'Pancaking' Your Braid Is the Fast Track to Fairy-Tale Hair (PHOTOS)

pancake braidWhen we first heard the term, we thought pancaking was perhaps a fun breakfast trend in which one hops from pancake house to pancake house gorging on the delicious morning dish. Then, we saw myriad images of braids related to the word and realized we were very, very wrong.


So, what the heck is it? 

"Pancaking is a technique where braids are flattened by loosening the outside edge of them and can be done in three simple steps: braid, secure, extend," says celebrity hairstylist Liz Rich. "This technique works best with hair that is detangled and not extremely oily, so be sure to detangle your hair and use a dry shampoo if need be."

Take a quick gander around Instagram, and you'll find examples of the technique in droves ... and it's so pretty.

Saturday we've been waiting for you @kelsrfloyd #beachday #braids #hairgoals #summertime

A photo posted by S W I M W E A R W O R L D (@swimwearworld) on

Liz offers up her expert tips on how to pancake your braid at home:

1. Choose your braid.

"It could be a Dutch, cornrow, or fishtail braid," she advises. "After establishing your desired braid, secure it with an elastic band."

Half up half down fishtails for stunner @cxitlxn �

A photo posted by � GAME OF BRAIDS � (@game_of_braids) on

2. Perfect the pull.

"Once the braid is secured, begin to extend by pulling the outer edges of the braid one by one, creating a wider and flatter braid," says Liz. "I like to add a little finishing spray after as well but it is not completely necessary."

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3. Laser in on layers.

"It's very important to be conscious of layers in the hair, knowing when to stop the braid to ensure it doesn't unravel," she warns.

A little bit updo, a little bit braid, a lotta bit awesome. #braidbitchbraid

A photo posted by Amy (@hairbysmash) on

4. Be gentle.

"Keep in mind that less is more when pulling the strands out," she says. "I've found it to be a lot easier when I pull one strand at a time."

Just a little #braidspiration for your sunday afternoon. #alliedoeshair

A photo posted by Allie Liliokalani (@alliedoeshair) on

Image via iStock.com/Jasmina007

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