Braids are hot; How to French Braid
Braids are highly versatile and creative as a hairstyle. Hence, it’s not a surprise that a lot of women like sporting French braids because there is a wide range of styles to choose from depending on what type of look you are aiming for. Aside from the opportunity to be creative, another reason why French braids are very popular is the fact that it requires no expensive tools or products to do. You will be using your best tool – your hands! Plus, a few basic tools such as clips or elastic bands.
But braids are highly deceitful, though. This hairstyle might look effortless, casual and easy-to-do but it’s anything but. In fact, some people think that there are certain people that are gifted with the talent of braiding and it isn’t something you can learn. Thankfully, those days are gone because you need to adapt a few basic braiding techniques from experts at doing this hairstyle to pull off great looking French braids too – whether on yourself or on somebody else.
Start by cleaning the hair. Make sure that any dust or grime are completely removed because these can make your hair sticky and difficult to work with when braiding. If you want to get best results from braiding, it’s got to be freshly washed!
Even though you have to wash your hair prior to braiding, you need to dry it first before starting to work on it. A little dampness is good but wet is bad. You won’t be able to achieve uniform results with wet hair, plus each strand might shrink at a different rate as soon as they dry up. Take the time to de-tangle any strands that have knotted up together.
If you have split ends, trim the ends off so you will have a more even texture to your hair and minimize the tendency of the sections being tangled up as you weave them together. However, it is a different case when you are aiming for a loose braid because a little uneven texture can actually work for the French braid.
The Braiding Process
Always start each braiding process by dividing your hair into neat, even sections. Separate the top and bottom sections of your hair so it is easier to work with them. Use every finger in your hand to keep these sections separate from one another. All of this work depends solely on your hands so this is when practice can pay off because it is all about keeping your fingers familiar with the braiding motion. For beginners, you can try chanting out the weave pattern aloud.
Don’t forget to smooth out each section as you go because it will be difficult to do that once you have everything braided up. If, in case, a particular section of hair is starting to ball up, use one finger and hold the sections by wrapping it around that finger. Use a brush to smoothen that part again.
When you are braiding, it is recommended that you maintain the same level of tension on each braid. This is one of the keys to uniform braids. A firm handle on the sections of hair will help you apply constant pressure onto the hair as you braid them in and to ensure that some sections are not tighter than others.
• Take your time - Braiding process is always going to be time-consuming. Learn to make the most of the time in your hands rather than rushing through the job. There is no shortcut to achieving the perfect braid.
• Don’t use a mirror - Watching your braid from a mirror’s perspective will only confuse you because the view is inverted. Ditch the mirror and learn to master the braiding process using your hands. And that is only possible when you…
• Practice, practice, practice! – The only way you can become an expert at braiding is to constantly practice. The more your hands get used to the knotting and braiding process, the less daunting it will appear to you. You can also experiment with different braiding styles as you practice.
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