It’s Baaaccckkkk: How To Style The French Twist

Just when you thought ’70s and ’80s hair was dead and gone, the fall 2009 runways up and resurrect those looks. Spotted on the Brian Reyes runway was the one and only French Twist! But, before you skip the rest of this post and head on to the next, hear me out: This fall’s version is not what you’re thinking. Reyes’ version was sleek from the front and adorably retro in the back, making it the perfect complement to this fall’s classically shaped dresses and short hemlines. Here’s how to pull it off yourself. Updos get a bad wrap—they aren’t all as hard as they look! To get this twist we went to the source, Cutler/Redken’s Yannick D’Is, the lead hairstylist for the show.

Start by spritzing Cutler Protectant Treatment Spray, $20, on damp hair, then blow-dry, flipping it over for added volume and body. Hair doesn’t have to be stick-straight—a little wave will actually make it easier to handle. Next up, start the twist at the nape of your neck, grab a small section of hair and twist. Add pieces of hair as you continue to twist up your head. Don’t get too carried away, though! Only twist up to about the crown of your head. Now, pin. Pin like your life depends on it—oh and hairspray helps at this point too. Essentially, the bottom half of your head will be twisted from the nape up to the crown with the front pieces (hair from your crown to your forehead) still loose.

Part two: the front bits of your hair. You want some pompadour-like volume in the front of your hair, so back-combing is key. Work some Cutler Volumizing Hair Spray, $21, in there and start the teasing just in front of your crown and work backwards towards the already pinned bottom twist. Flatiron the very front pieces of your hair for sleekness and lightly comb over the back-combed hair—there should be height at the center of your head. Very lightly create a loose twist with the front half of your hair, being sure not to twist so tightly that the very front pieces of hair start to twist themselves. Next, tuck the ends from the front bits of your hair into the twist and pin in place. Hairspray, hairspray, hairspray. Run a comb lightly over the look to tame any flyaway pieces. Done!