Summer is the hottest season of the year and also the perfect time to do many things you love. It offers a chance to enjoy the longest days, compared to other seasons. However, summer brings the warm weather alerting the haircare needs. The heat and humidity can cause severe damage to hair, making it look lifeless.
Protective hairstyles to the rescue!
Protective hairstyles can help a lot to deal with hair trouble during the summer, shielding your natural hair from excessive heat and breakage. Protective hairstyles usually include braids, locs, twists and knots. They are highly versatile and manageable with minimum maintenance.
Protective styles will save you lot of time that goes into hair care/styling and not to forget how efficiently you can avoid the bad hair days. Currently, there are many types of protective styles to match everyone’s preference. There is so much you can do to style them in your own unique way by adding beads, patterns, rings, and colors.
To make the summer exciting, add a bit of style to the haircare basics for hassle free summer days. We have listed the cutest possible styles to let you experiment with your hair.
1. Box Braids: These are the easiest, most popular, and always in style. Box braids are created using three strands technique, they look super classy and chic. You can either go for a simple look or the jumbo version of box braids to make them look outstanding.
2. Colored Braids: If you are someone who loves to experiment with hair, then colored braids are worth a try. There are various beautiful shades available to pump your look. Colored braids instantly add a twist to a simple braiding technique, create your own Rockstar style with adorable range of colors.
Check out Braided hair
3. Crochet Braids: These are also called as latch hook braids. The process includes crocheting hair extensions to natural hair with the help of a crochet needle or hook. Crochet braids are usually made from synthetic hair extensions to withstand the process of crocheting.
4. Faux Locs: They resemble natural locs or dreadlocks. They are great if you are looking for a fun and natural style. They can be worn by anyone and are becoming very popular day by day. They completely cover your natural hair and provide protection. Faux locs made from human hair are known as goddess locs.
Twists: They are typically created by separating the hair into sections and then twisting the hair to create strands. Twists are light in weight, very easy to install, and remove. They blend well with any kind of hair texture to give a clean look. If you want a simple and cute protective hairstyle then twists are just perfect to try!
Senegalese Twists: They are also known as rope twists, created using two strands technique. Senegalese twists look like a smooth and silky rope. They originated in a country called Senegal, West Africa. They are flexible and look undeniably stunning in any length you prefer to choose and last around 1 to 2 months with a good maintenance.
Loose Ends: It is a simple way of combining two different styles to create a bouncy look. Loose ends look more freestyle than any other protective hairstyle. These are for someone who loves to keep their look cute and natural.
Wigs: In ancient times, wigs were worn to protect the scalp from excess heat. This is a must have accessory when it comes to protective hairstyling. Wigs are made of real or artificial hair. They not only protect your hair but also cover hair flaws. There are so many options available to choose a wig. Always go for a wig which suits your requirement and makes you look effortlessly stylish.
THE ULTIMATE STEP BY STEP BOX BRAIDS TUTORIAL | MARQUETTA BRESLIN
“Hi! It’s Marquetta Breslin and today we are going to get right into learning how to do box braids. Box braid are very beautiful, and the technique actually is very similar to micro braids, the only difference is the type of hair you use and the size. And with box braids, you can do them small, you can do them medium, like mine, you can do them large like Janet Jackson, there’s so many different sizes that you can go with box braids! They are really cool and awesome, and they work for children, they work for adults, they work for older women. Box braids are very versatile, and they work for everybody. Now as far as the length, my braids that I am wearing go all the way down to the bottom of my back. Which is what we are going to doing today. You don’t have to do them very long, you can get them shorter or in an asymmetrical bob. You can do whatever you want to do with box braids, so let’s get right to it!”
“My client has had her hair shampooed and dried and she gave herself a deep condition before coming in and her hair feels really, really soft and really, really good. What I did is that, she came in with her hair twisted and what I did was go through and detangle her hair, and it wasn’t tangled it was just twisted so I wanted to pull those twists out. So, I took her hair from the ends and worked my way up to her roots. That is the correct way you want to detangle hair, you never want to start from up here and that hurts and you will pull hair out.”
“So, you want to start detangling from the ends always and work your way up to the roots. Now that I’ve done that and she’s all detangled, before I move on any further, I do want to mention that my client is natural, she has been natural for about 4-5 years. So, her texture is very soft, but it is also a kinkier texture like mine. And some people like to say that kinky hair is easier to braid than any other type of textured hair which I don’t agree with that. I believe hair is hair and if you can braid you can braid anything, you just have to practice. So, we are going to start braiding her hair. What you want to do is ask your client if they are ever going to wear their hair down and if they are do they like their part on the middle or the side? My client is in the military she is probably going to be wearing her hair up, not probably, but she is because I’ve already asked her. So as far as parting goes, I can part it in the middle, I can keep the parting as it is, or I could do different things. But since she already has this part here, I’m going to leave it in case she decides to wear her hair down.”
“So, the first thing you is… if you want to start from the front, which is what I always do, is you want to make sure to put the part hair as you are going to braid. You want to separate this top section. I always start from the front, every once in a while, I may start from the back but I just I don’t know, it’s just something I do. I always start from the front. So, now that I have this part, I’m going to come from the back of this part and go all the way around the ear. That’s going to determine my first section of hair that is going to be braided. So I’m going to start from here and I’m going to come all the way down. Now, you can use a rat tail comb if you want, or you can use a comb like this, one that has the bigger teeth than normal and then the smaller teeth on the other side. Whatever you’re more comfortable with, a lot of times with a rat tail comb, you’re able to get a more precise part but you need to use whatever is going to work best for you. Now, when I start braiding, I may switch over and use my rat tail comb, I don’t know, it just depends on how her hair is working with the comb. You just want to make sure that whatever you’re doing is comfortable for your client. So, I’m going to turn her a little bit, so you can see where I’ve parted. I’ve parted from the top and I’ve come all the way around just above her ear. This is a good section of hair to start working with, you don’t want the section you are working with to be too big and you also don’t want it to be too small, because this is how this section is going to lay, this will determine how the hair is going to lay.”
“So now that I’ve done that, I’m going to clip this hair right here out of the way. Now, there’s several different clips you can use there’s the traditional duck bill clips or you can use these alligator clips, or you can use the butterfly clips. I like to use the alligator clips because they hold a lot of hair and as you can see, my client does have a lot of hair. So, now I’m going to come to the other side with the same comb and I’m going to pick up my parting opposite from where the other one started, so if the other one started here, I’m going to pick up right here and continue parting all the way down. The same way I did on the other side. Now with box braids you want to be sure that your parts are consistent and the amount of hair you pick up is consistent and that’s I think, in my experience, that’s the hardest thing for people to grasp, is how to stay consistent with your parts and with the amount the amount of hair you are grabbing to put into the braid. And to be honest with you it does come with practice, so you’re going to have to continuously do them and practice them in order to perfect how much you’re picking up and in order to get your technique right. And, that’s okay because that’s what we’ve all had to do, even I had to do that. And once you’re able to do them, you will understand, and it will be like second nature. Just pick up the hair, braid it and you’re done!”
“Okay, so I’ve parted this section over here, I’m going to clip up this hair out of the way. I’m going to turn her around so that you can see how this is parted, and this comes down just over the ear just as the other side did. Alright, now what you want to do is you want to pick a side to start on, it doesn’t matter if you start on the left it’s not going to determine anything from the right, but you always want to start from the bottom and work your way to the top. So, I’m going to start on the side that has the most hair, just because I like to feel like I accomplished something when I get done with that side. So, I’m just going to wrap this hair around my finger and I’m going to clip it away. And you want to have everything set up, I have my whole station set up right here, I have clips, combs, just two combs! And with box braids, you don’t need a lot of stuff, just a few clips, some combs, and some hair and that’s it! And the type of hair that I’m using, we will get into that later. But, that’s all you need! It’s very simple and very easy, you don’t need a lot of stuff. And, we’re getting ready to get started with the braid! Now, I’m going to turn her around, but the parting technique, a traditional parting technique from way back in the day when I started doing videos and teaching people, I would always teach how to part using the boxes. And every box was perfect, and you would start from the bottom and it was like a brick lay effect and then the next set of boxes would fall in between those. We don’t do that anymore, we use the half-moon shaped parting, and they still fall in a brick lay effect, but it just looks a little more updated and they lay a little bit better. So im going to show you how to do that. And the easiest way to make sure they are laying properly is to start from here right by the ear on both sides, and in the back, you want to start in one of the corners. That’s easiest way to ensure that this technique lays correctly. So, I’m going turn my client and I’m going to turn myself, and when I come back, I’ll be ready to start showing you how to do the parting technique. Okay, so were back, in order to do the parting technique that I’m talking about, now you can do this with box braids, kinky braids, micro braids, whatever kind of braids you’re doing, you can use the same parting technique. The size of the parting is going to be determined by the size of the braid, so we’re doing medium sized braids, probably around the same size as mine. So, I’m going to a medium sized part, but just before that I’m going to show you, just in case you’re doing a micro braid, because this technique does work for micro braids, I’m going to show you how to do this part on a smaller scale.”
“So, you’re just going to start on one side and make a semicircle or a half moon, and you’ll see here that you have that semicircle type of shape. So, on a larger scale, I’m going to go from one side and make a half moon to the other side. Now, depending on how big you want then or how small you want them you can refine that layer. But that’s just the simple, simple, parting technique. So, if you first hair is going to be a braid, twist or whatever you’re doing, in this case we’re doing box braids, so I’m going to say braids. So, if you’re first braid is going to be here, you’re next one you want to fall outside and outside, inside and inside, and in between the parts like a brick lay effect. So, where’s the next one going to go? Yes! You’re right! It’s going to go right here, just outside of it and fall here. You’re next one will go here and then you’re next one you’ll start in the middle. And so, on and so forth. But we’ll get deeply into that as we get deeply into the hairstyle. I’m going to start with this section of hair so now that we’ve got this all parted out, you can place your comb there, and now it’s time to grab the hair. And, now I can tell you what type of hair I am using.”
“Okay, so when it comes to hair, and when you walk into a traditional hair store, the walls are filled with nothing but synthetic hair. It’s overwhelming. But that’s okay, because even I have gone into a beauty supply store thinking that I’m going to buy something that is a higher quality. So instead of 99 cents I’m paying an ooh! $2.99 per pack, and I’m thinking, Oh! I’m getting some high quality synthetic hair for braiding and then it starts to frizz, and after a short period of time it just does not look good. So, even the most qualified person has to go to someone else for more information or further education. So, I was sitting in the braid salon getting my hair done and I asked her. I said what type of hair do y’all use in here? Because it doesn’t look like the stuff that I’m bringing in. And she said, your hair is 100% Kanekalon, but the fibers are different, so she said, let me order you some hair, and we’ll use our hair and compare it against your hair and see which one you like best. What I’m wearing, is the hair that she ordered for me and it looks absolutely amazing, the ends look straight and everything. The first day that I came in, I had synthetic hair, and it wasn’t the Kanekalon fibers and she stresses to me that no it needs to be Kanekalon, it’s not going to work. So that’s the first thing you want to remember when you go to the beauty supply store and you’re overwhelmed. DO NOT buy synthetic hair! Buy 100% Kanekalon hair and you also want to get the flame-retardant kind. If they have it, not every beauty supply has it, but if they do, get the 100% Kanekalon that’s flame retardant. What I’m using is 100% Kanekalon, they did not have flame retardant. Now, sometimes with the Kanekalon hair, they also have it super long. So, the hair that I’m wearing, when it came, it actually had to be ordered from New York. The hair was double this length, so if she had put it in my hair and didn’t cut it, it probably would have been mid-thigh length. Which, I’m okay with, but I didn’t want to have her there all day so. It was all good! Again, this is 100% Kanekalon hair, it is not flame retardant, it feels really soft. So, what you want to do when you pull it out of the package is you want to take a chunk of hair off. Okay, so I’m going to take my favorite brush, after taking the chunk off the full pack of hair, and you don’t want the ends to be blunt so, I’m going to take my brush and I’m just going to brush through it. I’m going to brush through this hair and get all the tangles out and kind of get rid of this blunt look at the bottom. Now, you can also take some moisturizer, like Lustrous Pink Oil Moisturizer and you can put it on the hair for some shine as well. Or you can leave it like this. Now you can also take the hair and pull it apart, see how that tangled? I’m glad that I did that now and not when I was trying to braid because that would have been a disaster. So, you want to take the hair and pull it through a few times to make sure that when you’re ready to work with it, it is exactly how you want it. So, I’m going to start from the bottom, and I’m going to brush through it a little more and there you have it! It’s okay if it’s not even at the bottom, that’s not what we are going for. Now, this is going to be the part where you have to make your determination on the size of the braid. Like I said in the beginning, I am doing medium sized braids. So, if you’re doing smaller sized braids, you’re going to want to take a little less hair than what I’m taking and try it out. Start to braid, if you see that it’s too thin or too thick, take it out and remove some hair. It’s going to be the best thing to do until you get used to pulling out the same amount of hair each time, so that your braids are consistent.”
“Okay, so for medium sized braids, I’m going to take a medium sized chunk of hair., now I’m just going to take it and pull it apart, just like this, you always want to handle your hair at the top like this, you don’t want to just pick your hair up from the middle and have it fall apart. Always handle your hair from the top like this where it loops over. Now, if you are working with a child or an adult that doesn’t want their hair as long as her hair is going to be, you can always cut this in half, and work with this at the bottom, and once you get to the top, you can leave the hair at the full length. We are doing these long, so I’m not going to cut the hair at all. Alright, so I have my chunk of hair, I am going to put this to the side neatly, for the next braid.”
“Okay, so now were getting ready to start to do the actual box braid. Now the thig you want to remember if you’re doing cornrows, micro braids, whatever you’re doing, they key to not having lumps and bumps is making sure that all of your strands of hair are even throughout your entire braid. I have a method to my madness. The way I do that is I take a single piece of hair like this, and I divided up into three even pieces so that when I get ready to braid, I don’t have any lumps and bumps and it looks absolutely gorgeous, and it looks need. So, I’ll get ready to show you how I do that.”
“Okay, so you want to take your hair, and what you want to do is pinch a smaller piece of hair off. You see that? I have a chunk here, but also have a smaller piece here. You also don’t want ot do half, you want to do like a quarter. Now, once you do that, you’re going to have two pieces of hair, you want to take your smaller piece, and you just want to make a T across the fatter piece, and then you have three pieces of hair. Boom! So, you have 1,2, and 3! And guess what? They are all even strands of hair! Now that is going to take some practice. You are going to have to work with it a little bit and figure out how much you need to pull off. But you have to have even strands. Now you may figure out a way to do this that’s not the way I do it and that may work for you and that’s fine. My only point and the only point you need to get out of this DVD is that you need to be working with three even strands of hair the entire time you’re braiding to prevent lumps and bumps.”
“So now let’s move on to the actual technique. So, I know y’all up in my grill, but it’s okay because that is a part of teaching. So, now any time you’re doing box braids, cornrows, micro braids, whatever, anytime you’re doing something that’s going to extend from the head in little tiny sections the key to them not falling out is creating a little tiny cornrow. So that’s what we are going to start with. We’re going to start with a small cornrow and then we are going to extend out, that will ensure that this does not fall out and that it stays the entire time. So, the way that you do this is that you take your section that you parted off and you want to take a small piece from the top of that section. Now that piece is going to be added into this middle strand right here. And then I’m going to cornrow down and then I’m going to extend out just as a normal braid or a normal micro braid. And I’m just going to braid all the way down. Now, just like I said earlier, when you are doing braids, and you are working with hair that you are not used to working with, that you pulled out a section of hair that was not as small or as big as you thought and that you have to go back and redo it? That’s the exact same thing that happened to me, I’ve never worked with this hair before and its smaller than what I thought I pulled off, so I could have actually used more hair. So, what I’m going to do is take this out, add a little more hair and make my part a little bit bigger and I’m going to redo this braid. So, I’m going to take this out, and you want to be careful. And so, since the amount of hair that I had was bigger than this part, I’m going to make my part bigger too. My concern for my client is that, her hair for the military can’t be too bulky and if I do a bunch of braids this size all over her hair it’s going to be too bulky. So were going to go a little bit bigger. Again, don’t be afraid of that, that’s the whole point of this first braid.”
“Okay, so I took the hair out, made the part slightly bigger and added some more hair, so I’m going to go in with that same technique, remember, you’re going to pick up a piece of hair from the top, you’re going to add it in with that middle strand, that you created earlier, and then you’re going to make a small cornrow here by picking up hair from each side as you go down and then you’re going to extend the braid out. It’s really, really easy and in fact I’m going to run that clip again, so that you can see exactly how to do this, and it’s very repetitive! The whole style is going to be done the exact same way.”
“So, one of the things you want to be very, very mindful of is the edges and your tension. Braids, just because they are braids, do not have to be tight, you don’t want to do that, you don’t it to be uncomfortable for your client, you want it to be snug of course, but you don’t want to pull their hair out. That’s the reason I go the lady I go to get my hair braided because she cares about the health of the hair, and not pulling the hair too tight. So, you always want to be mindful and ask your client. One thing that I do when I’m braiding is I look at how tight I’m pulling the hair while braiding and I loosen that a little bit. Then, I ask my client, does that feel comfortable? (Client says yes) There you have it!”
“So, you always want to be mindful of the comfort of your client, the health and the integrity of the hair. And you’ll be good to go every single time! Now what I’ve done here, I’ve taken this braid and as you can see, it’s even all the way out, I don’t have any lumps or bumps or anything like that, and I just braided it all the way down to the end, because once we get to the end of the DVD, we are going to be dipping these into hot water and then we will be done with this style. So, now I’m going to move onto my second part. And remember you want to be consistent in the size of your parts and the size of your actual braid. So, I’m going to take off a section of hair in my half-moon shape, this is the hair that I’m going to be working with. One thing you want to take into consideration when you are braiding, is the lift and bulk of your client’s hair. My client has a lot of hair and its long, so when you’re pulling the Kanekalon hair that you’re going to use for this braid, just take that into consideration because it is going to create some bulk at the beginning and the braids are going to skinnier as they go down. In fact, let me show you what I am talking about. I’m going to pull one of the braids put from my bun, and you’ll see that with this braid, it starts out thick and then the closer it gets to the bottom, the thinner it gets. That’s because I have some bulk in my hair and my bulk with the bulk of this hair made it thicker and it got thinner as it got down to the bottom. Now there is a way not to do that. If you want the same size through out, I will show you how to do that later, but I don’t think it needs it, I like it like this, I like it tapered down, I think it looks nice. But I will show you how to do it the other way.”
“Now after we do that, we are going to move on and continue this technique throughout. I’m going to separate the hair just as I did before, make my little three strands, and then I’m going to continue on with the braid. So, you just want to check up the size of the braids against each other and make sure they are about the same size and just want to continue your braid. And that’s all box braids are, it’s just the same thing over and over again. They hey is to just make sure that your parts are consistent, and the width of the braids are consistent and that there are no lumps and bumps. So, for your next braid, you want it to fall between these two right here and then for your fourth one, you want it to fall out here. So, just going to do my parting right here just like this, and then I’m going to go ahead and part my next part that’s going to fall to the outside. Just like that and then I’m going to start my braids. So, the next time you see me, most of this side will be completely done.”
“If you need to, don’t be afraid to hit the back butt or the previous button, whatever is on your remote control, and go back and watch the technique again. Because it’s so simple and so easy but it is going to take a little bit of practice. And what you’ll also notice, through here, of course I braided this all the way down, this is the first one. But, it will save you a lot of time in grabbing the hair for the next braid if you stop the braid in the middle and go back and finish that up later. So that’s what you’re going to see, when you come back. All of them will not be braided to the ends, we will just have some hair left out and then at the end I will go back and finish everything up. So one thing I wanted to mention is you can see before I even mention it, you can see the progression, all of them are the same size, and they are laying nice and neat, and with my parts they are falling just between, just like a brick layer effect but without the boxes. But one thing I wanted to mention is that when you go to a braid salon and they are doing the finishing touches on your hair, they always clip the ends and some of the hair that’s sticking out, and they also clip your ends, and then the salon I go to, they also take a candle and they sear all the ends to melt them in. But what happens when they do that is, they end up burning your actual hair. Which is why I always ask for them not to do that to me. But having said that, I don’t clip ends and I don’t clip the hair sticking out because in most cases, this is a protective style, if you’re going natural, or if you’re going to give your hair a break. If you take it out, you still need your hair to be in the same shape that it was in when you got them done. So, in doing that, I like to use something on the hair to keep the ends down. And right now, I’m using a product called True Braids RX. It’s a really good product. It works a lot like jam, jam will also work, but its keeping these edges down, its keeping everything nice and smooth, and so I’m applying it to her hair at the start and then I’m also applying it as I do the braid. So right now, I’m just going to continue braiding, and you’ll see me periodically pop in and give you some instruction and you’ll see the progression throughout.”
“Alright, so what you’re seeing here is everything completed. Now one thing you will notice is that when I got into the area that has more hair, I made the parts a little bit smaller, but I used the same amount of hair and that’s going to give her a fuller look throughout. It’s going to fill in this area. Because, when I get to over here, because her hair is so long and bulky, I’m going to make my parts bigger, but use the same amount of hair. Now, sometimes, you’ll want to be consistent throughout, but with her hair you won’t be able to tell. Plus, we want to minimize the bulk because her bun has to be less than 3 inches thick and this is already a lot of hair. Because the hair that was in the packs wasn’t a lot, this is 3 and a half packs on her hair. So, I don’t want to make her too bulky. So, I’m going to make things a little bit bigger through this middle section. The back will be just like this and so will the sides, and that will even everything out. So now what I’m about to do is turn her to the other side, and I’m going to do the exact same thing that I did on the first side.”
“Okay so, here you have! All the front portion that we previously sectioned off is all braided! You’ll notice that these are close together so that you don’t see any parts. I mean you are going to see some parts, but I wanted them to be closer together at the top. And you’ll see here. See how my parts are laying? Even though they are not boxes, they are still laying between the braids underneath so that they create a fuller effect.”
So now what I’m going to do is that I’m going to turn my client and around and we are going to start in the back. Now another thing you can do is that you can go ahead and braid these down all the way to the ends. but I’m not going to do that. I want to get the braids done first and then I will go back and finish braiding all the way down. You could do it however you want to, itis not going to mess up your results either way. So now that I have my client to the back, I’m going to lift her chair all the way up as far as it can go, so I can reach without having to bend over. Okay, so I’m just going to remove this other clip that I have in her hair. The hair is kind of tangled and disheveled a little bit. Just start from the bottom and comb through the hair to straighten everything out. Once you’ve done that, then you’ re going to start parting from the back and braiding your hair in the back, working your way to the top. So, the first you want to do is to decide what corner you are going to start in. It doesn’t matter, it’s not going to make the results any difference. I’m going to start from over here.”
“All you;re going to do is pull your section, your half-moon section just as you did on the front side. Now one thing you want to remember with nape hair is that you don’t want to make your parts too small and add in the nape hair because that could cause tension and it could pull the hair out. So, you want to take a bit of a generous amount of hair in this area to start your braids. As I said before, for this back section, I’m going to keep the braids close together because I want it to appear as it does at the front and then when I get to the middle I’m going to make them bigger so as not to make it too bulky for her cause gain, she has to stay within three inches of her bun because she is in the military. So, I’m going to start braiding from this corner, and the next time you see me, some of this portion will be completed.”
“Okay so we are moving right along, and you can see through here, the parts are much bigger than the ones on the sides and the ones at the nape area and again that is just to, not thin it out but to reduce the amount of bulk because these size box braids whether you know it or not, can be thick and bulky once they are all in. So, I want to reduce that and so I made my parts bigger. Sometimes I reduce the amount of hair depending on the size of the part If the part is really thick, you’re going to want to reduce the size of hair that you’re using because otherwise you’ll have a really fat braid. So, you just want to kind of eyeball it and test it out as you did in the front. If you remember when I first started, I had to redo that braid because I didn’t enough hair. So, it’s okay if you want to. Add hair or take out hair, cause you want to make sure it’s right. So again, these are big, and I’m going to turn my client and show you the difference. So, as you could see through here, these parts are much smaller than the ones from the back like I showed you earlier. So now I’m just going to continue braiding and when I come back we will be at the very top with the last couple of braids. And then, we will do the ends and I will show you how to make these even and nice and consistent all the way throughout. So were actually almost done. “
“Okay so, now I’m at the last braid so I’m just going to use a little bit of my braid gel that’s going to help keep everything, nice and together and neat, just like everything you see here. And this is smaller, this section of hair is smaller than the previous middle section I showed you because this is the top. Everybody is going to see this part and it’s going to cover up everything that is underneath. So, it’s okay if these are a little smaller but you still want to use the same amount of hair. You are also going to see me in this clip braid all the way down to the ends. And then for then for the last two that I need to braid I’m going to show you how to add more hair to add more length if you want them a little bit longer. And I’m also going to show you what to do when you run out of hair in one of your strands. How the “borrow” or move over hair from one strand and still make sure everything is consistent and even. So, the first thing I want to do is complete this braid. Now I’m just going to continue braiding all the way down to the ends. Now with my client’s hair. If her hair was short and sticking out of the braid, then I would add a little more of my gel, rub it in my fingers, and continue braiding. What this type if gel does is that it holds the hair together. It also has a bit of a moisturizer in it too and it adds a bit of a sine as well and it keeps everything together, So as you can see, it added little bit of shine and you always want to use this type of gel, when you get towards the ends of your client’s hair because it’s going to help hold everything in as well. And when you’re braiding all the way down to the ends, or anytime you are braiding, you want to make sure to be consistent in all your strands of hair. You see how consistent my braid is? So now I’m getting towards the end of the braids. Now once you get towards the end, your strands of hair are not going to be the same. Now, I don’t know if you can tell on camera or not, but you see this little piece of hair sticking up? This is going to run out which in turn will thin my braid. So, what you’re going to have to do when you get to a point like this is that you’re going to have to pull hair from another section and make it even so I’m just going to continue braiding like normal, can you see? My braid is already starting to taper, its already starting to get smaller. Now this strand of hair is a lot thinner than the other two, so what I’m going to have to do is borrow hair from my middle strand and add it to this one. It’s really simple. You just pinch off a piece of hair and just add it with your other section and then just continue braiding like nothing ever happened. And you’ll see here that my braid is still consistent, and you may have to do that two or three times, but you want to continue doing that all the way out to the ends. Now where you stop braiding will totally depend on how the finished result will be. So, I’m just going to stop here so I can dip the ends in hot water. I’m going to stop right here. Now you see all these ends that are sticking out? That is not her hair. My client’s hair stops right about here. So, none of this is her hair. So, what I’m going to do is I’m going to grab a pair of shears that I use for things like this and I’m just going to trim all the excess hair off. Now you could wait until the very end and do these all at once, you can do them one by one, you could do it however you want. But key is to make sure, you are not cutting your client’s hair. So, even after you clip you are still going to have some pieces sticking up. Don’t worry about that because once you dip the hair into hot water, all these pieces sticking up will melt into the hair. That’s the whole point of the hot water. Now what I’m about to show you is how to add hair to the braid that’s existing to add length. So, let’s say my client wasn’t satisfied with this length, she wanted it even longer and the hair didn’t come that long. What you’re going to have to do is add hair as you braid and I’m going to show you how to do that but remember the key to doing that is ensuring that you’re consistent with the width of the braid all the way throughout. So, you want to wait until you it starts to taper as you braid, and you see its slowly starting to taper as I go down. What I mean by that is its thick up here and its tapering to get smaller. The width of the hair is getting smaller as I go down. Now once you get to the point where its tapered enough to add hair, here is what you want to do.”
“So, I’m going to take a piece of hair, and you want to make sure it’s the same width or thickness as what you have in your hands and I’m going to add it with two strands and then I’m just going to continue my braid. Now you’re still going to have one short piece in there, and you either use the technique from before by borrowing hair or you can add another piece. So, I’m just going to borrow, I’m going to keep doing that until I am forced to add another piece. Now you can see everything is still consistent all the way down. I have to add another piece so the second piece that you add, you want it to be a little thinner because you’re going to be adding it. So, the next piece you add you want to add it the exact same way as before, but you just want to make sure it’s a little bit thinner. Then once you get it in there that’s when you want to redistribute the hair so that everything is all the same, meaning all of your strands are the same width. And it’s still going to taper, and you still continue braiding, just as you did before. And you’ll see all this length here in a second, how much length I’ve added. And you can see just from an original braid and this is the one we added length to. You can see how much length we have just from using that technique. And if you don’t want that much length, start adding your hair from up here, you don’t have to add it twice, you can feel free to be as creative as you want. But since we don’t need all this length, I’m going to go back and take all this out and I’m just going to complete this braid down, to complete this portion.”
“Okay, I know you’re like why is she standing there with a tea kettle or pitcher? Well this is going to finish her ends. When you get to this point, everything is done, the hair is all braided. I’ve braided the hair as far as I’m going to go and now it’s time to finish the ends. Now you can do a lot of different things, you can curl the ends by braiding them, rolling them, whatever you want to do. But what we are going to do with this style, to keep it current and to keep it timeliness is to dip it in extremely hot water. So that’s why I have this nifty thing. So, this, I purchased from Walmart, so you fill it up with water through here. And there is a little heater “stove eye” looking thing. This heats the water and you bring it over here to your client being very careful. And you take the ends and dip them in here and that’s what seals it together and makes it look all pretty.”
“So that is what I’m getting ready to do now. I am going to show you a couple sections, maybe one or two sections and then I’m going to go ahead and finish. And we will be done, now don’t forget to clean up your ends with the shears. You don’t have to do this, in the braid salons, they go all the way up with the shears and then with the candle and burn everything. Like I said, I don’t believe in that. We aren’t going to go there and be all up in her hair trying to cut ends off that don’t need to be cut. So, I’m going to go ahead the ends after I seal the ends and we will be completely done.”
“Okay, my kettle just clicked so that means the water is ready, so I’m going to go ahead and move it and I’m going to start to dip the hair. You want to be extremely careful when you do this because stylists have been known for being sued for clients being burnt while using this hot water. So, you just have to be very, very, very careful when you’re doing this, and if you have an assistant, work closely with them during this part.”
“I don’t have an assistant today, but I’m used to doing this because I have done this so many times that I can do it by myself, which you still don’t want to take for granted because, you can always make a mistake. So, you want to take a section of hair and your water and you just want to dip your hair in the pot. Dip! Dip! And Dip! Now this is where you have to be very careful. Now I should have a towel under me, but I don’t. So, I’m going to let the water drip onto the floor, and then I’m going to wrap the hair in a towel and rub the towel on the hair all the way down. And this is what we’ve got. It straightens the hair and kind of seals the ends together.
Now if you have a client with long hair like my client, you don’t want to go that far up because you don’t want the hot, hot water to touch the client’s natural hair. So, I’m just going to continue doing this and when I come back, we will be completely done!”
“Well! After many, many hours behind the scenes of braiding, we are 100 % percent done, the ends are done, and it looks beautiful. And as you can see, I’m going to pull it back, so you can see how everything lays. I’m going to be careful because I know from experience, no matter how “loose” they are and not tight, they hurt. Your scalp can still be a little sore especially if you’re not used to getting braids or if you haven’t had your hair braided for a while. So, you can see, when I pull it back, it looks very, very full. Although through the middle the parts are a lot bigger. And at the edges, these braids are not tight, around the edges her braids are kind of loose, so I can maintain the integrity of her edges, and I’m just going to show you the back. You see I maintain the size by reducing the amount of Kanekalon hair I used. But I kept the parts bigger and reduced the amount of hair and it kept everything the same size as far as the width of the braid.”
“Now there’s a ton of different styling options you can do with box braids. You can get a high bun just like me, and all you do is pull the braids into a high, high ponytail that sits further up than what you normally do. So, if your ponytail normally sits right here in the crown, you want to pull it onto the top of the head and then make a donut just like mine and wrap it around. You could pull just some of it back, you could pull half of it up. You could do so many things with this style and it is a great protective style if you’re going natural. It’s just like wearing micro braids or a sew in weave or whatever. And it’s just something to protect the hair. It’s great for the summer, great for vacation. It’s great for anything! If you want to give your hair a break, if you have children. My daughter runs track, and her hair needs a break from the ponytails, so I’m going to do her hair today as well. This style is very versatile, and I absolutely love it. And I really hope you enjoyed it.”