Braided Beauties: Celebs Embrace Pretty Plaits

Seventeen years ago, Janet Jackson sparked a huge trend with her Poetic Justice "dookie" braids, and soon after, Brandy reinvigorated the style with her perky braided extensions. These days, braids are back in a major way--and they're more versatile than ever. From Pocahantas plaits to intricate cornrows, check out the latest A-listers to embrace the braid.
ESSENCE.COM Jan, 14, 2010

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Jada Pinkett-Smith gathers her braids back into a low, loose ponytail at a red carpet event in Hollywood.

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Alicia Keys accents her sexy, voluminous waves with a skinny braid at the hairline. So chic.

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Malaak Compton Rock wears hip-length braids on date night with her hubby, Chris.

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Adorable Zoe Kravitz hits the red carpet wearing a loose, messy-on-purpose side braid.

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Ciara, rocking a head full of thick, gorgeous cornrows, throws up the peace sign at a recent basketball game.

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Paula Patton accents her elegant bouffant with a thin, braided headband.

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We’re not sure how Erykah Badu balances those poufy balls on her head while she plays the keyboards, but we do know that her neat cornrows are beyond beautiful.

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Jordin Sparks’ off-duty look is so cute: sunglasses, a denim dress, and slightly mussed Pocahantas braids.

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Melyssa Ford showed up to a VH1 party wearing gorgeous, intricate cornrows swept over one shoulder.

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Jennifer Hudson takes the stage wearing tiny braids pulled back into a sleek, tidy bun.

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Tyra Banks isn’t all weaves and wigs, all the time. Here, she wears her hair in low-maintenance cornrows, and she’s never looked lovelier.

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With her statement-making bun and braided accent, Beyonce nails this high-glam, fancy-night-out look.

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At a recent red carpet event, Brandy swept her signature micro-braids back into a glorious, thick ponytail.

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