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How to Do a Fishtail Braid

Learn how to do a fishtail braid with the step-by-step instructions in this hair tutorial from Howcast.


So I'm going to show you how to do a fishtail French braid. Instead of a standard French braid, which normally starts near the hairline, we're going to start the fishtail french braid a little further back. We'll start by taking a small section right here in the back, and splitting it into two large sections. We're going to take a small piece from the outside and cross it over the center. Then take another small piece from the other side and crossing it towards the center, creating an X in the middle.

Now we'll take a small piece from the outside and start picking up hair and adding it to those pieces, crossing it over the center. Pick up a small piece from the outside and a larger piece and crossing it over the center. We're going to continue to take hair in a circular section, adding it to the braid. You always want to make sure that you have an X here in the center, otherwise we lose the whole style.

Another tip with fishtail braids is to make sure that each of the outside sections that you're taking is nice and small so that the style is nice and tight and you get that zipper effect. Clean sections is key with the fishtail braid, because the second you lose your clean sections, you lose the whole braid. Now at the base of the hairline you have no more hair to pick up, so continue taking small sections from the outside of the two sections.

I've found that by picking up the sections with your pointer fingers you keep the sections nice and clean. Now this braid is great, because you can turn it into an updo, you can turn it into a side braid. It's just a really nice look to have in your repertoire. To keep the look fresh I like to stop the braid a couple of inches, two or three, maybe four, we're stopping on Kelly maybe four inches away from the bottom, just to make it look a little less stuffy and have a little more fun with it.

Now you're going to finish off with a clear elastic. Now you can leave the band exposed, but I normally like to cover the band, so I'll take a small section from the back and wrap it around the elastic. Then just finish tying off that elastic, pulling it up and just kind of moving the hair down, so that it completely covers. Great! There you have a French braid fishtail.

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