Meet your guest trainer #DKMaster Courtney Elzy. She is the Owner of Conay Control in Chicago.
There are many techniques for starting the traditional on-the-base braid known as the cornrow. The cornrow is a three-strand, on-the-scalp braid created by using an underhand “pickup” technique.
To cornrow like a professional, you must practice and have patience. A skilled braider takes time every day to practice cornrows. Cornrowing is the repetition of the entire woven patterns; the sequence of weave patterns may vary and will determine the style. However, the series of revolutions are created by a simple, repetitive pickup motion. Practicing on a mannequin will help you develop speed, accuracy, and dexterity. Braid services can vary in time from two hours for larger braids and six hours for smaller braids
After mastering the basic cornrow technique, you can approach other braid styles with confidence. Cornrows are skillfully designed by sculpting the parted sections. When sculpting the braid, you must first visualize the finished look. This will allow you to create smooth and consistent curved partings that follow the contour of the head. The curve partings are a part of the design, so they must be neat and even. The more creative you are in designing the partings, the more beautiful the finished sculpted look will be. This contouring or sculpting is especially beautiful on small to medium-sized cornrows.
- 5 butterfly clips
- 8 oz. (227 g) synthetic hair
- wide-toothed comb
- ail comb
- long duckbill clips
- spray bottle with detangling and moisturizing solution
- waxy gel
- blowdryer with nozzle comb attachment
Example Cornrowing Procedure
- Detangle client’s hair. Blowdry with nozzle comb attachment to elongate.
- Part synthetic hair in half. Stretch hair to taper.
- Smooth hair.
- Separate and prepare extension hair.
- Starting at the nape, part hair in a forward direction, ending above the left ear.
- Part hair with clean contoured parts to create a sculpted movement.
- Partings are ¼ inch (0.6 cm) or smaller, depending on the density and length of hair.
- At the nape, start cornrow with natural hair. Pick up and divide into three equal strands.
- Begin cornrow by moving outside-right strand under the center strand to become the new center strand.
- Now, move the outside-left strand under center to become the new center. With each crossing under or rotation, pick up hair strands from scalp base.
- Pick up hair strands from directly under your finger. Passing the strand under the center with each rotation creates the underhand cornrow braid. Hydrate hair as needed.
- Do not over direct hair. Over directed hair adds tension to the scalp, creates stress on the hair and scalp, and promotes breakage.
- After four to eight rotations, introduce hair fiber by placing the extensions on the inside strand and leaving the outside strand of the extension to be picked up at the next rotation.
- Continue to feed the extension into the cornrow until the desired width and length are achieved.
- Contour and sculpt cornrows over to left side of crown. Continue to create asymmetrical cornrow until crown is reached.
- Proceed to braid or two strand twist excess extension to ends.
- With a scissor, groom each braid only cutting blunt ends and frizz in the parts of the braid that is below the clients hair. Do not trim up the braid where the client's hair is located. Avoid cutting into braid.
- Style as desired.