The hippest thing to wear today could be crumpled up at the bottom of your dresser: Itís a scrunchie! The ruffly ponytail holders have become the punchline of a joke since their heyday in the early 1990s, but the questionable hair accessory made a big time comeback during the Olympic games.
Team USAís gold medal gymnasts wore patriotic red ones, as they flipped and twirled to victory. So did girls from other countries Ė like Russia, China and Italy, and all of the high profile coverage has reignited scrunchie fever for a whole new generation. Now stores, ranging from teen favorites like Forever 21 and American Apparel, to stores like Bloomingdales and even high-end designers like Marc Jacobs, are all rolling out scrunchies - for $2 on up to $30 a pop.
Gold medal gymnast Shawn Johnson explains that scrunchies remained popular with gymnasts because itís a way for them to showcase their personality Ė since the sport bans competitors from wearing nail polish and jewelry while competing. Another selling feature? You can literally do 100 backflips without one strand of hair falling out.