How to do marley braids: Easy step-by-step tutorial

Because getting the marley braids of your dreams doesn't have to be hard!  

Featured video
Close up of woman with dark brown marley braid wearing a black button down dress in the in the All Things Hair UK Studio

Hair Types

You Will Need

Constantly seeing your fave celebs or social media stars rocking marley braids? Don’t worry about reaching out to your go-to braid lady, because we’re here to show you how to marley braid hair yourself, in just 10 easy steps.

As this style is twisted (marley twists hair only require two strands to be wrapped around each other, instead of three strands of hair like box braids do!), it is a lot quicker to do.  So, get your weaving fingers at the ready and discover just how simple this technique is, below.

How to do marley braids on yourself


Prep your marley braid hair.

Before you begin weaving your marley braids, you’ll need to prep your braiding hair. To do this, you just need to comb through it to remove tangles, and apply the VO5 Frizz Free Cream  to smooth out the hair and get it ready.

How to do your own marley braids: shot of woman with natural afro hair holding a marley twist hair extension in her hand in the All Things Hair UK Studio

Section and secure.

Taking your comb, section and divide your hair. After, clip the top half up so it doesn’t get in your way when you start plaiting.

How to do your own marley braids: Shot of woman with natural hair sectioning into box parts in the All Things Hair UK Studio

Prep your hair.

Take a small amount of the VO5 Frizz Free Cream a again and, using your fingers, run it through the first section of hair you plan on braiding. After, apply some of the VO5 Firm Hold Gel Spray

Using both of these hair products will make your strands softer, easier to plait and also keep frizz at bay.

How to marley braid hair: Woman prepping her natural dark afro with gel spray in the All Things Hair UK Studio

Start creating your marley braids.

Now for the fun part: mastering the marley braid hair technique! Take your hair and split it into two even parts, then place the marley hair in the middle of the two sections and hold it securely with both hands.

Twist the top section of the part in a downwards motion about 4-5 times, then do the same with the bottom section, twisting in an upwards motion.

How to create your own marley twists hair look: Woman in a studio wrapping marley braiding hair around her hair in the All Things Hair UK Studio

Do the twist.

Take the bottom twisted strand and overlap it with the top, upward twisted strand you created in Step 4. Keep twisting these two strands together, making sure to keep a tight grip to keep the marley braid secure.

How to do marley braid hair: Woman twisting her marley hair around her hair in the All Things Hair UK Studio

Twist from root to tip.

Continue twisting until you reach the end of the marley hair.

How to do marley braids on yourself: Woman twisting marley braid in the All Things Hair UK Studio



Repeat the process.

Moving section by section, divide the hair equally and continue this box twisting process.

Psst.. To make your style look seamless, we suggest you use the same size and length marley hair extension for each twist.

How to do marley twists: Woman with dark brown marley twists finishing her hair up in the All Things Hair UK Studio

Trim your marley braids.

Once you’ve finished twisting all your hair, carefully use a pair of scissors to snip off the ends.

Marley braids tutorial: Woman with dark brown marley braid hair using a scissors to trim the ends of hair

Finesse your edges.

The final step of this marley twists hair tutorial? Touching up your baby hairs! So, spray a small amount of the  VO5 Mega Hold Styling Gel onto a spare dry toothbrush and use it style your edges.

How to do marley braids: Close up shot of woman with long marley braids, using a toothbrush to tame her baby hairs

Final look!

That’s all there is to it! Want to jazz up your marley braids up a little? Simply add a few well-placed hair cuffs and you’ve got a protective hairstyle worthy of a Solange music video.

Marley braids final step: Woman with long, dark brown marley twists hair wearing white shirt, smiling and posing in the All Things Hair UK Studio


Check out these hair braiding types 101!

You Will Need

Sign up to our newsletter and get exclusive hair care tips and tricks from the experts at All Things Hair.