Pigtail Theory / Hair Theory tiktok video examples.

Pigtail Theory / Hair Theory

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Updated Apr 03, 2023 at 05:17PM EDT by Zach.

Added Apr 03, 2023 at 04:25PM EDT by Phillip Hamilton.

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The Pigtail Theory or Hair Theory is a theory popularized on TikTok in late 2021 claiming that servers, strippers and other service workers get better treatment and tips from customers if they wear pigtails. It is speculated that this is because pigtails make women look younger, arguably like children, thus inspiring creepy older men to tip them more. The theory first went viral in September 2021 when TikToker @aliveandwellandsexy posted a video alluding to the theory, inspiring other TikTokers to test it for themselves and retell their own experiences with wearing pigtails at work.


On September 26th, 2021, TikToker[1] @aliveandwellandsexy posted a video captioned, "When you wear pigtails to work and make double amount of tips than usual," garnering over 1.4 million views in two years (shown below).


♬ PUT ME IN A MOVIE – Stargirlvibes

The video inspired numerous comments from other TikTokers claiming that they also get better tips and treatment from customers, specifically older men, when they wear pigtails (examples shown below).

sarah dillon = i do it because it's such an easy hairstyle when i forgot to put up my hair but i'm always getting hit on by older men and now it makes sense 2021-9-28 35.4K View more replies (6) βœ“ Reply Taylor They told us to do this in Girl Scouts to sell more cookies 2021-9-27 49.7K Reply View more replies (192) βœ“ this week for the first time in my life i wore pigtails and i promise you i got 10x the attention i used to.. what's wrong with this world 2021-10-5 310 View more replies (4) βœ“ Reply c.herrelle NO I GET SM MORE TIPS WHEN I WEAR NO MAKEUP AND PIGTAILS BUT WHEN I WEAR MAKEUP AND MY HAIR DOWN ITS CRICKETS 2021-9-27 174 View more replies (1) Reply


Throughout 2022, TikTokers began posting similar videos about getting better tips when wearing pigtails, as well as testing the theory out for themselves and reporting if it worked or not β€” many finding that it did (examples from August 2022 shown below). On August 17th, BuzzFeed[2] then reported on the theory. On October 16th, TikToker[3] @lils_yi posted a video testing the theory and suggested it worked.

@b_woodard pigtails are a fan fav #pigtails #waitress ♬ original sound – bella

@sammmtheman was not expecting that… #fyp ♬ All Your'n (Sped Up) – Tyler Childers

The theory saw an increase in virality throughout early 2023 as users continued to test it. On January 15th, 2023, Business Insider[4] notably published an article on the theory as it saw a resurgence online.

On February 25th, 2023, TikToker[5] @wdistmwtsmbtah posted a video testing the theory, garnering over 6.5 million views in two months (shown below, left). On March 31st, The Tab[6] then reported on it. That day, TikToker[7] @rachelmdarby posted a video explaining how it worked and noted that it inspired "old men" to compliment her and look at her more, garnering over 145,000 views in three days (shown below, right).

@wdistmwtsmbtah ignore how the work air affected me #pigtailtheory #m #fyp #men ♬ original sound – meepcitygirl13

@rachelmdarby i literally h*te m*en so much #pigtailtheory ♬ original sound – rachel

Various Examples

@lil_roxxstar_cece #ponytail #ponytailtheory #server ♬ original sound – Catherine s

@lils_yi Testing the pigtail theory #pigtailtheory #pigtailsforhyunjin #pigtails #serverlife ♬ original sound – lily


♬ Meddle About – Chase Atlantic

@halle.hargrave Not bad :) #waitress #server #pigtails ♬ No Hands (feat. Roscoe Dash & Wale) – Waka Flocka Flame

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