Kelsie Cummings braids at Criss Cross Braid Studio at 219 King Ave. Credit: Dominique Johnson | Lantern reporter

Kelsie Cummings braids at Criss Cross Braid Studio at 219 King Ave. Credit: Dominique Johnson | Lantern reporter

Students looking to up their braid game can now achieve intricate styles from a salon near campus.

Criss Cross Braid Studio at 219 King Ave. provides only braiding hairstyling services, specializing in French and Dutch braiding.  

Co-owner Roza Nussipbek has lived in Columbus for three years, and wanted to open the braiding studio similar to those common in her home country of Kazakhstan.

“I came here and I noticed there were a lot of drying bars or blowout bars,” Nussipbek said. “So I decided I had enough experience to do this and came up with this idea. My stylists are not hairstylists, but braid artists. This entire salon is inspired by an art studio.”

Kelsie Cummings, a braid artist at the studio, and fourth-year in communication said both French and Dutch braids involve three sections of hair. With a French braid, the hair is added while overlapping the center strand, as opposed to a Dutch braid in which the hair is passed under the center strand.

Cummings said the braiding service is more sought out than she initially thought it would be. She said she enjoys braiding, which has been a hobby of hers for years.

“This first week being open has been, honestly, just great,” she said. “It is such a chill atmosphere coming to work, and it’s not the typical stress of an everyday salon. I can relax and focus on one style and the clients.”

There are five basic hair-braiding styles offered to clients: Simple Chic, The Sass Master, The Amazon Warrior, The Big Cheese and The Little Wonder. These styles, which Nussipbek calls “vibes,” range from $25 for a simple style to $60 for a more intricate style. Styles take from five to 25 minutes to complete. For an additional $5, clients can have accessories added within their braid style, such as safety pins, hair stickers and ribbon.

Nussipbek said her team offers variations of these five styles, and they serve as a basis for the look each braid artist seeks to create.

“We never ask the clients what type of braid that they want,” she said. “We always ask what their plans are for that day or evening, how they would like to express themselves or how they would like to feel.”

The studio offers braiding classes to individuals and groups of stylists from other salons. Nussipbek said she will also travel to parties and provide braiding as entertainment and hairstyling to bridal parties.

She said she wanted to take advantage of the popularity of braiding by teaching, as well as actually doing the braids.

“We do this back in my home country, so why not share it?” Nussipbek said. “Braiding is art and we really like what we do. My job is to inspire my artists and to give them direction. My hope is that I can expand this type of hair studio in Columbus and beyond.”

Correction Nov. 17: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated the amount of time it takes to achieve the braided styles.