Top Trendy Protective Hairstyles For Natural Hair
Protective styling is the single most reliable way to ensure that your hair is safely tucked away from manipulation. This in turn, results in growth retention and prevention from damage. You may be new in the natural hair space and probably wondering what to rock on your fro for a change. Read till the end as we recommend five of the best styles that are sure to protect your hair and still make you stand out.
Knotless box braids
It’s not everyday people recommend braids for fear of them being too tight or worse causing breakage. However, knotless braids are a variation of box braids that use the feed-in-technique. They are known as knotless because they lack the little knot at the root where the hair and braid meet forming a ‘knot’.
They are achieved by braiding one’s natural hair from the root just for an inch then feeding in the braiding hair for length. They are painless, versatile and easy to style. They can last for a month if well installed but may take some time to install so grab a book when going to a hairdresser.
To be honest, there is absolutely no look you cannot pull off with the perfect bun. They are easy and can take as little as 5 minutes to style. Whether you want a low bun, high puff, pineapple puff, a braided extension, and drawstrings (curly, straight or kinky). The perfect bun can be the only fashion accessory you need.
All you need are the right products, that is, gel, a scrunchie and whatever extension you may need. Make sure you do not make your bun too tight to avoid breaking your hair or having headaches and you are good to go.
Flat twists are similar to braided cornrows except instead of braiding, you twist. They are easy to do at home, painless and can vary in size, style and parting according to the one twisting them. The best part is that you only need your hair and basic two or three strand twisting knowledge.
Being natural means there will be time when you are forced to do your hair. Nothing works better than learning how to twist or braid your hair but if you are bolder and would love to show a little bit of curl, then a perfect twist out or braid out is your solution.
To achieve this, your hair has to be cleansed and moisturized, but most importantly, it should be damp because this is the only way your twist out will really pop. You can use a good gel just to make your curls more defined or just a good curling cream/custard.
Finally, wait for your hair to air dry (which may take a day or two) so be patient. The key to a great twist out is to have the hair completely dry when unravelling. Remember to oil your hands and hair first before unravelling and keep your hair covered when sleeping to avoid matting and frizz.
Wash and go
The irony behind a wash and go is the fact that it is not really a ‘wash and go’ kind of hairstyle. It takes a lot of time, patience, good products and tools to get the perfect wash and go. The best part however is that once it is done, your curls will be so cute, moisturized and full.
A good wash and go involves a lot of moisturizing and curl defining gels or creams. There is also a great deal of detangling so if you can invest in a good detangling brush and a wide tooth comb would be great.
Start by layering your products in small sections. It will take some time so be patient. Make sure your hair is damp before using any products so have a spray bottle on stand-by. After you are done, cover when you sleep and if you want to stretch out your wash and go, pull your hair from the ends and blow out your roots making sure the blow dryer is a few inches from the hair.
Finally, oil your hair every so often and please avoid the urge to touch it no matter how temptingly luscious your curls look.
A crown braid is similar to a French braid except that it starts at the forehead and wraps around the head forming a half-moon shape. If you can do any kind of cornrowing, the crown braid will be a piece of cake for you.
You can make it fun by making it into a low bun, adding accessories and playing around with your personality. There isn’t much to do with hairstyle but you can lay your edges for a neater look and keep moisturizing your hair every so often.
Much like the crown braid, the halo braid is simple and can be as fun as you want it. It appears to have a halo effect after braids are plaited and secured making it look like a ringed halo on the head. To get this style, remember to wash, moisturize and dry your hair.
Divide your hair in two at the back and plait French braids from the nape towards the front of your head. Keep braiding around your head all the way back to the nape. Keep braiding and secure the long plait with pins. Clean up the centre and lay your edges.
One of the most overlooked protective styles is the use of head wraps. The only problem with using head wraps is that most naturals do not remember to use wraps that are silk or satin. This is because cotton scarfs will dry out your hair leaving it frizzing and matted.
However, with the right hair wrap (silk/satin) you can elevate your style to incredible heights just by learning how to tie your hair wrap like a pro. Additionally, these wraps help keep your hair protected from the elements and the need to constantly touch your hair.
One of my favourite goto styles. You can use our Magic No Heat Curlers to create beautiful curl sets. These curlers allow you to create perfect spiral curls without using heat, pins or clips that could damage your hair. You can find instructions in my very popular YouTube tutorial below.
All these styles are easy to learn but if unsure, book a hair coaching session for professional help. It is important to understand that no one can understand your hair the way you can so in order to achieve the look you want, a great haircare routine has to be established way beforehand.
Whatever style you go for, Full Bloom Beauty's Haircare Essentials can help you create a great haircare routine.