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View Full Version : French Braiding issues



CurlyNinja
March 12th, 2008, 12:11 PM
Ok, so here's my problem:

My French braids are getting better and I'm getting more skilled at doing them, but my main problem area is juuuust at the nape of the neck where it starts into the "english portion." For some reason it's always much looser there than I'd like it, messy, misshapen, and/or does not make a smooth transition off the head. What am I doing wrong, and how should I correct this?

Masara
March 12th, 2008, 12:17 PM
This is the hardest part for me too. The transistion is mush better than it used to be on French braids but I'm still having problems with Dutch and rope from time to time. I find that the transition is smoother if I change my hand position from a french to an English postion. I usually pause, take a breath, put all the strands into one hand to allow the other to change position and start again. I also find dipping my head forward a little helps.

darkwaves
March 12th, 2008, 12:18 PM
Practice, practice, practice?

I used to find my braid went weird at the bottom like that, and then figured out I need to start the loose part of the braid higher up the nape than I'd been doing. That fixed my glitch -- so just experiment, and you'll find what works for you.

Isilya
March 12th, 2008, 12:18 PM
I have the same problem sometimes. I then try to redo the last bit of my braid and make sure I've divided all my hair before I get to my nape, so that at the nape I don't have to pick strands up and I can just do a normal English braid. This usually works out for me. HTH

Smokie
March 12th, 2008, 12:22 PM
Try grabbing the last two sections before you reach the nape of your neck. If you pull them up from above where they are instead of even with them, you'll have a much tighter transition point. It took me a long time to learn this. It also leaves a nice little hole for tucking the ends under if that's your intent.

Does that make sense? My last two weaves are always rather large chunks and are always grabbed before you would normally think to grab them. Oh, and if you have thicker hair, try grabbing more hair with each weave from the start.

Edit: I think Darkwaves explained it better. The regular english part should start above the nape. That's a much better way to put it.

Curlsgirl
March 12th, 2008, 12:27 PM
Yeah I agree it's mostly practice. One thing that helps me is to do it
s-l-o-w-l-y and try to not be rushed. I am so used to doing them now that I can go pretty fast but it took a long time to be able to do that. I also take the time when I get to the braid that gets the rest of the hair to go into an English braid to pull it tighter before I go on (but not too tight).

CurlyNinja
March 12th, 2008, 12:29 PM
When I've tried to start it above the nape and pull the last hair "up" I still get a bit of loose hair there, but I guess the solution to that is to keep my hands close to my head and hold on tight. Thanks for the tips! I'm going to try them next time.

Curlsgirl
March 12th, 2008, 12:32 PM
When I've tried to start it above the nape and pull the last hair "up" I still get a bit of loose hair there, but I guess the solution to that is to keep my hands close to my head and hold on tight. Thanks for the tips! I'm going to try them next time.

Maybe instead of "up" you could pull it in toward your head, not up or down and work the braid close to your neck and back as far as you can. Does that make sense? My "issue" comes when I have to lift my arms up to braid the rest. I keep getting a few hairs pulling on my scalp for some reason. I never used to do that. It doesn't happen everytime but it drives me MAD!

serenitygal
March 12th, 2008, 12:37 PM
I wear my hair in a French braid every night, and probably 4-5x/week. I'll either get all the hair into the braid before I get to the nape of my neck, or I'll hold my hands very close to the nape while braiding and make certain that I've braided a few really snug rounds before moving my hands from my nape in order to continue braiding (over the shoulder, or what ever).
HTH!

queen_isolde
March 12th, 2008, 01:39 PM
... then figured out I need to start the loose part of the braid higher up the nape than I'd been doing. That fixed my glitch...
I've found the exact same solution to that problem. That really helped me getting those braids nice, straight and "bulk-less"..

spidermom
March 12th, 2008, 01:53 PM
I agree, lift up from the nape. AND keep the braid close to the scalp. The more you pull the hair outward from the scalp, the looser it's going to look when you release it. It helps me to think about folding each section inward to the center; you don't pull when you fold. Most people do pull when they braid.

Toffee20
April 21st, 2011, 02:54 PM
For me, making sure my hands are as close to my head as possible and that I've not got tired and am not keeping the hair tight! I totally agree that this is the hardest part of french plaits !