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Photo: Unsplash/ Yanapi Senaud

In fifth grade, I got in a fight with a hair tie. The hair tie won.

My personal David and Goliath–esque duel with the inanimate object took place way back in the day when the ends of many hair elastics were connected by a metal fastener—or, apparently, a weapon. Holding the base of my just-formed ponytail with my left hand, I attempted to use my teeth to remove said medieval tool from my right wrist. While you can probably see the grisly end of this tale as clearly as the inevitable plot twist in Gillian Flynn novels (controversial opinion: Gone Girl is overrated), I only realized my mistake when thwack! the elastic band—metal gleaming and vicious—snapped off my wrist and straight into my front tooth. I still have the chip.

Hair ties have evolved so far since that fateful day that “elastic” can barely be used as a synonym anymore. In fact, the hottest thing in ponytail holders now looks more like a telephone cord—a foreign concept to the trend’s youngest adopters, because to them, phones have always been magic boxes that can fit in your pocket duh—than a rubber band. According to a Pinterest’s summer fashion and beauty trends report, searches for spiral hair ties have skyrocketed 2,198 percent over past year. Forgive me for stating the obvious, but that’s a lot.

Double up on #TELETIES to achieve the ultimate look. ✨

A post shared by TELETIES (@tele_ties) on

While using retro-fab scrunchies is one tried and true method for avoiding that dreaded ponytail crease (even RBG swears by them), they sure are slippery little buggers. The spiral hair tie’s signature shape, meanwhile, allows it to grip tightly to your hair without pulling and breaking your strands like your passé elastic.

And its advantages don’t stop there: As a total coil-fastener convert, here are more undisputed perks (as decided by me):

  1. They help give your updos a bit more oomph. Wider and rounder than your traditional band, they really help to perk up that pony, Ariana Grande–style, once wrapped around your hair a couple times.
  2. Being waterproof, they don’t leave your wrist damp and soggy for hours (Is it hours? It feels like hours) after you wash your hands.
  3. Since they’re not as tight as traditional elastics, you can finally rock a sleep #lewk sans ponytail headaches.
  4. They’re prettier, objectively.
  5. They don’t lead to dental emergencies.

Now that you’re sold on spiral hair ties, here are options to add to your cart (and wrist).

While spiral hair ties are clearly the best choice—you’re convinced, right?—for most of the time, some situations do call for other varieties. Here’s a rundown of the best hair ties for every scenario, according to a stylist. And when you’re feeling fancy, this is the French-girl-approved hair accessory you’re about to see everywhere.

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