Braidelicious: From box to faux, take your pick of these braids
Braiding, particularly in African cultures, is a tradition that goes back for centuries yet it has come back with a new school swag.
It’s been hundreds, if not thousands, of years since women first started to wear their hair in braids.
You can look absolutely stunning in them, as braids are almost perfect for every season, whether you are attending a wedding, chilling on campus or going to work.
Braids can also help your hairline grow, but make sure you have a stylist that knows what they are doing.
Hair has become a way of lifestyle and has the ability to convey a deeper meaning than just a hairstyle.
These are a favourite as they can be any length and thickness and are so easy to style.
Box braids usually take a long time to be plaited but they last longer – up to two months if well maintained. These plaits are three-strand braids that are divided into square-shaped sections, and then plaited by extensions for extra length.
The braided bob
Braids don’t have to be very long. This sentimental style is great when you don’t want to deal with the extra weight and long box braids brings, but gives you the same effect.
Bobs like this usually suit everyone.
Braided pony tail
If you are looking for a neat hairstyle, you can opt for the braided ponytail. It’s very versatile.
To keep it clean, always spray it with braid hair spray.
For an extra look add some accessories, as this is a style which outlines your facial features.
When life gives you lemons, just make lemonade braids. These were made popular by Beyoncé. Give her album Lemonade another listen…
Also known as side braids, Beyoncé wore them on the cover of the album. The braids go from left to right rather than going to the back. Add some beads or rings to finish that versatile look. Curving the direction of your braids adds another stylistic element to your design.
These braids are named after the Fula people in West Africa. The style is done by braiding thin to medium plaits in rows along the sides of the head while leaving a central twist at the crown.
The central braid is decorated with beads and rings which signifies a traditional Fulani look.
Fulani braids can also be combined with other styles to make a fashion statement.
Cornrows may be the most popular braids, they certainly are trending. They can be thick or thin and very simple, it’s your choice.
They usually last four weeks if properly maintained. Make sure your hair gets some attention by decorating the braids with accessories such as beads, rings, and wires which have been trending lately.
There are numerous sizes in braid twists: extra small, small, medium, and big.
Instead of a regular braid which uses three sections of hair, a twist braid uses only two sections of hair. Twist braid styles are one of the easiest and most popular protective braids and give you a natural look.
Half cornrows, half afro
If you want to have both cornrows and a ‘fro; this style is definitely yours.
Braid your hair halfway down, stopping at the crown of your head. And then let the rest of your hair grow free.
Of all the trendy dreads, faux are the best. They’re perfect if you want both dreadlocks and natural curls and they can be long or sort.
These natural-looking Locs are usually installed by crochet. This involves crocheting synthetic hair extensions to a person’s natural hair with a latch hook or crochet hook. Faux Locs give you that natural look.
Sho Madjozi, South African songwriter, rapper, singer and poet known for her unique Ndebele style, loves these beautiful colourful braids. She often styles them in ponytails, leaving some hanging.
General braid tips
- To avoid damaging your hair with braids make sure that your scalp is not too dry, keep it moist.
- Don’t have them for too long on your head.
- When you sleep wear a head wrap that is smooth as its smooth texture will prevent your braids from being tangled and keep your edges looking fresh. This also protects your roots from drying out.
- Avoid styles that involve pulling too tightly because they damage your hairline.
- You do need to constantly wash your hair, especially if you have Box braids.
- The price of your braids usually depends on the size, length and style. Other than that, they are affordable unless you go to a pricy salon.
So, which style is your favourite?