Braiding hair is one of the many skills that often feels ingrained in some of us and absolutely not ingrained in the rest of us. For those of us that hair braiding did not come naturally, it often feels like an uphill battle to master, let alone moving into dutch braids. However, there is hope. I, myself, was a self proclaimed braiding failure, so if I can do it, you can too. I guarantee you have more ability than I did starting out.
I am going to walk you through how to dutch braid in a simple and easy to follow step by step guide. I guarantee that when you get through, you will be on your way to braiding guru in no time. All you need is some patience, practice, and willingness to read!
So what’s the difference between dutch braiding and French braiding? Dutch braids give the illusion that the braid is popping out of your head while French braids seem to go into your head. While they may look drastically different, it only takes one change to switch to the other style. That being said, I am focusing on dutch braids today. French braids are another day, another time.
Step by Step
- First, you will need to grab supplies. Get a hair brush and two smaller hair ties. This is if you are planning on two dutch braids. If you are moving straight into one braid, switch that out for one hair tie. The benefit of practicing on two is less hair and a better angle to master the technique with.
- Now, grab a very small section at the top forefront of your hair. Split these into three even smaller sections. Again, if it’s one braid, use all of your hair. If it’s two braids, split it down the middle and do this twice. Tie one side up while you complete the other side to help prevent any confusion. This is where the braid will start, so be sure it is small enough to look cohesive when you have finished.
- This is the most important step that comes into play. Unlike standard french braids, you will not take the outside pieces over the middle. Think of dutch braids as the complete opposite of regular french braids. Grab the right outside strand and move it under the middle strand. Next, grab the far left strand and move it under the middle strand which was the original far right strand.
This might sound a bit confusing at first, but when you have mastered this step, you have the dutch braid basically finished. Think right under, left under, then add some hair. That’s the next step!
- Now that you have started the dutch braid, it’s time to add some more hair. The key to this is small sections of hair added each time to give the dutch braid effect. Grab some on each side and connect them with the right and left sections of the braid. It’s also important to prevent bumps as much as possible. If you can manage to use your hair brush to get rid of any knots, that is great. If not, work your fingers through as much as possible. The less bumps, the more cohesive the braid will look.
- Repeat steps three and four until you have braided your hair as far as you want. You can braid it til the end of your hair or tie it into a ponytail. Grab your elastic and tie it off and voila! You did your own dutch braids! I told you it wasn’t as difficult as you think.
There are loads of ways to use dutch braiding in your hairstyles. Like we’ve already mentioned, you can opt for one braid or two braids, but there are loads of other styles. A half up dutch braid, two half dutch braids, a dutch braid into a bun, and so much more. Let your creative juices flow with your new talent.
The more you work at it, the more natural it will feel, so don’t give up if you’re not blown away with your results on the first attempt. Like anything, practice makes perfect, so give yourself a bit of slack to get that much needed practice in. When you do get it down, though, the sky’s the limit!