Do you ever wonder how those celebrities and pretty girls at school or work get their fish tails to look so good? Maybe you like a tight fishtail braid look or maybe you like the loose fishtail look. Either way, whether you want a regular braid or you want to put it into a french braid, you can find out how to do it and learn the perfect ways to accomplish the task at hand. There are a variety of fishtail braid hairstyles to pick from when talking about this type of braid.

The major difference between a braid and a fish tail braid is that the fish tail only uses two base pieces instead of three. This will generate a unique look and a major difference in flow. Typically, this style works much better for long hair, or hair past the shoulders or longer. With short hair in any braid, it always finds a way to fall out. French braids or styling braids can work fabulously with short hair and a french fishtail will be shown on short hair and long hair in the tutorial.

How To Do A Fishtail Braid (Easy Fishtail Braid)

1. Separate the hair into 2 sections (as image shows above).

2. Take a small piece of hair from the back of one of the sections and cross it over to the inside of the other section.

  • Make sure to keep the hair pulled tight and tidy or the braid will come out.
  • The hair you have crossed over has now forever become part of the other section.

3. Repeat step 2 with the other piece of hair and cross it over to the one you started with.

  • It should make an “X” in the middle of the head.
  • Still keep pulling it as tight as you can because this can be a messy braid.

4. Continue crossing small pieces of hair from the back of one side and crossing it to the other side, always remembering to keep the crosses tight.


The braid should start out looking like this. The more you repeat the steps and the tighter you pull, the longer and nicer it will look. So if you want to get that nice neat and clean look remember to keep the hair pulled tight. However if you are looking for a looser and messier look, you can relax a little bit more.

After repeating the steps over and over, this should be what it will begin to look like. We suggest you use much smaller pieces than what is shown in this image for a better effect. In our opinion, lose braids look better fit for the younger group of people who like to call themselves hipsters.

You are going to want to stop the braid at around 2 or 3 inches from the bottom of your hair. This effect makes the braid look more casual and less stuffy. Some people stop the braid at around 4 inches and some people according to hair length go all the way down to the bottom.With shorter hair, it will look better to go the full distance but with long hair, you have plenty of room to spare, so letting a little natural hair flow at the bottom could benefit you greatly.

There are a variety of different kinds of fishtail braids that you can try and experiment with. You can make your hair into bubble braids and fishtail each section, you can do a french fishtail, a side french fishtail, a reverse fishtail, and much more of which we will be showing and explaining.

How to Fishtail Your Own Hair

The only thing that changes about fishtailing your own hair from the tutorial above is that you have to manually manage to get the hair to each side without being able to really get a good look at it. The best way to do this is to start it behind you or have someone else start it out, and then pull it to the side so it is made possible to do with hand placement and mobility. The braid may be pulled to one side but the process is made much much simpler.

You could also set up a mirror behind you in the bathroom so you are able to see the back of your head if you wish to have it completely in the back. The easiest way to do this is to get a stand up mirror and set it up against a chair. Personally, whenever I had fishtailed my hair, I put my hair in a tight ponytail with a pony tail holder, then do the braid and when it is finished i cut the top hair tie out.

Different Fishtail Braid Hairstyles

  1. 1. Tight Fishtail in Ponytail

The tight fishtail ponytail is mainly for casual wear and is on the easier side of the different braiding styles. The higher the ponytail the “cuter” the fishtail looks with it.

2. Pulled Out Fishtail Braid

This pulled out fishtail braid is also used for casual wear because of how easy it is to do. One may also dress this hairstyle up by putting things in the braid or just making it very neat. The messier the braid is, the more casual it is. As you can see in the picture, the pulled out fishtail is one that can be used in a variety of different environments and events.

3. Loose FishTail Braid

The new look now-a-days is messy but beautiful. There are many ways you can dress up a messy look. Simply putting a messy loose fishtail braid with a nice dress gets the tone by creating the perfect mix. As you can see in the picture, the fishtail braid is very small but does a huge difference. Little is big in the fashion world, and these simple fishtail hairstyles can save your “I don’t know what to do with my hair” days!

4. Half Up Half Down (Crown FishTail Braid)

Depending on where you decide to wear this hairstyle, you can make a lot of uses from it. An option is putting a flower crown in the little crest of the hair to add a looser and hipster effect. This is easy to do and is an easy way to make you hair look professional and great at the same time! Don’t know what to do with your hair? Just wrap a fishtail around your hair and make it a half up half down hairstyle.

5. Messy Half Up Half Down Fishtail Braid

Hipster is calling! this messy half up half down pulled out fishtail braid is the perfect and EASY hipster look. Want your hair out of your face on a hike but still want to look cute for your date or for pictures? try this out. It is simple and easy, and does not involve any hard french braid or anything along those lines! When you are finished braiding, pull out the sides for effect.

6. Flowey Fishtail

Perfect for bridal showers, weddings, homecoming, formals, prom, and more! As you can see in the image below, the small fishtail braid is making a huge difference in the hair world. It seems to be what is pulling the whole thing together back there.

7. Headband Fishtail Hairstyle

Classy and sassy? That can be used to describe this headband hairstyle. All you need is a piece of hair from the side fishtailed and then folded over your head. School, work, weddings, or even just a causal event, you will be the hair superstar of the show.

8. French Fishtail Braid

This look is very popular for weddings and formal events due to the chic and unique texture to it. You can do just about anything with the french fishtail and you will look nothing short of fabulous. This look does take a lot of effort if you decide to do it yourself. Your best bet is to have a professional  do it for a formal event or have a friend try to watch a tutorial and do it for you. Once you learn, it is not that hard to do it to yourself, but if you do not know what you are doing then it is nearly impossible.

Below you will find five youtube videos that include how to fishtail, how to do your own fishtail, and show a variety of different ways, steps, and styles to this masterpiece of a braid.

The video above shows how to make a regular fishtail braid, just a simple braid that you can wake up and throw in. There is nothing hard or special about this braid, watch the video and learn how to do it today!

French fishtails can be a little on the trickier side, but what you want to do is take your time to make sure that it comes out tight and stays in.