The Ultimate Guide To The Different Types of Braids


Let’s talk about the different types of braids!

Braids have been seriously in style for the past few years, and they aren’t going away anytime soon. With visual websites like Pinterest and Instagram to pave the way for new hairstyles, braids have grown to an entirely new level.

This list goes way beyond a basic 3-strand braid or classic French braid; innovation is the name of the game these days. Let me introduce to you 12 different types of braids that are totally rockin’ the hair scene.

12 Different Types of Braids

*This post contains affiliate links meaning that if you make a purchase after clicking the link, I earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. This helps me provide the best possible content on this site for free. Keep in mind that I only link to quality products that I use myself and feel would be beneficial for my readers.  Please read my full affiliate disclosure for more information.

1. Classic 3-Strand Braids

Let’s start with the classic 3-strand braid since every other type of braid stems from this one. Don’t underestimate it. It can be used to create powerful hairstyles.

Most people probably know how to do this already, but in case you don’t, here is a tutorial from Pose. If you are a braiding beginner, start here because they only get more complicated from here on out.

A guide to plaiting girls' hair

2. French Braids

The French braid is a wonderful staple that should be in anyone’s hairstyle rotation. In fact, I LOVE side French braids to keep my hair out of my face, especially when working out.

French braids are pretty similar to the basic braid since they also come to life with three strands of hair in the same fashion.

The main difference is that French braids start higher up and accumulate more hair as they move down the head. This allows the braid to be very tight and close to the head.

If that doesn’t make sense, just let Luxy Hair show you.

How To: Basic French Braid

3. Dutch Braids


Credit: pro Do™

Dutch braids are pretty similar to French braids, except they are braided under-handed. This makes the hair stick out, instead of being tucked in.

I’m guessing you want a tutorial? Here’s a fabulous one from Alexsis Mae.

How to Dutch Braid | Braiding 101

4. Waterfall Braids

Now that we have some braiding basics covered, let’s get into the good stuff.

The waterfall braid is a perfect example of a braid type that has gained a ton popularity over the past couple of years. Nobody really knew what the waterfall braid was before 2012 (aka the dawn of Pinterest), but now you see it everywhere.

It’s seriously beautiful and perfect for any formal event. I especially love to see these braids used in bridal hairstyles. BecomeGorgeouscom can show you how easy it actually is.

Waterfall Braid Tutorial – Become Gorgeous

5. Rope Braids (Twist Braids)


Credit: nicciwelsh

Rope braids are really elegant and can be transformed into many beautiful styles.

There is a super cool machine that does rope braids for you in a just a few seconds. If you think that’s cool, you should check out these other awesome DIY hair products you can buy on Amazon!

Don’t be intimidated by these types of braids. They are actually easier to do than you think. Here is a pretty sweet tutorial from Cute Girls Hairstyles.

French Twist into Rope Braid | Back-to-School | Cute Girls Hairstyles

6. Milkmaid Braids


Credit: Sam Villa

Milkmaid braids come to life when you wrap two braids around the top of your head. There are many different variations of milkmaid braids, and they can be created using various other types of braids. Additionally, they are the perfect braid to add into formal hairstyles.

They’ve gained a ton of popularity over the past year or so, but right now they are on fire. Everyone from Katy Perry to Jennifer Lawrence to Mary-Kate Olsen to Scarlett Johansson has been seen sporting them recently.

Since Missy Sue is pretty much the queen of braids, she can show you how to do this one.

Dutch Milkmaid Braids | Missy Sue

3 Pcs Hair Braiding Tool Roller With Hook Magic Hair Twist Styling Bun…

  • Easy to use (as picture), Suitable for girls or…
  • For any hair type such as: straight, curly, thick…
  • Good for going party or banquet Brings you a new…

7. Ladder Braids

Ladder braids start taking things to the next level. You will typically see braids like this integrated into super fancy, formal hairstyles.

A ladder braid typically starts as a waterfall braid that has multiple levels to it. Here is another fabulous Missy Sue tutorial for your liking.

Half Up Ladder Braid | Missy Sue

8. Lace Braids


Credit: b.l.u.s.h.e.d

A lace braid is essentially a one-sided French braid. It is also similar to a waterfall braid without hair flowing through the braid.

These are another type of braid that can easily be integrated into many different hairstyles and expanded upon. Elaborate lace braids can be quite breathtaking.

I’m gonna let CuteTeenHairstylesXo show you how to do this one.

Lace Braid Tutorial

9. Fishtail Braids


Credit: hairbypeta

I do remember learning how to do fishtail braids when I was a little girl. They are actually pretty easy, and like other braids on this list, they are often integrated into more elaborate hairstyles.

Kayley Melissa has a super easy fishtail tutorial for beginning braiders.

How to Fishtail Braid – Beginner Friendly Hair Tutorial

10. Feather Braids


Credit: Alana

Feather braids are pretty much a hybrid between waterfall braids and lace braids. The technique is the same as a lace braid, but the strand falls through the bottom like a waterfall braid.

Babes in Hairland will tell you more about it…

Wrapping Feather Braid Hairstyle |

11. 4-Strand Braids


Credit: Missy Sue

Here’s where braids start getting ultra-creative. When you start adding multiple strands and spacing certain strands out, the braids can take on a totally different look. This beautiful 4-strand braid is a perfect example of creativity.

I DID mention that Missy Sue is the queen of braids, RIGHT?

4 Strand Braid Ponytail | Missy Sue

12. 5-Strand Braids


Credit: Beatričė

Similar to the 4-strand braid, the 5-strand braid takes on a whole new look. The possibilities are endless…

5 strand braid tutorial step by step ❤ Easy and Cute ❤


DIY Braids: From Crowns to Fishtails, Easy, Step-by-Step Hair-Braiding…

  • Adams Media Corporation
  • Coefield, Sasha (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

General FAQ

What are some popular types of braids in 2019?

The French braid, Dutch braid, infinity braid, waterfall braids, braid flowers, 5-strand braids, fishtail braids, boxer braids, pull-through braids, and rope braids are all popular types of braids in 2019.

How many different types of braids are there?

There is no set answer for this question as new types of braids are constantly being invented by mixing other types together. There are several beautiful braids to start with.

What is a normal braid called?

The standard 3-strand braid. This basic braid can be incorporated and evolved into several other types of braids.

What is a reverse braid?

A reverse French braid is called a “Dutch braid,” which sticks out instead of hugging the head. This look is created by placing the hair under the middle strand each time, instead of over.

Your Turn: Are there any other types of braids that I forgot to mention? Which one is your favorite? I’d love to read your feedback in the comments section below…

If you liked this post, you need to check out 10 Different Types of Bangs or 10 Different Types of Haircuts.

Did you enjoy this post? I’ll love you forever if you share it with your friends on your favorite social media website…


You may also like