The Rat Tail Is The Unexpected Trend Coming Back, But It Can Actually Be Cute

The return of a daring and easily recognizable hairstyle of the '80s and '90s may be leaving some with their jaw hanging, but others will be thrilled to see that the rat tail is surprisingly back on trend. Characterized by a thin section of hair at the nape of the neck left longer than the rest — and often braided — the rat tail is rebellious and can also be pretty darn cute.

Today's modern take on the iconic cut seems to blend the rat tail into the layers and style of the rest of the hair, incorporating bright colors, bangs, and other elements we didn't see much of the last time around. When you've got a long going on with your locks, the rat tail is less of a jump scare, and that seems to be what is piquing interest in this re-emergence. Maybe you've always been adventurous with your hair, and hopping on this train is a no-brainer, but if not, you may be surprised to find more subtle options when trying out a rat tail yourself.

Wild and free

We're loving the soft feathery texture of this cut and long sleek braid that encapsulates a true rat tail like no other — and with the gentle, natural hue — we're all here for it. There's just something about braids and denim that will always have us swooning. It's the perfect modern edge on a fun, retro style.

Bangs and a bob

Blue bangs and a high bob to complement a rat tail? Nothing beats this combo. Less subtle than some of the modern and retro rat tail styles out there, this look is bold, commanding, and far from standard. The perfect look to define your unique identity and play with the many avenues available on the rat tail trend.

Side swept

We're loving this high contrast, super thin rat tail and short cut combo — not to mention the tight side braid. It's truly the ideal method for adding a little something to your pixie cut and embodying the unique style in all its glory. There's something tidy about the look, and we're all about it.

Double the fun

Possibly the all-around winner when it comes to unique rat tail styles, the double rat tail pigtails are totally winners in our book. Charming, sweet, and versatile, this style leaves room for styling and blending. The shorter the pigtails, the more subtle the contrast is, and an ideal route for those who aren't ready to take a full dive into the rat tail realm.

Defined bob

Another example of the double rat tail, this effortlessly chic bob on straight hair with more definition and contrast between the two, gets all the heart eyes from us. Easy to style and super fun to wear, this striking look is sure to turn heads and inspire others to take the leap when it comes to creative hairstyles.

The rat tail mullet

While this one could technically fall into either category, we feel it can be claimed in the rat tail camp as the cascading locks around the neck are a fair bit longer than the rest — and how perfectly stunning the look is. Textured and feathery, this shaggy mullet meets rat tail has us majorly swooning — and paired with a bright pink lip? Not much could be better than that.