SUMMER BRAID 4

photos/post/graphic design: kristin ess

All summer the subject of braids will be a big one around here. Last week we talked about a trick for bulking and voluminizing your braid. Many requests rolled in for a tutorial on the actual braid that was done in that post. Well here it is! I have to be honest, when I asked Nora to sit in on this post I had completely forgotten that we chopped off her hair a few months ago. It was up to her chin and now it’s around her shoulders. But I still wanted to do the tutorial on her head because it leaves me a great opportunity to show you guys how to cheat a dutch braid (aka: an inside-out braid) on hair that is between the chin and shoulders. I’ll show you how we did it, but I split up our normal tutorial so you could really see detail in the larger individual photos. Here we go… READ MORE…

SUMMER BRAID 3

PHOTOS/POST/DESIGN: KRISTIN ESS

Okay, I know this isn’t an actual full braid tutorial but I felt like I needed to throw this in as part of our ongoing “Summer Braid” series because it’s a pretty epic tip. Anyone with fine, thin, straight or super healthy hair that tends to slide right out of a bobby pin will definitely need to grab a bottle of this stuff, STAT. It’s called texture powder and it makes all the difference in the world when it comes to updos and braids. When I first tried this stuff a few years ago, I was terrified. It felt too starchy and dry when I put a light layer of it all over my long hair. I like soft shiny pretty hair and I felt like this made my long hair look matte and dry. Well it’s supposed to! It was designed to “bulk up” the hair you have and give it additional volume so I should have only been applying it at the root. Once I figured out the deal with texture powder, I started using it to get bigger, fuller braids and my hair kit hasn’t been without it since. A lot of products are like that– you just have to find the right way to use them!

So here’s what Nora’s braid looked like before adding the powder. As you can see, it’s gorge and there’s nothing wrong with it so if you prefer to wear it like this then that’s amazing. But trend-wise, we’re always craving a bigger, messier, more textured looking braid than before. All of you pretty peeps who say “I wish my hair was that thick” or “I wish my hair was that long”, should know that Nora has a fine head of hair and it’s cut just above her shoulders, so at least give this a shot!

So here’s how I like to use the texture powders…

Shake a decent amount onto a dry braid. Don’t put it on wet hair. Don’t worry about it looking like a George Washington wig… it fully blends/disappears with the next step.

Once you apply your light layer of texture powder, tap, tap, tap it into your braid. You’ll see your visible powder magically disappear.

Now pull the loops of your braid and that’s it. No, joke it’s that easy. There’s no crazy skill involved. You’ll just instantly have fuller braids that won’t slip out of place while you’re pulling on them to get volume.

There are many brands making texture powders now and here are some of my current faves…

  1. OSiS- Dust It
  2. Bumble & bumble.- Pret-A-Powder
  3. Batiste- XXL Plumping Powder
  4. Big Sexy Hair- Powder Play

Seriously though, if you’re having trouble getting big braids, invest in one of these little game changing bottles! This isn’t the same as a dry shampoo so don’t get them confused! If you do this, hashtag your photo with #TBDbigbraids so we can see yours!

Hot roller favorites

photo by kristin ess, post by norah curlee

Blame it on Mad Men if you will, but hot rollers are making a comeback! There’s a reason why the women of yesteryear could always be spotted sporting a full set of these in salons everywhere. Curling your hair with an iron takes time, giving yourself a blow out can be difficult and labor intensive, but rollers take just minutes and free up your hands to move on with your beauty routine! You can eat breakfast, curl your lashes and freshen up your mani all while these hotties are doing the grunt work for you. Perfectly styled hair with minimal effort. Genius.

With so many different options available, there is a set out there for everyone, and naturally…we have a few favorites. Lets roll…

 

1. We love these jumbo rollers by John Frieda for creating larger curls/waves and they heat up in only 2 minutes!

2. This set from Conair has 2x the flocking for better heat protection and a smoother curl.

3. We love that this set has cool end rings…not burning your hands is always a good thing!

4. This option from T3 is a bit of a splurge but comes with two different sizes and it’s ion levels help retain moisture to fight frizz.

5. Revlon offers a 20 piece set with 3 various sizes to mix it up!

6. These by Remington have heated clips that add additional heat transfer for a longer lasting curl. Smart!

7. For the girls with hair for days! These by Babyliss tally in at 30 rollers…that should do it!

8. We love the temperature settings on this Conair set.

9. This 5-roller set from Conair is perfect for travel with its compact case!

 

If you are someone who is pressed for time or just can’t be bothered to juggle a curling wand or round brush then hair rollers may just be your knight in shining armor. Are you already a roller girl? We want to know your holy grail set in the comments below!

SUMMER BRAID 2

thebeautydepartment.com Baby Boho Braid

Post/Photos: Kristin Ess, Graphic Design: Eunice Chun

While we love a good, big, thick braid, there is also something about a baby braid that we just love (remember these braids?!). They are so cute + simple and can provide lots of texture with just a little bit of hair so you can leave half down. When our gorgeous graphic designer Eunice came into town I thought it would be fun to do it on her jet black hair so you can see for yourself that in fact, these braids can be done on dark hair and look just as intricate and beautiful as they do on light hair. We get a lot of comments and emails about braids not looking as fun on dark hair but I think we can all agree, this looks super pretty and fun. Here’s how we made this little gem!

  1. Start by taking 2 equal sized sections, one from each side (in front of your ears). Think of it as if you were going to put your hair half up/back.
  2. Now grab a small third section from the center back of your head. Grab it from right near the occipital bone (that bone in the back of your head), that way you’ll have a lot more length to work with.
  3. Start weaving that small piece in a section 8 pattern between the two larger sections.
  4. Keep going all the way down until you run out of length with the small section.
  5. Tie it off using a small elastic that matches your hair color (or use clear!).
  6. Gently and slowwwly pull small bits of the larger sections out from in between the small pieces to give it some texture. If your hair is too soft or straight, add a little surf spray. Eunice has thick, heavy, straight hair so we added a couple sprays of one of my favorites, Wella Ocean Spritz, to the braid and let it dry before pulling it apart.

And for those of you who want a visual of what this braid looks like on lighter hair, we’ve got a picture perfect photo for you below!

thebeautydepartment.com Baby Boho Braid

As you can see we added THESE cute little hearts at the top. You could also use THESE or THESE or THESE!

Now hop to it! Let’s get to braiding!! Don’t forget to tag us @thebeautydept on Instagram with your own baby boho. braids!