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When it comes to adding serious style to your ‘do, the answer is clear: braids, braids, and more braids. As nothing short of a trendy girl’s best friend, braids allow you to pump up the style, show off your skills, and truly bring your look to life. Whether you weave in one, two, or five braids to serve as accents or the main attraction, you’ll be sure to turn heads left and right.
So, whether you’re looking for a more rolled-out-of-bed messy braid or the ultimate power plait, we’ve got you covered with some of our favorite styles. They’re the perfect addition to your locks no matter the texture, color, or even your skill level. You got this!
Whether you’re going to the farmer’s market or a fancy party, a side-swept braid is just the style to top off your look. Simultaneously laidback and intricately chic, this woven masterpiece can take on a number of variations—from sleek to messy and thin to thick.
Get the look by following these simple steps:
Step 1: Use mousse. In order for your side-swept braid to maintain its style without looking too tightly manicured, it’s best to start off with a little bit of mousse for extra grip. Try using the L’Oréal Paris AIR DRY IT Ruffled Body Mousse on damp hair, letting your strands dry on their own.
Step 2: Create a side part. Using a rat tail comb, create a side part, with the larger section of hair being on the side where you want your braid to lay.
Step 3: Braid. Divide your hair into three sections and weave a traditional, fishtail, French braid—or, hey, a combination of all three. Once you’ve reached the ends of your hair, simply tie it off with a mini clear elastic. To finish the look, gently pull apart your braid here and there for a slightly undone feel.
Lately, our Instagram feeds have been flooded with half-woven hairdos that are giving us some serious hair envy. And since half-up hairstyles have been having something of a moment lately, it’s no wonder that when braids are added to that mix, the fashion and beauty world goes wild. Whether you want to weave one, two, or five braids for one epic look, the moment you turn your head, everyone else will, too just to get a glimpse of your Insta-worthy ‘do!
Step 1: Detangle damp hair. After you hop out of the shower, towel dry your hair and comb out all tangles—the last thing you want when trying to create delicate, tightly woven braids is to encounter a nasty knot that will make your look fall apart, forcing you to start all over again.
Step 2: Add mousse. A little bit of mousse can go a long way when it comes to a series of braids keeping their composure all day long.
Step 3: Create a part. Part your hair to one side, leaving the smaller section to be filled with cornrows.
Step 4: Work section by section. Using a rat tail comb, separate small sections of hair to be braided for each cornrow. In order to keep your braids looking crisp, be sure to clip back whatever hair you’re not working with so that no extra strands get in the way.
Step 5: Begin braiding. When creating cornrows, you’re essentially French braiding. However, instead of adding more and more hair from other sections of your head, you will be using one specific row of strands. Separate the row you’re working with into three sections, crossing the left strand under the middle strand, thus letting it become the new middle strand. Then do the same thing for the right side. Repeat this process until you reach just behind your ear and tie it off with a mini clear elastic.
Step 6: Repeat until happy. Depending on how many cornrows you want your look to contain, just keep braiding until you’re pleased with the outcome. This look leaves a lot of room for creativity because you can create thick cornrows by braiding two or three, or you can go thinner by creating four to five. It’s all up to you!
Who said pigtails were only for little girls? We don’t know about you, but there’s just something about the playful dual-braid look that leaves us swooning. To update this youthful look so that you can incorporate it into your adult life, simply weave Dutch (a.k.a. inside out) braids and muss them up a bit for a slightly lived-in, ultimate Cool Girl style.
Step 1: Part hair down the middle. Using a rat tail comb, create a middle part—either straight or, if you’re feeling playful, zigzag.
Step 2: Start with one side. Beginning with a small section of hair at the front of your head, divide it into three parts to begin your braid. To get optimum texture, be sure to weave in a Dutch fashion—that means braiding under instead of over. Continue this process until you reach the end of your braid and secure with a small clear elastic.
Step 3: Repeat on the other side. You know what to do!
Step 4: Make things a little undone. Once you have both braids in place, add some flair by gently unweaving them for a slept-in, naturally undone effect. And just like that, you’ve taken your favorite hairstyle from childhood and made it something you can rock any day now.
Sometimes, you just want to keep it plain and simple—on those days you absolutely can’t go wrong with relying on a classic. As the style that never goes out of fashion, a classic straight-down-your-back French braid is perfect for lazy days, busy days, fancy days, sporty days, and everything in between.
Step 1: Start with freshly washed hair. One way to make French braids really pop is to create them with super-voluminous hair. Not naturally your thing? No worries. Wash your hair with the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Volume Shampoo and Conditioner.
Step 2: Brush your hair back. To keep this look as classic as possible, instead of creating a part, simply brush your hair straight back before braiding.
Step 3: Create your plait. Starting around the crown of your head, grab a handful of hair and split it into three sections to create your braid. Beginning on the left side, pull the hair over the middle strand, making it the new middle strand. Follow by doing the same thing with the right side. After each left + right combo, add more hair from each side.
Step 4: Secure your braid. Once you run out of hair, tie your braid off with a mini clear elastic and take a small strand of hair to conceal it by wrapping it around and tucking it into the hair tie on the underside of the braid. Voila!
Looking to embrace your inner flower child turned surfer babe? These undone boho braids will do the job! The trick is to start with textured hair so that you won’t have to tie them off with elastics. The hair tie-free, braided look will end up looking like you woke up like that in all your ethereal appeal. What’s not to love?
Step 1: Add texture. When creating braids without the need for hair ties, the most important thing you can do to ensure a look that lasts is to start with ultra-textured locks. To make this possible, pick up a bottle of the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle AIR DRY IT Wave Swept Spray.
Step 2: Braid, braid, braid. There is no method to the beautiful madness of undone braids. That said, simply choose small sections of strands from different layers of your hair to create an array of traditional and fishtail braids.
Step 3: Seal your look. Since hair ties aren’t part of this look, it’s important to do whatever else you can to ensure that they’ll stay in place. One thing you can do: Pick up a can of strong-hold styling spray for added style strength.
There’s something about a ponytail that really perks up a look. From how it seems to lift your eyebrows to how it keeps your hair out of your face, the perfect ponytail is the ultimate power ‘do. Rock it at the office, happy hour, Sunday brunch, or walking down the red carpet (hey, we can dream, right?).
Step 1: Start with clean hair. To optimize the shine factor of this power ‘do, start by washing your hair with products designed to help combat frizz, like the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Frizz Defy Shampoo and Conditioner.
Step 2: Brush out all lumps and bumps. Another way to really pump up the shine factor is to ensure that no bumps are present on the top, sides, or back of your head leading into your ponytail. All you have to do is brush your hair straight back to target any trouble areas.
Step 3: Create your ponytail. Once you’ve flattened any imperfections, secure your high ponytail with a hair tie. To make your hairstyle look more natural, take a few strands of hair and wrap them around your hair tie to conceal any un-natural elements of your look.
Step 4: Braid your ponytail. Traditional, fishtail, or rope braid your hair from crown to ends tied off in a clear mini elastic.
Step 5: Make it shine. As a last-ditch effort to pump up the shine once and for all, use a shine spray or serum like the L’Oréal Paris EverSleek Frizz Finish Oil-In Serum.