The great thing about summer is that messy hair is almost always in. I’m not sure if it’s the fact that it’s reminiscent of the beach (because no one’s hair looks perfect on the beach) or if it’s just the carefree nature that summer always brings, but hair that looks messy is essential for a perfect summer time look.
However, I love doing things with my hair, and I love braiding. Now that my hair’s finally long enough to actually braid, I’ve been experimenting with a few styles.
The figure 8 braid is a really simple, messy look that I got when toying around with my hair. It’s fairly easy to do, doesn’t take much time (recording myself braiding my hair, the video was around 3 minutes), and achieves the ever-elusive quality of “I’m carefree enough to have my hair messy, but I take time on my appearance as well.”
So, let’s get started! All you’ll need is a headband (preferably in the same colour scheme as your hair or discreet, like a clear rubber tie, but all I had was a bulky, black hair tie stolen from my roommate).
Take your hair into a side ponytail. Separate your hair into three sections. The middle section should be smaller than the other two—about an inch wide. This middle section is the only part of the braid that actually moves—unlike a French braid, in which you move all three strands, the middle section is what creates the ‘figure 8’.
Now we’re beginning the braid. This is the tricky part, because it’s very easy to get mixed up. Take the middle section and bring it across the top of the outermost section (the one furthest away from your head/neck).
… but instead of making a loop, you’re going to wrap it around the bottom of the inner strand as well.
Loop the middle section around the top of the innermost strand. Now the middle section should be in its original position. Add some hair from either side (alternating sides when the strand returns to the middle) and repeat.
Tie your braid with a hair tie. Gently tug and pull the braid until it becomes loose and ‘messy’.
It’s fairly simple, although it sounds/looks complicated in practise. The reason I call it the figure 8 braid is because the middle strand of hair literally makes a figure 8 pattern around the two strands of hair, binding them together.
Here’s to a summer’s worth of great hair (and happiness after being done with conference),