Veering braids away from playground vibes and towards evening-appropriateness comes down to a few nimble makeup moves and some on-point accessorising. Boxer braids and Dutch braids wove their way onto countless celebrity heads earlier this year, with everyone from Kim Kardashian, Adele Exarchopoulos and Hailey Baldwin, to Shanina Shaik, Chiara Ferragni and Karlie Kloss, trailing the style-of-now both off-duty and on the red carpet.

Boxer braids are still winning big on Instagram too, steadily setting themselves up to be THE hairstyle of 2016.

The fashion set also clearly approve, with sleek versions making a tough-but-feminine statement at the Creatures of the Wind Autumn/Winter 2016 show at NYFW. Still, navigating double Dutch braids IRL when you‘re over the age of eight does require a couple of select sartorial distinctions. Consider this your cheat sheet to pulling pigtail braids beyond the days of recess and trigonometry revision.

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Pops of colour add some much-needed attitude. Hunter S. Thompson shades, optional.

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Toughen up braids with appropriately fierce accessories.

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A black blazer swiftly adds a “send in my three o’clock” sensibility.

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Youthful touches are fine, but work better when spiked with attitude. Case in point: Micky Mouse bomber, natch.

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Braids already make cheeks pop, but you can still help them along with some stealth strobing.

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French even do braids better.

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Plunging neckline + Sexy grin = “Please, I’ve got this.”

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All braids work better with buddies.

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Fact: Enlisting an army of mini-me’s instantly matures your look.

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Two braids just too much? Mono-mohawks make just as much punch.

Cover Image: Now Fashion
Title Image: Now Fashion