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Can I French Braid My Curly Hair?

Dear Rebecca:

I absolutely love the braided styles that trend with spring and summer clothing. They're so feminine and there's something very organic about rocking a beautiful French braid.

It's very simple to braid straight hair; however, I have 3c curls that tend to frizz if I style them beyond soaking wet. When I gently stretch a curl, it lingers somewhere between my armpit in the front and my shoulder blades in the back. How can I achieve some of the beautifully side-swept styles that I see today? I get so frustrated knowing that I have enough hair, but can't French braid it because of shrinkage and frizz! Thanks!

Dear Frenchie love:

The easiest way to support this style would be to begin in the evening (so you have time for your hair to stretch overnight). While your hair is wet, use a silk-based smoothing serum like Design Essentials Silk Essentials. Apply quarter-sized amounts to the palm of the hands, emulsify and apply, working from the ends to the roots, ensuring that you are focusing most of the product to the middle and the ends of the hair. Next, start to braid your hair in a tighter braid more than you normally do. By braiding it tighter, the hair will actually be forced to smooth out, which helps to pull the curl out. Then go to bed. In the morning pull the braid out (it will still be wet but the curl will be looser) and re-braid with your desired tension. Your curly French braid should last throughout the day.

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