How To Create French Braid: Easy To Follow Guideline

French braid is a beautiful and timeless hairstyle that brings women elegance and sophistication. It is a classic technique that has been adored for generations, and its versatility makes it suitable for various occasions, from casual gatherings to formal events. In this comprehensive French braid tutorial, we will take you through the basics step of French braiding, providing you with the skills and confidence to create a stunning braid that will turn heads wherever you go.

How To Create French Braid

What Is A French Braid?

The French braid, also known as the French plait, is a type of three-strand braid that starts at the crown of the head and gradually incorporates hair from both sides as it moves downwards. Unlike regular braiding, where the hair sits on top of the braid, the French braid is an “inverted” or “inside-out” braid. This means that the strands are crossed over each other, adding hair to the braid as you move along the hairline.

The French braid
A beautiful French braid hairstyle

How To French Braid

Now, we will walk you through the process of creating a classic French braid. We recommend practicing on yourself or a willing friend until you feel comfortable with the technique.

Step 1: Prepare Your Hair

Comb your hair to remove any tangles
Comb your hair to remove any tangles

In the first step, start by brushing or combing your hair to remove any tangles or knots. This will make it easier to braid smoothly. In this easy tutorial, we recommend that you should not worry too much about washing your hair before styling, because unwashed hair tends to give the best hold for braids.

Step 2: Divide Your Hair

A Step By Step French Braid Guide
Choose a part of your hair and separate it into 3 pieces

Decide where you want to start the braid. You can begin at the top of your head or slightly to one side. For a tighter, more secure French braid, you can consider starting right on top, in the center of your head (just above your forehead). Gather a small part of the hair at the top and divide it into three equal sections with one from the left, one from the center, and one from the right.

Step 3: Braid Your Hair

A Step By Step French Braid Guide
Braid your hair, take the left and right sections over the center section

Start braiding in the classic way you normally would, by crisscrossing the strands of hair. Cross your sections overhand by taking the section to the right and crossing it over the middle, then getting the section from the left and crossing it over the top into the middle.

Step 4: Grab Hair As You Go

A Step By Step French Braid Guide
Work in additional hair to the braid
Continue the same method, but incorporate small sections of hair from both sides. Please note that you should not take more hair than you can manage so that you can be in full control of each step. Once you’ve added all the hair, continue with a regular three-strand braid until you reach the ends.
A Step By Step French Braid Guide
Finish with a basic braid

It is regarded that mastering hand positioning is one of the most challenging aspects when it comes to French braid. While everyone has their own favorite approach, it might be helpful when you hold all three strands with one hand strategically. This enables you to free up the other band, pulling more hair into the braid evenly and efficiently.

Step 5: Secure The Braid

A Step By Step French Braid Guide
Use a hair elastic to secure the braid
The final in this tutorial is ecure the hair. Once you’ve reached the ends, tie off the braid with a hair elastic to secure it in place, leaving a half inch or so of hair poking out at the ends. Keep in mind that hair ties can easily unravel. That’s why we recommend using a small elastic tie. Once you ensure your ends are secure, feel free to adorn your braid with a scrunchie, barrette, or any other favorite accessory that you like.
A Step By Step French Braid Guide
Complete your desired French braid hairstyle

If you want a looser and more voluminous braid, gently pull on the edges of the braid to loosen it a bit. This technique is called “pancaking.” It helps create a fuller and more relaxed-looking braid. So, we have walked through the steps of French braid for beginners. Let’s move to the next part

Different Types of French Braid

You have mastered the steps to create a beautiful and elegant classic French braid. Now let’s discover some  variations which offer creative and stylish ways to wear this classic hairstyle. We suggest 6 popular ideas you can try:

1. Single French Braid

French Braid Variations
Let’s start with the most basic one – a single French braid

This is one of the most typical types when trying French braid. A single braid elegantly weaves three strands of hair from the crown to the nape, keeping hair stylishly secure. Its classic charm suits various occasions and hair lengths, making it a go-to choice for a chic and practical look.

2. French Braid Pigtails 

French Braid Variations
French braid pigtail gives a dynamic and adorable look

French braid pigtails are often associated with teens, but it doesn’t mean you can’t embrace these hairstyles as an adult. This hairstyle involves dividing hair into two sections and crafting French braids on each side, from crown to tips. This fun and youthful style is perfect for casual outings, sports, or when you want a playful yet charming hairstyle that keeps hair off your face.

3. French Braid Ponytail

French Braid Variations
Combine a French braid and a ponytail for a stylish hairdo

Of course, we won’t miss this beautiful braid ponytail. This hairstyle is a great combination of the classic braid with a trendy ponytail. Begin a braid at the crown of your head and braid all the way down to the ends, then gather the remaining hair into a ponytail. Not only being visually appealing, a braid ponytail is also practical, keeping hair secure and stylishly tamed throughout the day.

Related article: How to Do a French Fishtail Braid Step by Step

4. Double French Braid Ponytail

French Braid Variations
Consider it if you are not into the familiar single French braid ponytail

If the single braid ponytail above is not your cup of tea, then you can try these double one. It involves dividing the hair into two sections and crafting braids on each side of the head, starting from the crown and working downwards, incorporating additional hair with each plait. Once both braids are complete, the remaining hair is gathered into a sleek and high ponytail.

5. French Braid Bun

French Braid Variations
French braid bun makes you look chic and glamorous

Starting with a classic French braid at the crown of the head, the hair is meticulously woven in a three-strand pattern, incorporating additional strands as it progresses down the back of the head. Once all the hair is gathered, the braid is twisted into a neat and sophisticated bun, secured with bobby pins. This hairstyle gives a polished look that keeps hair securely in place all day.

6. Half-Up French Braid

French Braid Variations
Not just hair experts, you can also do this pretty hairstyle yourself

This is such a creative and attractive hairstyle to try. At first, you might think that this hairstyle appears to be more suitable for braiding experts. But if you look closely, you will discover that in fact, it’s just a loosely woven, half-up braid on long hair. Gently tug on the braid after you finish it to loosen it further and create even more movement.

Conclusion

After all, remember, practice makes perfect. Don’t be discouraged if your first few attempts don’t turn out exactly as you want. Learning how to make French braids may seem a bit difficult at first, but by following our guide and keep practicing, you’ll master the art of French braiding in no time!

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Next article: Dutch Braid – A Timeless Hairstyle For Effortless Elegance

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