Your hairstyle can make or break your look—and beautiful braids have the power to make your simple style statement-making in an instant. A great thing, a cascading waterfall braid will add some romantic and feminine vibe into your looks. If you’re looking for a great hairstyle for your girl’s night out, evening party, or a special occasion, keep reading for the waterfall braid inspirations that will make you more attractive.
What is Waterfall Braid?
Do you know that braids made a comeback when Alexander Wang sent models on the runway wearing sweatshirt and side braids in 2009? Thankfully, braids are timeless and chic, and they won’t go away anytime soon.
In fact, women of all cultures have embraced the braid hairstyles. No wonder some braids were named for the country that made them popular. Have you heard about the French braid, Dutch braid, and even Swiss braid? Also some of the braid tweaks were inspired by certain era or decade. While fishtail braid became popular in the ‘80s, double braids were prominent in the ‘60s.
The waterfall braid is closely linked to the French braid, but it has a more complicated, giving you a more sophisticated vibe with your hair down and flowing. The hairstyle will actually show off your long hair in a dreamy, whimsical, romantic way. In fact, some women associate the waterfall braid with a mermaid-inspired look, while others bring on the look with a bohemian twist.
There are lots of waterfall braids versions that are popping up—so you can have your pick. Also, braid hairstyles are creative and endless, and you can even mix different kinds of braids to create the unique look that you love.
What makes waterfall braids perfect for any occasion?
If you want to skip those hair damaging styling tools like curling and flat irons, braids are a way to go. Waterfall braids look feminine and romantic that will surely make a statement whether you’re all dressed up with a party dress or dressed down with a tee and jeans. A great thing, this hairstyle will work for all occasions from weddings to beach, from office to cocktail hours, from dinner dates to weekends and so on.
Beauty trends come and go, along with trendy hairstyles and looks. Luckily, braids especially waterfall braids are timeless and they’re not going away anytime soon. In fact, it would not be fair to consider them just a beauty trend—they can add some statement to your looks while making everything chic and effortless.
If you have lots of baby hair, waterfall braids are great to tame them in a more elegant and chic way. A great thing, this hairstyle also come in handy during summer when you don’t want to add some heat to the warm temperature. It will keep your hair polished and sleek without the need of brushing or restyling your hair on the noon.
Apart from it, waterfall braids can add some volume to your straight and flat hair. Just add some bouncy curls to your cascading waterfall braids and you’ll surely make a statement.
How to Do Waterfall Braids
Gather your hairstyling tools.
What exactly would you need when creating waterfall braids? Most of the time you’ll only need a comb, a brush, and some elastic bands, but it won’t hurt to be more prepared before styling your hair.
Think of bobby pins, hair clips, and hair ties that can secure your hair while braiding, as well as texture powder, setting hairspray, hair oil, hair serum, heat protecting spray and such to tame your flyaway strands and set your final look. You may even think of having a curling want or a flat iron near you just in case you wanted to add some twist to the typical waterfall braids.
As a styling hack, some hair experts even recommended placing a hair tie on your wrist before starting the braids. This way, you’ll only slip it off your wrist when you need to secure the braids, rather than asking for someone to hold the braid for you as you pick up a hair tie to secure it.
Prep your hair for braiding.
Remove those knots and tangles on your hair, so the process of braiding will be effortless. You should gently comb through tangles—there’s nothing worse than braiding a knotty hair and it could actually make the braiding process harder. Hair experts recommended using a wide-tooth comb if your hair is wet and a brush if it is dry. If you just stepped out of the shower, make sure your hair is fully dry before you start braiding it.
Do you know that some hair experts even recommended braiding your hair the day after you wash your hair? In fact, a day-old hair will look more flattering and natural due to the balance of natural oil in your scalp. If you feel uncomfortable, simply use a hairspray, hair serum, hair oil or even a leave on conditioner to make your hair more manageable and give some added grip.
Apart from it, mousse, styling gel, hair creams and setting sprays tame your baby hairs and flyaway hairs, making your waterfall braids sleeker and polished. According to a hair expert, adding hairspray to your hair will add some grip when you braid them.
Section your hair and begin braiding.
Most of the time, creating a side part will make your waterfall braids sleeker and neat on the top, and it can complement the cascading waterfall look of your hairstyle. Some women prefer it to be on the center, on the sides, or on a deep side part, but the latter actually let the waterfall braids to get that cascading look.
If you haven’t tried braiding before, you should pay attention to the position of your hands while braiding. To make the braiding process easier, place the two sections of your hair to one hand, and the other section of your hair to your other hand. This way, it will be easier to you to weave the braids.
Grab the heavy section of your hair and divide it into 3 parts. It would be better if the top strand is the nearest to your forehead, depending on how thin or thick you wanted your waterfall braids to be. If you divided your hair in the middle, you can start with whichever side that you like, but if you divided your hair with a deep side part, work on the section with the most hair.
This would be the base of your braids, so keep in mind the thinner your first section, the thinner your braid will look and vice versa. Just keep in mind that you should keep that tight, but not too tight tension while braiding to avoid loosening your braids. It would be unsightly to have that loose lumps in your waterfall braids.
Start the braid by weaving the three strands together as you would do in a regular braid. A rule of thumb, you should cross the strands closest to your hairline over the middle, then the bottom strand over it. Continue by crossing the bottom strand over the new middle strand.
Just go on with the braiding process by weaving new hair to the section of the hair you’re braiding. As a reminder, once you dropped the section of your hair, get a new portion on top behind that hanging strand. Cross the new portion the same way you started the three strand braiding technique.
Do you know that this three strand braiding technique is the universal way to make most braids? But on the last part of the process, you have to add new hair that’s not included in the 3 original sections you made. It’s also the same technique when doing the French braid, but the twist of letting the new strand hang down makes it a waterfall braid.
Also, waterfall braids are designed to be placed on your head horizontally rather than vertically just like French braids. The thing that makes the braid create that cascading waterfall effect is that you’ll leave the hanging piece rather than crossing it.
Keep in mind that the dropped strand should be replaced with a new strand that you can cross over the middle strand. Yes, the dropped portion of hair will serve as the waterfall piece on your hairstyle. But you have to cross the top strand and bottom strand once. Continue the process by repeating the braiding technique—grabbing the top stand and placing it the middle then letting it hang down.
By letting the strand hang down, it will blend with the unbraided hair. Just repeat the steps until you finished the rest of your hair.
Secure your braids and think of ways to make your hairstyle unique.
Once you’re done with braiding, secure your braids with some elastic band and you’re good to go! A great thing, waterfall braids are romantic, playful, at the same time versatile. Yes, you can do some tweaks on a waterfall braid to give you more creative and appealing look.
If you’re looking for that mermaid-inspired look, you can simply leave the cascading waterfall braid as is—falling naturally on your shoulders. The sweet hairstyle will actually take you from special affairs to date nights and weekends.
You can leave your hairstyle as is, but if you want a feminine yet effortless look, think of adding some twist to your braids. You can have them on a high or low pony tail at the back of your head—or opt for a half-updo with the help of a hair tie. You may also create a bun that will amp up your messy hair don’t care statement.
For a more romantic look, think of adding some glamorous waves and locks on your waterfall braids. If you want to add some curl to your hairstyle yet you don’t have that naturally wavy hair, curling iron is your best friend. Just pay attention to the beach waves on the ends of your hair and add some cute hair accessories to add some personality to your looks.
If you want to show off your creative and artistic skills with your hairstyle, go for a more elaborate braided look! Do you know that you can combine different kinds of braids in one hairstyle? Yes, your cascading waterfall braid can be mixed with fishtail braid too.
Finish your waterfall braids with a hairspray.
Braids tend to last longer than other hairstyles, but you still want to make them look polished and sleek even more. If you want that typical waterfall braids with cascading effect, you can add some texture to your hair with a sea salt spray, giving your that mermaid-inspired look.
If you’re aiming for beachy waves, add some setting mousse or hairspray to your curls right after you styled them with a curling iron. After all, your waterfall braids took some time and effort to complete, and making them last longer makes sense.
Hair Hacks for Waterfall Braids
For some women, braiding their own hair is a breeze, but if styling your hair often ends up looking like a bird’s nest rather than waterfall braids, then you need some hacks to make the process easier.
You can add some volume to your waterfall braids with hair extension.
If you got that thin, fine hair, adding some clip-in hair extensions to your hair will make your braids more voluminous and healthy. However, you need to attach them on the roots of your hair before you start braiding, so the thickness, volume, and bounce of your hairstyle will look natural. To avoid having issues with the fullness and length of your hair extensions, you should cut them to desired length accordingly.
You can elevate your braids by twisting them and securing them in place.
If you have that flat, straight hair, elevating your braids will add some volume to your hairstyle. Some hair experts recommended twisting the last section of your braids and securing them with a hair tie. If you don’t have a hair tie, simply cross the two hair pins or bobby pins together. Also, think of applying some texture powder to your braids to get some healthy and fuller look.
Second-day hair is the most ideal condition when doing braids.
Do you know that a dirty hair is best for braiding since it has the perfect, messy texture? If you’re worried about hygiene, don’t fret, you can dirty up your clean hair with products to make your hair sections easier to manipulate. Have you noticed that a newly washed hair feels slippery? To add some grip to your clean hair, add a bit of hair products like hairspray, wax, or pomade to make the process of braiding easier.
If you like, go for a texturizing powder instead to tame the frizz in your hair while volumizing your hair. A great thing, it will not only make your hairstyle fuller, but help it to last longer. Remember, the finishing touches you do on your waterfall braids will depend on the look you’re trying to achieve.
To make your waterfall braids neat, make your partings neat too.
Do you know that your partings play an important role to define your look? It can actually make your face look more proportioned, and if you’re donning an elaborate hairstyle, it can keep your look sleek and polished. For a waterfall braid hairstyle, having a deep straight part is essential.
The same thing applies to the uniform size of your hair sections, but keep in mind that the smaller the sections you get, the bigger your braids will look. To get the job done, use a rattail comb instead of your fingers to make things easier. Also use some hair clips to secure your stray hair, along with mirrors to make those hard to reach spots sleek.
Sleep in a silk scarf to make your waterfall braids last longer.
Prepping your hair before doing your braids will make your hairstyle last longer, but you also need to give some care and maintenance to your waterfall braids. Over time, braids tend to get some frizz, and if you’re going to stop friction, it will stay sleeker for a longer time.
If you’re going to sleep with your braids, opt for a silk pillowcase over a cotton one. Also, think of wrapping your head in the silk scarf to make your braids neat in the morning.
If you want a slightly messy waterfall braid, loosen your strands.
Do you know that braids, especially waterfall braids should have texture? If you’re just a beginner and you messed up while doing your braids, don’t fret as the flaws will give your waterfall braids some fresh, effortless vibe to your overall look.
If you’re an expert but you’re aiming for a slightly undone look, you may loosen your strands by gently pulling them from each hair section. Or, you may even get your waterfall braids done before bedtime. When you wake up, you’ll surely get that effortlessly cool waterfall braid with a bohemian twist.
Waterfall braid is one of the most beautiful hairstyles to wear, and with our guide, you’ll be able to master the look and make you more attractive.