What Are Pigtails?

There really isn't a huge debate on this subject, but there are some differences of opinion. This article looks at some of the differing opinions related to pigtails hairstyle definition, attempts to find some middle ground (perhaps unsuccessfully), and closes with this author's own definition and description of the ideal pigtails.

A ponytail is when the hair is tied together into a bunch and hanging from the back of the head. Most would agree on that. But if that ponytail is braided, is it still a ponytail? Some say it is, others say that this is called a braid. The same question applies to pigtails, the most common term for the gathering of the hair into twin ponytails (one on either side of the head). Can pigtails be braided and still be called pigtails? Do the terms "braided pigtails" and "unbraided pigtails" make sense? Some argue that "braided pigtails" are just "braids" and not pigtails at all!

The Random House College Dictionary defines "pigtail" as "a braid of hair hanging down the back of the head." Huh? It refers to ONE pigtail hangs down the back of the head, and calls it a braid? Hmm, there's no mention of TWO pigtails at all! Something doesn't seem right here. The dictionary entry for "ponytail" matches the definition I gave above. So what's up with all this? Is the dictionary wrong? Are there multiple dialectal or regional terms for twin ponytails, hence the difficulty for a dictionary to properly address the word's definition? Has the definition been too fluid over time for the dictionary to pin it down? And why doesn't the definition include the phrase "the cutest hairstyle ever?"

The word pigtail is also a wire cabling term that applies to a particular method for terminating an electrical cable's braided shield. (There's that word "braid" again!) Another technical, and even more contemporary, use of the word pigtail is for some sort of wireless accessories for radios or cell phones, or something like that - I haven't completely figured this one out yet.

A few years ago, a survey was done in a college classroom regarding the term pigtails. The students pretty much agreed that pigtails are two ponytails, one on each side of the head, and that they cannot be braided. If they were braided, they were called braids. The class instructor, being of a different generation, had a different definition. He believed that pigtails specifically meant two braids and that two unbraided ponytails should actually be called doggie tails. My personal analysis of this "experiment" is simply this: The instructor must have been elderly, or nearly so, and possibly losing his memory, so who knows what his generation really called "twin ponytails." And doggie tails? There is no way I could ever adapt to using such a term. The word dog, or anything like it, can never be used to describe a woman with the playfulness, boldness, and/or superior self-esteem to wear her hair in pigtails. The students clearly had a much better handle on what pigtails are all about.

So, where does this leave us? There appears to be generational differences and possibly regional or dialectal differences contributing to the debate (if you'd call it that). So, I'll put it this way: Pigtails are two gatherings of hair hanging on the left and right sides of the head. They may be braided or unbraided. But I'll add my preferences here as well, because the way I see it, there's one right kind of pigtail. Pigtails are far more attractive when unbraided. They should be located on the sides of the head, maybe a little behind and above the ears. Pigtails that are too high on the head, too low, or too far around in back, just don't possess the true spirit of pigtails. And pigtails without this true spirit are simply unable to work their undeniable magic on the wearer and those around her.

Bob Decker is a pigtails hairstyle aficionado and one of the webmasters at http://www.PigtailDreams.com. The website tastefully honors "the cutest hairstyle ever."

In The News:

Complete A to Z of beauty  Times of India
Walmart US expands beauty business  CosmeticsDesign.com USA
Accessible Beauty Products  Women's Health

Serious Skincare

Serious skin care vs. winter weather, cleansers, and stress. Serious... Read More

Cholesterol Depostis on Facial Area - Large Pores

Cholesterol DepositsTHESE LITTLE BUMPS LOOK LIKE MILIA BUT ARE MORE... Read More

Anti-Wrinkle Lifestyle Tips

Experts say that, when it comes to getting wrinkles, 10%... Read More

Taming The Frizz

My daughter hates her hair. Several of my friends hate... Read More

Whats Up With Botox?

BOTOX® is part of a family of drugs called "botulinum... Read More

Plastic Surgey: The New Beauty Norm?

This is a good topic to discuss especially now since... Read More

Discover The Make-Up Artist in You

As a licensed cosmetologist, I would like to share how... Read More

Non Prescription Contact Lenses Are the Best Way to Alter Your Look Without Altering Your Sight

Today's world has a staggering 75 million contact lens wearers,... Read More

Hyaluronic Acid Secures its Place Among Wrinkle Removal Products

Hyaluronic acid has firmly secured its place among wrinkle removal... Read More

Being a Beautiful Bride

Everybody wants to be a glowing beautiful bride on that... Read More

Homemade Beauty Recipes

Do you want to look stunning with out wasting too... Read More

Effective Ways To Remove Dark Cicles Under Eyes

Dark circles under the eyes are known to be signs... Read More

Novelty Contact Lenses are Fun if Used Safely

It must be Halloween or you are in a play... Read More

Belly Fat and Cellulite Realities and Remedies

About Consumer products: As a scientist coming from the... Read More

Natural Ways to Treat Stretch Marks

Pregnancy is a wonderful time in a woman's life. One... Read More

Deep Skin Moisturizing

When it comes to skin care, moisturizing is usually one... Read More

Costume Contact Lenses ? Be Noticed in the Crowd!

Costume contacts have always been a favorite tool of movie... Read More

Should You Get Hair Extensions?

Are you sick and tired of your current hair style... Read More

15 Hair Care Myths - The Truth and The Lies

Everyone has a favourite myth about hair care ? and... Read More

What The Heck Are Crowns, Veneers and Implants Anyway?

Dentistry has become a hot topic, as writers across the... Read More

Acai Berry From The Amazon Is Taking The World By Storm!

The benefits from eating healthy are endless. And, according to... Read More

Botox Toxin Not So Toxic

The Botox toxin is not so toxic if you're trying... Read More

Beauty Consultant on Skin Care Basics

If you're like many women you are confused about how... Read More

Hot Colors for Cooler Days

Labor Day not only marks the end of the summer... Read More

Hair Stylist - Record Holder

Have you ever seen hair stylist cutting hair with Fire... Read More