#BraidGang: 35 Looks to Get You Inspired

With temperatures rising (not to mention the humidity), you might be wondering "what now?!" when it comes to your hair. Thankfully, there's no better time than summertime to kick back, relax and enjoy a fuss-free protective hairstyle. Listen up—braids are the epitome of chic for the office, vacation, and everywhere in between. With so many styles to choose from ranging from daring to demure, we deem braids the "it" hairstyle that never left. Here's 35 ideas we think you can 100% get on board with!

Janell M. Hickman May, 20, 2016

1 of 35 @Mahoganycurls via Instagram

Tap into your romantic side with a lovely side braid. Accessorize with flower for a bohemian twist.

2 of 35 @kerihilson via Instagram

Try your hand at this casual look—a half-up/half-down bun never fails to impress.

3 of 35 @Naturally_Candace via Instagram

Forgo the traditional back-length braid extensions for a dramatically longer look.

4 of 35 @Naturallytemi via Instagram

You can do no wrong in a gorgeous up-do. Wear this style to your next summer wedding or dinner party.

5 of 35 @Beyoncé via Instagram

Bey slayed with traditional box braids in her iconic video, "Formation." We covet her ability to rock any style.

6 of 35 @Lolaraemusic via Instagram

 Get creative and style your plaits into a sculptural work of art.
(Styling by, @bernardsmiless)

7 of 35 @Joyvivre/@rastafribraid via Instagram

Crocheted locks are a refreshing take on individual braids, plus they're effortless and beautiful.

8 of 35 @kekepalmer via Instagram

Keke Palmer kept it cool in long jumbo braids styled in a low ponytail with loose strands framing her face.

9 of 35 @Mac_bxtch via Instagram

Thicker braids look amazing in color—better yet, colors that contrast like this rich plum hue.

10 of 35 @imadamejay via Instagram

 Elevate your look by pinning back a small portion of your front plaits. It's a simple style that's sure to stun.

11 of 35 @olaj_arel via Instagram

The 90's are back in full swing and box braid hair bobs are giving us all kinds of Maxine Shaw from "Living Single" vibes.

12 of 35 @Indialove via Instagram

Less is more. Make your plaits more natural looking by only rocking 10-20 braids—and work that baby hair.

 

13 of 35 @tameraofficial via Instagram

Chunky cornrows are perfect for warmer weather. These could be easily worn to the office or an off-day at the beach.

14 of 35 @tia_becca_ via Instagram

Spruce up this sporty-inspired look with long sleek strands.

 

15 of 35 @ravenelyse via Instagram

Cornrows offer a safe way to try out haute hues without damaging your hair. Don't be afraid to find your favorite shade of blonde, brown, or even blue!

16 of 35 @lemybeauty via Instagram

Low messy plaits are smoking hot right now. Add as much hair as you wish to enhance volume.

17 of 35 @ravenelyse via Instagram

Cornrows offer a safe way to try out haute hues without damaging your hair. Don't be afraid to find your favorite shade of blonde, brown, or even blue!

18 of 35 @janellemonae via Instagram

Want drama? Bring it like natural hair icon and singer Janelle Monáe with a long intricate due that sure to wow.

19 of 35 @naptural85 via Instagram

Deviate from the traditional French braid look with a deep statement side part. Instead of braiding all the way down, stop mid-braid and twist your locks into a fashionable bun.

20 of 35 @aliyahraey via Instagram

Chunky oversized braids with a dash of baby hair are subtly sweet.

21 of 35 @drayamichele via Instagram

The new mom makes an edgy choice with this regal hairstyle.

22 of 35 @iam_queenroe via Instgram

Make an unforgettable statement with a braided hybrid updo.

23 of 35 @aaliyahjay via Instagram

Between this makeup, hair, and outfit, we can't figure out where to focus on!

24 of 35 @fkatwigs via Instagram

We'd expect nothing less from the eccentric artist.

25 of 35 @kellyrowland via Instagram

The perfect style to show off the "Chasing Destiny's" natural beauty.

26 of 35 @ciara via Instagram

This double braided crown sent the internet abuzz for good reason.

27 of 35 @karrueche via Instagram

We were floored when we found out this was a customized wig created by the one-and-only Toyko Stylez.

28 of 35 @tee.withlove via Instagram

In a rush? Style damp strands in an elegant braided style to beat frizz.

29 of 35 @nicolegibbonsstyle via Instagram

Get ready for your close-up (and big night out) in this fiercely feminine style.

30 of 35 @tikasumpter via Instagram

Sumpter looks perfectly regal in a sleek double braid next to Naomie Harris.

31 of 35 @Folayanless via Instagram

When it comes to mini braids—the brighter the better.

32 of 35 @kayrayejayy via Instagram

Who said bigger means better? These colorful mini braids show otherwise.

33 of 35 @zoeisabellakravitz via Instagram

Effortless and undone never looked so cool.

 

34 of 35 @gabunion via Instagram

Gabby took a break from her signature waves for a wake-up-and-go braided style.

35 of 35 @studiomucci via Instagram

Pretty in pink, with a big side of confidence.