fabrics, “so [your hair] is not breaking when rubbing against it so much.” The growing variations in scrunchies allow you to pull back your hair stylishly while showing it some TLC. The popularity of this resurrected ‘80s trend combined with hair health revelations act as proof: the scrunchie trend is back and better than ever.

With unique designs, textures, and advantages to consider (not to mention the wide price range), the scrunchie market can seem overwhelming. That’s where an expert comes in, offering advice to make your scrunchie search as easy as 1-2-3. I present to you the modern, must-haves of the scrunchie revival:

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1

Silk

Pure Silk 3-Pack Hair Ties

Slip
nordstrom.com

$39.00

Silk has major smoothing benefits for your hair, making it the perfect scrunchie material. These dreamy, elegant scrunchies are 100% silk in an effort to be as gentle as possible. This colorful three pack is entirely free of elastic leaving your hair free from creases and pulling.  

2

Velvet

Velvet Scrunchie Set

Urban Outfitters
urbanoutfitters.com

$12.00

Dress up any cool-weather look with these colorful scrunchies. A more affordable option than silk, the soft and lightweight velvet material will hold your hair without creasing it, adding a fun pop of flavor to even the most simple of ponys or messy buns. Find some inspo for the perfect messy bun here.

3

Skinny

Skinny Scrunchie (5 Pack)

Banana Republic
gapfactory.com

$7.99

Get a subtler look for your mellower moods with a skinny scrunchie. A thin strip of color is the perfect way to keep your hair strong, sturdy, and stylish. No occasion is too casual or too formal for a slight pop. Try these instead of the mundane black or brown elastic ties for healthier, happier (and creaseless!) hair.

4

Elastane

Light Locks Scrunchie

Lululemon
lululemon.com

$14.00

Scrunchies can be secure, too! This lightweight elastane and polyester scrunchie is perfect for athletes. Designed to keep hair in place and out of your face while you train, this scrunchie can handle movement and sweat. Lululemon has 10 vibrant patterns and colors to choose from all lined with a reflective border so you can stand out for those after dark runs. For styling ideas, check out the best workout hairstyles.

5

Oversized

Reclaimed Vintage Inspired Oversized Seersucker Scrunchie

Reclaimed Vintage
us.asos.com

$13.00

Large and in charge. When wearing a scrunchie of this size, you can pretty much assume all eyes will be on you. This accessory transforms an ordinary ponytail into a bold updo, making the colorful, textured scrunchie the centerpiece of any outfit. Not to mention, a statement bracelet when worn on your wrist. 

Pro tip: Quinlan recommends tightly positioning your hair with an elastic prior to applying the scrunchie if focusing solely on the scrunchie decor. Create an easy fashion statement with just a litttle bit of extra help. Ever thought about adding some pizzazz to your topknot?

6

Dangling

Scrunchie + Scarf Set

Kristin Ess Hair
kristinesshair.com

$10.00

The long, hanging addition to this scrunchie combines the skinny scrunchie look with the elegance of a patterned ribbon. Why only dress up the hair band when you can have a decorative, extending strand, too? This look is the perfect splash of color or pattern for the simple outfit and will add excitement to any hairstyle. Quinlan likes to braid the hanging scarf into her hair, adding pattern and texture variation to a simple hairdo.

7

Bow

Softest Cord Bow Scrunchie

Free People
freepeople.com

$8.00

All wrapped up with a bow, this inexpensive scrunchie will transform your bun or pony into the cutest hairstyle for a first date or festive lunch. Subtler than the oversized and dangling scrunchies, the bow is a common scrunchie style that many brands have put their own spin on. Big or small, long or short, patterned or solid, whatever kind of bow you’re looking for, there is a scrunchie to keep it in place.

8

Leather

Janelle Scrunchie

Jennifer Behr
revolve.com

For the more formal occasions, leather scrunchies provide a sleek, pulled back look destined to make you scream ‘put together’ even at your most frazzled. Quinlan loves her leather scrunchies and has them in all different colors!

9

Beaded

Beaded Elastic Hair Ties (3 Pack)

An elegant touch to a low pony or ballerina bun, a beaded scrunchie will catch the light of any room you walk into. This accessory will dress up your hair to match whatever fabulous night-out or brunch outfit you have planned. Try these easy updos with a beaded scrunchie at your next outing to shine like a celeb. 

If focusing on the hair health benefit, try a low pony with a looser look to it to compliment the product’s looser functionality.

10

Textured

Textured Scrunchie Set

Anthropologie
anthropologie.com

$12.95

A pro-move to any hairstyle is adding in a different texture. Not too big and not too small, these textured scrunchies from Anthropologie will add spice to any ’do. Six scrunchies all in different colors, patterns, and textures, this set is sure to compliment your shiny, healthy locks at any occasion.

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