How to French Braid Your Own Hair

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Introduction: How to French Braid Your Own Hair

About: An engineer, seamstress, cook, coder, and overall maker. Spent a summer at Instructables; got a degree in E: Neural Engineering at Olin College; made a microcontroller (tessel.io); now thinking about climate c…
I have long hair. It can get in the way. Consequently, I keep my hair up in a french braid much of the time, and also braid it each night before bed to reduce tangling.

I've made a couple of approaches to this: I have this video, below; I have a Pinterest-style series of pictures on the first step; and I've done a step-by-step. If I were you, I'd start with the video. It gives the fullest picture. But if you need more help, the step-by-step is worded a bit differently.

I'd love if you'd comment on this to tell me which approach is most useful (or if I should keep trying several ways to do it). And of course, if you have any questions or clarifications, I respond to comments!

The video below is an overall lesson and demonstration, with voiceover and captioning:



If you need more help, continue on to read the step-by-step!

Step 1: Get a Bit of Hair From Each Side of Your Head

Step 2: Cross Right Over Left

It doesn't have to be right over left, of course. But for the purposes of this Instructable, it's much easier to say right and left than "this one" and "the other side".

Step 3: Transfer to Right Hand

Transfer both strands to your right hand. Keep them separate.
My technique: grab the original strand between index finger and curled middle finger. Then take the next strand by grabbing between curled index finger and thumb. This allows you, in the next step, to rock your hand forward and release the first strand.

Confusing? See the video below. I'll show you first how your hands will move (with nothing in them to braid), then on some scrap pieces of cloth. If it looks difficult, practice first! You will be doing this on the back of your own head.


Step 4: Add Hair From the Left

Pick up some hair with your left hand. I do this by sliding my index finger under both some hair not yet in the braid and the bottom-most lock of hair. (This hand position works with the hand technique demonstrated in the previous step.)

Step 5: Cross Left Strand and Pass to Right Hand

Passing is shown in the video below (this is the same video shown two steps ago).

Step 6: Add Hair to the Right Strand

Same as adding hair to the left, but this time with the right hand.

Step 7: And So On, and So Forth

Step 8: Braid the End

Step 9: Tie It Off

Step 10: Ta Da!

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1 Person Made This Project!

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32 Discussions

0
RC Guy
RC Guy

8 years ago on Introduction

Hey i just wanted to ask if i put a instructable in the contest and win the grand prize if i want can i change that to the first prize? just asked this question to u coz u wrk at i'bles so . Nice ible anyway coz i am a boy i can just compliment u!!!

0
tbrer75
tbrer75

Reply 3 months ago

What is i'bles?

0
hairsylesfor
hairsylesfor

Reply 4 years ago

http://hairstylesforchubbyfaces.com/short-haircuts-fat-women/ <a href="http://hairstylesforchubbyfaces.com/short-haircuts-fat-women/"> fat girls hairs </a>

0
tbrer75
tbrer75

Reply 3 months ago

Just keep trying! Focus on the way you move your hands as well as how you hold the hair! That's the most important part of learning! You will get it, eventually! Just DON'T GIVE UP!! YOU GOT THIS!! I BELIEVE IN YOU! 💕

1
MacCupcake
MacCupcake

6 years ago on Introduction

You obviously have been doing this a long time! I just can't seem to grasp doing that without being able to see it, it turns out so messy for me. I get so frustrated with my hair sometimes that I am just ready to cut it all off. Have you ever slammed your hair in the car door? Wrapped it around the shower controls? Knelt on it or stepped on it (when you kneeling)? Most people never experience that. BTW, my hair is about the same length as yours... and I admire yours!!

0
tbrer75
tbrer75

Reply 3 months ago

Exactly! I can't seem to grasp doing it on my own head either! And my hair goes all the way down to a quarter inch above my butt crack and is hellishly thick.. For example, one year I went to the salon and she offered to thin it a bit because it was so hot out side and I accepted.. BUT after thinning it TWICE(!) It was still thinker than most peoples hair.. 🙄 It is CONSTANTLY getting in the way!! So I understand and empathize with the struggle!
#TheLongHairStuggle #LongHairHurts #LocksOfLove? More like #LocksOfLies 😂😂 But I LOVE her hair! It is absolutely gorgeous! 😍💕

0
SelkeyMoonbeam
SelkeyMoonbeam

Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

My personal least favorite things: "hello my name is" stickers that you have to wear at hair-level, chairs that have metal fastenings that your hair gets stuck in, jewelry for your hands that gets stuck while you're trying to get your hair out of the way of the sticker or the chair... but at least it wasn't as bad as when I did this: https://www.instructables.com/id/Surprisingly-Easy-Rapunzel-Costume/ and it kept getting stepped on. Totally worth it, though.

1
calyad
calyad

6 years ago on Introduction

Thank you. I didn't think I could do this. My hair is thin and there is not much volume in a plait. It looks like a rat's tail. But I tried this and I can't get over how much stress is off the top of your head, say, compared to a bun or a pony tail. My first attempt is a bit messy, but it feels wonderful. lovely Instructable!

0
SelkeyMoonbeam
SelkeyMoonbeam

Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

I'm glad it helped! I definitely agree– I have been putting my hair up in a bun more often lately, but my neck gets tired and my head starts to hurt. It's amazing how much weight there is in hair, and how much difference it makes to redistribute that weight!

0
calyad
calyad

Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

Yep. Weight is a problem up to a point for me. There is not much weight in my hair compared to yours. Its the tightness of the band or the clips digging in that causes me most trouble. Oh, by the way, 'Greetings from Western Australia'!

0
Redhot333
Redhot333

Reply 6 months ago

Good for u that’s awesome

1
Redhot333
Redhot333

6 months ago

I’ve never been good at making French braids but now I am and everyone asks me to do their hair

1
SiyanSnowflake
SiyanSnowflake

1 year ago

Thank you so much for the help. I went through so many websites and did it all wrong but just tillI browse through this website and try it on my own I did it!!! Thank you so much <3

0
LadyBosS_A
LadyBosS_A

4 years ago

Thank you so much! It helps a lot with long hair!

thank you so much for this new method it worked perfectly for me despite the fact that my hair is only a few inches past my shoulders and all the other methods did not work for me. you're very talented, good job!

1
loveable09
loveable09

5 years ago

Well it's pretty good for my first time, plus my hair is down to my butt

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1
fugu08
fugu08

5 years ago

my first time ever!!!!!!!

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