Hair combs and pins can be gorgeous with braids and chignons. Place them around the base of a bun or above one ear to hold shorter layers.
When you want to pull your hair back quickly use a barrette. It looks classier and more expensiove than an elastic. To ensure a tight hold, thoroughly tease the underside of the hair before gathering it into a ponytail and snapping the barrette as close to the nape as possible.