TRiM Holiday Hair Tutorial #2: The 3D Braid Updo

If last week's holiday hair tutorial from TRiM Hair Salon whetted your appetite for more, you're in for a treat! Today's tutorial features another lovely braided updo by stylist and owner Sarah Stach. I love how my friend Paula's hair looks here. The upside-down French braid has a raised 3D texture, and gradually thickens and culminates in a ladylike side bun. Talk about drama.

This style is more advanced than the easy braided updo, but still something you can do on yourself with practice and patience. Or better yet, gather some girlfriends at your place, have a glass of wine, and braid each other's hair before your next big holiday party.

Ready for the step-by-step breakdown?

Step 1: Start with second-day (i.e. unwashed) hair. Spritz and brush dry shampoo like Kevin Murphy Fresh Hair throughout locks to absorb excess oil and create texture. Then spritz a gritty but touchable hairspray like Aveda Air Control throughout. This step is especially important if, like Paula, you have healthy and slippery strands, as it allows hair to hold styles better.

Step 2: Now it's time to set hair for more hold and grip. Divide hair into four sections: the crown, two side sections, and a back section. Wrap each section around a curling iron, winding in a direction away from the face. For very healthy locks like Paula's, hold for a couple extra seconds to make sure the curl has staying power.

Step 3: Brush out and loosen curls so you have a head of soft, voluminous waves.

Step 4: Create a deep side part. On the side with less hair, grab a small section and braid it 1, 2, 3 times to start the braid. Then flip this section over to the side with more hair. Flipping the braid is what gives the raised French braid its upside-down V form.

Step 5: Continue the upside-down French braid. Gather small sections of hair as you go, and always braid under, not over. The sections of hair should start from the deep side part you created in step 4, and come from the same side of the head that the braid is on, i.e. the side with more hair.

Step 6: Keep gathering small, horizontal sections of hair starting from the side part. (You should be progressing from the front of your head to the back.) Keep working the sections into the upside-down French braid.

Step 7: Once you run out of hair on the braid side, begin gathering hair sections from the opposite side of the head. Make sure the sections still start from the side part. (You should be progressing from the back of your head to the front.)

Step 8: Finish braiding hair and secure the end with an elastic.

Step 9: Pull on the front sections to loosen the braid for a softer, more romantic look.

Step 10: Pin the end of the braid into a side bun, and set with a spritz of hairspray.

Is this a look you'd try for your next holiday party?

Many thanks to Sarah, TRiM, and Paula for collaborating on these hair tutorials!

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