The best part of having long hair is mixing up your look on the daily. We love a beautiful curl or ponytail, but using your lengths to their full potential means stepping up your hairstyling skills. We’d like to introduce you to the Dutch braid, a style seen on almost every high-powered celebrity in the past calendar year.
Although the Dutch braid may appear complex in dark brown hair or blonde, just think of it as the French braid’s younger sister. If you can do one, you can do both—all it takes it readjusting your technique. Instead of crossing each of the three strands in the braid over the center, you’ll be pulling them under. This is especially easy when you’re doing your own hair (there’s no need to lift your arms quite so high).
Even if you’re not a reality star, the Dutch braid is guaranteed to look good on you. Like its French counterpart, the style is super versatile, with more styles being invented by creative girls every minute. Trust us: The Dutch braid is the cure to your follicular ennui.
The Best Dutch Braid Styles To Try Now
Dutch Braid Pigtails
These are the pigtails heard round the world, especially once a certain famous reality show family started wearing them. Often called “boxer braids” (with or without an eye roll), these braided pigtails are certain to keep your hair out of your face all day. How often can you wear the same style from the gym to a meeting, and then out for the night?
Dutch Braid Pigtail Bun
This deceptively simple-to-master braid is perfect for festival season, especially when misted with a coat of longwearing hairspray. Flipping your head over, divide the hair into two even sections using a comb. Then, braid from the nape to the crown and secure each pigtail with a no-show elastic. Flip your head back up, and create a perfectly messy top knot on each side.
Dutch Braid Ponytail
When you sleep in late or try to get away with an extra day before shampooing, it’s easy to fall into the rut of throwing your hair back into a ponytail. Set aside just five extra minutes to try this super-simple Dutch braid style, which will make your hair appropriate for office or date. Start with a deep side part, Dutch braiding along the hairline. Once you’ve reached the side of the head, begin a standard braid. Then, tie it all back into a ponytail.
Triple Dutch Braid
Here’s one for the ladies with lobs, bobs, and everything in between. Using a long-tailed comb, section off the rectangular portion of hair from either edge of your forehead to your crown. Divide it evenly into three sections, using small clips to hold each. Then, Dutch braid each section toward the crown of the head. When you’ve completed the braids, tuck all three into a top knot or a ponytail.
Mohawk Dutch Braid
If you’ve already mastered the Dutch braid, this style is a showstopper. Break it out for a bachelorette party, a night on the town, or even a particularly stylish group brunch to impress all your friends with your hair know-how. Starting with your hair secured in a voluminous bump at the hairline, create a braid that’s tight to the scalp.
Dutch Braid Equestrian Half-Up Ponytail
Horse lovers already know competitive riders wear some of the best braids in the game, and this equestrian-inspired look is no exception. This style begins at the hairline, with a single Dutch braid across the crown to the nape of the neck.
Here’s the unique part: Instead of braiding all the way to the end of your hair, you’ll secure the braid with an elastic. Leaving the mid-lengths and ends in a loose ponytail, wrap and secure a strand around the base of the tail to hide your elastic—we like to use bobby pins and a little bit of hairspray.
Dutch Crown Braid
Growing out your hair inevitably leads to an awkward stage when wearing it down doesn’t feel quite right. The Dutch crown braid is the ultimate solution, a polished way to tuck your ends up that doesn’t require much effort. Start one braid from a deep side part, braiding along the hairline. Create a braid from the other side, then pin the two together at the base of your head.
Dutch Braid Chignon
We’re suckers for a beautiful chignon over here, so it’s no surprise this list contains at least one. This low bun starts with a Dutch braid from a side part, with the braid eventually joining a pinned low bun. Gently loosen the braid, pulling out a few strands around the face and neck for a goddess-like feel.
Dutch Braid Pigtail Buns
Want to live out your ‘90s raver dreams? Try these Dutch braid pigtail buns, which are business in the front, party in the back. They pair perfectly with cut-off shorts, summer weather, and a long day of concerts. After sectioning off the top half of your hair, part it in the middle. Then create two Dutch braids that stop at the crown, finishing each one off with a top knot.
Dutch Side Braid
Here’s yet another braided style that’s deceptively simple, we promise. Beginning with a side part, braid along the hairline. Continue past the ears, pulling hair all the way across the head. When you run out of hair, switch to a standard braid and finish. Fluff the braid as much as you’d like.
Dutch Braid Half-Up Top Knot
Feeling like it’s a leggings and t-shirt day? Get comfy, but try a hairstyle that’s both quick and stylish. This variation on the top knot involves a short Dutch braid from the hairline to the bun, creating an unexpected twist on a popular style.
Dutch Braid Tucked Bun
End your hunt for the perfect bridal style right here, because this tucked bun is an ideal choice for any kind of ceremony. Start with a crown braid, elegantly hiding any loose ends with a rolled bun that sits low on the neck. The look is also a unique option for those looking to include shimmery accessories or fresh flowers in their wedding hairdos.
Dutch Glitter Braid
We like to think you’re never too old for a little glitter. If you agree, these glitter festival braids are absolutely a must-try for you. Don’t feel like you have to stick to pigtails, either, because this versatile look will work with any kind of style.
Put your short hair to work with this cropped ponytail. Flat iron your hair until it’s perfectly straight, then get to braiding. Once the braid reaches the neck, secure it with a transparent hair elastic. The look is unexpected, not to mention the perfect opportunity to mix up your signature style.
Dutch Headband Braids
Are you still mourning the days of the headband’s peak popularity? Recreate the style with tight braids located right on the hairline.
Stacked Dutch Headband Braid
If you can create a single braid, you can certainly do two. Create a stacked look by beginning a second braid directly behind your first. By this point, you’re pretty much a braiding professional.
Dutch Braid with Pigtails
Here’s a slight variation on the Dutch braid pigtails we talked about before. Instead of braiding all the way to the ends, leave your pigtails loose. We like to backcomb each one, adding in a little texturizing spray to ensure they look particularly voluminous.
Diagonal Dutch Braid
For the most relaxed among us, sometimes the tight up-and-down of a traditional braid can feel like too much. If that’s the case, try out a diagonal Dutch braid by adding hair to the braid increasingly loosely as you go. FYI: This style is particularly lovely when it ends in a loose bun.
Rosette Dutch Braid
Not such a fan of buns? End your braids with a rosette, instead, by twisting a standard braid until it resembles a flower and pinning it. Cute and highly Instagrammable—it’s a win-win.
Hairline Dutch Braid
Cutting bangs always seems like such a good idea at the time. Whether you planned it for months or made the chop on a whim, fringe can get old very quickly. Hide your still-growing-out bands with a hairline braid.
Want extra help learning the Dutch braid? Use our salon locator to book an appointment with a stylist near you.