Braids have been a staple in the world of hairstyling for centuries, offering versatility, functionality, and beauty. With countless variations, they cater to a diverse array of hair textures and lengths, as well as personal tastes. In this article, we explore 40 different types of braids that can add flair to any look.
Classic Three-Strand Braid
The quintessential braid that everyone knows, the classic three-strand braid is simple yet elegant and serves as the foundation for many other braid styles.
An evolution of the three-strand braid, the French braid weaves strands over the top and incorporates new hair with each crossover, creating a seamless look.
Similar to the French braid, the Dutch braid involves crossing strands under rather than over, which makes the braid appear as if it’s sitting on top of the hair.
The fishtail braid divides the hair into two sections and alternates small pieces from each side, creating a herringbone pattern that’s intricate and chic.
A romantic style where sections of hair cascade down like a waterfall, the waterfall braid combines French braiding techniques with free-hanging sections.
The milkmaid braid wraps two braids around the head, creating a crown-like effect that’s both bohemian and regal.
Crown braids involve braiding around the head. Unlike milkmaid braids, the braid is usually singular and follows the hairline closely.
Adding complexity, the four-strand braid offers a woven look that stands out from the traditional three-strand style.
For those seeking an even more intricate look, the five-strand braid takes weaving to the next level.
Rope braids are created by twisting two sections of hair around each other, ideal for a quick and stylish look.
Boxer braids are essentially tight Dutch braids that are aligned with the head, often used by athletes for a sleek, out-of-the-way style.
Cornrows are tight, flat braids that are braided close to the scalp, often in straight lines or intricate designs.
Also known as banana braids, Ghana braids start off small and gradually get thicker as more hair is added.
Inspired by Beyoncé’s “Lemonade” album, these are side-swept cornrows that often incorporate beads or other accessories.
Feed-in braids begin with natural hair and gradually integrate synthetic hair, creating a seamless transition to longer, fuller braids.
Micro braids are tiny, delicate braids that cover the head and can be styled as freely as loose hair.
Tree braids combine cornrows with free strands of hair, giving the illusion of a full head of hair with the comfort of braids.
Not a braid itself, a braid out involves braiding the hair and then undoing it to reveal wavy, voluminous locks.
The ladder braid consists of a standard braid crossed with smaller strands, resembling the rungs of a ladder.
Butterfly braids are large, voluminous braids with pieces pulled out to resemble the wings of a butterfly.
The snake braid weaves a small braid into a larger one, creating an ‘S’ pattern that slithers down the hair.
Knotless braids forgo the small knot at the start of traditional box braids, reducing tension and breakage.
A halo braid wraps around the head and is secured in a way that creates a “halo” effect, perfect for elegant occasions.
Incorporating hair into a heart shape, heart braids are a sweet and playful style often seen on young girls.
A pull-through braid uses elastics to create a braid-like structure with puffed loops, resembling a braid but without the typical weaving.
The mermaid braid often begins as a side braid and incorporates loose strands, creating a whimsical, aquatic-inspired look.
Bubble braids are a series of hair sections tied together to create a “bubble” effect, making for a unique and fun look.
Yarn braids integrate yarn into the hair for a colorful, creative style that can also protect natural hair.
The lattice braid creates a basket-weave effect across the head, a beautiful choice for special occasions.
These are tiny braids that blend with unbraided hair, creating a subtle textured look.
The zipper braid is a complex braid that creates a pattern resembling the teeth of a zipper.
A dragon braid is a variation of the Dutch braid that runs along the top of the head, creating a raised, bold look.
Mohawk braids take the center stage by running down the middle of the head, often flanked by shaved sides or tightly pulled hair.
Scallop braids incorporate curves into the braid, making a pattern that looks like scalloped edges.
Twist braids involve two sections of hair twisted around each other, a simple yet attractive style.
Inspired by historical Norse hairstyles, Viking braids are often complex and include multiple braiding techniques.
The carousel braid wraps a braid around the head, interweaving it with loose strands for a merry-go-round effect.
A tassel braid ends with the hair unwoven and free-flowing, resembling a tassel.
Infinity braids involve looping hair through two main sections, creating an infinite pattern.
“Pancaking” a braid means pulling it apart for a fuller, flatter appearance, making the braid look more voluminous.
Q: Can all hair types be braided? A: Yes, most hair types can be braided, but the techniques and styles may vary depending on hair texture and length.
Q: How long do braids last? A: Depending on the type of braid and hair care, braids can last from a few days to several weeks.
Q: Are braids damaging to hair? A: If done too tightly or left in for too long, some braids can cause damage or breakage. It’s important to braid with care and not to neglect hair and scalp maintenance.
Q: Can braids help hair grow? A: Braids themselves don’t make hair grow, but they can help protect your hair from damage, which can result in healthier growth over time.
Q: Is it okay to braid wet hair? A: Braiding wet hair can make it more susceptible to break