Video by Renée Rodenkirchen
A strict French braid is best left to school marms and small children. Try the side-stitch, worn long and loose with a suitably salty, wind-blown texture; scrunch in beach spray first.
FLARE pick: Ouidad Wave Create Sea Spray, $22.
Gathering in the Wilds
A mélange of braids is made for a modern-day love-in. Drape one plait across your forehead as a medieval touch, but be sure to loosen hair at the roots to avoid looking like a corn-row tourist.
FLARE pick: Nexxus Hydra-Light Root Lifting Mist, $13.
Hail to the Halo
The braided crown lives on…with good reason. Positively angelic, the romantic updo is a tad less precious with urbane texture. Create grip with pliable paste on fingers, then pull out pieces and twirl for a soft-focus effect.
FLARE pick: Pureology Colour Stylist Control Twist, $30.
People are still talking about that long, chunky side-braid from Alexander Wang’s Spring 2010 show. Re-vamp a sure bet with multiple fish tails, teased into soft submission and intertwined like lovers on a warm weather night.
FLARE pick: Goody Teasing Comb and Volume Brush, $7/set.
Start with soft-hold sculpting cream to keep up the no-try (even though you did) appearance. Build an oversized topknot of rooftop-party proportions, leaving out enough strands to make two petite plaits to loosely spin and pin.
FLARE pick: Eufora Beautifying Elixirs Control Creme, $24.
Inside Braid Love
Dream Weavers: The here, there, everywhere Hair influencers behind our cool-girl story
What do Balmain’s spring goddesses, Daenerys from Game of Thrones and challah bread have in common? The type of effortless-looking braids we all crave. Summer makes us particularly ravenous: think a chignon of bundled twists to relieve a perspiring nape; milkmaid-style to block out the beating sun at Osheaga; or a single-spine-trailing stalk, the better to sandal the city streets without strands in mouth—with the bonus of effortless waves the next day. No wonder braids are the ‘do most often worn by models when hairdressers bring teased, tormented runway hair back to reality.
For our shoot, we also channelled the lived-in texture of ’60s model, and Keith Richards paramour, Anita Pallenberg. Her out-of-bed locks inspired the look at Philosophy di Alberta Ferretti’s spring show, too, where hairstylist Didier Malige used Davines For Wizards Sea Salt Primer No. 14, $31, on damp hair and let it air dry. “It’s carefree,” he told us backstage. “As if someone would go to the beach and [then] dry their hair with a towel.” Sexy-sweet and low-maintenance? Now there’s a twist.
Return to Runway: Canadian model-mom Liisa Winkler makes a comeback
Discovered in 1993 by local agency Mode Elle while shopping in her hometown of Belleville, Ont., Liisa Winkler—the star of our braids shoot—soon stormed major runways (Marc Jacobs, Miu Miu) and appeared in a series of Gucci-under-Tom-Ford campaigns. After a four-year baby-rearing hiatus—she’s mom to Stella, 6, and Oscar, 3—Winkler walked in Prada’s Fall 2013 show alongside fellow comeback queen Kirsten Owen. Off the runway, the vegetarian animal lover’s side projects reflect her values: she’s an eco-food warrior who passionately backs The Non-GMO Project, and also serves as an ambassador for the World Society for the Protection of Animals’ anti-rabies campaign.