Posts Tagged ‘braid paste’


the beauty department braid paste


Braiding can be a daunting task for even the most nimble fingers. I found something a while back that’s helped me teach people how to braid their own hair. Some super duper helpful stuff called  BRAID PASTE! There are tons of molding pastes on the market, and as I’ve showed you many times before, and I still love/use those as well! But sometimes you have to cocktail a paste with some shine serum because the paste by itself can be a bit too mattifying, causing hair to look a little dull. But braid paste has been helpful on pretty much all hair types when braiding, leaving it shiny but giving it soft hold so the braid doesn’t slip out as you go. Basically the cocktailing of paste and serum are already done for you!

the beauty department braid paste 2


For fine to normal hair: I like to use a pea size dab of paste to start and go back in if I need more. Put it in your palms and warm it up. Go middle to ends and then if you need any up toward the root, just use whatever is left on your hands.

For thick or coarse hair: When I braid thick hair, I usally break it up into two sections to apply paste, otherwise I feel like it gets concentrated in certain places and there’s none in other places. I break it up from ear to ear, horizontally, applying to the bottom half first and then the top half. Depending on the thickness, I would use a pea size or slightly smaller per section. Warm it up in your palms and then apply middle to ends. If you need some at the root just use whatever is remaining on your hands after you apply everywhere else.


braid paste the beauty department


After the paste is on the hair and you’ve done your braid, like a FISHTAIL BRAID, a ROSETTE BRAID or any braid for that matter, you can now loosen it up with ease knowing that the whole thing isn’t going to slip apart as you work some texture into it. It’s just a cool, very helful product to add to your arsenal if you love braiding or if you want to learn how to be a better braider.

Do you have any favorite products for braiding?




We love a braided half updo during the fall/winter months because it’s not only gorgeous with that big thick braid, but also leaving half your hair down keeps your necks warm! I think we can all agree this would look amazing any time of year, but today we’re pairing it with a sweater and turning it into our cold weather coiffure!

braided half updo hair tutorial the beauty department

  1. Prep your hair by giving it some soft, loose waves. I’ve really been in love with the piece-y waves I’ve been getting from my  NEW IRON. It’s a 1 1/4 barrel which is half ceramic and half metal. It was an serious hair investment but I’m feelin it! As you know, favorite budget friendly version of this iron is THIS ONE! I curled away from the face and put a couple drops of THIS GLOSS through the middle and ends, which smells ahhhhmazing.\
  2. Next up, create a hairline braid. You’ll want to do it inside-out because you’ll get a fatter looking braid. With a regular french braid, the bulk of the braid gets tucked underneath as you go, whereas an inside-out braid puts the bulkier part of the braid on top! If your hair tends to be really slippery and soft or if you just washed it, try adding a dab of BRAID PASTE or WATERBASED POMADE to the section before your braid. It will help you get a lot more control over your braid without making it sticky or greasy.
  3. Use THIS TRICK to fatten up your braid.
  4. Take a fine tooth comb and tease a very small section in the back of your head. Tease as close to the scalp as you can. This is where you’ll “anchor” your braid, so put it as high or low as you want it. I like to do it right at that bone you can feel in the back of your head, called the occipital bone. It’s a good safe place to anchor the braid if you’re not sure. Use a strong holding bobby pin (and a little strong holding hairspray if you need it) to anchor your first braid to your head.
  5. Repeat the same thing on the other side and then join them together in the back of your head, tucking the second braid into the first braid. Get them to blend together as best you can. I think of it like doing a half knot. I tuck the second braid up, over and then push it into the first braid.
  6. Use a hand mirror to check it from the sides and the back to make sure you have good balance!

Tip: go to a beauty supply and get the strongest bobby pins you can find. It makes the biggest difference with a hairstyle like this! A strong holding bobby pin will not slip and slide all over the place! You can typically feel the difference between the ones you buy at the drugstore and the ones you buy at a pro beauty supply. I love THESE ONES! This links to gold ones but you can get any color and they’re SO strong and fairly inexpensive. Get them, it will be worth it!


For those with layers, it can be a huge struggle just to braid, let alone make it stay for longer than 30 minutes! Clearly, we can lock it all down with a thousand bobbypins and a whole can of superhold, but there’s a much easier way to do it and we’re excited to share it. Warning: this could be a very obvious trick to some of you pros and closeted hairdressers, but remember that a lot of people are just learning these things, but hopefully you can take something from this, too! Okay, let’s do it…

photos/post/graphic design: Kristin Ess

  1. Here we’re going to show you what happens when you braid medium length hair with lots of layers. The hair in photo 1 is clean and blown out straight.
  2. Clearly as you move along with your braid, the pieces start to pop out and you start losing track of where you are in your braid.
  3. By the time you’re done, you have something like this. It’s nice and to be honest, some may prefer it like this. I still think it’s cute, I just don’t foresee that holding all day. Also, there’s a great aesthetic difference between hair with texture and hair that just has wild pieces sticking straight out. Messy texture will likely stay and even get a little messier throughout the day, where layers that are falling out might loosen the security of your braid and eventually cause it to fall apart.
  4. The  simple trick here is to curl your hair before you braid. Not an everyday wave where you tap the ends and leave them a little straighter, but curling all the way to the tip. Round those ends off! That will create a curve and then the ends of your layers will “hug” the braid making it SO much easier for you to spray, pin and keep the layers locked in place all day.
  5. Once you’ve curled also try adding a little bit of waterbased pomade to your layers for additional hold. You’ll want something soft that will disappear into the hair like POMADE or BRAID PASTE!
  6. Now try braiding your hair with the curls! This is what I do to any of my clients attending an event when I want to make sure their hair holds all night. This is also a great trick for anyone who plans on dancing (i.e.: wedding hair!)

Take a look at the first attempt vs the second attempt. Barely had to use any product after curling. You may still need a little strong holding hairspray for support here and there but nothing outrageous. Tell us if you try this or if you have any other great tricks for braiding with shorter layers!

OH! And in case you were wondering, we used this particular HOT TOOLS IRON for this tutorial.