Wedding Braids with Jessica Keife–Expert Bridal Hairstylist
Happy Monday friends! I am so excited about today’s post because its a topic I have yet to cover but know is something every bride thinks about… choosing a wedding hairstyle! When it comes to deciding how you will style your hair on your wedding day, and even your bridal shower there are so many aspects to consider, but most importantly you want a hairstyle that compliments your wedding dress, not competes with it. Saying Yes to the dress is so exciting and your dress is one of the main focal point of your wedding day, but choosing a hairstyle that will compliment your makeup & dress will tie your entire look together. Straight, curly, wavy, updo, down.. the options are endless especially if you are scrolling through Pinterest & Instagram. But that’s why I have Jessica Keife—Expert Bridal Hairstylist on The Guide to give you some fresh new ideas and inspo for the big day. I don’t use expert lightly because this girl knows hair, and is a braid QUEEN!
Hello! I’m Jessica Keife, I’m a bridal hairstylist based in the Inland Empire. I had my first wedding about 3 years ago, and it has been non stop fun since! I get the opportunity to travel all around Southern California making women feel their absolute best on their big day… what a dream! I would describe my style as loose, romantic, and bohemian. I specialize in braids and love coming up with new intricate styles. I absolutely love being in the wedding industry because I’m constantly surrounded my talented artists who inspire me. My goal as a bridal hairstylist is to continue to grow as an artist, continue to meet amazing brides, and hopefully educate other artists about what I have learned in the industry!
Most requested styles:
My number one most requested style is what I call my big intricate braid. Typically, this style requires extensions (unless you have very long thick hair naturally). I would say this is my signature style and 100% my favorite style to create. It is almost like a puzzle for me and I love how it’s so unique!
Another requested look is a braided updo. I prefer to do my updos low, loose, and texturized. I use a combination of both elastics and Bobby pins so the updo is nice and secure. I always like to change up the braid between a classic 3 strand braid, Dutch, fishtail, stacked, etc. I love leaving pieces of hair in the front along the hairline to soften the updo as well.
Can’t forget about your flower girl!
For girls who still want to have some hair down but still want detail, a half up is perfect! They have an option of twists, braids, or even a combination of both!
Jessica’s Hair Tips For Your Wedding Day
Always have an inspirational photo ready that mimics YOUR hair color and texture. So if you have dark brown hair, do not look for blonde highlighted styles. If you have short hair, don’t pick a photo of a girl with long thick hair (unless you’re bringing extensions).
I always recommend having clean, completely blown dry, and ready to work on hair! This means that if someone has extremely frizzy hair, it needs to be smoothed before their appointment. Also if someone has thick hair, there cannot be any moisture left or it will not curl. This will allow your hairstylist to stay on time!
As for product, I always recommend putting a little volumizing mousse on your crown area before you blow dry your hair. I like the Kristis Ess brand that can be purchased at Target.
Bridal Hair Accessories
DON’T BUY THESE AT THE BRIDAL STORES!
They are so overpriced it’s ridiculous. Ask your hairstylist if they have any suggestions or look on amazon! Another option is to add fresh flowers to your hair. This is one of my favorite looks!
Seriously though, is she not a braid QUEEN! Adding a braid to your bridal style can give the classic curls that little bit of “extra”. Thank you so much Jessica for sharing your amazing work & major bridal inspo and let’s be honest who doesn’t want their hair braided to perfection!? These styles can be used for any special occasion! If you want more bridal hair inspo for Jessica, follow her instagram @jaykaybraids and for all other inquiries you can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Along with Jessica’s amazing tips I wanted to share a few of my own personal hair tips for finding the perfect bridal hair style!
Understand Your Own Hair
It’s so easy to scroll through Pinterest and Instagram and save hundreds of pictures of bridal hairstyles you love. Just remember that chances are these girls have extensions (and tons of them) which could include adding hair color (unless they are blessed with luscious long locks and perfect balayage) so knowing your own hair type: thin, fine, curly, straight, long, short… your hair color will help narrow down your searches. If you are brunette then search for brunette hairstyles etc. Sometimes a hairstyle will look totally different in a picture than on you because they have so much dimension and color in their hair. If you know your hair you can be more specific in your searches & can also decide if you will need extensions to achieve your dream hair! I recommend consulting with your non bridal hair stylist because chances are they have worked on your hair multiple times, or if your extremely picky and loyal like me they may be the only one who has worked with your hair in years ( thanks @colorbymichael ) using a stylist you know and trust, they know how much blow-drying needs to be done or how your hair holds a curl and what products work best on you. Listen to what they have to say, they know what works best for your hair type and this will help your bridal hair stylist make you look perfect! Team work makes the dream work.
Your Personality and Your Vibe
This one is a big one! Your big day is all about you & your fiancé and sharing your love authentically with your favorite people. Now I’m not saying I’m against bold choices but I don’t recommend doing a major chop, extreme hair color change or something that seems trendy now—but who knows how long that will last for your wedding day? You want to look back in 10, 20 years and still love your style. I know what looks good on me, and which hairstyles (as much as I wish I could pull off) just don’t work in my favor, but thats okay because I know what does and I work around that! Not that they look horrible, it just doesn’t feel like me, and on your wedding day you truly want to feel like your best self! If your wedding has overall vibe ie; beachy, boho, elegant etc. you should talk to your hairstylist to find a style that ties in vibe! Speaking of vibe.. your dress has everything to do with your vibe. If your dress has a lot going on you may want to stick to a more simple hair style so it doesn’t take away from your dress! Vice versa, if you have a more simplistic dress, then playing with hairstyles can add a little something to your look! Communicate your vibe with your stylist and the perfect hairstyle will follow.
Do a Trial Run ALWAYS
It’s a given to do a trial for your makeup, but don’t forget about your hair! Especially if your makeup artist and hairstylist are two independents not from the same company. I highly suggest scheduling your trials to be at the same time so you can see the complete look. The trial will allow you to tweak anything, if you feel like maybe that your hair needs a little something extra like baby’s breath or accessories, then you have time to make those arrangements! This also allows you to envision your look with your dress and ensure your hair will compliment your dress perfectly! Bring a picture of your dress to the trial because your hairstylist can offer opinions to make sure your dress and hair coincide seamlessly.
Location & Weather
Don’t forget to take into consideration the climate you’re getting married in. Tropical, hot, dry, humid, cold, windy, even rainy – try to think comfortable. Beach weddings (especially here in Southern California) are extremely popular, but don’t forget the wind! You want to make sure your hair isn’t blowing in your face in all your pictures/ that’s just not fun trying to fix your hair while saying your vows! Your bridal hairstylist will also recommend some essential products that will help hold your hairstyle together. A great hairstylist will also know tips to ensure your hairstyle will last all night long! The goal is to make your hair work in perfect harmony with your surroundings.
This is SO important, especially for you brides that are a little more shy. SPEAK UP. Don’t be afraid to express your opinion because if you don’t like the way your hair looks or want something changed, your hairstylist is not a mind reader, but they are very understanding because their goal is to make you look and feel your best. Honesty is key. After you trial make sure you are 100% satisfied, trust me your stylist WILL NOT be offended if you went in thinking you wanted a specific style and when its complete, it’s just not what you expected. Try something else, but don’t leave until you find the exact style you want and love! Speaking up also applies to the day of. If you feel like something needs to be tweaked, a curl was missed, something feels loose SPEAK UP!! Remember this is your day! You want to feel your best and know that your photos are going to capture your love, and not you stressing about a piece of hair thats bothering you! Ask questions too, if you feel unsure whether your hair is going to hold or needs more product.. your stylist will know. They are the experts for a reason!
I hope these hair tips are helpful and you found some inspo with Jessica’s beautiful braids, and I would love to know what your wedding hairstyle will be or was!