How To Do A Reversed, Inside-Out French Braid

Hair at Ann Yee at New York Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2012

Braids have been ruling the catwalks (and sidewalks) for the last few seasons – and Fall/Winter 2012 will be no exception. When the braided headband and color-streaked braids of the past few seasons have run their course, though, and you’re looking for something new, take inspiration from Mercedes Benz New York Fashion Week where Marcos Diaz of ION Studio designed “a tribal, pre-historic/Jurassic look that was still tangible and modern,” for Ann Yee’s runway show, turning French braids inside out (literally) for a fresh new take on the classic hairstyle. For a less editorial look (aka something that’s not only runway ready, but also real-way ready), skip steps 3 -5 and instead subtly secure the ends with bobby bins.

How To Do a Reversed, Inside-Out French Braid…

STEP 1 – Prime the hair with Davines For Wizards No. 13 Mat Forming Ground for a matte finish, and to make the hair easier to grip and handle while styling.

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STEP 2 – Create an inside-out braid (the reverse of a French braid), starting at the nape of your neck, by dividing the hair into three even strands and holding two sections in the left hand and the third section in the right hand. Bring the right hand section under (instead of over) the middle section and hold with the left hand. Then take the outer most section from the left hand and bring it under the middle strand. Continue to reverse French braid by alternating between the left and right sides, always bringing the outside strands under the middle strand. Like with a traditional French braid, before weaving the outside strand under the middle strand, add more hair from the outside.

STEP 3 – Rick rack the front hair (the ends from the inside-out French braid that have not been braided). If you don’t know how to do a rick rack braid (we didn’t!), all you have to do is divide the hair that’s now at the top of your hair into smaller sections, comb and braid each section of left over hair (using a traditional braising style). When you get to the very ends, hold one of the three strands firmly in your hand as you pull the other 2 pieces up the braid, creating a zigzag patterned braid.  Secure with bobby pins.

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STEP 4 – Flat iron the rick rack braids and allow the pieces to set to give the hair an accordion, zigzag look. For an easier and faster effect, use a hair-crimper instead.

STEP 5 – Remove the pins and tease the hair with a comb. Finish with Davines Defining Invisible Hairspray.

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