Have you always wanted to know how to bantu knot? Then we’ve put together a fool-proof tutorial just for you.
What you’ll need
Bantu knots have been worn by black-haired women for many years, yet only recently have we seen the style take stage on the runway. Not only are bantu knots a great protective hairstyle for your mane, but they also create the most wonderful heatless bantu curls, too!
For those of you that are unfamiliar with this hair vernacular, bantu knots are inspired by the traditional hairstyles of the Bantu peoples of Africa. They are easily identifiable by its characteristic twisted ‘mini bun‘ look and in some circles, you might find that they are also known as ‘Zulu knots’ or ‘duuduubs’.
However, bantu knots can be worn on all hair types and are really easy to create. Whether you want to wear them ‘knotted’ or simply sleep in the style to create stunning bantu knot out for the next day, we have a super easy step-by-step bantu knots guide, below.
Detangle your hair.
When creating bantu knots, it’s important to keep your tresses hydrated, so generously mist hair with the TRESemmé Botanique Nourish & Replenish Hydrating Mist.
Tip: Know that you can create your bantu knots hairstyle with wet or dry hair, and is a decision only you can make, as you know your hair best. Generally damp hair is ideal, as it is more manageable and easier to work with. Okay, now for the fun part…
Part your hair.
If you want slightly smaller bantu knots, then you’ll need to create more sections; less knots and you’ll opt for bigger sections. Remember the more knots you have, the tighter the finished bantu curls will be, and the bigger the knots, the looser the waves once unravelled.
We suggest smoothing a few drops of an oil, like the TRESemmé Keratin Smooth Beautifying Oil, through your ends to give your locks a shimmering shine!
Once you begin twisting from the root down towards the tips, the hair will begin to curl into itself. When the hair is twisted into a ‘knot’, secure with a hairband or tucks the ends under your hair to hold the shape.
8 Inspiring bantu knots: Our Insta-favourites
As a hair tribute to this versatile ‘do, we’ve taken the liberty of pulling together our favourite styles from Instagram. So, regardless of whether you’re a bantu newbie or a knotting pro, you can find plenty of #hairspiration down below. Enjoy!
Since nostalgia has hit an all time high when it comes to hair, why not relive the ’90s by styling your baby hair? Just make sure you create little, subtle designs around your hairline, as opting for really big, bold patterns may distract from the main attraction – your bantu knots, of course! Credit: @real.saje
Editor’s tip: Looking for baby hair inspiration? Take a look at FKA Twigs signature ‘dos.
Play with your partings
Who said that your partings had to be square (pun intended)? If you’re looking for a subtle way to spice up your bantus, playing around with your partings is a super simple way to add interest to this traditional hairstyle. So, you better start brushing up on your geometry, because you’re going to want to work with all the pretty geos for your next ‘do! Credit: @mbgittens
Small bantu knots
One of the main reasons we love bantu knots is because it works well on both long and short hair (yes, we’re not kidding). Believe it or not, with just a few inches of hair you can still achieve beautiful bantus. The secret? Just make your partings smaller – it might take longer, but trust us, little knots are perfect for short manes. Credit: @lillyanne_i
Bantu knots with locs
If you thought that bantu knots were a hairstyle just for those with natural hair, then you might want to rethink that notion. Just take a good long look at this variation created with dreadlocks – it just goes to prove how this versatile this updo really is!
Tip: Follow this Instagrammer’s innvovative styling prowess and experiement with colour. Not only will this give masses of extra interest to your look, but you’ll look so insanely cool, people will be stopping you on the streets! Credit: @yaya.marley
Braid bantu knots
If you’re already a bantu knot veteran and are looking to switch up the look a little, why not start by braiding your tresses before you create your knots? It’s a great way to take your ‘basic’ bantus up a level and add a textural dimension to your hairstyle. Trust us, no one will be able to look away from these beautiful knots when you’re rock them! Credit: @beatsbyberry
Bantu knots are casual, right? Well, we wouldn’t blame you for thinking that – but contrary to popular to belief, you can rock this look for sophisticated soirees, prom or even weddings (yes, really!). Just dress your hair up with pretty hair accessories, like flowers (or a tiara) and it’s wedding bells all around. Easy peasy! Credit: @thexaylishow
Remember what we said earlier about bantu knots working a treat for all hair length? Well, you’ll be pleased to hear that they’re also the ideal hairstyle for those with thick textured hair! By making bigger (and in our opinion, better) knots, you can speed up the styling process, while still gaining a bold and beautiful look! After all, creating small knots can become rather tiring. Credit: @sasa_loncaric
Okay, we know that technically, these aren’t actually bantu knots, but we just love the bantu influence of these multiple puff ponytails. It’s definitely a great option if you have thicker, type 4 hair or a short ‘fro. Credit: @chiandebs
Has learning how to bantu knot inspired you to try more looks for your natural mane? Then skip on over to our Black Hairstyles page, where you will find all the latest hair trends, how-to guides, celebrity inspiration and more!