Does anyone make a comfortable headband for women?
October 21, 2008 9:04 AM   Subscribe

Does anyone make a comfortable headband for women?

I frequently give my very voluminous hair a little control by wearing my sunglasses on the top of my head, so the bangs are in front and the rest is sort of lightly restrained. It is, however, a very informal look and I'd like to be a little less casual at work. Are there headbands that actually work on adult heads? Every headband I've bought from the drug store is too tight behind the ears, and ends up giving me a headache. I can't quite get the same look from a loop of elastic or fabric, unless maybe there's a way of arranging the hair over it to be less...sweatband-ish? How do you ladies pin your hair out of your face without resorting to a ponytail?
posted by lemonade to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (12 answers total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: I don't know if you've tried the Scunci Comfort Fit Headband yet, but in my experience it's the only hard headband that doesn't put pressure behind my ears. (I have a pretty big head, too.)

Scunci also makes a flexible plastic headband with an elastic back - I haven't worn it myself but it looks promising.
posted by Metroid Baby at 9:20 AM on October 21, 2008 [2 favorites]

I have found thin elastic headbands made in various "hair colors", by Goody at Target -- which were not too prominent and didn't look at all sweatband-ish. They look like a bigger version of a ponytail holder and I think would be work-appropriate.

They don't work well for me though; I find that any fabric or elastic loops just slide right out of my hair, which though voluminous is rather fine in texture. Still, if you have curly or thicker hair, you might have more success with these.

And yes, most "hard" headbands pinch far too tightly at the ends, giving me a terrible headache.

The only one I've found that is both effective and comfortable is this one, made by Karina, which I found at Ulta in their hair accessories section. They were sold as a two-pack, one black and one tortoiseshell. At 1/8" it's very light, but it has separating teeth and has worked well on my particular head. The price point is low enough that you could give it a try and not break the bank if it doesn't work for you.

Good luck! I will be reading this thread with interest to see if another magic solution pops up.
posted by pineapple at 9:28 AM on October 21, 2008 [1 favorite]

Best answer: This is the area of my expertise- one wall of my bedroom is covered with headbands hanging from nails. I agree with you that the cloth and the elastic bands look less than professional.

For professional and non-hurty headbands, try the ones at Banana Republic. (I have that navy chain one) They are more expensive than the ones you usually buy probably but last a while and are worth it for the non-pain.

I've also had a lot of luck with some skinny plastic ones that are much more flexible than normal ones that I found a few weeks ago at Urban Outfitters. They sell them in multi-packs of metallics.

In general, I never buy ones with the little rick-rack ribbon on the underside or the plastic ones with the teeth because those are recipes for headaches.
Another option I use a lot are little barrettes and bobby pins. I don't use clippies much anymore because I think they look young, but something like this could be nice.
posted by rmless at 9:29 AM on October 21, 2008

If you don't like the head squeeze, try a band that cinches with an elastic cord at the bottom, where it will be hidden by your hair. Some are even adjustable. Flexible ones are nice; a skinny chain like this one (minus ugly logo) looks modern and cute. Or you could get one like this flexible plastic one at the drugstore - it's a bit more solid, and has mini teeth, so it will definitely hold the hair in place.

Myself, I'm partial to scarves as headbands. You want a smallish light silk square so it doesn't have too much bulk, and the key is to avoid using it to hold your bangs straight back - that never works right, unless you wear it more like a bandanna. Kind of tuck your bangs to the side, and you'll still have your hair off your face but look very fresh and polished.
posted by peachfuzz at 9:32 AM on October 21, 2008

Gah! This should be that last link.
posted by peachfuzz at 9:34 AM on October 21, 2008

Take a thin hard headband and simply stretch it out a few times with your hands until it stays that way. If you overdid it, just push it back again. There is a risk of breakage, but in my experience this only happens with older headbands (I guess the plastic becomes brittle with age).
posted by serena15221 at 9:55 AM on October 21, 2008

Do you knit or do you know anyone who does who could whip something up for you? I've made myself some skinny versions of Calorimetry (can be knit in an evening, and I say I made skinny versions because the pattern as written is quite wide, but easily altered). Soft, so there's no headache and you can dress it up or down depending on the yarn texture and color.
posted by stefnet at 10:29 AM on October 21, 2008 [2 favorites]

I do the same thing with the sunglasses. I found most headbands to hold my hair down too tight - I finally settled on a little clip gathering the hair where I usually have the sunglasses sitting. It gives me the looser look yet still pulled together.
posted by KAS at 10:34 AM on October 21, 2008

Another vote for scarves--I have a big skull, and back when I had long hair they were the only non-painful way to keep the damn stuff out of my face. Silk or silky synthetic scarves were sometimes too slippery, though, and would slide off backward. So I would periodically hit the fabric store, go through the bin of 18"x18" cotton quilt squares, and get some pieces in good colors/patterns. Then I'd fold a piece diagonally, twist it into a roll, tucking away the raw edges, and tie it at the nape; it came out to be just the right length.

(The real solution for me was to cut all my hair off, and I am now ecstatically happy with my 1" crewcut, but I realize that's not for everyone...)
posted by Kat Allison at 1:02 PM on October 21, 2008

You might like to try a lock scrunchie.
posted by not that girl at 11:32 AM on October 22, 2008

I am an adult with an adult sized head and I wear those awesome kid headbands. The secret is a microwave.

I'm not kidding. Microwave those super wide headbands for twenty-to-thirty seconds, put on, and mold the plastic to your head. (I have done this with great results to leather and fabric covered headbands, as well as the plain plastic ones.)
posted by aint broke at 1:48 PM on October 23, 2008 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I favorited the answers I tried...the Scunci Comfort Fit Headband is quite good, although I can't wear it all day it is fine for a few hours, and the Banana Republic one I found is very pretty and quite comfortable, although it only looks good with my hair down because it's not actually 'head shaped' but more rounded.

I totally wanted the microwave option to work, but it didn't work on the (skinny) headband I had. But I will definitely try that again on the type of headband described!
posted by lemonade at 3:57 PM on December 22, 2008

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