70 Best Black Braided Hairstyles That Turn Heads

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Braids are an easy and so pleasant way to forget about hair styling for months, give your hair some rest and protect it from harsh environmental factors. Besides, with the awesome hairstyles listed below you will attract attention, admiring glances and sincere smiles.

Braided hairstyles make space for creativity. There are many interesting braiding techniques to make every head unique. Besides, you can experiment with highlights, natural or curly texture, clips, patterns, shapes, etc.

Natural perm and hair thickness is your big plus and a unique bonus that you simply can’t leave unused. Your hair, that you might have been complaining of before, is created for braids. So why not to use this idea to your advantage?

African hair braiding is very versatile: microbraids, cornrows, fishtail braids, blocky braids, black braided buns, twist braids, tree braids, hair bands, French braids and more are at your disposal. Once you pick a desired braiding style, thickness and have your hair braided, you may shape your braids into gorgeous hairstyles both for every day and special events.

Researchers say that braids were “in fashion” even 2000 years b.c. If they have survived till our time, there definitely must be something special in them, don’t you think? No wonder, every year world-famous designers experiment with braids at fashion shows. Fancy to know what’s new they offer!

Popular Trends in Black Braided Hairstyles

Fashion shows are always inspiring, yet when it comes to clothes, we need to wait at least till March to begin to bring some new fresh ideas into life. As for hairstyles, things are much easier here: get inspired and try on new images already now. What’s new was there in braided hairstyles? These are some trends for inspiration:

– Tight and edgy cornrow styles, cornrowed buns. Cornrows have been always considered as a rather casual hairstyle, but now when they are in Couture collections, it’s high time to rock them for a while in the new season.

– Wrap-around braids and twists for black hair with fresh flowers. These are loose, messy and inspired by Boho chic.

– Very loose whimsical braids for long hair. The braid that starts from mid-shaft is not noticeable in the front and looks sloppy in the back.

– Low braided buns. Braided bun updos are always an extra charge of elegance to ennoble even the simplest outfit.

– Twisted rope braids. These long 3 dimensional braids, ideal for long thick hair, look very interesting, unhackneyed and worth a try.

The Most Gorgeous Black Braided Hairstyles

Check out the ideas in pictures below to get inspired.

#1: Criss-Cross Goddess Braids

Chunky cornrow braids, referred to as goddess braids, are perfect for days when you want to give your hair a break or when you are going on a beach vacation and would rather not worry about styling your strands every morning. The great thing about the braids of this size is that they don’t take too long to do and are easy to take out.

#2: Bold Triangle Parted Box Braids

Braided hairstyles are quite common among modern women, especially traditional looks like box braids. One of the easiest ways to make a standard style seem fresh and new is by changing the size of the braids and experimenting with parting. Large braids will go well with the 90’s revival and athleisure/streetwear fashion trends that are popular at the moment.

#3: Braided Bun

For a long time, large braided updos were reserved for older women on the go. But everything old is new again, and now younger women are embracing the style with flair. The micro braids accent the jumbo cornrows for a fun twist on the classic.

#4: Long Braids for Black Hair

Even if you are adding hair for length, chunky black braids are not ideal for those with short natural hair because they can slip out or cause too much tension. A good way to combat this is to feed small tight cornrows into larger ones for a similar, but more secure, effect.

#5: High Bun with Mohawk Braid

Natural braids hairstyles do not always have to be protective; sometimes braids can be used just as an accent to the overall look, as shown. Blending a Mohawk braid with a high bun is something new and unexpected in the hair world.

#6: Braided Ponytail

As wonderful as braids can be to create interesting protective styles, braiding hair can sometimes feel heavy when it comes to hairstyles with individual plaits. A cornrow ponytail is great for a casual updo that won’t pull on your edges.

#7: Purple Highlights in Black Braids

Outside of the extra length and thickness, adding hair also gives the ability to experiment with color. Weaving in a few pieces of hair for a pop of color like the purple shown here will give you cute braids with a highlighted effect.

#8: Centre-Parted Crown with Fishtail

Although they are known as “boxer braids” now, this double braided look has been popular for quite some time. Despite being one of the most popular and, therefore, common braids hairstyles for black women, the addition of a fishtail braid at the end and platinum blonde streaks makes this look a step above the rest.

#9: Mixed Braid Updo for Black Hair

Looking for a fun style to wear at a formal event? Mixing in a few braids of different sizes will result in a fashion forward updo for black women. To help the look last for a couple of days, make sure to sleep with a silk scarf at night.

#10: Jumbo Coil with Braids

Instead of a standard bun, try using the pattern of your plaits as the basis for a design. The bold coil stands out more because of the chevron look that the big braids create. Plus, this simple hairdo will look good in any setting.

#11: Feed-in Braids

The benefit of the feed-in method is that it makes cornrow hairstyles look more natural and less bulky by creating a narrow and flat point at the hairline. This also creates less tension and protects the edges. This method of braiding can be done at any African hair braiding salon.

#12: Classy Updo for Black Hair

With goddess braids in braided updos you can take something as simple as a bun and make it worthy of a double take. The smaller the braid is, the tighter the weave will be which will ultimately make your hairdo last longer.

#13: Braids with Curves

One of the best things about wearing braids is the ability to create designs without shaving them into your hair or using color. This can be done with just the parts or by manipulating the actual braid. Pick something that matches your personal style; it can be something simple and beautiful like the slightly curved braids shown or you can go all out with a more intricate look.

#14: Chunky Mohawk Braids

Mohawk braids are an easy way to try the shaved style without committing to actually cutting your hair. Also the possibilities are endless when it comes to styling the long section of your hair—you can cornrow it as shown, wear individual African braids, twists, or more.

#15: Wavy Straight-Back Braids

One of the most classic cornrow styles is the straight –back look. It’s typically the first hairdo that new braiders master because the pattern is simple and it does not take a lot of time to complete. To add a softer twist, ask for curvy parts to create a wavy appearance.

#16: Poetic Justice Braids

One of the most popular hair braids style at the moment is the Poetic Justice look. This is named after the long braided look that Janet Jackson wore in the hit 90’s film. Pair with bantu knots on top and flirty makeup for an eye catching look.

#17: Dutch Braid Crown for Black Hair

If you have long natural hair, or want to add length to your strands with extensions, braiding hairstyles can promise you a fabulous new look. This is perfect for nights when you want to go out and don’t feel like straightening your hair or twisting it out.

#18: Revamped Braided Ponytail

Take a ponytail to the next level with braids. Because the style is not very versatile, you want to introduce something quirky or fun into the look so that it doesn’t feel boring after a couple of days. Incorporating smaller braids, or wrapping hair around your ponytail holder are those simple touches that will keep it exciting.

#19: Braid and Side Bang

If you have a long bob or a medium tapered cut, you can still rock braids as shown here. Use the longest portion of your cut in the middle to create a braid or add hair to the section where you will be able to get the most grip. With a sleek bang in the front—this look gives new meaning to the phrase “business in the front, party in the back”.

#20: Bulky Crown Bun

Blushing brides or even wedding guests who are looking for a formal updo should try this regal crown bun. Hairstyles with braids are so versatile – they can fit into any setting, and this sleek combo of twists and cornrows is no exception.

#21: Half-Updo with Long Freely-Hanging Braids

Long braided Ghana weaving hairstyles are a staple for African American women during the summer months. Keep your look fresh with a half-updo that features a nice height on top. This style can be completed in a time crunch for a sexy look that lasts throughout wherever the day may take you.

#22: Braided Updo Hairstyle with Curls for Short Hair

No need to rock a fully braided style to get the effect. Braid the back, leaving room in the front for bouncy spiral curls. This style works well with short to medium hair length, as it does not require much length to complete.

#23: Braids with Accessories

Braids don’t just have to be reserved for updos and long hair. Try a funky bob with layered box braids for a low maintenance look with style. The gilded thread adds an element of surprise with a bohemian flair.

#24: Jumbo Double-Twisted Updo

Here is a simple updo for black women with natural hair that can work for a dressy event or just when one craves a more glamorous moment in day to day life. The best part is that this look can be completed in less than five minutes for a quick and easy black braided hairstyle.

#25: Cool Marley Twists

Black women with long, thick hair can recreate this easily by making chunky two-strand twists, but even if you don’t have long strands, simply add in “Marley” hair to replicate the style shown. The puffiness of the twists gives off a carefree vibe that looks only cooler as they are becoming messier.

#26: Braided Hairstyle with Jumbo French Braid

A French braid goes from being sweet to sassy the larger it gets—and this style brings a heavy dose of the latter. Try a jumbo braid for an upcoming weekend out; this is a surefire conversation starter!

#27: Updo with Cornrows and Twists

No need to choose between braids or twists for your next updo. Blending the two together in various sizes results in an intricate and interesting black hairstyle.

#28: Bulky Braided Crown Bun

One of the fastest and most pulled together protective styles is a braided bun. This style can be achieved by most textures and lengths. Unless your locks are extremely long and full, it is easy to add hair to create a bulky crown-like bun.

#29: Asymmetric Braiding Hair Style

If you wish to draw more attention to your face, make a “side-bang” with a face-framing braid. The look is a fun option to offset a funky outfit for a night out with friends. This style would work well with medium hair lengths.

#30: Twisted Updo with Blonde Highlights

Showcase your highlights in the elegant twisted updo with honey blonde accents. Pump up the volume of the style with a beautiful bouffant in the front.

#31: Chunky Twisted Updo

We love the idea of twists in black hairstyles. A twisted updo style for natural hair like this one will combat frizzy strands during humid days, while still appearing polished and pretty.

#32: High Bun with Twists

A high bun can go anywhere, from trips to the grocery store to trips to the beach. Give your everyday look an update by adding twisted pieces throughout your bun.

#33: Cornrows with French Roll Updo

Smaller braids tend to last longer, so if you are willing to commit to a style for a couple of weeks try this braided hairstyle for long hair. The gorgeous rolled Mohawk will suit a variety of occasions like a work trip or vacation with your significant other.

#34: Updo with Forward Braided Bun

Don’t get stuck in a rut with the same black braid hairstyles. Try a voluminous loosely braided bun updo for an eclectic twist that would work well for black women with medium-to-long hair lengths.

#35: Twisted Updo with Fun Face-Framing Twists

Create a sort of side bang by brushing your Havana twist braids across your face and pinning them to the side; it will instantly add some drama to your face. This cute braided hairstyle gets a bonus point for pulling double duty—once you untwist the braids you are left with glorious spiral curls!

#36: Large High Bun with a Headband

Although this is not what you would typically think of when you picture braids, this style overlaps three separate sections in a bun to add visual interest. Take it to the next level with dyed ends and a bright headband.

#37: Black Braided Updo Hairstyle with a Cute Design

Use alternating cornrows of different sizes to create an intricate symmetrical design on both sides of your head for an eye-catching look. This can be done with medium to long hair lengths.

#38: Intricately Twisted Fauxhawk

A true hairdo for a woman who likes to stand out from the crowd with no apologies; with a stylish updothat blends braids, voluminous twists and color, you are sure to make a statement.

#39: Double Bun Mohawk with Undercuts

Show off your shaved sides with two larger than life spunky braided buns; the perfect hairstyle to complement your look for an enjoyable night out.

#40: Highlighted Braids and High Bun

Lighten up your long braids for the warm weather with honey brown highlights weaved throughout chocolate brunette locks. A high bun is always classy and will work well for any daily activity – school, work and beyond.

#41: An Unmatched Combo: Braids + Curls

Can’t decide between braids or curls? Leave your problem of choice behind. With this awesome hairstyle you are getting 2 in 1. African hair braiding section with an explosion of curls at the ends is a wonderful and exciting idea to try.

#42: Outstanding French Style Braids

Extremely chic and stylish, they are not going to be out of fashion in the near future. A gorgeous thick braid, starting at your bang wraps your head gracefully, just to be rolled up at the crown of your head. Look: it’s a crown, indeed!

#43: A Cascade of Enchanting Braids

This is a truly universal braided hairstyle for teens. You can simply clip some braids on top or tie them up, leaving the remaining braided ends loose on your shoulders for a luxurious, time-tested look.

cute braided hairstyles

© Poco_bw | Dreamstime.com

#44: A Brilliant Braid-Inspired Solution

Are braids all over the head a bit too much for you? Don’t worry, there’s a brilliant alternative: braids at the roots and chic unbraided ends. This solution is very universal and suits any occasion.

#45: Superb Intricate Patterns

Tiny braids are both classy and classic but your can shape them into absolutely unexpected intricate patterns on top. Add some trendy hue to your hair color and here you are: one of the trendiest braided hairstyles.

#46: Showy Diagonal Braids

These pretty diagonal braids not only look cute and quite unusual, they are suitable for most face shapes, hair textures and and any age. Wherever you go, I bet you won’t remain unnoticed!

#47: The Most Sophisticated Braided Updo Ever!

Unbelievable… look at that! Those elegant spirals, skillfully rolled into the most sophisticated updo, are worth to grace your head for a once-in-a-lifetime occasion, like wedding, to say the least.

#48: A Feminine Braided Hairstyle for Medium Length

Tresses, falling on your face, always look very feminine and sexy. You can double the effect if you have them plaited into numerous thin tough braids or thick Ghana braids. This hairstyle rims and slims your face outstandingly.

#49: Creative Cornrows

Cornrows are universal but you can shape them in a completely unexpected and creative way, like in this photo. Sleek sides and a stylized bun on top look very eccentric, but, definitely, mind-blowing, don’t you think?

#50: Glamorous Yet Easy Braiding

Some comparatively easy-to-perform examples of braiding can turn into a very glamorous hairstyle, worthy to adorn a pop star. So why not to imitate such successful ideas?

#51: The Chic Braided Mohawk

This Mohawk-inspired hairstyle is very unique because of its perfect shape, reminding a sea horse. Pair this hairstyle with showy earrings and a stylish cocktail dress.

#52: A Neat Pile of… Braids!

Thicker braids are very showy and you can experiment with them. In this impressive updo they are piled on top, while behind there’s something to stare at admiringly as well…

#53: A Snail Shell

A thick braid is running around your head, getting thinner and ending in a cute tiny curl. This is a perfect African hair braiding style for an office look or a very special occasion where you need to look stunning.

#54: A Fantastic Nature-Inspired Hairstyle

Greenish is a doubtful hue for hair, but look how harmonious it is in this braided hairstyle. The braids are associated with the plant stems and the thin curly locks remind the tops of some exotic vegetation, and it’s growing… on your head!

#55: More of a Color Theme

Do you find green a bit too bold for a hair color yet still wish to experiment with unusual hues? Here are some beautiful and hot roses in a very impressive hairstyle for creative ladies.

#56: Havana and Marley Twists

Are you seeking for some truly dramatic hairstyle? With Havana and Marley twists hairstyles you have found it. People will turn heads, so better prepare your best smile to respond to tons of refined compliments!

#57: Braids and Waves for Any Occasion

Braids, ending in waves, will provide you with good options for a choice of hairstyles. Wear them loose, cascading your shoulders for every day or pile everything up for a superlative updo that is never out of fashion.

#58: Charming Twists and a Playful Ponytail

Ponytail hairstyles are trendy and so versatile. This asymmetric curly ponytail makes you look very feminine and playful. Beautiful twists complement this cute ponytail and make it one of a kind.

#59: Gorgeous French Braids

Tired of microbraids? Well, there are more brilliant ideas for any taste and mood. Variations with French braids are endless, and this one is a very popular kind, worthy to imitate.

#60: Twisty Elegance

Those multiple twists remind chains which can be shaped into something very original and unbelievably elegant. Asymmetrical patterns and soft flowing lines in this hairstyle are very impressive.

#61: Braids + Twists = Perfection

This is an excellent example of an elaborate and sophisticated hairstyle where braids interlace with twists to create an impression of absolute perfection, inherent to all works of art. This is one of them, by the way.

#62: Easy and Ingenious

This is one of the best ways of how you can present your natural perm in the best light ever. Let some braids run slantwise for a more creative result.

#63: A Chic Cocks Comb

It’s unbelievable what shapes you can come up with, experimenting with braids. Don’t forget to complement such a stunning cockscomb with showy earrings, imitating the outlines of your hairstyle, according to Nigerian fashion, like you see in the photo.

#64: Centre-Parted Senegalese Twists

Joy Bryant’s thin Senegalese twist braids offer gorgeous texture that looks awesome in very simple hairstyles, like this centre-parted downdo. With this particular one shoulder dress Joy can also sweep them to one side.

#65: Symmetric Cornrows with a Braided Parting

Alicia Keys chooses breathtaking symmetric cornrows with a braided parting and beads at the ends. Image how they clink in movement?

#66: Red Eye-Popping Framing Braid

Rihanna is always a girl to stare at and examine admiringly. Her fabulous face-framing red braid is contrasting with the emerald green lace earrings which create together a breathtaking play of colors.

#67: Blonde Milkmaid Braids

Beyonce couldn’t simply pass by milkmaid braids trend, so she adopted it for one of her brightest looks. Yes, I know, it’s so far from natural hair, but looks pretty good on African American women, isn’t it?

#68: Bulky Top Bun from Box Braids

Eva Marcille is so incomparably bright and beautiful with her high bulky bun from box braids that you can hardly look away. Meanwhile, provided that you are currently wearing quality box braids, you’ll easily twist it yourself in a matter of minutes.

#69: Twist from Box Braids

Keri Hilson also occasionally adopts the box braids trend, and she wears her braids in a modern way – without “baby hair” at front. Well, hers is sleeked cutely into a couple of tiny tendrils.

#70: Freely Flowing Black Curls with Braids

A chic black braided hairstyle can feature a wonderful mix of braids and curls, like this awesome downdo from Keri Hilson. Centre-parted thick black curls with 2 headband braids are a simple and great black hairstyle idea to embrace for any occasion.

As you see, there are tons of exciting ideas of how to change your image with different types of braids. Take advantage of your naturally thick wavy hair and show the world just how breathtaking you can be!

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