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Brief Published: 5 Jun 2015

Selfridges’ Braid Bar

The Braid Bar, Selfridges

A new hair-styling pop-up at London department store Selfridges confirms the rising trend for intricate hair braiding, and caters to the needs of consumers looking for time-saving, affordable beauty solutions.

The Braid Bar offers a visual braid menu inspired by style icons such as British model Naomi Campbell just in time for the summer festival season. Looks include fishtail styles, looser, tousled plaits and more elaborate examples that tap urban cornrow styling. The styles can also be customised with add-on options of feathers, trinkets and colours.

The popularity of the Braid Bar confirms the trend we saw on the S/S 15 catwalks, and the beauty and grooming styling in our A/W 16-17 Design Direction Wilderness, where we see braiding extended to male grooming.

Seizing on a gap in the market, former fashion stylists Sarah Hiscox and Willa Burton set up the Braid Bar for consumers looking for quick, easy, and ultimately affordable braiding on the go. Rolling off the success of blow-dry bars and significantly reducing the price point (salons can charge upwards of £40 while the Braid Bar costs £15-25), this venture suits consumers looking for affordable, convenient beauty solutions.

“The bar has been much more successful than we’d hoped – it seems to have captured a huge teenage audience,” Hiscox told British newspaper The Daily Mail. “I think it's because it's a way that girls can experiment with their look without having to do anything permanent and it’s also within their budget.”

The Braid Bar will run until the end of summer. For more speedy beauty concepts emerging to accommodate consumers’ increasingly busy lives, see Rethinking Beauty: Fast Consumption.