Hair trends come and go but occasionally something so major comes back that we all stop and take notice. While not new to the hair scene, Dutch braids (also known as goddess cornrows, milkmaid braids, halo braids or incorrectly as “boxer braids”) are experiencing a serious mane moment. Celebrities from Amanda Seyfried and Ciara to Kelly Rowland and Vanessa Hudgens are strong supporters of the look.
“Braids in general, whether plaits, French braids, cornrows or halo braids, have been prominently seen on the runways for the past two years,” explains celebrity Curly Textured expert and author of Textured Tresses Diane Da Costa (also of SimpleeBEAUTIFUL Salon). “Designers get their inspiration from the street culture and so I’m not surprised that celebrities are rocking this style right now.”
Practice Makes Perfect
This style may be easy to wear, but execution may be challenging if you are new to braiding. Sarah Potempa, celebrity hairstylist and inventor of the Beachwaver, reminds us you don’t have to go at it alone. “Practice on your friends! Get the girls together for a braid party and watch some great YouTube videos,” she says. A key piece of advice? “Sectioning is key when you are braiding. Start further back and try a looser version and then you can try for the tight, slick braids,” she adds.
How To Create Dutch Braids
“Two Dutch braids with a middle part is a very casual style for everyday wear,” says Da Costa. “For a more formal look, try a side part. Simply create two Dutch braids on each side, then join together in the back and crest a messy bun at the nape of the neck.” Below is Da Costa’s step-by-step guide to getting the look — plus all the products you’ll need to achieve it.
- Mousse or styling foam
- Moisturizing pomade and edge control gel
- Rat tail comb and smoothing brush
- Hair dryer (with diffuser)
- Clear elastic bands
- Hair pins (specifically for halo braid style)
The Step-by-Step Process
- Start with damp hair, then apply a mousse foam or textured spray.
- Brush the hair smoothly over to one side of the head. Start with three sections held between index and pointer fingers.
- Create braids by taking left hand with pointer finger and thumb, then grab the left section, leave middle strand free, then with right hand use thumb and index finger to hold on to right sections.
- Use your pointer finger to grab sections on each side and bring the hair under into the middle section.
- Hold hair down, pick up sections from each side and always place hair under each section to bring to middle section. If you know how to create a French inverted braid, all you have to do is place hair underneath each other instead of over each other.
Luckily, unlike other complicated styles of the past, this is one hairstyle you can get in on. Click through the slideshow above for real-girl inspo.