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French Braid

THE LOOK

The French braid is a classic, timeless hairstyle. It is created by initially following the basic braid technique and then adding in small sections of hair from each side as you continue down the back of your head. The French braid sits close to your head and is a beautiful way to wear your hair up. It looks great in curly, wavy and straight hair types and suits all hair lengths, from shoulder length to extremely long hair.

DIFFICULTY LEVEL

Medium

IDEAL HAIR LENGTH

Medium to long

HAIR EXTENSIONS NEEDED?

No

ASSISTANCE NEEDED?

Yes, but you can do this in your own hair with practice.

ACCESSORIES

Thread ribbon through as you braid to accentuate the structure or use a decorative hair elastic at the end of the braid for a pretty finish.

TRY THIS

Once you’ve mastered the French braid style, you can move it around to create an infinite number of hairstyles. Try a half braid, diagonal braid, S-shaped braid, or an upside-down braid bun.

Top : Hairstyling by Christina Butcher, photography by Xiaohan Shen, modeling by Sophia Phan.

Bottom left : Hairstyling, photography, and modeling by Suzy Wimbourne Photography.

Bottom right : Hairstyling and modeling by Christina Butcher, photography by Xiaohan Shen.

HOW TO GET IT FRENCH BRAID

WHAT YOU NEED

  • Brush
  • Hair elastic

1). Start by taking a section of hair at the top of your head and splitting it into three equal pieces. In the same way that you form a regular braid, bring the left section over the middle and the right over the left (now middle).

2). When you bring your left over the middle again, grab a little extra piece of hair from the left side of your head, combine it with the left section, and bring them into the middle together.

3). Then, on the right side, bring that section over the middle and add in another piece of hair from the right-hand side. This way you keep forming a regular braid but you add in sections of hair as you go.

4). Continue down the back of your head, adding in equal sections of hair to your braid.

5). Once all your hair is added, finish in a basic braid and secure the end with a hair elastic.

TOP TIP : To keep your braid straight, be aware of your dominant hand—if you’re right-handed, concentrate on your left hand. Also, look down as you braid. If your head is turned, the braid won’t be straight. Make sure you keep the sections that you add in even, and keep the braid taut (but not too tight) as you work.

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