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Short Hair with Tail

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...How did she grow that tail in two years?

In character design, there is the crucial question:

Short Hair or Long Hair? Short implies that the character is practical, independent, and strong. For women, long hair means that she's feminine, beautiful, even regal, but it may also be regarded as decorative or impractical. So, with these two opposing hair philosophies, will the creator choose the practicality and ease of a short cut, or the awesomeness of hair that goes fwish for dramatic effect?

You need never choose between the two again. A woman who has Short Hair with Tail has the spunk and practicality of Boyish Short Hair with all the elegant drama of Rapunzel Hair. A man who has Short Hair with Tail has the stereotypical, short male haircut at the front but gets to be a long hair or Long-Haired Pretty Boy at the same time.

Characters with this hairstyle simultaneously rock the short and the long styles—they're just that awesome. Distinct from Hime Cut in that hime cuts have mid-length side tresses to frame the face, and all long in back, while Short Hair with Tail is quite obviously a short style all around with a noticeable tail.


This is a character design trope, subtrope of Anime Hair. Convenient for accommodating No Flow in CGI — both the short hair and the long braid are easier to animate than long, flowing hair. See also Rapunzel Hair. Compare with Anime Hair, for the general likelihood of actually seeing these styles walking around, and Hime Cut, when the short hair is only in front to frame the face.

Not to Be Confused with a character with short hair and a literal tail.



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    Anime and Manga 

    Comic Books 
  • Hopey and Maggie from Love and Rockets have had rattails and variations thereof at different points in the series.
  • The 40 Worst Rob Liefeld Drawings describes Shatterstar's early look:
    Bill and B: Oh mercy, I just realized that the guy has a semi-short haircut everywhere, but has a real long ponytail, and then ALSO has two long braids coming out of like the back of his neck somewhere. Can you imagine how hard you would elbow your friend if you saw a dude with three ponytails? You would elbow the shit out of them.

  • The Padawan cut from Star Wars is cropped all around, except for one very long, thin braid.
  • Some artwork Mulan, which shows her in the outfit and hairstyle she fought Shan Yu in at the end of the film for some reason had her hairstyle drawn in a way so it now includes a ponytail.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In Babylon 5, the female cut for the Centauri could be considered this—shaved bald except for the long, long ponytail.

    Video Games 

  • Soli of The Meek has this. She used to have long hair all around, but at some point she cut it.
  • Homestuck:
    • The Handmaid: Neck-length hair, except for two bangs framing her face which reach almost to her feet.
    • Later, Meenah is seen with two braid-thin tails that touch the floor behind her.
  • In Drowtales, Agneya'mukhi Balvhakara has the bangs and sides of a Hime Cut, but this trope in back. (Seen here in the last panel on the right)
  • As seen on this page of El Goonish Shive, Noah actually has shoulder-length hair with two waist-length tendrils coming out of the back of his head protruding out from underneath it. He usually ties his hair up to make it look like he just wears a long ponytail, though...

    Western Animation 
  • One episode of King of the Hill has Bobby idolizing a garage-band punk rocker with a buzz cut and a rat-tail. His attempts to do the same doesn't take off.
  • If baldness can be taken for "short cut", then Prince Zuko had one in the first season of Avatar: The Last Airbender.
  • Crazy Stunts in Skysurfer Strike Force.
  • Kimiko Tohomiko from Xiaolin Showdown sports this hairstyle in two episodes: "Journey of a Thousand Miles" and "Hannibal's Revenge", though for the latter, her hair is depicted black, her default hair colour than blonde from the former.

    Real Life 
  • Attempted with varying degrees of success and failure by mullets. Rarely do they reach Rapunzel Hair length with the long parts, rarely is the long hair badass, and rarely do mulleteers go for the all around short with a single long ponytail—but there are some occurrences.
  • Rat Tail and Duck Tail are also Real Life examples of attempts at this style.
    • The former was especially popular in the mid-80s, worn by pop singers like Aimee Mann and the men in Tears For Fears.
  • A traditional Manchu hairstyle forced on the Chinese during the Qing Dynasty involves having the head mostly shaved bald except for an area in the back of the head which is grown long and braided into a tail. It's called a "queue" - not to be confused with the thing you stand in to wait for something. The Manchus executed any Chinese who cut their queues or grew out the rest of their hair.
  • Ukrainian Cossack chupryna/khokhol is not too dissimiliar to the aforementioned queue, although the remaining hair is usually on the peak of the head and not braided.


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