If you've decided to keep your black hair unaltered from straightening, relaxing or texturizing, here are some natural hairstyle ideas for keeping you inspired. We'll also share our advice on how to get the best out of natural hair by following the key do's and don'ts.
3 natural hairstyles for you to celebrate your hair without damaging it.
Floaty kinky/coiled loose hair
The key to perfect loose kinks and coils is all about moisture. When natural hair is dry, it can have a tendency to shrink and coil tightly around itself (this is also a nightmare for tangles). But you can prevent this with an ultra-moisturizing hair care routine.
Hair prep: Use the power of nature to help treat your dry natural hair. We love the Mythic Oil hair care collection, infused with natural ingredients - like argan oil and myrrh - known for their moisturizing and smoothing properties. Shampoo and condition as usual, then apply the Oil Detangling spray before gently combing through damp hair with a wide-toothed comb.
How to style: On the lengths and ends of your tangle-free hair, apply a light defining gel like Bouncy and Tender from Dual Stylers to keep your kinks and coils frizz-free. Use a diffuser extension on your blowdryer to dry the hair to 90% (leave in a little moisture). Cup sections of the hair in the diffuser while it dries so as to encourage the hair's natural body.
Natural stretched afro
A voluminous stretched afro is many a girl's dream natural hairstyle, but it isn't always that easy. Once you get the length and the technique down, you won't have to spend hours building up the body. It's all about the right products and tools.
Hair prep: You'll have to leave your hair to grow for quite some time in order to achieve a long stretched afro. However, you can start styling it into shape even when it's only a few inches long. Use diluted essential oils to keep hair smooth, and don't forget a silk pillow or night scarf to keep the hair in good condition.
How to style: Once your hair is long enough (minimum shoulder length) and you've been to the stylist to ensure all the tips are top and the shape is ready, it's time to style! Separate your hair into about 10 sections and use a wide-toothed comb to brush out the ends. Apply a nourishing balm down the lengths and braid or twist each section together. Leave for 30 minutes then unravel and use your fingers to pull the sections apart. Finish with your wide-tooth comb if needed, and a spritz of hairspray.
Long box braids
Box braids are a way of achieving long and creative styles on natural hair without the damage caused by chemical treatments like relaxing.
Hair prep: Box braids are a protective style, but the hair underneath still needs to be protected before it gets covered for weeks in synthetic/foreign natural hair. Treat it to a deep conditioning mask a few days before the styling, but be sure to rinse everything out by D-day, or it risks your scalp becoming irritated. The same goes for twists and cornrows.
How to style: While box braids can be achieved at home, we'd still recommend you get a professional to do it for you. Not just because they can step back and see the look as it goes along, but because they'll be much (much) faster than a novice!
How to care for natural hair
Do: Use a weekly hair mask to keep your natural hairstyle moisturized.
Don't: Resort to chemical treatments to straighten hair or create curls.
Do: Get regular trims and shaping from a professional hair stylist.
Don't: Lighten hair at home (especially not repeatedly) as this can cause severe dryness and damage.