How to Wear Ribbons in Your Hair

by Michelle Powell-Smith

Ribbons can add color and style to your hair, whether you have an easy-going short cut or long locks. Nearly any type or width of ribbon can be used in your hair, including grosgrain, satin, jacquard, sheer or velvet ribbons. Depending upon the ribbon you choose and the style, you can look young and fresh, cute and casual or elegant and sophisticated. Move beyond just bows with new looks for hair ribbons.

Items you will need

  • Ribbon
  • Scissors
  • Lighter or anti-fraying liquid
  • Needle and thread
  • Ponytail holders
  • Alligator clips or flat barrettes

Ribbon Headbands

Step 1

Cut a 15-to-20 inch length of ribbon. Seal the ends by passing them through the flame of a lighter or applying a fray-stopping liquid.

Step 2

Interlace two pony tail holders, then pull snug to form a knot. Fold a hem into one end of the ribbon, then fold again. Place one loop of the ponytail holder into this fold and stitch into place with a needle and thread.

Step 3

Fit the headband to your head. Trim the ribbon if necessary and seal the ends, before folding and stitching to the ponytail holders as you did the other side.

Step 4

Wear ribbon headbands with short or long hair. Try pairing a headband with a ponytail to deal with second day hair or wearing one near the hairline to hide growing out bangs.

Tuxedo Bows or Clips

Step 1

Cut a short length of ribbon, ranging from 3 1/2 inches for a small clip to 6 or more inches for a larger tuxedo-style bow. Glue the bow into a circle, then glue the center together to create a flat bow.

Step 2

Use hot glue to secure the bow to an alligator clip, french clip or plain headband.

Step 3

Wrap a short length of ribbon around the center of the bow without gathering it. Glue into place on the underside of the hair clip.

Step 4

Use these small, flat bows to clip back your bangs, secure stray strands or accent a ponytail. Use solids in satin, velvet or grosgrain ribbon for a simple and subtle look or have fun with plaid or a polka dots.


  • Choose ribbons in solid, classic colors for a more sophisticated look or playful prints for a touch of whimsy.


  • Wired ribbons or craft ribbons sold for floral displays may not stand up to use in your hair.

About the Author

Michelle Powell-Smith has been writing on a variety of subjects from finance to crafts since 2004. Her work appears on various websites. She holds a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in art history from the University of Missouri-Columbia, which has provided strong research skills and a varied range of interests.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images