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HOW TO CREATE STYLISH BRAIDS FOR LONG HAIR

Plaits have the power to totally overhaul your look. Shake up your style using our fuss-free guide to braids for long hair.  

In the eyes of the fashion world, braids can do no wrong. You can easily tick off laidback glamour, boho chic and Hollywood beauty when you braid lengthy tresses.  

Long locks lend themselves to creative plaiting, sparking the opportunity to play with the way you style your hair. Braid hairstyles for long hair can vary from the complex to the simple, but no matter which look you go for, it’s bound to score style points.  

Let our long hair braid bible serve as your muse and take your look to a super-stylish new level.

Classic braid

Sometimes you just can’t beat a classic – the traditional three-strand plaiting technique is adored for its easy nature and beautiful results. Whether you use it to add texture to flowing waves or bring a new dimension to your ponytail, there are endless ways to use the classic braid on long hair. Master the art of the basic braid with our useful guide. 

Here’s how to create a basic braid 

1. Separate your hair into three 

2. Braid hair using a three-strand technique  

3. Hold in place with a hair tie

step one: Separate your hair into three 
Divide your hair into three equal sections.   

step two: Braid hair using a three-strand technique
Cross the right section over the middle section, keeping hold of each section separately to make braiding easier. Cross the left section over the middle section, continuing to keep hold of each section.  

step three: Hold in place with a hair tie 
Continue to braid to the end of your hair, then secure in place with a hair tie.  

Tip: To give your braid extra body, prep your tresses with ghd total volume foam by applying a few pumps to damp hair before blow-drying.

Products used: ghd total volume foam

French braid

Exude polished glamour with an elegant French braid. Taut and frizz-free, this style of braid is at the refined end of the plait spectrum. Do the style justice by recreating it in more than one way - long tresses mean you can dazzle with a pair of tight braids or create an intricate updo that embodies romance. However you decide to get creative, perfect French plaiting by following the simple guide below. 

Here’s how to create a French braid 

1. Prep hair with taming product  

2. Separate locks into three 

3. Begin to French braid hair 

4. Add in hair as you continue to braid

step one: Prep hair with taming product  
Apply a few pumps of ghd straight and tame cream to damp locks before blow-drying. 

step two: Separate locks into three 
Once dry, divide your hair into three equal sections at the hairline.  

step three: Begin to French braid hair 
Start off your French braid by crossing the right strand over the middle stand, then cross the left strand over.   

step four: Add in hair as you continue to braid 
Repeat step three, adding in new sections of hair as you continue to braid until you reach the end of your locks and all hair has been incorporated. Secure your French braid in place with a hair tie.  

Products used: ghd straight and tame cream 

Dutch braid

Think of thick plaits and Dutch braids will spring to mind. Make the most of your long hair and create a show-stopping Dutch-style halo braid or go playful with a soft take on the boxer braid. Add this type of stylish plait to your hair repertoire by getting to grips with the step-by-step guide below. 

Here’s how to create a Dutch braid 

1. Separate hair into three 

2. Braid using a Dutch technique  

3. Add hair into your braid 

4. Secure the look

Double Dutch Braids

Image: @joloveshair

step one: Separate hair into three 
Divide your hair into three equal sections.  

step two: Braid using a Dutch technique
Begin braiding in Dutch style by crossing the right strand under the middle strand. Then cross the left strand under the middle strand.  

step three: Add hair into your braid 
Continue to repeat step two. After your first few weaves, begin adding small sections of hair to the outside strands. Continue to braid all the way down until you reach the ends of your hair and all hair has been incorporated. 

step four: Secure the look  
Finish the style by securing in place with a hair tie and spritzing with ghd final fix hairspray

 
Products used: ghd final fix hairspray 

Fishtail braid

Bolster your cool-girl credentials with an edgy fishtail. Your hair will be doing all the talking with this statement type of plait. The intricate-looking fishtail braid can transform your style in a matter of minutes, whether you reinvent the down do with a mini version or go for a pair of cute chunky pigtails. Try your hand at the fishtail braid, starting with the simple how to guide below.

Here’s how to create a fishtail braid 

1. Pull hair into a ponytail and separate in two 

2. Braid using a fishtail technique  

3. Continue to plait to the ends of your hair 

4. Loosen locks at your hairline

step one: Pull hair into a ponytail and separate in two 
Sweep your hair back into a ponytail and divide into two equal sections.  

step two: Braid using a fishtail technique  
Take a half-inch section of hair from the outside of the left section. Pull this across the top of the left section and over to the right section. Repeat on the right section.   

step three: Continue to plait to the ends of your hair 
Repeat step two until you reach the ends, then use a hair tie to secure the fishtail in place.  

step four: Loosen locks at your hairline 
Pull a few tendrils loose to frame your face. Use the ghd curve® soft curl tong to gently curl your locks and add a soft touch to the look.  
 

Products used: ghd curve® soft curl tong 

Rope braid

The super-hot rope braid is trending. Festivals, catwalks and Instagram are awash with the chic style and it’s not set to go out of fashion any time soon. It’s simple to create when you’ve got long hair, especially as a ponytail style. But you don’t have to stop there – try the modern type of braid as a fairy tale-esque side plait or add a subtle edge to a mane of soft waves. Take on the easier ponytail version, before you begin experimenting with other rope braid styles.

Here’s how to create a rope braid ponytail 

1. Get rid of knots in your hair  

2. Create a ponytail  

3. Separate the ponytail in two 

4. Twist and cross your hair in opposite directions 

5. Continue to twist and cross 

6. Fix the look in place 

step one: Get rid of knots in your hair  
Brush your hair with the ghd paddle brush, taking care to remove any knots.  

step two: Create a ponytail  
Sweep all your hair back into a high ponytail and secure in place with a hair tie.  

step three: Separate the ponytail in two 
Divide your ponytail into two equal sections.  

step four: Twist and cross your hair in opposite directions 
Take a section in each hand and twist them both to the left all the way to the ends. Then, take the left section over the right section.   

step five: Continue to twist and cross 
Wrap the twists to the right until you reach the end of your ponytail, making sure to keep twisting the sections to the left simultaneously to keep the look tight.  

step six: Fix the look in place 
Secure in place with a hair tie.  

Products used: ghd paddle brush 

These trendsetting plaits are just the start – there are countless braids for long hair to choose from. Don’t settle for a run-of-the-mill hairstyle - unleash your inner fashionista and sport these oh-so-stylish braids.


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