Elaborately-braided hairstyles can sometimes take hours to achieve, so of course, you want them to look extra fresh once you finally get out of the salon chair. We’re talking about hair that makes you do a double take and thendouble tap.
Braiding, particularly in cultures with a strong African influence, is a tradition that goes back for generations. And classic styles are constantly being reinvented and brought to life with a new-school swag. That’s because braids are extremely adaptable, and with a wealth of techniques and traditions to look back on, it should come as little surprise that Black people with naturally Afro-textured hair are embracing and reinventing an important part of our culture.
Be it beads, patterns that swoop and swirl around the crown, technicolor ombré hues, or braid styles adorned with thread, cuffs, and butterflies, the options are endless, which can be a bit daunting if you’re trying to decide on a look. But fear not! We’re here to help you navigate it all with some major inspiration spied on celebrities and on Instagram.
We’ve got ideas that will help you achieve ultimate hair goals.
A few of the models on the runway at Pyer Moss’s Spring 2020 show wore sets of beautiful cornrow braids adorned with gold cuffs forged in the image of Black female music artists. The gilded likenesses of Missy Elliot, Grace Jones, Rihanna, Lauryn Hill, and more graced their plaits, a beautiful tribute to the contribution of Black women to pop culture worldwide.
Braids on Braids
To close out her video for “Hit Different” in September, SZA gave fans a little teaser of her single, “Good Days.” For the segment, she wore a set of beaded braids, complete with a gorgeous fringe, which was also adorned with wooden flourishes.
Tessa Thompson’s super long BDSM-inspired braid was one of our favorite hair looks from the 2019 Met Gala, “Notes on Camp.” The style comes courtesy of Lacy Redway, who left a little tassel at the end of the 12-foot long latex braid so it could resemble a whip.