I don’t need to tell you that throwback hairstyles are having a moment. Every time you open Instagram you’re probably berated with prom-style tendrils, tiny hair clips, and oversized headbands—I know I am. But recently, there’s been a hair accessory I’ve abandoned all my sparkly pins, fancy scrunchies, and pearl-encrusted everything for: the humble claw clip.
To me, claw clips have always been utilitarian. My mom has worn a plain tortoise one when she’s cooking for as long as I can remember, and I used to wear them to keep my hair out of my face in elementary school. It wasn’t something I ever expected I’d want to wear again, until last spring when I was walking through a dollar store during a trip to Tokyo. There it was: the cutest pink clip. I bought it on a whim, thinking I’d use it to hold back my hair during my nighttime routine.
At first the claw clip didn’t make it out of the house, but then they were suddenly everywhere I looked. Overnight, it was like every Insta-girl was wearing candy-colored Seoul Import clips, and more sleek versions were popping up in celebrity pap shots left and right. And then it hit me: claw clips are officially chic.
Since then, I haven’t left the house without a claw clip tucked into my hair or in my purse (or sometimes, clipped on my purse strap). While, yes, they’re amazing at their main job—holding up a lot of hair with minimal effort—what I love most about the clip is its versatility.
My first venture into wearing claw clips out of the house is a look comedian and host of the Glowing Up podcast Caroline Goldfarb dubbed “the Brigitte Broke-dot.” Essentially, it’s just pilling a bunch of hair into a half up, clipping it, and leaving your front tendrils or bangs out. It’s romantic, easy, and insanely flattering—the half-up with some pieces around the front frames your face in such a pretty way. The look somehow fixes any bad hair day, and makes every outfit a little more pulled together.
On the other hand, the look of choice for celeb models like Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid, and Hailey Bieber is a slicked back bun with the clips holding it all together. It’s a very ’90s supermodel look that manages to feel fresh and modern. The sleekness of the bun looks put together, but a claw clip lends it some “oh this old thing?” charm and effortlessness. I’ve never been into slick hair, but the ease of a clip makes it feel totally wearable. Plus, this style lets you really show off a cute clip. It feels like you’re wearing jewelry in your hair.
While there are certainly luxe options, my favorite thing about this trend is most clips clock in at under $25. Believe me when I say you won’t be sorry to resurrect them.
Shop the best claw clips, below.
Bella Cacciatore is the beauty associate at Glamour. Follow her on Instagram @bellacacciatore_.