8 Protective Styles for Black Hair

1. Cornrows

Cornrows are a versatile braid style that involves braiding the hair close to the scalp in straight lines. They can be done with natural hair or braid extensions, offering numerous styling options.

2. Box Braids

Box braids are characterized by square parting and uniform braids, typically created using synthetic hair. These braids provide a protective style and can be worn in various lengths and sizes.

3. Knotless Braids

Knotless braids start without a knot at the scalp, reducing tension and creating a seamless look. Hair is fed into the braid gradually, making this style gentler on the scalp and versatile in styling.

4. Fulani Braids

Popularized by the Fulani people, this style features cornrows in the front with a center part and box braids in the back. Fulani braids are typically medium-sized and can be adorned with beads.

5. Pigtail Braids

Two thick, braided pigtails offer a cute and low-maintenance protective style. Part the hair down the center, secure each section into high pigtails, and braid. Extensions can be added for more length.

6. French Curl Braids

This trending style combines braids and curls, with the hair braided at the root and releasing into curls at shoulder length. French curl synthetic hair is typically used to achieve this look.

7. Stitch Braids

Stitch braids are similar to cornrows but use a "stitch in" technique to create horizontal patterns. The clean lines are achieved using a special finger technique, often involving the pinky nail, to create the distinctive look.

8. Flat Twists

Flat twists are two-strand twists done on the scalp, suitable for both relaxed and natural hair. Start with a hydrating shampoo to cleanse and moisturize the scalp, then use a rat-tail comb for parting and twist the hair.