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4 Steps To The Perfect Rope Braid

by Martha Adams

This article originally appeared in the December 2015 issue of SELF. For more from the issue, subscribe to SELF and download the digital edition.

Sleek, chic, cool—this rope braid is a triple threat. Spotted backstage at Public School , the sporty look is "clean and strong, but quite feminine as well," says Allen Ruiz, Aveda global artistic director for hairstyling. Here's how to DIY.

1. Prep the hair with a body-boosting product.

Try adding Suave Professionals Luxe Style Infusion Volumizing Weightless Blow Dry Spray ($5) to damp hair. Blow-dry hair straight, brushing it back on the head.

2. Gather strands into a high ponytail.

Make sure to wrap an elastic tie around the base three times. Take a small section of hair from beneath the pony, then wrap it around to hide the elastic. Secure with bobby pins.

3. Divide the pony into two sections.

Warm a dime-sized dollop of Aveda Smooth Infusion Nourishing Style Creme ($26) in your palms and work throughout the ponytail. Separate the hair into two equally sized portions and hold one section in each hand.

4. Wind the strands into a rope twist.

Tightly twist each individual section using a clockwise twirling motion. Then twist the two sections around each other, moving in the opposite direction. Secure with an elastic; smooth ends with styling cream.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Aveda

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