Celebrity stylist Sarah Potempa has been posting #365DaysOfBraids on Instagram every day since January, so it's fair to say she's got the braid thing handled. Sarah created 14 braids for Cosmopolitan.com, and these aren't your average traditional three-strand braid how-tos.
Disclaimer: You might have to be more of an advanced braider to pull these off — and even have a friend over to help execute some of them — but they're worth it because they're *~BeAuTiFuL~* and will get you a ton of likes on social media.
1. Beachy Side Dutch Fishtail Ponytail
1. Take a large side section of hair and separate it in to two pieces. Take a small section from the left and send it under, adding it to the right section of hair. Then, take a small section from the right and send it under, adding it to the left section of hair. Continue to Dutch fishtail braid the hair.
2. Pull all your hair into a high ponytail.
3. Curl the hair that isn't braided for a party-perfect finished look.
2. French Braid Roll-Up Braid
1. Create a loose French braid on the left side all the way down.
2. To add volume, pull at the edges of the braid.
3. Add a stretchy headband over your head and roll the hair up into it, tucking the hair into the headband.
3. Loop-Knotted Braid Updo
1. Tie a knot: Separate hair in two sections on top, and loop the left section over and through the right.
2. Hold the two ends of the knotted hair together to create one section. Pick up a new section from the root to have two sections again (similar to how you would create a French braid).
3. Take the right section this time and send it over and through, tying another knot. Continue by repeating steps one and two until you get to the ends.
4. Secure the braid with an elastic, tug on the loops to make them larger if you'd like, and then roll the end of the braid up into a low bun.
4. Zigzag Wrap-Up Top Knot
1. Section the hairline in a clean C-shape part and add mousse to the remainder of your hair for a cleaner finish. Start by creating a three-strand Dutch braid across your hairline and weave the hair in the other direction to create the zigzag effect until you reach the crown of your head.
2. Spray a flexible hairspray onto a styling brush, like the Beachwaver Co. On Set Styling Brush, and use it to put your hair up into a smooth high ponytail.
3. Put the tail into a bun with your hands or pull your ponytail through the Wrap Up Bun, pinch it closed, roll it down, and bend the two ends back for the perfect top knot.
5. Stacked Boxed Fishtail Flower Bun
1. Pull your hair into a low ponytail and separate into two sections.
2. Take a small section from the right, separate it into two pieces and send one piece over the top and add it to the left. Then, send the other piece under and add it to the left section.
3. Take a small section from the left, separate it into two and send one piece over the top and add it to the right. Send the other piece under and add it to the right section. Continue to repeat all the way down for a 3-D fishtail box braid. Then, create the flower bun...
4. Separate the edges of the boxed fishtail by tugging on the sides of the back of the braid.
5. Pull your hair up into a loose bun by wrapping it around and pinning it in place.
6. Snake Braid and Beach Waves
1. Curl your hair.
2. Braid a simple, clean, three-strand braid 2 inches back from your hairline.
3. Holding the middle strand only, push the braid toward your roots.
4. Pull the two strands back down gently and adjust to create a snake effect, and secure the braid with a clear elastic.
7. French Fishtail Mermaid Braid
1. Create a center part and braid your hair to the left side of the part into a 3-strand braid.
2. Fishtail braid the hair on the right side of the part by separating the hair in two, pulling a small piece from the right and adding it to the left. Then, pull a small piece from the left and add to the right. Continue until you reach the ends.
3. Take both braids and wrap them up and pin them into a milkmaid braid.
8. Ponytail Mohawk Braid
1. Brush your hair into three ponytails down the center of your head.
2. Braid each ponytail.
3. Loosen the braids by pulling on the sides. Wrap each braid into a loose bun and secure with bobby pins.
9. Double Waterfall Braid Plus 2-Strand Braid
1. Curl your hair to get the perfect loose waves.
2. Start with a three-strand braid. With each section that passes over to the right, leave it down to create a waterfall effect. Then, replace that section with a new strand of hair from the root. Continue this all the way to the back of your head.
3. Create a second waterfall braid by adding the hair from the first braid that's hanging down, passing it through the second braid, and then adding a new section from the bottom root each time.
4. Create a two-strand braid on the left side.
5. Add all three braids together into a braid and secure with an elastic.
10. Knitted Mohawk Low Ponytail
1. Curl your hair to create volume and movement.
2. Separate hair into two sections and pull the left section over and through (like you're tying a knot).
3. Add the two sections together to form one section and grab a new section of hair from the root. Then, repeat the large knotted technique.
4. As you reach the bottom, create a three-strand braid to the ends. Then, pull the braid apart gently to make it appear thicker than it is.
11. Celtic Knot Headband With Waves
1. Curl your hair.
2. To create the knotted headband, section a horizontal piece and separate it into two pieces. Loop one side under and through (aka tie it). Repeat and send the left and right sections under the next two loops to add it to the third knot.
3. Continue to add the pieces under and to the third piece as you move down. Secure with an elastic.
12. Braided Bridal Bun
1. Starting on the left side, Dutch braid the hair by only adding hair from the root to the top section.
2. After braiding all the way across, start weaving the hair downward by adding sections from the root on the side and lower back only. Complete the braid all the way down.
3. Pancake the hair by pulling the edges out to make it appear thicker. Wrap the hair around itself and secure with bobby pins in to a low bun.
13. Fishtail Milkmaid Braid
1. Create a center part.
2. Braid your hair on the left side of the part into a three-strand braid.
3. Fishtail braid the hair on the right by separating the hair in two sections. Next, pull a small piece from the right and add it to the left side, then pull a small piece from the left and add to the right side.
4. Take both braids and wrap them up and pin them into a milkmaid braid.
14. Zipper Braid
1. Apply Aussie's Mousse + Leave In Conditioner onto your hair to create a flyaway-free braid. Then, separate your hair into three sections where you want the braid to begin.
2. Take the middle strand and take it over the left strand, then take the new middle strand and take it over the right strand. This completes your first stitch of the braid.
3. Now, take the new middle strand and cross it over the left strand again, take it under the two strands to the right, and have your friend hold the piece of hair so the braid stays tight.
4. Pick up a tiny section of hair on the right side of your head, which will become the new strand, and take that piece over the middle strand, under the left strand, and have your friend hold it again.
5. Grab a section of hair on the left side of your head, cross it over the middle strand and under the right strand, and have your BFF hold it again (she should have two strands of hair in her right hand).
6. Take the first strand she was holding, bring it under the new strand you just gave her, and add it to the middle strand.
7. Section off more hair from the right side, take it over the middle strand and then under the left strand, and have your friend hold this second piece of hair.
8. Then, take the first strand of hair from her, weave it under the second strand you just gave her, and add it to the middle strand. Continue to repeat steps 5 and 6, and then 7 and 8 until you reach the ends.