All the Baby Hair Inspo You Could Ever Need

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Whether they're swooped to the side or sculpted into curlicues, baby hairs are a cute detail that can be the cherry on top of a style. With so many creative ways to lay them down, finessing your edges (and the products it takes to do so) have come a long way. Just ask Los Angeles-based hairstylist Fesa Nu. "Edge styling can add a more elegant or dramatic twist to any style depending on how much baby hair you leave out," she says, emphasizing her love for dramatic swoops and loops on any hair look — whether it be a high pony or braided straight backs.

But before you start to twirl your own edges in place, Fesa has a few tips. "A no-no when styling your own baby hairs is, do not use an oil-based edge control if you want them to last [for as long as you're wearing] the hairstyle." The reason? Oily edge control products have a soft hold you can easily sweat through by the end of the day. New York City-based hairstylist David Lopez also cautions those styling heat-pressed edges that "water-based gels can sometimes cause your texture to revert, making it curly again. Petroleum-based products or a beeswax with a hold are best in this case," he says.

If you've got very tight, coiled, or kinky hair, the Instant Control Edge & Braid Gel Max Hold is a good product to start with, the same goes for Murray's Edgewax. Fesa also mentions the Style Factor Edge Booster as a product she generally likes to work with when she's doing baby hairs. Once you've gotten your edge control on hand, there's the matter of actually shaping your edges. The tools you use to do so can vary, but Fesa says she prefers using her hands and baby hair brush with a metal rat-tail end.

"Smooth your baby hairs down with the brush side and create a shape with the rat tail," says Fesa who typically finishes off the shape with her fingers. Our favorite edge tool is the Best of Beauty-winning Baby Tress Edge Styler, and Lopez loves the Edge Brush from Pattern Beauty.

Once your baby hairs are shaped, cover them with a satin wrap or a "sanek" strip (those neck protectors they use in barbershops) then hit them with a blow-dryer. "The faster the baby hairs dry down, the better the upkeep is," Fesa says. Once your hairs are dry, take the wrap off and then carefully spray your exposed edges with got2B Schwarzkopf Glued Blasting Freeze Hair Spray "to seal the hair in place for longer-lasting results," Fesa advises.

Now that you've got some direction, it's time to live your baby hair fantasy. Take a peek at some of the looks that have been inspiring us as of late.

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One Giant Loop

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H.E.R.'s hair at the 2021 Oscars was an absolute dream. Yes, it's her signature style, but the giant, single curl peeking out from underneath her beaded veil is just perfection. We love how her stylist placed it exactly so you could see it in all its glory.

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Extra Wavy

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Normani's baby hairs are making us want to grab our surfing gear. Her stylist created sharp, Big Kahuna-style waves to uplift this wrapped ponytail she wore to the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards. What we love most about this is that the little hairs at her sideburns are brushed in the opposite direction of the hair closer to her temple and the very center of her hairline.

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Deep Waves

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Is there anything chicer than a slicked-back bun? Yes: a slicked-back bun with wavy baby hairs that seamlessly transition to your crown, as seen here on @lozvassallo. She shaped the swoops on either side of her head, leaving just a tiny, extra-fine curl just off-center of her part.

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Half-Up, Fully Styled

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"Curls need love too," New York-based hairstylist Nikki Nelms captioned this image of Hannah Brofman's natural curls in a tight, half-up pony. Note the teeny-tiny swoops at the edges. They're just subtle enough, but still impactful.

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Rhinestone-Studded

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We can't name one thing we don't like about this look. Rhinestones dot the ends of model @joyjah's looped edges, accompanied by zigzag-parted cornrows parts done by @fesa_n. It's not a look for beginners, but for those up for the challenge, it's well worth a try.

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Combed Down

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For the 2021 NAACP Image Awards, Alicia Keys went for baby hair overload; her stylist gelled hers down straight all around her hairline. By her sideburns, a little S-pattern wave was added as a welcome contrast to the combed-down section.

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Sideburn Loop

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Cornrows and baby hairs: name a more iconic duo. For the 2020 American Music Awards, Ciara amplified simple straight-back cornrows with long, wavy squiggles along both sides of her face. Both ended at the sideburns in a neat, sculpted loop.

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Spikes & Spirals

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Talk about hair to the heavens. Megan Thee Stallion's bun is spiraling high, almost to another dimension. (Wherever they're going, we want her to take us there.) In the meantime, we'll be admiring its twisted structure, punctuated by little wisps of hair sticking out. The bun's edginess pairs beautifully with those soft, scalloped baby hairs all across her hairline.

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Swirled & Slayed

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Bree Runaway's baby hairs are slick as a mutha. Her mile-long black hair is styled in loose waves that look soft, but the swirling baby hairs here brings an Instagram baddie-esque intensity we're so into. What we love most about this look is how the shape of the baby hairs mimic the shape in the waves of the rest of her hair.

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Single Swoop

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@nonicyngor finessed her side part in one fell swoop. Quite literally! She slicked back the rest of her strands and at the very beginning of her part, she added a little bend, which gives this look a nice, subtle flourish.

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Long Tendrils

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One thing you can always count on is Saweetie's edges being laid; she don't call herself the baby hair princess for nothin'. For the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards, her hair was styled into a sky-high ponytail, with her edges shaped into long, snaking tendrils. Now, "baby hair" might be pushing the term a little bit — these hairs are long and dang near adult — but the effect is still there.

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Latticed Edges

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No natural baby hairs? No problem. "To create Tanaya Henry's baby hair look on this photo, I pre-made these baby hairs & placed them onto her forehead using hair bonding glue," says Fesa Nu. The delicately-latticed hairs are anchored by a high genie ponytail.

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Rhinestone Web

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For a judging appearance on RuPaul's Drag Race season 10, Lizzo came ready to serve with this epic updo, done by Los Angeles-based hairstylist Shelby Swain. The look is your '90s auntie on steroids — strands crisscross and weave in and out on her forehead, creating a glorious, swirly, rhinestone-flourished web we won't soon forget.

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Shishi Curls

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Ari Lennox's baby hairs are slicked to a T, in a curly shape that reminds us of a Chinese guardian or "shishi" lion. They're so dramatically curved, they almost look like little hooks. They're a lovely finishing touch to her cornrows, which are pulled into an elegant low bun.

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Fuzzy Edges

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>Baby hairs — they don't always need to be flawlessly laid! It can be a nice change of pace to let them be a little fuzzy, even if you do brush them down. Here, Jhené Aiko's baby hairs are peeking through the middle of her hairline for this natural, relaxed style.

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Modern Milkmaid Braid

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Chicago-based entrepreneur @girlnatalie proves that slick baby hairs and a milkmaid braid are the perfect pairing. We love the bold, wavy look of her itsy bitsy strands that seamlessly transition into her braid, wrapped around like a headband. It's a modern twist on a classic updo.

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Gelled-Up Curls

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@lilasmia's baby hairs flow right into her updo. They don't stand out — they are shaped and styled to go in one uniform direction, which is an option for those who aren't as skilled with the edge control and brush.

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Scalloped

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Beauty vlogger @janibellrosanne styles her baby hairs into rainbow arches that scallop and gallop across her hairline. This is a quick and easy way to lay down your edges if ornate designs aren't your style. Simply apply some edge control to your hair then use your handy brush to create arches that flow back into your hairline.

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Laid-Back Edges

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Again — it is totally OK to wear your baby hairs a little fuzzy, even if you have tighter coils. Vlogger @southernsophis offers another low-key take on styling with these subtle-yet-sweet wisps, which are just a little bit frizzy and a lotta bit gorgeous.

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Soft Edges

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@chelliscurls's wispy edges are brilliantly glossy. We love how soft they look here. Yes, they have a bit of definition, but they aren't done with a heavy hand. The shape is there, but it's subtle, almost as if her hair naturally falls that way.

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Polished Pigtails

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Actor Tessa Thompson's slicked-down, soft spirals are exactly what her two long, thick pigtail braids needed to bring them from the playground to the red carpet. New York-based hairstylist Lacy Redway finessed the actor's hairline for the premiere of Little Woods in 2019, providing a cool, elevated, and elegant take on a classic hairstyle.

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Delicately Defined

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Take a close look at the part of Ryan Destiny's hairline that lined up with the highest point of her brows. Do you see them? Whispers of baby hairs that are just defined enough to give her sleek ponytail a delicate, ethereal touch.

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Sideburn Swirl

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If Saweetie is the baby hair princess, FKA Twigs is the queen. When she came on the scene, she was serving baby hair looks that were downright artistic. This style she's wearing here is a little more subdued than what we're used to seeing from her, but the sideburn-length swirls go nicely with her intertwined updo full of braids and accessories.

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Faux Hawk Finishing Touch

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@diaaandra26's baby hairs are also super subtle here. Blink and you'll miss 'em — they're just gently brushed down to add some polish to this fro-hawk she created, not to be a statement on their own.

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Curly Temple

@heygorjess is looking extra fly with this half-up/half-down look. Here, she decided to only define her edges just above the temple as a cute little detail to uplift — not overwhelm — her overall style.

Keywordsbaby hairnatural haircurly hairkinky hairedgesedge controlhair stylecelebrity hairstylisthair ideascurlshairservice