Poll! What kind of hair accessories are appropriate for the office?

Are Some Hair Accessories Unprofessional? | CorporetteOne of the article ideas that people often offer us is to do an article about which hair accessories are appropriate for the office.  Yet we’ve always hesitated … well, primarily because we don’t know if anything is appropriate for the office beyond low-ponytail type hairbands.   Headbands always seem too prissy / 1980s / wear-in-your-early-20s kind of things.  Barrettes seem so middle school.  Fanciful bobbypins seem too… Drew-Barrymore-in-the-early-90s.  Anything to assist with a bun seems too… ballerina-like.  But maybe we’re off base here — what are your thoughts?  Any favorite brands or haunts where you find great hair accessories?

Picture above:  Feathered Flower Headband, by Bebe, now $49.


As a side note, did anyone see Bride Wars over the weekend?  What were your thoughts on Kate Hudson’s hair at the first big client meeting?


  1. I haven’t thought too much about this. I’m still fairly young so I wear headbands outside of the office but have always hesitated at wearing them to work. Mostly for me it’s just bobby pins and ponytails, although lately I’ve been using one of those clip things to keep the hair out of my face because it’s too short for a ponytail. Neutral colors though.

  2. Yeah, those clip things JD are the other big question. I think they almost look more professional than a pony tail holder.

  3. I have worn neutral headbands on Fridays, but I’m also in my mid-to-late 20’s if that makes a difference.

  4. I always keep a clip in my desk — no matter what I do with my hair in the morning, after a long day, it starts drooping. And if the long day drags into the night, then the clip is a sanity-saver.

    I’m wearing a neutral headband today (am in my mid-30’s). Don’t really see how it would be unprofessional. If anything, I think ponytails have a higher risk of looking too young or too casual. I’ve had the best luck with hair accessories at H&M. Neutral and cheap (so not a big deal when lost).

  5. I’m in my early 20’s and currently rocking a very slim black satin headband. (I have dark brown hair). Wearing a suit today and still looked just fine. I have bangs so sometimes when I don’t wash my hair in the morning I’ll reach for the headband just so things look polished as opposed to greasy and dirty.

    I’ve also been a fan of the clips when my hair was longer/one length.

    I just bought a ponytail scarf from Coach over the weekend – thinking about trying it out as a summer thing – anyone care to weigh in?

  6. I am in my late 20s and usually wear my hair loose and parted on the side (it’s bobbed). If I’m in a rush in the morning or it’s really humid, low ponytail it is (sometimes with a simple, thin headband). My hair does bizarre things with a headband alone but other associates wear them – if you avoid the headband and cable knit/argyle or severe turtleneck look I don’t think it’s too preppy/”artsy”.

    Have worn a small, plain barrette once or twice to pull back just the part of my hair that would be bangs, if I had them, but felt a little young looking (middle school’s about right), and would only wear the style again with a few outfits (probably very business-y, like a crisp shirt and pants).

  7. Unless I cut my hair super short, I need to pull it back. I think that a clip worn low in a pony tail is more professional than the elastic/pony tail holders. I am also fond of those hair fork things that let you put up your hair up, although I don’t know what they’re called. I usually go with barely visible hair things.

  8. What is on that woman’s head? It looks like she painted a bright pink swath on her hair. When I first saw it, I thought you were going to debate the wisdom of Manic Panic at the office.

  9. we have slowly weaned my boss off scrunchies, although they sometimes make a comeback during late nights.

    I generally stick to bare minimal hair accessories and if I’m in a meeting or in court I almost always pin my bangs back with a bobby pin or the clips that snap to avoid brushing it out of my face.

  10. On a day-to-day basis, I keep it pretty simple: pony tail holders that are clear or match my hair, neutral headbands, bobby pins, or small claw clips in brown or black.

    I do own a couple of “cute” headbands from j.crew that I bust out (particularly in the summer) without batting an eye. I veer toward preppy, though, in general, so that probably has something to do with it.

    Also, since most of the people that I work with are men, I seriously doubt that any of them notice my hair accessories one way or another (although, they’d notice — and make fun of — feathers, without a doubt). As long as it’s tasteful, I say, go for it.

  11. On pony tail holders matching your hair, do they even sell packs of them that would match, say, blonde hair or red? I feel like I see multicolored ones and black ones and that’s it.

    I also think it’s kind of silly to worry about a problem with a black one even if you think colors are going too far (I don’t). What, people might know your hair isn’t naturally in the shape of a pony tail?

  12. I say bring on the feathers! I was blessed with big hair, so there’s not much out there that will draw *more* attention to it than it already receives.

    Of course, I work in a so-called creative capacity, so perhaps more avant garde clothing and accessories are more generally acceptable. In fact, I think I’ll wear a peacock feather in my chignon tomorrow…

    Tamia´s last blog post..Style: Work It!

  13. Website source = France luxe. Not the purple and other eccentric colors or bedazzled stuff, but their various iterations of tortoise are all gorgeous and professional.

  14. a reader,

    Goody has a line of hair accessories called “Colour Collection.” They have clips, elastics, and headbands for blondes, brunettes, redheads, and black hair.


  15. Thanks, t. Intriguing. I guess you miss out on things when you buy your hair elastics at the grocery store.

  16. Can also vouch for France Luxe…I have different sizes of mosaic brownish clips for myself (and the fish ponytail holders for my daughter). Excellent quality and beautiful neutral shades. I personally find headbands distracting in a work setting. I love headbands and I really want to enjoy them at work but I have never been able to, either on myself or on anyone else (while in the office). The closest thing I can come to accepting these as professional looking are the ones that are very thin black elastic.

  17. Here’s an example of what NOT to wear to the office (or anywhere else for that matter):

    http://www.bumpits.com/ (safe for work, unless your office is offended by big hair)

    Watch the video with your office door closed, or else everyone down the hall will wonder what you’re giggling at.

  18. Ha ha! Make sure to check out the disclaimer: “bumpits are not edible.”

    Thanks for the tip on France Luxe. What great source!

  19. Goody’s are available at Target, some grocery stores and maybe even Wal-Mart.

    Nordstrom carries France Luxe. I have three of the dark pearl/tortoise claw clips (all different sizes) that I’ve been wearing for about two years. They are great – durable, comfortable & fashionable.

    I am in Dallas, a far cry from NYC, so merchandise and availability may not be the same.

  20. that video is hilarious: i love the faux-Amy Winehouse at the end!!

  21. Have just bought some gorgeous new Scunci Linziclips from Walgreens! They hold better than all other claw clips, are great quality and are so pretty! I also found a website www.glitz4girlz.com and found a range of different colors and finishes! Go take a look! I googled Linziclip – their website is www.linziclip.com