5 Gorgeous Beach Braids

Some of the best things about summer, like endless hours splashing in the ocean and long days floating at the pool, can be tough on our hair. Swimming around and lying on a windy beach with your hair long and loose can result in some nightmarish tangles and issues, so why not keep your hair back and look trendy doing it? Braids are a hot hairstyle this summer, having been rocked by celebrities like Kim Kardashian, Nina Dobrev and Beyonce because they’re not only stylish, but practical as well. With these five braid ideas, you’ll have the best beach ‘dos (and your hair will thank you later).

1. Side Braid

Side braids are a simple and pretty way to keep your hair back. They’re so easy, you don’t even need a mirror to do them!

What you’ll need

  • Brush
  • Root lifter
  • Hair tie
  • Finishing spray

Directions

  1. Dellaria Salon’s owner and master stylist, Franco DiRienzo, suggests starting with a root lifter, like KMS Add Volume Root and Body Lift ($16.99), to create some volume. DiRienzo says to spray this “to the top of your head and back-brush [your hair] to create a little volume, and then lightly smooth it back with fingers; you’re not going for perfect.”
  2. After parting your hair on a side, “gather hair to the opposite side of your part, low and off to the side,” DiRienzo says.
  3. Split your hair into three chunks and braid it all the way to the end, securing it with a fun-colored hair tie.
  4. Tug the braid horizontally starting from the top and going to the bottom to get a wider and messier braid.
  5. Finally, DiRienzo says to use It’s a 10 Miracle Finishing Spray ($10) to make your hair shiny and help resist humidity.

2. Fishtail Braid

Where else would a fishtail fit in better than at a beach?

What you’ll need

  • Brush
  • Root lifter
  • Hair tie
  • Finishing spray

Directions

  1. To achieve this gorgeous look, start the same way you would a simple braid: spray a root lifter on your hair, back-brush your hair, somewhat smooth it and give yourself a side part.
  2. Pull your hair low to the side and divide it into two sections.
  3. DiRienzo says, “work your way down by taking a thin piece from the outside right section and joining it with the left. Then do the reverse: a thin piece of hair from the outside left and join it to the right.”
  4. Once you have about an inch left, stop and secure your hair with a hair tie.
  5. “I personally like loose, undone … braids the best,” says celebrity hair stylist John Francis, who has worked with celebrities such as Blake Lively, Hayden Panettiere and Hilary Duff. To give your hair a messier look, pull the braid horizontally all the way down. Then, spray a light coat of Bumble and bumble Shine On Finishing Spray ($28).

3. Halo Twist Braid

A halo twist braid is a great way to get your hair up and look like a goddess at the same time.

What you’ll need

  • Brush
  • Clear hair elastic

Directions

Chell Love of Ted Gibson Beauty takes us step-by-step on how to achieve this look:

  1. Starting in the back of your head, make a middle part.  
  2. Create two sections of hair (a right and a left section).
  3. Begin to twist the right section along with the left section and cross them over each other.
  4. After crossing the sections, pick up another small section, intertwine it with the right section and cross again.
  5. Continue to pick and twist using the right section to intertwine the hair, moving the twist braid around your whole head. Use an elastic at the end and tuck it into the twist.

4. Braided Ponytail

Braided ponytails were once sporty and are now chic, thanks to celebrities like Emma Stone and Blake Lively. These braids are so easy, you don’t need a YouTube tutorial to learn how to do one.

What you’ll need

  • Brush
  • Hair tie

Directions

  1. Use a brush to give yourself a smooth, high ponytail.
  2. From there, you can decide what kind of braid to do. “A braided ponytail in the traditional three-section braid is always a staple, being a sophisticated and sleek look,” Francis says. Or, you can mix it up by doing a fishtail braid down to the bottom. Fishtails “give a unique two-texture look,” Francis says.
  3. Secure the bottom of the braid with a clear hair tie, ribbon or colorful cloth hair tie for a fun summer look.

5. Braided Bun

Buns are so in these days, and they’re even sturdier and more beach-ready when braided.

What you’ll need

  • Brush
  • Bobby pins
  • Hair tie (optional)

Directions

  1. Brush your hair back into a smooth ponytail and secure it at the top of the back of your head.
  2. Braid the ponytail down until there is an inch left of hair, and secure it with a clear hair tie. “Braid tightly for a smooth sleek look, or braid loosely for a bigger, softer look,” says DiRienzo.
  3. Wrap all of the braid around the ponytail’s base and secure it with criss-crossing bobby pins. You can also add a hair tie around the whole bun if you need the added support.

The five types of braids are both stylish and smart. You’re protecting your hair from the summer elements and looking so good while doing it. With these tips, your hair will be the envy of all the other beach bunnies. Happy braiding!