French Braids For A Cool Summer Hairdo

Summertime calls for a cool hairdo and what's better than a french braid to keep you chilling? French braiding takes a little practice and is much easier to do if you already know how to braid, or plat hair. It's nearly impossible to French braid your own hair, so have some friends over and practice on each other and you'll get the hang of it soon. Long hair is tedious to french braid but is somewhat easier to work with than really short hair. Hair should at least be shoulder length for your first attempt. Some people find it easier to french braid wet hair, some think dry hair is more manageable. Try both ways to see which is easiest for you.

There are many different styles you can do but starting with a simple style, gather the hair from just above the beginning of the tops of both ears, to the top of the head. Pull together as if to make a ponytail, then comb. Separate into three sections, holding the right side section of hair by folding the pinky finger and ring finger of the right hand over it, then do the same to the left side section of hair. For the center hair section, hold it with thumb, index finger and middle finger of whichever hand you prefer. After practicing the French braids, you can develop a way of holding the hair that is the most comfortable for you. Start by braiding them together one time. One time means to take the right side section and put it in the middle, then take the left side section and put it in the middle. That completes one full braid. Now, grab a strand of hair that is hanging down on the right side, and put it with the strand you are already holding in the right hand. Pick up a section from the middle, which is hanging down, and put it in with the strand you are already holding in the middle. Do the same to the left side. Now, braid one full time. After each braid, gather a section from the right side and put it in with the piece you're already holding in the right hand, then take a section from the middle and put it in with the existing middle section, and then do the left side in the same manner. Continue this pattern until you are finished with all hair that is around the scalp, then finish by using a regular braiding pattern down the length. To prevent the hair from tangling during the braiding process, stop on occasion, put all the hair in one hand, keeping it separated by the fingers, and comb, then begin braiding once again.

How the braid will look depends upon how you braid hair. If you braid each section by going under the next section, the braid will appear slightly different than if you braid by crossing over the sections. Do whichever is the most comfortable, or learn both styles over time.

You can do the same pattern on pigtails by starting with the hair parted from the center of the forehead to the middle back of the neck. After placing in two sections, concentrate on one section by braiding the top portion of it once, picking up an extra strand for each existing strand and braiding once again. Tie off then do the other side.