This is your go-to for all things braids!
A braid is a unique pattern structure that is formed when you weave three or more strands of hair together. They are one of the most popular black hairstyles out there, all thanks to the fact they are protective and come in so many cool variations, which also require different techniques to achieve them.
From box braids to cornrows, goddess braids and everything in between, no matter your hair type or length, there’s bound to be a braided hairstyle, below, you’ll want to try next. Scroll down to see our top picks for 2019.
Double Dutch braids
Two French braids
Next read: Your complete guide to crochet braids.
Editor’s tip: Keep your fishtail braid in place with a spritz of the VO5 Invisible Firm Hold Hairspray.
This ultra-fine fast drying hairspray offers frizz control and humidity protection and had a gorgeous coconut fragrance.
Characterised by their beautifully thick appearance, Ghana braids use extensions to help create a fuller-looking finish and best of all, there are so many stylish options you can try. Credit: @futibraids
Next read: Celebrities loving Ghana braids.
The sky’s the limit when it comes to braided updos. From power ponytails to beautiful buns, which braided updo will you choose? Credit: @stylesbykrystalj
Braids for short hair
Whether they’re real or faux, dreadlocks never fail to impress. Credit: @naturalbabepro
Next read: Ultimate guide to dreadlocks.
Half-up, half down
A halo braid is all the rage with celebs and real girls alike and it’s the perfect boho look for any occasion. Credit: @reneebigtime
Feed in braids
Give your hair the illusion of longer fuller braids by using the feed in braids method.
By attaching braiding hair extensions to your natural hair while weaving, you’re left with a more natural seamless finish. Credit: @braidedbytee
Stand out from the crowd with these stunning jumbo braid twists. If you’re looking for a stylish low maintenance hairstyle that protects your strands, you can’t go wrong with jumbo box braids. Credit: @annrdrz_17
Editor’s tip: Make styling your hair easy with the TONI&GUY Flexible Hold Braid Balm. Whether you’re creating your styles or need a touch-up while on the go, this is the handbag essential you’ve been missing.
Jumbo box braids
When you marry Senegalese twists and goddess locs together, you get passion twists. They’re the perfect summer style! Credit: @braidsgang
Crochet box braids
Looking for alternative ways to get box braids? Try using the crochet method instead to install your braids. Credit: @msnaturallymary
Next read: African hair braiding 101.
Crochet braids twists
These crochet twists are another example of the crocheting method in action. Credit: @rekaylacurls
A hairstyle that needs no introduction. Credit: @braidmama
You can score the curls of your dreams by leaving your box braids undone like this. Credit: @nigerianbraidshair
This elegant braiding style allows you to protect your natural strands and show them off, too. Credit: @braidsgang
Curly crochet braids
Your secret weapon for envy-inducing curls? Curly crochet braids! Credit: @chimerenicole
Fulani braids are usually accessorised with beads to give a unique and beautiful look. Credit: @gsterl
Free from parabens and silicones, the botanical blend of coconut milk, coconut oil and aloe vera will leave your hair feeling nourished.
Single braids (or individual braids) is another term used to describe box braids. Credit: @boxbraidsbr
When you want a hairstyle that’s equal parts stylish and long-lasting, two braids are the way to go. Credit: @_braidsbychristina
Big box braids
Kim Kardashian braids
Ever since Beyonce wore them in her Lemonade album videos, side-swept braids have become more coveted than ever. Credit: @freshlengths
Short box braids
Thought you couldn’t rock braids and get in on the short hair trend? Well, you definitely can and this stylish bob is all the proof you need. Credit: @its_jennj
Be the best-tressed in your girl gang with these cute bob-length twists. Credit: @poplaura.b
Tribal braids AKA Fulani braids are a popular choice for black women looking for formal hairstyles and more casual festival looks, too. Credit: @justineskye
If you’re loyal to your box braids but want to try something new, triangle braids are a fun way to shake things up and add extra detail. Credit: @slayedbymeliz
Heading off to a festival and want a killer hairstyle to complete your look? Get inspired by this Instagrammer’s purple ombre braids, which are giving off major Coachella vibes. Credit: @brialleringer
Medium box braids
Not sure which braids to go for? Classic medium box braids are a great style for braids newbies that are guaranteed to suit everyone. Credit: @tach.j
After a style that’s as cute as it is practical? These pigtail braids are utterly adorable and will keep your strands in check. Credit: @izabelag4
Perhaps the most seamless of braids, tree braids are partially plaited to a certain point (with or without hair extensions) to create the ‘root’, while the rest of the hair is left loose and flowing like this. Credit: @brandiwynae
Two Dutch braid
Why have one Dutch braid when you can have twice the fun with two? Credit: @black.lyst
Editor’s tip: Finish your braided look with the TRESemmé Botanique Air Dry Natural Hold Gel.
As the name suggests, these braided styles are woven with yarn braiding hair, making them a great alternative for those who aren’t a fan of synthetic or real hair extensions. Credit: @stellas_out
Alicia Keys braids
From elegant Fulani braids to cool beaded cornrow styles, Alicia Keys never fails to show us how fun and versatile braided looks are.
Poetic Justice braids
Braided wedding hair
Get the crowd talking on your big day with this gorgeous, doubled braided halo hairstyle. Credit: @stanlophotography
Ombre box braids
Stitch braids look like traditional cornrows but have a different graphic and linear finish. Unlike regular cornrows, this technique requires a pinky finger and nail to create the lines and a strong-hold gel to keep them in place. Credit: @braidsbyjmarie
Straight crochet braids
If you’re after a classic hairstyle that won’t fail to impress, go for this glossy, straight crochet braid hairstyle. Credit: @kiitana
The bigger the braid, the better the hairstyle! This middle-parted, chunky plait style is bound to get you noticed. Credit: @the_frohaven
Gone are the days of boring cornrows! You can give them a fishy update by copying this impressive braiding pattern. Credit: @steph_odia
Long box braids
Take a cue from this Instagrammer and embrace the Rapunzel hair trend. Credit: @chanairaskye
Thick box braids
The thicker and bigger the braids, the less time you’ll need to spend waiting for your dream look. Credit: @itsmyrayeraye
Triangle box braids
The triangle partings in this braided look take this half-up, half-down hairstyle to a whole new level. Credit: @beautycreationsinsta
Upside down braid
Pink box braids
Excuse us while we swoon over these pink box braids. Credit: @magavilhas