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Master Braiding Curly Hair: 5 Easy Styles and Step-by-Step Tutorial (2023)

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how to braid curly hairYou know the struggle of trying to tame your wild curly mane. I feel you. Let’s braid this beast together, shall we?

Twists and knots, loops and weaves – playing with curly hair is an art. But it doesn’t have to be complicated. With some moisture, the right technique and a dose of patience, you can master five easy yet gorgeous braided styles for your curls.

From waterfall braids to Dutch crown braids, these step-by-step tutorials will teach you how to braid curly hair like a pro. No more bad hair days ahead – only beautiful, bouncy braided styles that’ll make your curls shine.

Now grab a comb, secure those strands and let’s get braiding!

Key Takeaways

  • Section hair evenly for smooth braiding.
  • Use leave-in conditioner after taking down braids.
  • Try fishtail and waterfall braids for curly hair. The intricate plaits of fishtail and waterfall braids complement naturally curly hair.
  • Braiding damp hair results in voluminous curls when you take out the braids. The moisture helps define the curls.

Detangling Curly Hair Before Braiding

Detangling Curly Hair Before Braiding
Let’s start by gently detangling those gorgeous curls. Grab your Tangle Teezer Ultimate Detangler to smoothly brush through knots, then mist with a detangling spray to hydrate and further loosen tangles.

Tangle Teezer Brush

You’ve come a long way from those hair-pulling days of youth to finally cherishing your curls as the spirited expression they are. The curly-girl approved Tangle Teezer gently detangles and smoothes without breakage.

Reviewers praise its flex-teeth technology for wet, thick, curly tresses. Learn proper brushing techniques to maximize this tool’s benefits. Curlies, embrace detangling as self-care with quality haircare tools like the Tangle Teezer brush.

Detangling Spray

Fill that empty spray bottle with water to easily detangle and control frizz.

  1. Mist hair in sections, targeting tangles starting at the ends first.
  2. Alternate between using your fingers or a wide-tooth comb.
  3. Re-wet as needed and don’t force the comb through knots.

Curly hair tangles stand no chance against a quality detangling spray and gentle technique.

Sectioning and Smoothing Curly Hair

Sectioning and Smoothing Curly Hair
After detangling, part your hair into even sections for easy, smooth braiding.

Left Side Middle Right Side
Temple to ear Crown Temple to ear
Nape of neck Back of head Nape of neck
Above left ear Top/middle Above right ear

Start by sectioning hair from temple to ear on each side. Next, separate hair at the nape of the neck. Finally, section off remaining hair above each ear. Keep sections even and defined for optimal curl definition.

Use clips, ties or your fingers to hold sections taut. Apply product to each section as needed, smoothing any frizz before braiding.

French Braiding Curly Hair

French Braiding Curly Hair
When undertaking the daunting task of entwining your uncontrollably coiled locks, ensure each strand is gliding smoothly before initiating any intricate interweaving.

Start with a section at your crown and divide it into three strands. Cross the right strand under the middle then the left under the new middle. Incorporate a small section of hair into the right strand as you braid. Continue adding hair as you cross strands, keeping tension tight.

Make creative variations by braiding diagonally across your head or starting lower down.

  • Try a fishtail or Dutch braid for unique styling options.
  • Check for frizz and loose pieces throughout the day to keep your braid polished.
  • Add flair with braids across bangs or a cascading side braid.
  • Condition regularly and don’t scrub at knots to maintain your curls’ health.

Fishtail Braiding Curly Hair

Fishtail Braiding Curly Hair
Looking for a fun new braid for your curly hair? A fishtail braid is a beautiful, intricate plait that works well on curls.

Start by sectioning dry hair into two pieces at the nape of your neck. Take a small piece from the outside of one section, then cross it over into the opposite section. Continue alternating small sections from the outside edges into the opposite side to create a fishtail pattern.

Tightly braid all the way to the ends and secure with an elastic. For extra flair, thread ribbons through the braid as you work. Let the braid set overnight for defined waves and curls in the morning. A fishtail braid is the perfect way to add flair and style to your curly locks.

Braiding Wet Vs Dry Curly Hair

Braiding Wet Vs Dry Curly Hair
Braidin’ wet curly hair:

For braidin’ wet curly hair, be sure to apply plenty o’ conditioner for lots o’ slip.

  1. Smooth wet curly hair with a wide-tooth comb. If needed, add more conditioner or detangler.
  2. Separate clean curls into clean sections. Clip up sections to make braidin’ easier.
  3. Start slowly incorporatin’ small chunks of hair into a basic braid. As it dries, the hair will set in the braid shape.

Braidin’ wet locks lets ya reshape and stretch out curls temporarily without heat tools. Most find wet hair gentler and keeps length hangin’ longer than braidin’ when dry. The curls relax and unwind more softly. For max control and curl definition, braid when soppin’ wet with conditioner or a leavin’ in product.

But if ya prefer big voluminous curls or waves, braid damp hair instead. Wet braidin’ helps minimize frizz and breakage.

Maintaining Curly Hair After Braiding

Maintaining Curly Hair After Braiding
After taking down those beautiful braids, it’s time to get your curls back in shape. Frizz and dryness are common post-braiding, so start with a moisturizing hair mask.

Next, work in a leave-in conditioner, focusing on the ends. This helps restore moisture and definition. Now detangle gently with a wide-tooth comb or tangle teezer. If styling into a braid out, separate curls gently with your fingers to encourage the wave pattern.

Going forward, maintain braid-worthy curls with a weekly deep conditioning treatment. And seal in moisture daily with a curl cream or gel. Braiding wet hair can cause more frizz, so stick to braiding damp or dry hair.

With some TLC, your curls will bounce back better than ever.


And there you have it, all the ins and outs of braiding curly hair! With the right products, techniques, and practice, you too can master how to braid curly hair into gorgeous styles. Don’t be discouraged if it doesn’t come naturally at first – like shaping clouds in the sky, braiding curly hair is an artform that takes time and patience to refine.

But the journey will be an empowering one. Like dusk melting into moonlit night, each small triumph will illuminate your skills until braiding becomes second nature.

So grab your mane and get twisting, the allure of curly braids awaits!

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Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and beard care expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of men make their beards look better and get fatter. His work has been mentioned in countless notable publications on men's care and style and has been cited in Seeker, Wikihow, GQ, TED, and Buzzfeed.