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How to Do a Fishtail Hair Braid

Learn how to do a fishtail braid from professional hairstylist Joy La Rosa in this Howcast hair tutorial


The fishtail braid is just a few strand braid. It's probably one of the easiest braids there is to do, but it looks really complicated.

So what we're going to do is we're going to start by creating those two sections. And all you do to create the fishtail pattern is take a tiny section of hair from the outside of the one section and cross it over to the other section. You're going to take a tiny section of hair from the other side and do the same. You're just going to repeat this movement until you get to the end and it creates an X.

We're just going to take a tiny piece of hair from the outside corner, pull it over the top, and do the same on the other side. So you're seeing that we're getting a little X so far. We're just going to keep doing it. You can play with a fishtail braid and start doing different sizes of sectioning. Do skinny ones. Do fat ones. Do a little bit of both. Keep it really irregular. I always think that the thinner you go, the prettier the outcome, the more intricate it looks. But experiment with it. Have fun. And you want to keep it tight, so I keep moving it up, keeping it really tight. It's an easy braid, but it just takes a little bit of time.

Now if you wanted to do a side fishtail braid, you would just probably, the easiest bet would be to take a clear rubber band and secure it to the very bottom and then start working from there, so that you didn't have to keep it quite as tight as I am now. And then when you're done with the braid, just remove the rubber band by snipping it off with the scissors or moving it down. So you can see that it's taking on the fishtail shape, almost looks like a basket weave. And once you get going it's easier to just use your finger as a little hook and take a piece from the outside, flip it over, keeping it going all the way down to the end of the hair.

Try to keep your two sections pretty even in size. If you're doing more of a erratic braid, you still want to keep them pretty even. So if one side starts to get a little bit skinny, just take a little bit more hair from the other side and balance them out. Go almost all the way to the end, and then you want to secure that with an elastic band.

And I'm going to show you how to flip it out. It's really easy to do. You just pull on either side of the hair. You can see it really starts to stretch out the shape. The fishtail braid is a flat braid, so keep that in mind if you're doing a style that requires it to be really fat. The fishtail might not be the braid for you.

And if you want to make it even messier, you can go in and just rub your fingers together and mess it up a bit. You get lots of interesting texture that way. So that is your fishtail braid.

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