Braids are IN! They have been popping up all over my social media for a while now and they are a trend I quite enjoy. I like to rock a braid when my hair is on the dirtier side, when the weather is hot and sometimes – SHOCK HORROR! just because. Whilst learning the art of braiding is not what I would describe as ‘easy’, once mastered it’s a skill that you will have forever and it does come in very handy. Once you’ve practiced the basics 527 times then you should be well on the way to gaining a bit of a rhythm with your hands and soon you wont even have to think about what you are doing. Good old muscle memory! Bit like driving a manual car.. (I assume? Automatic gal over here).
I thought that today I would mention 3 different braided ideas, 2 that I do a lot and 1 that seems to be exceedingly popular on the inter-web. I will try my very, very best to explain what my fingers and hands are doing through this process but I suggest you maybe also try to watch a couple of YouTube videos before hand just to scrub up on the basic idea of what’s going on. The only words of wisdom I can give are; be patient, keep calm and keep your braid tight! This is not something you will be able to do straight away and it is a skill that needs to be learnt but if you already know how to plait hair then you are halfway there! If not, then what were you doing all those years of primary school if you weren’t plaiting other girls’ hair? Actually learning?!!
THE FRENCH BRAID WITH TUCKED TAIL
This is my most loved braid of choice. I haven’t yet learnt how to dutch braid so all my braids at the mo are of the French variety 🙂 I love this hairstyle because it’s a great option for getting dirty, unruly hair up and out of the way and has a lovely effect.
- Brush all of your hair back and away from your face
- Take a small section of hair from the front of your head (from your forehead to the crown) and separate from the rest of the hair
- Split this section into 3 smaller sections. If we are working from your left to your right, lets label each section A, B and C accordingly
- Take section C and pull it over B (so that it becomes the new middle section) and then take section A and pull it over C
- Now you have done a plait and set up your braid. This is where you will want to find a way of holding all 3 sections with one hand. For me, I start by holding with my left hand. I hold section C (left section) between my thumb and index finger, I push down section A (middle section) with the middle part of my index finger and hold section B (right section) between my index and middle finger
- I then use my right hand, using the thumb as a type of parting tool to pull a section horizontally from my face toward my crown. I then take this parted section and place between my index finger and middle finger to join section B
- Once joined, pull section A (middle) with your right hand to the right place section B over A and hold down with your index finger of your right hand and take hold of section C with your thumb and index finger
- Repeat the process done in step 6 using your left hand and join with the thumb and index finger of the right hand (section C)
- Repeat step 7 doing the same thing done on the right side. Pull the middle section to the left (B), Pull section C across B and push down with the middle of the index finger and hold A between the index and middle finger. Continue with this process until you make your way down the whole head and get to the nape of the neck
- Plait the remaining length of the hair to form a tail and secure with an elastic band
- You can either leave as is from here, but I like to fold the tail up and under and tuck into the braid and secure with some pins
- To tidy up any loose bit of hair I comb them through toward the braid and then secure into the braid with some pins. I then just give the whole thing a good spray with some hairspray
THE HALF FRENCH BRAID
This one’s for those days when you want a bit more of a relaxed look and you would like to leave some of your hair out and free-flowing like the beautiful goddess that you are! I recently did this hairstyle for a floor show and straightened the hair that was left out and the look came together really well. Straightening the hair is a nice way of taking this look to the next level if you are going out and want to look chic. Rather than repeating myself I will just refer to some of the steps above mentioned in the full braid.
- Follow steps 1-9 of the full braid above but only braid half the head
- Once you have done to about your ears, stop braiding and plait the remaining length of hair
- Secure the plait with an elastic band
- Pull a section of hair from the right and a section from the left across meeting at the elastic
- Secure these two sections with a small plastic elastic if possible and on the last loop of securing incorporate the plait too
- Finish with a bit of hairspray
THE PIGTAIL BRAIDS
This hairstyle is super popular on the net, thanks mostly to the Kardashians. It’s great if you are looking for an edgy yet girly look to your braids and can be used as a great base for a couple of different options that I mention below! Aahh, pigtails take me back to my childhood 🙂
- Part your hair down the centre of your head using a comb
- Secure one section loosely with a hair tie so that its out of the way
- Start braiding the first half of your hair once again using the technique mentioned in the full braid above. Taking hair from the part now rather than from the side like the full braid
- When you get closer to the ear make sure to pull tight on the sections of hair closest to the ear so that the braid isn’t loose and hanging straight down but follows the curve of your head
- Secure at the end of the braid with an elastic
- Proceed to do the same with the other half of hair and secure with an elastic
- to go for a bit of a Katniss Everdeen, Hunger Games-esque hairstyle then grab both tails and pin across and around each other in a type of figure 8 along the nape of the neck
- tuck the tails up into the braid the same as step 12 on the full braid
Hopefully with the warmer weather coming your will thank me for some of these up do ideas! Also, if you’re like me and tend to opt for a braid when your hair’s dirty then maybe try to smooth on some form of leave in conditioner before hand. I like to use Davroe Ends Repair Leave-In Treatment. This brand is 100% Aussie made, plant-based and vegan friendly.. plus the product smells gorgeous too! I have really noticed a change in my ends and when purchased on Salonstyle.com is only $10. Using a leave in treatment is a double win really because its able to work its magic whilst your hair is up and out of the way and it makes the hair slightly tacky and bendable which makes life so much easier while braiding (ain’t nobody want to braid slippery, just washed hair!)
Check out some more awesome products for your hair over at Salon Style!
Love, Rachelle x