How-To Video: Combination Braid

Jenny Strebe (@theconfessionsofahairstylist), the undisputed queen of braided styles and updos, shows us a combo braid that looks complicated, but can be easily done. Strebe incorporates a zipper and twisted fishtail braid, creating the illusion of it all being one process. It’s the perfect look for a bridesmaid, Game of Thrones fan or anyone who is feeling a little tired with the traditional three-strand braid.

Get The Look

  1. Prep hair by curling with a 1-inch curling iron. Strebe suggests definitely doing this if your client has layers as it makes braiding easier, as the bend in the hair will help stop the ends from popping out of the braid. It’s also suggested that you don’t add too much texture for this look, as you’ll want the hair to be silky when you part and section it for this style.
  2. Comb hair to smooth and remove tangles. Start by sectioning out the front from ear-to-ear. Within this, create a triangle section at an angle in the very front of the dominant side of the part. Begin braiding your twisted fishtail onto the scalp, as hair is thicker on this side. Strebe also suggests using an assistant for this braid and the next as it makes things easier. Finish by securing the braid with a clear rubber elastic, and add fullness by spraying with Kenra Professional Dry Shampoo. Pull on the braids edges to enhance the effect. 
  3. On the other side, use the same twisted fishtail braid technique, but don’t braid onto the scalp as the hair is not as thick on this side. Finish the braid as you did on the other side.
  4. To start your zipper braid at the back, smooth hair out with a comb and  begin by using the remaining hair from the front of the head and work your way down. Stop about 10 cm away from the ends of the hair and secure with an elastic. 
  5. To make your combo braid, combine your twisted fish tail by draping both sides across the back. Starting with the left, drape it across the top of the zipper braid and bobby pin it at the edge of the zipper, folding the end underneath. Strebe suggests weaving a textured hairpin back and forth in the hair to help your pins stay nice and flat to the scalp. Finish by doing the same thing with the other side, but pinning it above the other fishtail to avoid hiding all your hard work. 
  6. To finish, hair spray the crown, and then pinch and pull pieces of hair to create erratic texture and curl the ends of your zipper braid. 

About: With over 15 years experience, Jenny Strebe harnesses the transformative power of hair to create visually-arresting styles, from high fashion editorial to popular everyday looks for the modern muse. Fusing her talent for hairdressing and devotion to education, Jenny founded leading blog and YouTube channel, The Confessions of a Hairstylist, and carved herself a niche as the go-to for hair how-tos. The site has over 6 million views on YouTube and a combined following of 600,000 on all social media outlets. She's been featured in leading magazine titles including online, and named one of the top hair bloggers in America. She is also a published book author of 3 hair tutorial books sold worldwide

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