We're trend-spotters by nature, reveling in the buzziest hairstyles (like Jane Birkin bangs), hair colors (like Brazil’s favorite “illuminated brunette”) and hair accessories. Hairstyles and hair colors might fluctuate by season, but hair accessories seem to stick around for the long haul, competing with one another until one eventually rises above the rest to be deemed ‘trendiest of the year.’ In 2017, that hair accessory was the Blaire Waldorf-esque headband. In 2018, that hair accessory was the humble scrunchie—probably due in no small part to Netflix’s To All The Boys I Loved Before. This year, that hair accessory is a sweetly nostalgic and slightly unassuming accessory from the ‘90s.
We’re talking about barrettes. The old-school hair staple is all over Instagram, holding back the hair of bloggers, famous hairstylists, and celebrities. Trend-setters like Kendall Jenner, Ariana Grande, Ashley Graham, and Winnie Harlow (just to name a few celebrities) have ‘grammed photos of themselves wearing their favorite clips. Each one—whether it’s a subtle French-girl barrette or a slim and sleek metallic fastener—is perfectly ‘90s chic.
It’s no secret that Kendall is the one Kardashian-Jenner sister most prone to experimenting with editorial hair and makeup looks (we suppose that comes with the territory of being an international supermodel). Thanks to her sleek center part, flipped-out ends, and gunmetal gray barrette, she looks like she walked straight out of a 1995 issue of Vogue).
Solange Knowles is another celebrity who was an early proponent of the trend (no surprise there; she’s always ahead of fashion and beauty trends). She’s pictured here at the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Awards wearing not one but five separate barrettes in her hair.
Barrettes are becoming as synonymous with Ariana Grande as thigh-high boots, mini dresses, cat eye liner, and a high ponytail. In other words, she seems to be slowly and permanently integrating hair clips into her already iconic style. Here’s she’s wearing multiple Kitsch x Justine Marjan Medium Hematite Snap Clips ($29) in her high pony.
Ashley Graham fully embraces the trend, posing with barrettes and a very ’90s-inspired ponytail. Hairstylist (and hair accessory designer) Justine Marjan posted this photo of her to Instagram, captioning it “so obsessed with this blunt ponytail on @ashleygraham.” Graham is wearing 2 snap clips from Marjan’s aforementioned Kitsch collab.
While we’re on the topic of Justine Marjan, we can’t not mention her latest designs, which are taking over Instagram one celebrity photo opportunity at a time. For proof, just look to this picture of Jordyn Woods, which she posted on her own Instagram account. Notice the 2 different hair accessories she’s wearing. One reads ‘Damn;’ the one below it reads ‘Feelings.’ (Funnily enough, those are two words we would use to describe our initial reaction to the Jordyn Woods and Tristian Thompson cheating scandal…but we digress).
Along with the ‘Damn’ and ‘Feelings’ varieties, you can also opt for ones that say ‘Vibes,’ ‘Drippin,’ ‘Boss,’ ‘Glam,’ and ‘Icon’—the latter of which is our personal favorite. They’re all in the same rhinestone-covered gothic font, so you can mix and match. Rest assured you won’t be able to find a more eye-catching hair accessory anywhere.
Model Winnie Harlow wears gold faux diamond-encrusted snap clips to hold back her long raven-colored hair. Are you sensing a theme yet? While traditional black barrettes are back, the trendiest way to take on this trend is by opting for their shiny and glittery counterparts.
Victoria’s Secret model Elsa Hosk debuted this pretty hair clip while out and about in Brooklyn. It has a vintage-looking—almost Art Deco—vibe to it that we love. Like we said before, the bigger and more eye-catching the hair clip is, the trendier it’s likely to be.
Shop the Look
Urban Outfitters Chunky Flip Clip Set
These chunky barrettes are the stuff of minimalist dreams. There are three subtle and powdery color options—sky blue, terracotta red, and peachy-nude, respectively. Since they're muted shades, they can be mixed and matched with abandon.
Urban Outfitters Perfection Pearl Flip Clip
Pearl hair clips are quite possibly the most trendy of the bunch, popping up in stores everywhere. We like this geometric clip from Urban Outfitters, which is somehow equal parts vintage-looking and futuristic.
Anthropologie Lena Oval Hair Clip Set
For an artistic and rather whimsical take on the hair clip trend, opt for these dainty barrettes from Anthropologie. One look, and we can't help but to think these would make the perfect springtime hair accessory. They're just so fresh and springy.
H&M 6 Pack Hair Clips
And the award for most nostalgic hair clips goes to these girl-ish pink barrettes from H&M. As someone who wore sparkly butterfly clips in her hair for the better part of her childhood, these speak to me on a spiritual level.
Jennifer Behr Esme Barrette
We know what you're thinking. $252 for a single hair clip? That's expensive. However, it's worth it if you're looking for a hair clip to end all other hair clips. I mean, it's covered in sparkly and shiny gemstones; it's the definition of eye-catching.
Cult Gaia Large Barrette
This hair clip is almost as long as our heads are wide, and we love it all the more for it. There's just something about its sunshine yellow shade that makes us feel optimistic and uplifted.
Madewell Acrylic Circle Barrette
There are two things we love about this barrette: the circular shape and the tortoiseshell print. It's sophisticated and elevated and totally office-appropriate. The verdict is in. Hair clips are everywhere; there's even an appropriate design to wear to your Monday morning board meeting.
Now that we've gotten our barrette fix, check out 15 minimal and effortlessly cool hairstyles that French Women love.