Posts Tagged ‘braid’


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?


photos + post: kristin ess graphic design: eunice chun

Lately we’ve been getting a lot of workout hair questions. So let’s do a little series of workout hair ideas, shall we? This one is pretty simple but quite effective. If you go to spinning, dancing or kickboxing, there is a ton of motion. With classes like pilates, yoga and barre, you probably do a lot of posing and don’t want to break your concentration to gather all your hair back up into another bun when it falls out. Luckily, this hair will do the trick for both types of workout whether you’re gonna shake, shake, shake or not. Here’s how we did this cute braid bun combo…

  1. Start with your hair in two dutch braids. If you don’t know what a dutch braid is, it’s just like a regular french braid but it’s inside out. In other words, if you’re crossing over when you french braid, then you would cross under when you dutch braid. Tie these two off at the bottom using a small clear elastic.
  2. Cross the braids over each other near back hairline.
  3. Now wrap them around each other all the way down. Tie that off with another clear elastic. You can leave it at this point (because it looks pretty cool already) or you can do step 4.
  4. Use THESE MATTE BOBBYPINS to secure the bun. These come in a half shiny, half matte pin combo packs. (I stumbled on this trick by accident! I had these bobbypins in my office sitting on my desk to be photographed and used the black ones to put my hair up in a bun. The bun literally did not move at all for the whole day and I’ve been using these ever since.)

Hope this is helpful to some of you to keep the hair off your neck/shoulders. Do you like this workout hair series? Do you want to see more? Any specific requests?


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.


photos/post: Kristin Ess

It’s Sunday funday and you’re hopefully not headed to school or the office, so why not try something different to tie off your dutch/french/fishtail braid for the rest of the weekend? This little wrap detail is something I’ve been doing to my clients for a little while just to make things look a little more interesting than normal so thought it would be fun to share. The great news is you only need one tool! A thin ponytail holder. With all the fun braid tutorials we’re putting up this summer, like THIS ONE, THIS ONE or THIS GEM, you should definitely give this a shot!

All you’re doing differently when you tie off your ponytail is (more…)