Lately, I have been braid obsessed... french braids, dutch braids, fishtails, waterfall braids, etc. Oh the possibilities are endless if you combine different types. Man, I love braids. Okay #endrant #braidobsessed I've learned that certain tools and products are necessary for braiding. As my lovely face below displays, if you don't have these products and you love braids, you cray. Here's the arsenal of goods that you must have to perfect the braided look. Bobby Pins: Make sure they match your hair. My hair is ombre, so I have blonde and brunette bobby pins to camouflage them. I recommend placing the bobby-pins in the form of an "X" for a more secure hold. Also the curved end should always face down. I didn't know these tricks until like a year ago. No wonder I left a trail of bobby pins everywhere I went. Clear Elastics: I bought a 500 pack at Target for less than $5. They're like the size of your pinky but stretch enough to secure a whole head of hair if necessary. Use these instead of ponytail holders to blend more naturally in your hair. Hey, they're not just for 5 year olds! Clip-In Extensions: We're all not blessed with luxurious, long, thick hair. Braids shorten your hair. When you see those Elsa-like braids, chances are there's some extensions hidden up in there. The extensions will help the braid look fuller and longer. I'd use at least 2 wefts for most braided styles. Teasing Comb: Use the pointy end to section off hair or even pull the braid apart. Use the comb part to backcomb your hair and tease it. You can do this along a section to secure extensions or at the top of the head to add volume. Volumizing Powder: My favorite is Smart Solutions Volumizing Styling Dust. Sprinkle a little on your roots to add weightless texture, volume, and hold. It's perfect for most braids. I swear, this stuff really did come from a fairy because it is a miracle worker. Aerosol Hair Spray: I finish off a braid with a healthy dose of Tresseme Aerosol Hair Spray. I also spritz my teasing comb and then smooth along flyaways etc for a sleeker look.