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14 Gorgeous Braided Updos You Must Try

Braids are all the rage this season. Whether it be a fishtail braid, a waterfall braid, or just your everyday three-strand braid, this little touch of flair can be added to almost any style to give it an updated look. Check out these braided updos and learn how to change an ordinary upstyle into an extra trendy and chic look!

The Foxy Fishtail

This braided style is incredibly simple and it is a great way to keep your hair out of your face without losing style points.

Blake Lively Fishtail Updo Braid

How To Style:

  1. Begin by gathering your hair into a high ponytail and securing it with a ponytail holder.
  2. Begin your fishtail braid by separating the ponytail into two sections and grabbing small pieces from the outside of each section and bringing them to meet in the middle. Proceed until the whole ponytail is braided.
  3. Secure the bottom with a ponytail holder.
  4. Spray everything with a light hold finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This style is absolutely stunning on someone with long, thick hair. It will accentuate an oval or oblong face shape.

Recommended Products:

I love to use a bit of a shine serum in a braid. It helps to hide any flyaways and it also makes the braid look shiny and soft. Try Moroccan Oil Treatment!

The Bombshell Braid

This combination of messy and manicured is a great way to modernize your everyday French braid.

Long Blonde Messy Braided Updo Long Blonde Messy Braid Back View

How To Style:

  1. Begin by using a small curling iron to curl your hair.
  2. When everything is curled, use a backcombing brush to create volume and body at the roots in the back of your head.
  3. Loosely complete a French braid starting on one side of your head in the middle back area, and ending on the opposite side at the nape of your neck. Leave out your bangs if you so desire.
  4. Use a rat tail comb or your fingers to gently loosen the braid and pull out some pieces to give a messier look. Use bobby pins to place curls that have fallen out of the braid if you feel this is necessary.
  5. Spray everything with a light hold finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This style will look lovely on anyone who wants to make a round face appear slimmer. Long, thick hair is ideal for this style.

Recommended Products:

Spray some dry shampoo at your roots before you back comb. It will make for a great base for the braid and give you TONS of body! I like Fresh Hair by Kevin Murphy.

Tips:

Don’t strive for perfection here! This look is a bit on the messier side, so just go with what your hair wants to do.

Sexy Side Pony

Side ponies and buns are all the rage right now. Adding a braid makes this classic style more modern and romantic!

braided updos Sexy Side Pony with Braid Front View

How To Style:

  1. Leave out bangs if desired. Begin by taking a section of hair on the side of your head and separating it into three sections. French braid your hair so that it begins above one ear and ends just below the other. Use a clip to keep the end of the braid together.
  2. When you have completed the braid, gather all of the hair that isn’t in the braid and secure it into a low side bun. You may want to curl the sections of the bun and pin them up strategically to create a more intricate look.
  3. Remove the clip from the end of the braid. Pin the hair that is at the end of the braid into the bun using bobby pins.
  4. Spray everything with a light hold finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This style is great for someone who has a round face and wants it to appear slimmer and more narrow. If you have thick hair with not many layers, this is a great option for you!

Recommended Products:

I love Classic hairspray by Bumble and Bumble for a finishing spray that will give you significant hold, but won’t get crunchy or flaky.

The Chic Hippy Braid

Here’s a great way to create face framing and still keep a good portion of hair out of your face!

Chic Hippy Braid Hairstyle

How To Style:

  1. Use a medium-sized curling iron or wand to curl each section of your hair.
  2. When hair is curled, take a small section around your hairline that goes back about two inches. This section should be roughly span the distance between your eyebrows, or a little bit less. Separate this section into two pieces and begin a fishtail braid. You can also separate it into three sections and begin a regular French braid.
  3. Once you have completed the braid, use a bobby pin to secure it in the crown section of your head.
  4. Spray everything with a light hold finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This style totally rocks if you have long, medium or short hair. Someone who is looking to soften a harsh jaw line would love this look!

Recommended Products:

If you have hair on the finer side, try spraying some dry shampoo in the section that will be braided. It helps to create a little grip when braiding and doesn’t allow your hair to be so slippery and soft.

The Below Deck Braid

Here’s a stunning look that will have you standing out in a sea of braided updos!

Stunning Low Braided Hairstyle Stunning Low Braided Hairstyle Back View

How To Style:

  1. Begin by separating a two to three inch-wide section of hair at the nape of your neck that goes from below one ear to the other.
  2. On one side, separate this section into three pieces. French braid this hair and secure it with a small ponytail holder.
  3. Curl the remainder of your hair using a 1¼-inch curling iron.
  4. Using bobby pins, pin some of the curls above the braid so that the braid shows. Pin the remainder of the hair into place on one side of your head.
  5. Spray everything with a light hold finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

I love this look for anyone who wants to elongate their rounder face. Longer hair will work best for this look since it will be easiest to braid.

Recommended Products:

I love adding in some shine spray or serum to curls after you have completed your style. Try Shine by Bumble and Bumble. Spray a little in your hands and then apply it from the midshaft of your hair to the ends.

Tip:

Be patient! Since this braid is on the back of your head, it adds a bit of a challenge. Give it a try or two before you get frustrated and give up. It takes some adjusting to get your hands to work in the way you want them to for this one. You could also recruit a friend to do the braid for you!

The Double Trouble Braid

I love this look because it’s a unique and modern twist on French braided pigtails. Another bonus is that it keeps your hair out of your face while still looking fabulous!

Modern Double Braid Hairstyle Modern Double Braid Hairstyle Back View

How To Style:

  1. Part your hair as desired. Don’t define your part past the crown of your head. On one side, separate your hair into three sections at your hairline and begin French braiding until you reach the nape of your neck. Complete the same process on the other side.
  2. When you reach the nape of your neck, combine the two braids and complete the braid so that it becomes one braid when it’s below the nape of your neck. Secure the ends with a ponytail holder.
  3. Twist the braid and hide the ends so it looks like a bun. Secure it to your head using bobby pins.
  4. Spray everything with a light finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This style will look the best on someone with longer, thick hair. This look will accentuate your features and frame your face, so most face shapes would be complemented by this look.

Recommended Products:

Try prepping your hair with a bit of a working hairspray before you begin. I love Moroccan Oil Light Hairspray. This will give you some grip when completing your braids and help them to stay better!

Tip:

When braiding in the back, be sure to keep it loose. You don’t want this to look like two traditional pigtail braids, so don’t define your part in the back of your head.

The Braid To Pony Babe

Little mini side braids make an everyday pony one of the prettiest (and unique) braided updos we’ve seen!

Pony Tail with Mini Side Braided Updos Pony Tail with Mini Side Braids Side View

How To Style:

  1. Begin by separating two sections on either side of your head for the braids. The sections should be about two inches in width.
  2. Either tightly braid or twist the hair in the sections. When you reach the back middle of your head, secure the braids with a bobby pin momentarily.
  3. Back comb the top “Mohawk” section of your head, as well as your crown area.
  4. Gather your hair into a ponytail in the back middle of your head and secure it with a ponytail holder. Remove the bobby pins from the ends of the braids and wrap the ends around the ponytail holder to hide it.
  5. Spray everything with a strong hold hairspray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This style will be the easiest to create if you have thick hair with minimal layering. If you have bangs like the ones in the picture, this style will work well for you! A heart shaped face would really be complemented by this style.

Recommended Products:

I love using dry shampoo when back combing. It will give you excellent volume at the roots. Try Fresh Hair by Kevin Murphy. It smells great AND it won’t give your hair a white cast like some dry shampoos do!

The Extra Big Hair Braid

If it’s big hair you want, this is for you! The braid makes the 80’s style ‘do modern and trendy.

Trendy Big Hair Braided Updo

How To Style:

  1. Using bobby pins, tightly secure back the two side sections of hair on either side of your head.
  2. Using a 1-inch curling iron, curl the section of hair on top of your head that is not in a bobby pin.
  3. Back comb the hair on top of your head that you have just curled that remains out of the bobby pins.. If needed, secure pieces to your head using more bobby pins. Strategically place your hair so it covers all pins or clips.
  4. When the “Mohawk” section has been back combed and the desired height has been reached, braid the hair that is left out. Secure it with a ponytail holder at the bottom.
  5. Spray with a strong hold hairspray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This style will only work for those with long hair that is on the thicker side. It will give a small, compact face a lot of length and really showcase your features.

Recommended Products:

Volume like this requires some serious back combing skills! Try using a back combing brush instead of a comb. I love the Little Wonder Brush by Spornette.

Tip:

Try to be gentle on your hair when combing out a style like this. Start at the bottom and work your way to the root to remove all the back combing. Getting something like this out can cause breakage, so be cautious!

The Waterfall Wonder

The waterfall braid has become one of the more popular braided updos of late. This half up, half down style is absolutely stunning and is a great option for a casual day activity or a night out!

Long Curly Updo Hairstyle with Waterfall Braid Long Curly Updo Hairstyle with Waterfall Braid Back View

How To Style:

  1. Begin your waterfall braid on one side of your head. This is done by completing a traditional French braid, but letting the bottom section of the braid fall out each time. Stop the braid at the back middle section of your head. Secure the end with a bobby pin.
  2. Complete the same braid on the other side of your head. When the two meet in the middle back section of your head, secure them using a bobby pin.
  3. If desired, curl the hair that is not braided using a 1¼-inch curling iron.
  4. Spray everything with a light hold finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This style is great on fine, medium or thick hair, and it will work for long or short hair. The hair left down around the face is a great way to soften harsh features.

Recommended Products:

I love Redken’s Light Hold Finishing Spray for keeping your ‘do in place!

The Ultimate Braided Bun

If it’s drama and class you want, then this is the braided updo for you! And it will work with or without bangs!

Braided Bun Hairstyle Side View Braided Bun Hairstyle

How To Style:

  1. If desired, leave out your bangs.
  2. Secure all hair back in a tight ponytail that’s in the back upper section of your head.
  3. Leave out a large section at the bottom of the ponytail for the braid that will go over the bun.
  4. Secure the rest of the hair in the ponytail up into a bun. A sock bun is an option as well!
  5. Braid the section of hair you have left out. Wrap it around the bun. Secure it with a bobby pin.
  6. Spray everything with a strong hold finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This style is awesome for anyone with very thick, long hair. It will be hard to create if you have fine, short hair. This braided bun will look great on someone with a narrower or oval face shape.

Recommended Products:

This style requires some serious hairspray to keep those flyaways tamed! Try 360 Hairspray by Unite.

Tips:

If you don’t have quite enough hair to create a thick braid like the one shown here, don’t be afraid to add a little extra in! One clip-in extension would add a lot to a look like this.

The Tri-Braid Tease

Practice your braiding skills for this one, ladies! It could take a little extra practice to get this one just right, but once you do, you will be the star in the sea of braided updos!

Long Curly Hairstyle with Tri Braid

How To Style:

  1. In the front of your head, section the hair around your hairline into three sections, each about 1.5 to 2 inches thick. These will become the three braids.
  2. Braid each section so you end up with three French braids. Secure the ends of each with a bobby pin.
  3. Curl the rest of your hair using a 1¼-inch curling iron. Strategically place the bobby pins holding the braid together beneath a curl so they are hidden.
  4. Spray everything with a light hold finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This style is great for those with thick hair. It’s also a great way to get your bangs out of your face. A round face shape would be elongated by this look.

Recommended Products:

A good curling iron is crucial to a good style. I love the Hot Tools curling irons. They are affordable and they last!

The Big Sexy Braid

The big, sexy hair on top really makes the intricate braids in this style stand out!

Big Sexy Updo with Braids Side View Big Sexy Updo with Braids

How To Style:

  1. Section off the hair on either side of your head to braid. Leave out the top “Mohawk” section.
  2. Begin French braiding the hair on either side of your head until you reach the nape of your neck. Secure the end of the braid with a ponytail holder.
  3. Back comb the section of hair that was left out of the braids. Twist the hair in the back and then create a low bun or chignon at the nape of your neck.
  4. Wrap the ends of the braids around the bun and secure them using a bobby pin.
  5. Spray everything with a strong hold finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This look is ideal for someone with extra long, thick hair. If you have a compact or round face, this style will elongate it!

Recommended Products:

Try some dry shampoo or volumizing powder at your roots when back combing. I love Powder Puff by Kevin Murphy.

Tips:

Be patient! Braiding can often take a lot of practice, especially if you have a lot of hair. Give yourself time to practice before expecting to get this one just right.

The Simple and Sweet Braid

This look is ultra simple and understated. However, it still puts a fun twist on an otherwise ordinary low side bun!

Simple Sweet Hairstyle Braided Updo Hairstyle Back View Simple Sweet Hairstyle Braided Updo Hairstyle

How To Style:

  1. Leave out a section of hair by your face for a curl if you wish.
  2. Begin French braiding your hair so that the braid cascades from the top of one ear to below the other. Secure the end of the braid with a ponytail holder.
  3. Twist the end of the braid up so it creates a messy bun. Use bobby pins to secure pieces to your head.
  4. Spray everything with a light hold finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This look is great for someone with little to no layering and who wants to get their hair back and away from the face. This look could complement any face shape.

Recommended Products:

If you have fine, slippery hair, spray your hair with a working spray before you start the braid. It will give your hair a little grit so you will have something to work with!

The Multi-Braid Masterpiece

The subtle detail of these braids can add plenty to your look and really dress it up for a night out!

Short Curly Hairstyle with Side Braids Short Curly Hairstyle with Side Braids Front View

How To Style:

  1. Section off four to five ½-inch sections of hair on one side of your head.
  2. Braid (or twist) the sections until you reach the end of your ear. Secure the ends with tiny hair ties that are clear.
  3. Curl the rest of your hair and strategically place the curls so that the hide the hair ties.
  4. Spray everything with a light hold finishing spray.

Best Face Shape and Hair Type:

This look is great for someone with long or short hair. Harsh or sharp features would be softened by this style.

Recommended Products:

I love Classic Hairspray by Bumble and Bumble to finish off your look. It has a good amount of hold without getting too sticky or crunchy!

Adding a braid to an otherwise average style gives you a whole new opportunity to make your look unique and trendy. Don’t be afraid to experiment and step out of the box a bit. Braiding may look like a challenge, but once you give it a try you may be pleasantly surprised at how the beautiful braided updos can be!