Parents would braid the hairs of their children who would in turn learn the art in order to use it on their friends or siblings. Then, braids were used to identify a person’s social class and standing or even their marital statuses.
A lot of braids that you would consider beautiful originated in Africa. African braids can trace its way back in Egypt in the 3100 BC, cornrows date back to the 3500 BC, however crown braids came out of Europe from 1006 to 1485.
Braids signify the African culture and all its history. It is a symbol of strength and is much more than a hair style.
Until now, braids have evolved quite beautifully. It gained global recognition and has developed as a result of creativity. While most of the styles have not changed, there have been significant new ways to make them more appealing to the world.
African braids are just too numerous to mention. There are cornrows and feed in braids, microbraids and fishtail braids, twists, tree braids, braided buns, block braids, loose braids and a lot more. Quite a number of celebrities have donned on these and have stunned effortlessly.
Get inspired! Here’s some inspiration we have gathered for you from the streets of today - some popular Black Braided Hairstyles that are worth trying.
1. Micro Braids
Popular singer, Jhene Aiko donned and turned heads in this waist length microbraids. Beautiful isn’t it.
2. Fish Braids
These braids use a lot of twists and turns and are otherwise called the herringbone braids because they look like a fish’s skeleton.
3. Box Braids
These are very stylish and your hair is kind of divided in to boxes before they’re installed. Very chic and elegant hairstyle and you’d definitely stun in these. No other to rock it better than Keke Palmer.
4. Feed In Braids
These are the classic Ghana weaves that have made waves locally and internationally. They are beautiful and very creative.
5. Tree Braids
These are more often than not micro braids but have the structure of a tree braid. Actress Zoe Kravitz owned the red carpet in this platinum blonde tree braids.
6. Crown Braids
More like cornrows with a connecting braid that creates the illusion of a crown. It gives you a halo effect and is also very stylish.
7. Twists (Havana)
These could be in large chunky sizes or really thin ones. They are usually braided with just two strands which is why they are twists. They create a different outlook altogether and are very attractive. Brandy makes them look effortless.
8. Half up Mohawk
When looking to dawn on a Mohawk hairstyle by shaving the sides of your head, try out this instead, use cornrows for the sides and curl up your Mohawk instead for a dramatic effect. Beautiful and speaks a lot about your personality.
9. Braided Updo
Now you could want braids installed but not necessarily know how to style them. Take a look at this updo by Skai Jackson. It fits perfectly and you wouldn’t have to take it down.
Yes, ponytails could be achieved with braids too and they look gorgeous especially when they’re paired with cornrows or feed in braids. They are very low maintenance kind of styles and they wouldn’t be in your face when you’re on the move. Check this out.
11. Crotchet Braids
Well these could be afro or curly and sometimes not even braided but the hair is put in cornrows before these are installed so there goes. They could turn out stunning. Kelly Rowland sure rocks it well.
12. Snake Braids
So these are suitable for those who like their braids a lot closer to the scalp and they are ideal feed in braids but with a twist. They are curvy and can be personalized too with beads or clasps and other hair accessories.
You know, twists could take different dimensions and for Teyonah Parris, the nubian two strand twists just frame her face so well. Fun thing about these braids is that you could have it on forever. They become more beautiful as they age. Try it out.
14. Poetic Justice
These braids are basically box braids that have been nicknamed due to Janet Jackson. There are however a lot of ways to wear this style. You could have it installed side by side with bantu knots on top. Look at this stunner.
15. Marley Twists
These are still in the two strand family like the Havana, nuban and Senegalese twists except these ones are a lot thinner than others. They are named after the classic reggae singer Bob Marley and are mostly worn in longer lengths. Leah-Anne Pinnock stunned in this.
16. Braided Bun
You know when you just want to have it all tucked in and not worry about hair in your face or hair getting in the way? This is the perfect style for those moments. It is also perfect for the summer, protects your hair and also reduces the heat.
17. Faux Locs
These create the impression of dreadlocks but nonetheless your hair is locked in the process. It is a low maintenance style that could be used for months. It is like fine wine which gets better with age. Meagan Good makes this style much more appealing.
18. Bob Braids
So like the classic Bob wigs, these braids adopt the same structure but could be beautiful whether with chunky or thin strands. They frame the face so well and will always give you this put together look even if you’re not.
19. Half up, half down braid styles
So using cornrows for the front, you could imitate this half up, half down hairstyle that looks absolutely beautiful. The cornrows though seem to be braided very close to the scalp and they create beautiful details. Jourdan Dunn is a stunner everyday but this style attracts a lot of attention to her facial features.
20. Flat Twists
Ever heard of flat twists? Well its mostly used for kinky hairs but it could be used by everyone. Flat twists could be very beautiful especially with a curly updo if you’re not the type that wants your hair falling. Take a look at this kinky updo with the curls and the flat twists which are reversed. Perfect for the summer too.
21. Go Dutch
So Dutch braids have been somewhat over used if you could put it that way. They are classic last minute styles that can save you anytime and anywhere. They are a lot easier to maintain too. Yara Shadidi stuns in this Dutch braids.
22. Pocahontas Braids
This is an adaptation of the Dutch braids except that little cornrows are braided into the mighty French braids in the middle. They are again really protective styles and are ready to go.
23. Yarn Locs
These braids are made out of acrylic yarn as the name implies. They’re kind of like faux locs that are sewn in and they could be made in a variety of colors, just as dramatic as the person wearing it. FKA Twigs looks like a doll in these.
This is more of an updo but just rolled up, skillfully of course and could be worn to any number of occasions. They are elegant and classy too.
25. Crimp Braids
So these look like they were braided at the roots and left loose at the tips. The color adds a lot of drama to the look and is very fun and airy. Amanda Stenberg has her head up in these crimp braids in grey.
26. Fish tail
This braid has always been very appealing and attractive too. It is more of a layered braid but it comes out in the shape of a fish bone. Kate Bosworth wears it well.
27. Stun in orange
Another way to wear your braids would be to play with color. So start out with cornrows and then just finish up by adding colors to the braids. Oh and you could make them much longer too for a dramatic effect. Mila J stuns in orange floor length braids.
28. Rainbow Braids
These could come in box braids or tree braids or microbraids but the theme would be the colors in the rainbow. Chanel Iman brought out her fun side with these colorful braids.
29. Bantu Knots
This is a classic African braid. It is beautiful and unique all on its own. It includes some form of French braids which are then wrapped in circles to create the knot. Take a look.
30. Ghana Braids
This originates from Ghana and though similar to cornrows, has a different technique. They are quite beautiful too.
31. Mohawk Bun
Terrific for the summer, this braided bun is beautiful and a perfect protective style. It incorporates cornrows and settles at the Mohawk position.
32. Triangular Parted Box Braids
These are box braids but the hair is parted in triangles which creates a different effect on the braids. They could be accessorized with clasps or pins.
33. Cornrows with a twist
So try having cornrows installed but instead of the conventional ones, you could alternate them vertically and diagonally so they create a desirable effect. Look at this.
If you’re into curls and you just cannot stay away, there are ways to incorporate it into your braids.
If you love bangs, then the Alicia Keys kind of braids would suit you perfectly. She does a lot of cornrows with bangs on the sides of the ears. Oh and she uses a lot of beads or hair accessories.
For those who love bold colors like blonde, this should do it for you. Check out Monica in blonde braids, definitely a stunner.
37. Ponytails and crown braids
It should be one or the other but Gabrielle Dennis stuns in both. The braids frame her face perfectly.
38. Double cornrows
You know what? If you can have one, then why not two? This double cornrows are definitely turning it up. The low bun just gives it a finished look.
39. Braids and Faux hawk
It’s easy to get box braids so add a little personality to it and create a faux hawk in the middle. The cornrows by the sides would be a work of art.
40. Back Braids
These are more like chunky feed in braids that are wavy. You could add thin ones too and a lot of beads.
41. Braids in Purple
If you’re a fan of colors, you could try box braids in purple. They make quite the fashion statement. Justin Skye killed this look.
42. Milkmaid braids
Similar to the crown braid is a Milkmaid braid. It doesn’t exactly give you the halo that a crown braid does but it sure is beautiful. Take a look at the delectable Yvonne Orji.
43. Cornrows and crotchet
This combination of cornrows into a curly crotchety half up, half down look makes it look much better. The bangs as seen on Issa Rae frames her face perfectly.
44. Side Fringes
Another way to rock braids is to create a side fringe with cornrows and let your hair down.
45. Micro cornrows
These are very tiny cornrows that are very durable. They can be rocked to any occasion too.
Honestly, you can’t go wrong with locs, whether faux locs or dread locs, they are always beautiful.
47. Goddess Braids
These are similar to cornrows but are different in some other ways. With the right accessories they’d pop out like Alicia Keys.
48. Thick Criss cross Cornrows
Where you want to give your hair the much needed space to breathe, these cornrows are the way to go.
Whatever the style, you need a lot of accessories to accentuate the look. These have a handful of beads.
50. Box Braids in style
Look good in them box braids especially in this high ponytail by Nicki Minaj.
All of these Braided styles are current and fashionable. Braiding hairstyles are a lot more elegant and chic and very versatile too so get creative.