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It’s that uncommon style that can go ageless or tense, rich or blustery—Left Bank and Right. “The French twist can be romantic, sort of punky, vanguard, or Audrey Hepburn. You can adjust it to whatever kind of style a person has,” says Redken worldwide inventive executive Guido Palau. The 1995 Helmut Lang show in Paris was the first time through Palau sent models down the runway with the look. “I rethought it to be somewhat modern and high mold by tucking a feather into the back,” he says.

After a quarter century, “it feels extremely cool once more. For some time, simple, nothing hair was the thing, so it’s invigorating to invest a little exertion,” says Palau, who reconsidered the twist again for fall with ultrasleek styles at both Oscar de la Renta and Hermès. Off the runway, the key is texture—lots of it.

“Rake back unwashed hair with your fingers,” he says. “Strands hanging out include appeal. A French twist needn’t bother with much.”

Regardless of how beautifully rumpled, what each twist needs, Palau insists, is some structure: “Twist your hair firmly at the nape so it gives you that smooth profile.”


1. Clip the front piece of your hair so it’s off the beaten path. Separate the back in half with a center part. Back-brush little areas at the part.

2. Clear the left half of the hair over so that it all falls down to right side. Secure with pins or clasps.

3. Release the hair from the front, and scrunch at the crown with your fingers to fabricate a slight, Bardot-esque bouffant. At that point pin it back.

4. Bring the free lengths over to left side, roll ends under, and pin. For a roughed-up impact, save a couple teased strands for a second sweep.

5. Wrap up by moving the reserved strands over to left side, securing them with more pins. Set with hair spray. Flaunt throughout the day.