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As much as long hair is envied, having lengthy locks isn’t all fun and games. Let’s be real, it requires a lot more effort to take care of long hair than it does a cropped cut. There has to be some easier way to manage long hair though, doesn’t there? Oh, right. it’s all about how you style your mane. Having long hair may mean you need to put in a little extra work, but it’s totally worth it when you think about all the hairstyles that only work when you’ve got major length—and we’re especially in love with braids. For fall, chances are you’ll be looking for a new style to sport, and we have you covered. Here, step-by-step tutorials for eight braids for long hair that are perfect for the season.
There’s nothing wrong with keeping things simple. After all, your basic three-strand braid is a classic for a reason.
Get the look by following these simple steps:
Step 1: Add texture. Give your hair more grip and body, for a better braid, by spritzing with a weightless texturizing spray, like the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle Boost It Air-Blown Texture Spray, first.
Step 2: Section your hair. Split your hair into three even sections.
Step 3: Braid. Cross the right section over the center section, then cross the left section over the middle section.
Step 4: Repeat. Switch back and forth between which section is crossing over the strands in the middle, repeating until you’ve braided all the way down the length of your hair.
Step 5: Secure. Obviously, you won’t want your braid to budge. Use an elastic to tie off the end.
In search of a way to instantly dress up a daytime look? Look no further than this Parisian plait.
Step 1: Brush your hair. Gently, pull a brush through your hair to remove any tangles. Brush your hair backwards, pushing all of it behind your head.
Step 2: Separate the top layer of hair. From the top of your head, gather a large chunk of hair and split it into three pieces.
Step 3: Braid. Before you can French, you’ll want to braid as if you’re creating a standard three-strand plait. Do this for just a few rows until you’ve successfully gotten the braid started.
Step 4: Add hair from below. Keep braiding almost exactly the same as you were, but begin introducing new pieces of hair. When you cross a section over the middle, add a small piece of hair that’s outside of the braid.
Step 5: Repeat. Continue to braid, adding more hair as you go, until you’ve run out of hair from underneath the braid.
Step 6: Finish the braid. Braid the rest of the way down without adding hair, just as you would normally.
Step 7: Secure. Add an elastic.
Trust us, there’s nothing fishy about a fishtail braid. You’ll love this look, especially once you realize how unbelievably easy it actually is.
Step 1: Section your hair. Pull your hair to the side, over one shoulder, and separate it into two sections.
Step 2: Braid. Add a piece of hair from the outside of one section, to the inside of the other. Repeat this process, switching back and forth between both sections.
Step 3. Secure. Once you’ve reached the bottom of your braid, tie off the end.
Step 4. Mess it up. Braids don’t have to be prim and proper. Tug at sections to puff up the braid and create an undone look.
Step 5. Use hairspray. When you’re finished fussing with your fishtail, spray a strong hold hairspray, like the L’Oréal Paris Elnett Satin Hair Spray Extra Strong Hold, to help ensure your look lasts.
You may be long past your days of playing double Dutch on the playground, but you’re never too old for double Dutch braids (or a bit of jump roping). Double the braids, double the fun.
Step 1: Comb your hair. Go through your strands with a comb to smooth them out, then create a middle part, dividing your hair into two sections.
Step 2: Split one section further. Focusing on just one side of your head, separate the top layer of the section, then split it into three equal pieces.
Step 3: Braid. Creating a Dutch braid is similar to basic and French braiding. The big difference is, instead of crossing over the middle strand, you cross under. Cross the right strand under the center strand, and then the left strand under the center strand to kick start the braid.
Step 4: Add hair from below. As you continue to braid, add small pieces of hair to each strand before crossing them under the middle section. Keep going until you’ve completed one braid.
Step 5: Repeat. Repeat to the other side of your head, so that you have two Dutch braids.
Step 6: Secure. You know the drill!
What could be better than a braid all on its own? A braid and bun combo, of course. This backwards braided style features a French braid leading into a ballerina bun. Talk about chic!
Step 1: Flip your head upside down. Being upside down is essential to creating an upside down braid. Flip your head, letting all your hair hang down.
Step 2: Braid. French braid your hair, starting at the nape of your neck and going until you’re two-thirds of the way up your head.
Step 3: Secure. Flip your head over and pull the rest of your hair into a ponytail. Secure with an elastic.
Step 4: Form a bun. Twist the ponytail, wrapping the ends around the base to form a ballerina bun.
Step 5: Pin in place. Use bobby pins, placed around the bun, to hold it atop your head.
Step 6: Use hairspray. Give your style extra hold with a bold control hairspray, like the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle LOCK IT Bold Control Hairspray.
Tragically, we can’t all afford bejeweled tiaras and crowns. For something slightly more attainable, try rocking a crown braid to get your royal treatment fix.
Step 1: Comb your hair. Use a comb to form a middle part and separate your hair into two sections, one on each side of your head.
Step 2: Braid. Following the basic braid tutorial (above), braid each of the two sections and secure the ends with small, clear elastics.
Step 3: Wrap and pin. Wrap one of the braids up and over your head, pinning the ends behind your ear.
Step 4: Repeat. Do the same with the other braid, pinning the two together to form your crown.
Step 5: Add shine. Crowns are meant to be sparkly, so, of course you’ll want to finish things off with some shine. Spritz your hair with a glossing mist, like the L’Oréal Paris Hair Expert Nutri-Gloss High Shine Glossing Mist, focusing on the braids.
Spending time in bodies of water might be more of a summer activity, but they can serve as style inspiration all year long.
Step 1: Use heat protectant. Always spray a heat protectant onto your strands before using heat tools, being sure to evenly coat your hair.
Step 2: Curl your hair. Using a curling iron with a large barrel, put your hair in big, bouncy curls.
Step 3: Section your hair. You should be used to this step by now! After giving yourself a deep side part, split your hair into three sections.
Step 4: Braid. Begin with a basic braid, crossing the strands on the right and left over the middle.
Step 5: Add hair from below. Add a piece of hair into the right strand, then cross is over the middle.
Step 6: Let go of your first waterfall drop. Drop down the left strand and pink up a new section of hair, crossing it over the middle strand in place of the dropped strand.
Step 7: Repeat. Repeat steps 5 and 6 to create the waterfall effect, until you’re happy with the length of your braid.
Step 8: Pin in place. To stop your masterful style from falling out, secure the end with interlocking bobby pins.
If you haven’t noticed, mermaids are taking over the beauty-scape, and braids are no exception. Top off a mermaid-inspired makeup look with this beautiful braid.
Step 1: Cleanse and condition. Wash with a volumizing shampoo and conditioner, like the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Volume Shampoo and L’Oréal Paris EverPure Volume Conditioner.
Step 2: Use wave spray. To create texture, spritz through the length of your hair with a wave spray, like the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle AIR DRY IT Wave Swept Spray. Then, allow your hair to air dry completely.
Step 3: Braid the top section of hair. Gather hair at the crown of your head and create a basic braid, securing the end with a small elastic.
Step 4: Weave hair into the braid. Pick up a one inch piece of hair from the front of your face and twist it back. Push the piece through the first section of your braid and guide it through.
Step 5: Repeat. Continue down the braid, switching between sides and weaving hair through the braid until all loose pieces have been added.
Step 6: Secure. Add another elastic at the end of the braid for extra security.
Step 7: Mess it up. Mermaid braids should look full and relaxed, which means you’ll want to pull at random pieces to achieve a messy, mermaid-worthy vibe.
Still in need of hairstyle ideas? Don’t stray too far. You’ll want to check out our article, 6 Beautiful Hairstyles for Long Hair, for more style inspo at your fingertips.