Leaving home without a hair tie on your wrist is like forgetting to grab your cell phone before you leave for the day. It doesn’t matter what the hair tie looks like—it's all about having it close by in case of a major hair emergency. I’m a big a supporter of this trend, as I'm sure you are too. But what if I told you this habit could be harming your health? 

Here's What I'm Talking About

Surprisingly enough, keeping a hair tie on your wrist at all times could lead to a potentially serious infection. Just think about what you do on a normal day: go to class, workout, shower, eat, clean. Yet there are a lot of ways for bacteria to collect on your hair tie.

Take working out at the gym. Think about how many people have worked out on each machine before you. Whether it's the treadmill, free weights. or the elliptical—gyms are filled with bacteria. Recent findings have discovered that the weights you hold at the gym carry 362 times the bacteria of a toilet seat. Yeah, that’s pretty gross. Even worse—some of that bacteria could be wrapped around your hair tie.

It doesn't just have to be at the gym where bacteria can accumulate on your hair tie. Simply dropping your hair tie on the ground is like a feeding ground for germs. And then, you put it back on your wrist without giving it a second thought. Don't worry, I'm just as guilty. 

So What Does This Mean for Our Health?

Rebecca Block

While infections from hair ties are rare, it has happened before. It's all caused by keeping the hair tie too tight on your wrist, which can lead to cuts. Yikes. Watch out for the hair ties with metal pieces on them too, those are more susceptible to causing cuts and then leading to infections. 

“If the cut is deep enough, it can allow bacteria that normally live on the skin, or potentially dangerous pathogens to penetrate deeper layers where they don’t belong,” said dermatologist Michele Farber in an interview with Allure. 

How to Prevent Infection

If you’re going to wear a hair tie (let's face it, it's inevitable), make sure to keep it loose around your wrist. Maybe even try out Hairbanglez, which helps keep the hair tie away from your wrist. 

Next time you’re thinking about accessorizing an outfit with a hair tie or keeping one on your wrist for a humid day, make sure it's not too tight. Just to be safe, keep an emergency hair tie in your wallet or purse. Don't let a common item be the reason you’re going to the hospital.