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The Truth About Flat-Ironing Your Braids

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rihanna_s_head-turning_side_braid flat ironing your braids hairstyleA sad lesson all millennials will have to learn in real-time: not everything on the Internet is true. (Nooo!) Even scarier, this reality isn’t limited to blog posts by Food Babe — it also applies to *shudder* hair tips on Pinterest.

The struggle is REAL, y’all. 

Luckily, my generation of Oregon Trailers know to question what we hear, so when many of us read the popular tip of flat ironing our braids to create perfect waves, we were skeptical. A few tried it and confirmed that its efficacy was matched only by Cara Delevigne’s morning-interview congeniality. Which is to say, it doesn’t work.

rope twisted hairActually, you CAN create perfect waves with a flat iron:

Instead of braiding, just take two small sections and twist them together like a rope [see right], then flat iron the twist.

Obviously, the bigger the sections, the wider the wave, just like when you curl. Let them unfurl naturally to keep them polished, or brush them out for a beachier wave.

However, you should still try flat ironing your braids! Why? Straightening actually helps widen out the braid and make it look really pronounced, polished and perfect.

It can help simulate that tennis-shoe-loosening thing we all do where we tug out the braid to add volume, but without losing the polished look.

jessica stam braid model hairstyles
My girl Jessica Stam rocking a killer braided hairstyle (and looking a little Laura Prepon-ish)

Straighteners can also help with crown braids and the like that are meant to lay perfectly flat against the curve of your skull.

Seriously, try it. You will be addicted at flopping around your picture-perfect ultra-smooth flat Pollyanna plaits.

Try it with your mer-braids!

Need a flat iron recommendation? I’ve been playing with this Revlon rose gold plated one (only $30!), which not only looks classy as heck but has some interesting science behind it. My go-to fave straightener hasn’t changed in a long time – it’s the Sedu. This thing is ah-mazing.

Of course, more important than your choice in flat irons is that you use a thermal protectant. Heat hurts hair, honeys! (Check that alliteration!) My picks:

11 thoughts on “The Truth About Flat-Ironing Your Braids”

  1. This is awesome! I had no idea you could do this. I’m definitely trying it out with my hair. I’m always looking for great ideas like this to freshen my look.

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