Braided Hair: Hairstyles Featuring Braids

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Our Favorite Braided Hairstyles

Maria Menounos braid
Maria Menounos braid. WireImage / Getty Images

Braids are everywhere it seems -- from the streets to the red carpet and from Pinterest to Instagram

The best thing about braids? They are an easy way to create a unique hairstyle and they can be worn in long hair, short hair, down the side (as pictured here on TV personality Maria Menounos), in a bun or an updo or even hidden in a jumble of curls. There are milkmaid braids, fishtail braids and French braids. There are the Little House on the Prairie braids, which you don't see much of these days, actually.

The best thing about braids is they are not just for kids. You can wear them well into your 30s and even 40s. I've even seen some braids on older women that are absolutely gorgeous.

Here are some of our favorite braided hairstyles to give you inspiration for casual or more formal events.

See also:

Taking out braids without damage or loss

What can I do about tight braids?

How to get rid of post-braid buildup

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Jessica Hart's Chunky Milkmaid Braid

Jessica Hart's braided hair
Jessica Hart. Larry Busacca / Getty Images

The milkmaid braid is a braid that lays over the top of the head. While there are many ways to rock the milkmaid braid, we like Jessica Hart's chunky, updo style.

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Lauren Remington's Over the Head Twisted Platt

Lauren Remington Platt's braided hair
Lauren Remington Platt. John Lamparski / WireImage / Getty Images

Lauren Remington takes the milkmaid braid in another direction with this thick twisted braid and loosely curled face-framing tendrils. 

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Model Constance Jablonski's Dainty Milkmaid Braid

Model Constance Jablonski
Model Constance Jablonski. Gary Gershoff / WireImage

Or, you can wear a small milkmaid braid like a headband with hair kept long and sleek like Constance Jablonski. 

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Kate Bosworth's Braided Headband

Actress Kate Bosworth
Actress Kate Bosworth. Vincent Sandoval / Getty Images

Kate Bosworth does the braided headband in a chic, slick fashion.

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Berenice Bejo's Voluminous Braid Updo

Berenice Bejo
Berenice Bejo. Michael Buckner / Getty Images

Voluminous braid updo? Berenice Bejo has got you covered. We love this look.

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Jessica Alba's Gathered Braids

Jessica Alba's bunched braids
Jessica Alba. Stephen Lovekin / Getty Images

 Gather your hearts for Jessica Alba's gathered braids. They're beautiful.

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Olivia Wilde's Braided Chignon

Actress Olivia Wilde's braids
Actress Olivia Wilde. Christopher Polk / Getty Images

 Olive Wilde rocks the braided chignon with ease. 

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Amy Smart's Little Braid

Amy Smart
Amy Smart. Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty Images

 You don't need to fully braid your hair. Just check out Amy Smart and her little braid.

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Emily Blunt's Romantic Braided Updo

Emily Blunt
Emily Blunt. Frederick M. Brown / Getty Images

 Romantic doesn't even begin to cover how we feel about Emily Blunt's braided updo. You must try this look! 

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Ashley Tisdale's Messy Bun Braid

Ashley Tisdale
Ashley Tisdale. Michael Tran / FilmMagic

Ashley Tisdale's messy bun braid is perfect for a night out with friends or a significant other.

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Actress Yaya DaCosta's Tiny Side Braids

Actress Yaya DaCosta
Actress Yaya DaCosta. Michael Kovac / Getty Images

Tiny side braids, HUGE style plus.

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Actress/model Lydia Hearst's Tiny Side French Braid

Actress/model Lydia Hearst
Actress/model Lydia Hearst. Frazer Harrison / Getty Images for Cosmopolitan

A super edgy side braid. Lydia Hearst's tiny side french braid is enough to push you to the edge of your seat and leave you wondering, "can I rock that too?"

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Ruby Rose's Edgy Side Braids

Ruby Rose Edgy Side Braids
Ruby Rose Edgy Side Braids. Jeff Kravitz / FilmMagic

 Another look at some edgy side braids, this time those of Ruby Rose. 

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Stella McCartney's Edgy Faux-Shave Braid

Stella McCartney in braids
Stella McCartney in braids. Anthony Harvey and Karwai Tang / Getty Images

 Stella McCartney's faux-shave braid situation is at the top of our list. 

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Zoë Kravitz's Full Head of Braids

Zoë Kravitz
Zoë Kravitz. Steve Granitz / Getty Images

Zoe Kravitz's full head of long braids is absolutely gorgeous.

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Gabrielle Union's Full Braids with Deep Side Part

Gabrielle Union
Gabrielle Union. Alexander Tamargo / Getty Images

 Beautiful woman + full braids + deep side part = Gabrielle Union

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Kate Hudson's Loose Side Braid

Kate Hudson
Kate Hudson. Chris Weeks / Getty Images for Fabletics

 Kate Hudson does a great job with this loose side braid. 

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Alicia Vikander's Side Swept Braid

Alicia Vikander
Alicia Vikander. Andreas Rentz / Getty Images

Are you prepared to be swept away by Alicia Vikander's side swept braids? We weren't. 

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Ashley Greene's Sexy Tousled Braid

Ashley Greene
Ashley Greene. Carlos Alvarez / Getty Images

 Ashley Green's sexy tousled braid is casual, fun and sexy all at the same time.

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Stef Dawson's Side Fishtail

Stef Dawson
Stef Dawson. Frederick M. Brown / Getty Images

Oh, those bangs with that braid! This look is pulled together and chic, while still cute and casual enough for everyday wear.

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Leona Lewis' Sideswept Fishtail

Leona Lewis
Leona Lewis. Claire R Greenway / Getty Images

Leona Lewis' fishtail braid is nothing short of amazing.

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Selena Gomez's Side Braid

Selena Gomez
Selena Gomez. Jason Merritt / Getty Images

 The side braid can be worn with any outfit and would look great in many different hair colors.

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Charlize Theron's Twisty Braided Updo

Charlize Theron
Charlize Theron. Christopher Polk / Getty Images

 Twist and turn with this twisty braided updo worn by Charlize Theron. 

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Lucy Liu's Side Braid Turned Fishtail

Lucy Liu
Lucy Liu. Jason Merritt / Getty Images

 Another look at a great fishtail side braid. Lucy Liu kills it with this style.

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Malin Akerman's High Volume Milkmaid Braid Updo

Malin Akerman
Malin Akerman. Stephen Lovekin / Getty Images

The high volume milkmaid braid updo is taken to new heights with Malin Akerman's execution!

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Lea Seydoux's Messy Side Braid

Lea Seydoux
Lea Seydoux. Ian Gavan / Getty Images

 Messy, but chic. Try out Lea Seydoux's side braid.

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Maria Castro's Braided Bang

 Bangs + braids = beautiful. Maria Castro found the perfect combo. 

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Brooke Anderson's Big Sexy Braided Hair

Brooke Anderson
Brooke Anderson. Jason Merritt / Getty Images

 Brooke Anderson's braided hair should be serious inspo for you and your soon to be sexily braided hair. 

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Karen Gillan's Piecey Milkmaid Braid

Karen Gillan
Karen Gillan. Gareth Cattermole / Getty Images

 Karen Gillan's milkmaid braid is everything you could ask for and more.

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Emma Stone's Beachy Braid

Emma Stone in a braid
Emma Stone in a braid. Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images

 Good thing we just helped you find your next beach look! Emma Stone's beachy braids are great for a sunny and sandy day by the water.

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Nicole Kidman's Curly Braided Updo

Nicole Kidman
Nicole Kidman. Jason Merritt / Getty Images

The curly braided updo is fun and can be done with accessories -- see Nicole Kidman's beautiful updo above! 

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Model Alina Baikova's Braided Top Knot

Model Alina Baikova
Model Alina Baikova. Michael Stewart / WireImage

Braid that top knot, she said. Make your hair look amazing, she said. Alina Baikova's top knot is top notch inspiration.

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Sienna Miller's Double French Braids

Sienna Miller's Double Braided Updo
Sienna Miller's Double Braided Updo. Dominique Charriau / WireImage / Getty Images

 Double the braids, double the FUN!

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Danielle Lloyd's Classic Chignon with Braid

Danielle Lloyd
Danielle Lloyd. Gareth Cattermole / Getty Images

Danielle Lloyd wears a classic chignon with braid.