How To Create Halo Braids – SS12
With locks coiffed into softly braided relaxed updos, the feel at Valentino’s spring summer 2012 was decidedly romantic. Skin was given a flawless finish and cheeks were brushed with rose powder to augment the amorous aesthetic. To recreate a similar style, Sam Burnet, RUSH Hair artistic team and session team member, suggests prepping hair with a volumising spray to create the perfect base to work from.
‘Treat hair with L’Oreal Techni Art Full Volume Extra (£8.24) before blow drying – it’ll bulk out your hair and make it easier to work with. Take a section from the top of one ear to the other and clip it flat out of the way. Brush the remaining hair forwards, starting at the left ear, braiding hair clockwise bringing each section of hair to the hairline, continue this until you reach the other ear,’ Burnet advises.
‘Release the clipped away hair and continue to scalp braid in the same fashion until you get back to where you started, continue plating the remaining hair and fasten with a hair band. Using your scalp braid as a guide secure the lose plait in to position with a kirby grip and secure with hair spray.’
To take your look from day to night, Burnet suggests fanning out your plaits with your fingers to soften the look. ‘Expand the shape of your braids by teasing them with your fingers and letting lose strands drop down before securing your style with a spritz of L’Oreal Techni Art Air Fix (£7.75). Alternatively you could smooth the hair first, part on the side plait from back to front creating a more glossy and sophisticated version of the halo braid,’ Burnet concludes.
Trading bulky braids for fiercely feminine fishtail plaits, Glee star Dianna Agron gave the halo braid style red carpet finesse. Don’t worry if your locks aren’t long, you can still trial the trend - simply follow celebrity stylist Paul Edmond’s tips to adapt the look for shorter hair.
‘If you have short hair, keep the braid at the front section of your hair as opposed to attempting to craft a halo braid that extends around the whole head. Even though you won’t be able to create the full look with short hair, if you plait a section just across the front you’ll be able to achieve the essence of Agron’s style. For a softer, more ethereal look, use a tail comb in the plait to pull at it, making it smooth. Then roughen the plait to lift it a little and run fingers down the braids for a tousled look.’
‘Regardless of the length of your hair, it’s crucial to inject moisture into locks for a smooth finish. Firstly shampoo and roughly blow dry hair before adding a nourishing oil to replenish tresses. I recommend using Kérastase Elixir Ultime (£29.30) or Shu Uemura Essence Absolue (£39.50) so hair is soft and easy to braid. Once you’ve finished styling, use a hairspray like Shu Uemura Sheer Lacquer (£16.75) to give a firm hold – it’s easier than using a texture product to hold the braid,’ advises Edmonds.
'Most hair types suit this style except very silky hair as you need textured hair for your plaits to stay put. For those with silky hair, I would recommend using a light mousse to give some extra texture or if your hair is a bit frizzy or unruly, blend a bit of wax into the plait for a smooth, sleek finish,’ Edmonds suggests.
While some catwalk styles were ruffled and ethereal, flyaways and frizz were banned backstage at Moschino to let super sleek halo braids take centre stage. To get an equally polished finish, celebrity hairdresser Richard Ward has shared his styling secrets.
‘All hair types can be plaited, and are therefore great for halo braids. Thicker hair types are better, but if you do have fine hair, you’ll need to go load up on product. Try applying a small amount of wax onto your fingers as you plait for hair to tame any flyaways for the sleek finish spotted at Moschino.’
‘If you have fine hair, the trick is to give your hair as much body, volume and substance as you can, so you effectively have more hair to work with. Try backcombing your hair and spritzing all over with hair spray like Couture Hair Stabiliser by Richard Ward (£18) before your start plaiting to give the hair grip and extra body,’ suggests Ward.
‘If you’re going to create this look at home, use day old hair as it’ll help your plait to grip better. The general technique that you’ll need to master is French plaiting. Start by braiding the bottom section of hair and plait around your hairline, introducing more and more sections of hair as you go. Use plenty of Kirby grips and pins as you go and spritz with hairspray to keep your locks in place.’
‘A tail comb is essential for creating strong sections of hair which will then be used to create the plait. Also, hair products like wax or texturisers are also great for giving your hair grip, so your style has longevity and doesn’t slip out over the course of the day,’ Ward concludes.
Channelling Moschino’s smooth and shiny styles, Frieda Pinto’s sleek blow dry was coiffed into a halo braid that culminated in a low chignon, giving her flawless finish make-up and smoky eyes undone appeal. To channel the look, follow member of the global Ojon styling team, Michele Riccio’s, simple styling tips.
‘Halo braids, like Pinto’s, are spot on for summer months as they keep longer hair up whilst also looking stylish. For a similar style, hair ideally needs to be at least eight inches long and thick as finer hair won’t give you a full-bodied look.’
‘For a similarly sleek style you need to invest in products that will leave your locks smooth and easy to braid. Start by shampooing with Ojon’s new Super Sleek Smoothing Shampoo (£20) and conditioner (£20) – the sulphate free formulas are packed with keratin to help repel humidity and smooth flyaways. Follow up with Ojon’s Instant Restorative Hair Serum (£16) before plaiting hair and finish with finishing spray to keep the style in place.’
‘For plaits like Pinto’s, simply divide the into 2 from the crown downwards. Then divide each section into 3 pieces & braid all the way to the ends & secure with a band. Repeat on other side. Then take both braids & cross over on crown & secure with grips,’ Riccio suggests.
Halo braids don’t have to be saved for just the outskirts of your hair, with a plait running in place of a centre parting as well as framing the hair line, the glamorous updos at Valentino were heavily textured and sculpted. To nail the look, Flavien Abbas, senior art director, and Josh Rees Hole, senior hair stylist, both of Urban Retreat Harrods, have revealed their styling secrets.
‘To nail the natural look spotted at Valentino, I would use practically no products but hair bands and fine pins. For the glossy groomed look, hair spray, serum or a dollop of conditioner are all products to keep in your styling arsenal. While the Valentino hairstyles are heavily structured, the easiest way to style hair similarly is to create a middle parting from the hair line right down to the neck then divide hair into two plaits before pinning them back up to the top of your head following your hair line,’ suggest Abbas.
Alternately, for a less polished aesthetic, Hole suggests adding volume and texture with products first. ‘To get the perfect boho chic look for the festival season blow dry your hair using the fantastic Unite Expanda Volume (£14.85) to add volume and structure to the hair. Once dry, tong hair using the Babyliss Pro Ceramic Tong (£27.50) then put the hair back into a ponytail, plait locks and secure the style with hair band. Finally, pull the hair apart out from the braid and around the hair line and secure with some grips,’ adds Hole.
‘To this look from day to night blow dry hair as usual then try plaiting the hair in a fish tail plait and leaving small amounts of hair around the perimeter of the hair line. Tong the hair and add some Moroccanoil Luminous Hairspray (£16.65) to fix the look for a night out,’ concludes Hole.
While the catwalks were dominated by halo braids that framed models’ faces, the manner by which Charlize Theron’s stylist worked the trend was an altogether different affair. With hair parted at the side, the braids began just above the starlet’s ear leaving her side-swept fringe loose. For a similarly wearable way to work the look, Marc Trinder, art team director at Charles Worthington Salons, suggests injecting hair with texture and volume before starting to style.
‘A pre blow dry product such as Front Row Turn Up the Volume Spay by Charles Worthington (£6.29) or a mousse used on your roughly dried hair will help to achieve a chunky texture to take away the softness of freshly washed hair. Or if you have really fine hair, try using a mattifying powder or a dry shampoo such as Charles Worthington’s Front Row Refresh and Revive Dry Shampoo to obtain a padded texture. Lots of hairspray when braiding can also help keep strands in place under control.’
‘To get the look, divide your hair into two sections from ear to ear, crossing through the crown. Secure both sections into two ponytails - the top ponytail at your left temple and the bottom to the right behind the ear. Then plait each in a loose chunky traditional way and then use a small clear elastic snag band to secure each one. Lastly, wrap them around the circumference flat to the head, so they appear as one and secure with hair grips. Then pull sections of the French plait gently out so it looks slightly dishevelled.’
‘This style can easily be taken from day to night by loosening and distressing with a little salt spray such as Front Row Rough and Tousled Salt Spray (£6.29), you can also loosen a few strands around the hairline by pulling out fine hairs from the braid to give a soft and sultry look,’ Trinder concludes.
Click here to go to the original article on Red Online
Click here to see Wispy Hairstyles
Click here to see Conditioner
Click here to see Hair Oils