FRENCH BRAID OR DUTCH BRAID! Which Is The Best For Me And What’s The Difference?


I know you’ve been dreaming of making a braid of your hair for a long time now, after all, what’s there not to like about the famous French braids? If you can remember, you’ve been dreaming of making one since the time those cool sporty girls at school wore their hair in gorgeous French braids when they were totting off to practice. But you couldn’t get hold of it since the technique has been an alluring and elusive one for years as many were unable to master the look themselves. But thanks to trends, braiding has become even more popular in recent years, which has produced a slew of helpful articles describing how to achieve this coveted hairstyle for yourself.

But Just when we thought we had mastered the French braids of our dreams thanks to the internet, Dutch braids entered the chat and turned everything upside down. If you’re unfamiliar with the style, Dutch braids are essentially a reverse braid where you cross hair underneath each section instead of crossing over, as you would for French braids. These two hairstyles often get confused for one another as they’re very similar, but the techniques vary slightly to create different results.

We dove into the battle between the French braid and the Dutch braid to determine what makes them different and how to perfectly achieve both looks at home.


The French braid may not have originated in France

Despite its name, the French braid may have origins outside of France. According to Ipsy, some people believe the technique can be traced back 6,000 years to North Africa, whereas others believe it started during the Sung Dynasty in China around 960. Regardless of where this style originated, its popularity has remained intact for generations. If you want to join the braided elite and learn how to adopt this style yourself, you can do so with a few simple steps.

First, determine whether you want a single or a double braid and divide your hair accordingly. Next, you’ll need to split the hair into three separate sections at the crown of your head. Then you’ll cross the right strand over the centre before crossing the left strand over the centre. Repeat this motion a few times while maintaining the outside-strand-over-centre pattern as you descend your strands.


How to complete your French braid

After you’ve gotten the main pattern started, you’ll slowly add pieces of hair to the braid. As you grab the left section of braided hair, pull in additional pieces on the left side of your head and then repeat the motion for the right section. Be sure to do this in a straight line as this ensures you’ll create a tight braid and maintain the style more effectively. Once you bring the hair down the nape of your neck, you can finish with a traditional braiding technique before securing everything with a hair tie.

Ta-da! You’ve got a French braid. This hairstyle is great for numerous occasions, and you can French braid your hair when it’s wet to get gorgeous beach waves with minimal effort. Before you go to bed, section your hair into one or two French braids and spritz the strands with a moisturized texture spray. All you’ll need to do when you wake up is release the braids, give your hair another quick spray, and tousle with your fingers.


Dutch braids use a similar technique to French braiding but with one key difference

Like the French braid, you can fashion a Dutch braid into a single or a double plait depending on your preference. It requires a similar technique but instead of bringing the left and right sections of your hair over the centrepiece, you bring these sections underneath the centre, per Cosmopolitan. To do this properly, you’ll start by creating three sections in your hair near the crown of your head, like you would for a French braid.

Next, bring the left strands of hair under the centrepiece and repeat this motion with the right strands of hair. In doing so, you create the signature floating braid effect that distinguishes the Dutch braid from the French braid. Continue this motion until you’ve incorporated all your hair into the braid before tying it off with your favourite elastic. You can pin the braid as well if you want to create more of a milkmaid look, which is softer and slightly more unique.

Braid Hairstyles You’ll See Everywhere

2020 allowed us all to hit the reset button on fashion and beauty trends. Makeup took a back seat to basic skincare, comfort became the focus of fashion, and instead of straightening and curling our hair into submission, tired tresses got a much-needed break from heat styling and colour treatments.


The French braid

Taylor Swift’s messy French braid featured in Evermore is one inspiration behind this trend. The long braid beginning at the crown of the head looks like it was done without much fuss, and then became windswept and loose after a day spent walking in the woods.

Adam Reed, UK editorial ambassador for L’Oréal Professionnel, told Stylist, I absolutely love the new Taylor Swift album cover, the hair is right up my street, simple, supernatural and timeless.” He stresses that to properly achieve the look, you must embrace the carelessness of it: The key to Taylor’s braid on the cover is to not overthink it, it’s fine for some pieces to be bigger than others and loose hairs to fall down, it’s the undone done look that makes it work so well.


Long braids and twists

For natural hairstyles, next year’s braided themes will continue with this year’s popular trend of long, textured twists and braids, or even box braids if you prefer. These looks are not only stylish, as celebrity hairstylist and Tangle Teezer brand ambassador Takisha Sturdivant-Drew told InStyle, but they are also protected as well. Healthy, moisturized hair is the goal for every hair type, and these braids allow you to achieve length without excessive maintenance and heat styling. Take the look to the next level with your favourite accessories, which are one of the hottest trends anticipated for hair in 2021. Sturdivant-Drew explained, Next year will be all about elongated braids with beads, feathers, and some colourful hair jewellery.


Double Dutch braids

Both The Trend Spotter and Redken are predicting that double Dutch braids will be one of the hottest trends in hairstyles for the coming year. Not only do they help keep your hair out of your face and contained under hats and scarves for the long, cold winter months, but they are incredibly versatile and can be incorporated with other styles into crown braids or braids that seem to merge into buns.

As The Trend Spotter points out, Dutch braids are often called reverse French braids because the strands are plaited under rather than over to create a braid that, as they explain, “will stand out from your head rather than lying flat.” Double Dutch braids simply double the braid action on either side of a middle part.


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