A double French braid is one of the most comfortable hair-dos, especially for those with long or thick hair. It is good for traveling, sports or athletic events, or just for daily activities. The divided braids help keep hair away from the back of the head, preventing the discomfort that sometimes comes with ponytails or a single braid. As an added bonus, a double French braid gives you a second hair-do when you take it out: wavy hair.
I've been braiding hair for more than thirty years and have taught others how to braid as well. I hope this helps you learn to braid your own or others' hair.
Step 1: Necessary Supplies
1 or 2 elastic hair bands
Styling products of choice (If braiding wet hair for wavy hair effect, we have found hair clay to be the best. Mousse is a close second. If the double French braid is the only hair-do you're wanting you may not have to use any styling product, but can use mousse, gel or hairspray to help tame strays and fly-aways.)
Step 2: Wash and Brush Hair
You can start the double French braid with wet or dry hair. If you're wanting the wavy hair effect at the end, you will need to begin with wet hair. Brush it out and add styling product. Especially if you're wanting the wavy hair effect, some type of styling product will help the wave set and hold when you take the braid down (especially for frizzy hair).
Step 3: Divide Hair in Half.
With a comb, evenly divide the hair in half down the middle. If a natural part is slightly off center, this is okay.
Use one of the elastic bands to put one half of the hair in a ponytail. This allows you to complete the first braid without the other half of the hair getting in the way or accidentally getting braided in the first braid.
Brush the half for the first braid again before you begin braiding.
Step 4: Begin French Braid.
Starting at the top of the forehead, separate one section of hair to begin the first French braid.
Then divide that section into three equal parts.
Make one braid. With one side over the middle, then the other side over the middle section.
Step 5: Add Sections of Hair As You Braid
Each time you cross a braid over the middle, add a section of hair, alternating left to right until you get to the nape of the neck.
Step 6: Continue Braiding
At the nape of the neck, all the hair from that side should be divided into the three braid sections. Continue braiding the hair and tie at the end with an elastic band.
If you are wanting the wavy hair effect, curl the end (it should still be wet) around your finger to prevent the end being straight when you take the braid out.
Step 7: Repeat for Second Side
Repeat the steps for the second side.
It is best to keep the braids separated in two separate elastic bands, and curled at the end, if you are wanting the wavy hair effect.
If you are just wanting the double French braid for your day's activities you can choose to hold both braids together at the end and secure them both with one elastic band.
Step 8: Wavy Hair Effect
For the wavy hair effect, sleep in the braid overnight. Braids can generally be worn the next day. Make sure hair is completely dry before taking out the braids.
When you are ready for your wavy hair effect, simply remove the elastic bands, and take out the braids gently with your fingers. Do not brush hair, but style with your fingers. You can change or move the hair part down the middle of your head if you would prefer it on one side or the other.
And I'm a proud grandmother of an adorable grandson, which has nothing to do with hair braiding.