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The Editors
Updated on January 16, 2024

Aside from its fairly descriptive name, there’s something inherently magical about the halo braid. The wearer looks like a goddess, medieval princess or an ethereal sprite — the kind you see in fairy tales.

At first sight, the halo braid updo looks complicated, but if you know how to braid and don’t mind a bit of practice, you’ll succeed with this cute bohemian braid and maybe even customize this popular hairstyle for a one-of-a-kind look.

How to Do a Halo Braid

The typical halo braid is one braid that runs around your head along the hairline, so this hairstyle is basically for medium to long hair. You can either Dutch braid or French braid your hair, bringing the side strands of your three-strand braid under or over. Follow our easy halo braid tutorial:

  • Step 1: Start with a middle part or an off-center part. Take three strands on the right side of your part and bring the left strand under the middle one, and then the right strand under the middle one.
  • Step 2: For each next step add a little bit of hair to the side strands and bring them in turns under the middle strand.
  • Step 3: Once you reach the side of your nape, you’ll want to change the position of your hands for convenience, braid to the other side of your nape, and change the position of your hands once again.
  • Step 4: Braid your hair up along the other side of your head and to the ends of your hair.
  • Step 5: Wrap the freely hanging end of the braid around your head and pin.

Halo Braid for Short Hair

If your hair is shoulder-length, let’s say you have a bob cut, you can also style a halo braid, but your updo will consist of two independent braids that you’ll further overlap and pin in the back.

  1. Start off the side part.
  2. French braid your hair along one side first.
  3. In turns, take pieces from the sides, adding them to the center of your braid as you are crossing over.
  4. When you reach your nape, braid down and secure your plait. Now braid the other side the same way.
  5. Criss-cross the braids, tucking their ends inside the updo and pinning in place.

Here, we share 20 halo updos you can make yours, adjusting them for your hair type and length.

1. Voluminous Halo Braid

Worn undone with big loops and gentle, sweet tendrils framing the face, this braid headband updo is hardly associated with a common headband. Rather, the pieces woven into the braid and the pieces that aren’t seem to mesh together perfectly and naturally, creating an illusion of the actual halo.

2. Wrapping Fishtail Braid

This bohemian halo braid makes us want to head to the nearest music festival ASAP–and take lots and lots of pics. Don’t be afraid to let your locks be a bit naturally messy, as this particular coif works best when your hair is tousled and with flyaways.

3. No-Pin Halo Style

This haloed style is seriously taking us back to the early 2000’s (when pink hair was all the rage!). Although the notion of using no pins to create the look might seem intimidating, don’t worry — a simple how-to YouTube video should do the trick.

4. Double-Crown Updo

Rocking a three-strand updo for your wedding day (or your friend’s wedding day) is definitely a good idea, but you can always add something else (another braid, hair flowers) to make it look sophisticated or even glamorous–prepare to be the envy of your event!

5. Oversized Fishtail Braid

Just because you’re wearing a halo braid in your hair, doesn’t necessarily mean you have to braid your hair tightly. As this picture-perfect, prom-ready style goes to show, even an extra-large fishtail weave looks angelic.

6. Naturally Curly Braid

The milkmaid braid updo is also often associated with haloed styles. Ideal for black hair with curls, all that’s required is some patience, practice and bobby pins. If you are not that skilled at braiding around the perimeter of your head, the faux halo with an attached braid may be an appealing solution.

7. Royal Braid with Highlights

As you can probably guess by its name, wearing a crown braid is one of the easiest ways to feel like royalty (because you totally are!). We recommend sporting it at a classy event, be it a gala, black-tie get-together, prom or wedding.

8. Wide Crown with a Twist

The crown braid updo is pretty in all variations whether you do it with a Dutch braid, classic French braid or a voluminous twist as shown. The halo braid style is woven loosely, enlarging each piece and creating a truly big crown worth a double take.

9. Wedding Braid Style

Ok, we have more inspiring images with braided updos. If you’re in search of simple yet classy wedding hair ideas, try this pretty inside out French braid that wraps around your head creating a dimensional weave particularly beautiful on balayage hair. This won’t work for short hair, but if your hair is at least shoulder length, give it a go.

10. Low Haloed Braid

For African American girls, rocking a crown or a halo style updo is a great idea of a protective hairstyle you can wear comfortably for some time while feeling like a Queen. This updo can work for your natural hair or as a weave hairstyle.

11. Medieval Crown

Braided halo hairdos are reminiscent of the era where women wore ball gowns and arrived at events in horse-drawn carriages. You’ll look the part with the elegant wrapping style that features a slightly undone finish with romantic flyaways and soft babylights.

12. Double Headband Braid with Flowers

Although the trend is certainly leaning toward looser styles nowadays, there’s still a place for tight, head-hugging braided headbands. This kind of style can be helpful when you have long hair and want to keep it secured on your head.

13. Messy Crown Braid Updo

Ideal for a boho bride or her bridesmaid, this loose double-wrap braid uses two different-sized wraps to create a highly dynamic look. Be sure to tease your hair, especially the crown, generously beforehand to provide the needed texture.

14. Half-Up Half-Down Boho Style

When it comes to halo braid hairstyles, it can be common to categorize them as solely updos. Not always so, as this beautiful half halo braid goes to show. You’ll want ample volume on both the top and bottom, so consider incorporating extensions into the look.

15. Secured Wrapping Style

Clean, simple and easy, not all types of haloed hairstyles are intricate and eye-catching. This particular style is great for ladies with shoulder length hair. If you have longer hair, your braids will be thicker and more pronounced.

16. Angled Braid on Crimped Hair

If you’re looking for a style with a twist, try this cute angled braid updo from @femmeakoi. Like hairstyles with a side part? Go for an asymmetrical updo-it’s always creative and fun as opposed to classic symmetrical hairstyles.

Related Post: 20 Cute Ways to Style Crimped Hair

17. Faux Halo Braid for Short Hair

A faux braided halo is a go-to for natural hair that needs a put together look. If you have very short hair or prefer adding braided details to your look, try fancy curved braids across your crown that pair beautifully with a headband braid.

18. Traditional Halo with Flowers

This garnished Dutch braid hairdo is ultra ethereal and sweet, perfect for long fine hair. Complete the natural look with some wild flowers and enjoy your organic updo on a beautiful sunny day.

19. Tight Braid Headband

In search of a no-frills braided style? This tightly woven Dutch look, where not a piece of hair looks out of place, should do the trick. Keep frizz to a minimum with hair spray.

20. Chunky Crown Braid

As glamorous as it is effortlessly sexy, this chunky, slightly undone halo braid could be worn for school, work, a formal event or a date. Gently tug on the sides of the braid once it’s finished to make it lacier and let a few pieces fall along the sides of your face for a more natural, casual look.

The key to rocking a halo braid is making it your own. Whether voluminous, tightly braided and secured with pins or worn so loosely it hardly resembles something woven at all, there are tons of options for both days and nights, formal and casual occasions. Invent your own style which reflects your personality!

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