Braids at the Prom

When you think of braids, you probably think of Pipi Longstocking, little girls playing, or how grandma used to braid her long hair before bed each night. But braids are so versatile, they can be great for any occasion, even prom.

Rather than the traditional down-the-back braid, think braids that are loose and flowy, woven with flowers, or used as part of a dressier style. French braids are always a great style for almost any look.

Like many other simple hairstyles, braids can be dressed up or dressed down to meet the occasion. French braids have been a classic at the prom for decades. French braids can be worn to the side or woven with ribbons and adorned with flowers to make them prom appropriate. Try a reverse French braid or a four-strand braid for a change of pace. And French braids, one on each side, that meet at the nape of the neck and form a braided cascade are so pretty!

To add fullness and help dress up the basic braid, try curling your hair first. Use either a medium barrel curling iron or rollers curl your hair first. Don't brush out the curls, but rather finger comb your hair. Now, try a traditional braid or French braid. Curling the hair first gives the braid texture and fullness and transforms the plain, boring braid into a classy prom style.

To keep the braid from looking too stuffy, let some of the hair fall loose. If you lose some of the strands while youíre braiding, especially some of the shorter strands along the hairline, let them fall. Leave them as they are or try curling them into little wisps that frame your face.

If you have very long and thick hair, you can try a very loose traditional braid. Let your hair air dry after washing it and donít flat iron it before braiding so that it has lots of texture and fullness. Then loosely braid your hair simply down the back or a bit to the side. Try this with and without ribbons, flowers, and other adornments. Most times, all that you need is the braid itself. No decorations required.

After you've braided your hair, you can try pinning it up for a dressier look. Stay away from stiff styling products since this is a style which embraces a bit of messiness.

These prom braids sure aren't the same braids you wore as a little girl. You wonít end up looking like Raggedy Anne, but more like Katherine Hiegel or Kate Hudson. The little girl braid has grown up into a beautiful prom style.

These braids, soft and full, add a touch of casual elegance to any prom look.