For as far back as the world remembers, braids have been one of the no. 1 hairstyles for both women and men alike. So there’s no surprise that there are many and very varied braid styles out there.
Distinctive in the way they are made, these different types of braids represent the period or culture that led to their creation. They can also be a reflexion of their times or, to keep things on a lighter note, a very pretty and useful way to style the hair.
As is, in this list, we will be showing you the different braiding methods that you will want to know and which will leave you in awe!
As you’ll see, most come from the African hair community – the all-time queens of braiding – but there are also Caucasian and universally cool braiding styles as well as great ideas on how to wear braided updos. So without any further delay, feast your eyes on these beautiful braid styles!
I. African Braid Styles
1. Cornrow Braid Styles
What better way to start our selection than with a classic braiding style? Cornrows have been in style for as far back as we can remember and they’re as fashionable as ever to this day. Get them in a classic, laid back manner – or incorporate a part or unique design in them.
2. Box Braid Hairstyles
Box braids are definitely one of the most beloved braid styles among African American women. They’re highly flattering for all face shapes and facial features. Additionally, they come in various lengths and widths, from small to jumbo size.
3. Chunky Box Braids
As we mentioned above, box braids come in a variety of different versions. We first presented a smaller version, but let’s also admire spectacular chunky box braids. These were made even more special by the blonde highlights added mostly at the tips.
4. Goddess Braid Styles
Goddess braids will likely always hold a position on the braids style podium. These lovelies are quite similar to cornrows but are actually thicker, wider, and somewhat more eye-catching. The number of goddess braids you can get ranges from two and can go up to seven or even eight.
5. Sisterlocks Braid Styles
Love that curly hair? Then sisterlocks should be on the list of hairstyles to discuss at your next hair appointment. What makes these sweet braids so special is that the tiny braids create large ringlets.
6. Feed-In Braid Styles
The feed-in technique is an excellent way to make braids. For this, start the braids small at the hairline and then braid them thicker as you progress towards the back of your head. The two braids version is the most popular, but one can easily branch out to four strands or even five.
7. Poetic Justice Braids
Some of the most iconic braids among African American women are these Poetic Justice ones. These beauties were made famous by Janet Jackson in the 1993 movie that also gave them their name. Essentially, they are jumbo box braids with plenty of style!
8. Ghana Braid Styles
Another traditional African braid style is this beautiful example of Ghana braids. We recommend them for ladies looking for jumbo braids that flow beautifully from their scalp and down the back. They can also be worn to the side or over the shoulder.
9. Micro Braid Styles
An alluring braided hairstyle that you shouldn’t miss is a head full of magnificent micro braids. They will require spending a few more hours than usually at the hair salon, but the results are breathtaking and so versatile.
10. Tree Braid Styles
We often associate tree braids with micro braids – mostly owing to the thinness of the braids. However, tree braids use micro braiding just at the roots. After an inch or two, the rest of the hair is left free and usually straight or wavy.
11. Crochet Braid Styles
If you long for big, bouncy and brilliant curls, then crochet braids should be part of your next look. They’re perfect in any length and hairstyle – from bobs to shoulder-length hair or even lower. Crochet braids are associated with weaves and, just like them, are among the best protective styles.
12. Yarn Braid Styles
Bring more color into your life and also protect your hair by getting yarn braids! These particular yarn locks stand out through their vivid shades -which can generally range from bright colors to soft pastels. Also, as the name itself suggests, these braids are made using yarn instead of braiding.
13. Fulani Braids – Braids and Beads
You might initially call these braids with beads or even Alicia Keys braids – however, know that they are actually Fulani braids. These are indeed beads woven into the braids but inspired by the Fulani people, an ethnic group from West Africa.
This style is usually made on cornrows with a central one and several others on the side of the head. Beads and other elements are added at the tips or throughout the braids.
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II. Twist Braid Styles
14. Nubian Twists Braided Hairstyles for Short Hair
For ladies with short hair, Nubian twists can easily become your go-to braids. They’re chic, playful, and all-around charming for women – no matter their face shape. Nubian twists work on long hair too – although most of them are kept at shoulder-length style or even shorter.
15. Flat Twist Braid Styles
To prepare your delightful natural curls and make them all ready impress, flat twists can be the best way to do so! Not only does this hairstyle look fantastic on its own, but it’s also an excellent way to protect the hair before releasing those ringlets.
16. Havana Twists Braid Styles
For a sexy island gal look, you have to check out Havana twists. These sublime braids are perfect for ladies dreaming of long, jumbo braids. Nevertheless, they can be worn even at shoulder-length – for a shorter approach.
17. Kinky Twists Braid Styles
These cuties that are known as kinky twists are “cousins” of the Nubian twists. The main difference between them is that Nubian twists have a spring-like look while kinky twists are usually more laid back. Also, kinky twists tend to have a drier appearance, so keep this aspect in mind.
18. Senegalese Twists Braid Styles
With rich African origins, Senegalese twists are a traditional hairstyle that originates, as expected, from the homonymous country.
They’re lavish, easy to style and maintain braids that also double as a protective hairstyle for natural hair. Senegalese twists are also sometimes called rope twists and can be made with and without a weave.
19. Marley Twists Braid Styles
Here is yet another braids cousin relations, this time with Marley twists. As you might have probably guessed, they get their name from the late and great reggae artist Bob Marley. They are also distant cousins of the Havana twists – let’s call these the denser and somewhat heavier version.
20. Jumbo Twists Braid Styles
For a jaw-dropping black hairstyle, jumbo twists are totally an idea to take into account. These marvelous braids create a sensational hairstyle when worn long and free. Protective as well, they can also be worn tied back.
21. Half Flat Twist Outs
Remember what we said about flat twists and their protective properties? Well, here it is easy to see the results of a half flat twist out. The creatively designed cornrows on the top part are a great idea and a cool way to personalize your look.
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III. Caucasian Braid Styles
22. Classic 3-Strand Easy Braid Hairstyles
Let’s go back to the basics – the Caucasian, universal version! This is one if not the easiest braid of them all, created by simply weaving together three thick strands of hair. It works for all Caucasian women, as well as African American ladies with more relaxed long hair. Asian gals can use it too!
23. French Braid Hairstyles for Long Hair
The French braid has been around for ages but it’s still as trendy as ever. It’s safe to say that it’s a timeless classic braid for women – no matter their hair type. For an original approach, consider creating your French braid on a side of your head or horizontally.
24. Dutch Braid Styles
For a look that mixes innocent with edgy, also check out Dutch braids! They resemble goddess braids a bit because of their outwards braiding technique and they are also sometimes called reverse French braids (same reason). Still, Dutch braids are usually the choice among women with naturally straight hair or somewhat wavy one.
25. Reverse Braid Hairstyles
This reverse braiding style works for both naturally straight hair and relaxed, afro-textured long hair. Known as a reverse braid or upside down braid, this idea involves bending down the head and creating a French braid from the nape to the top of the crown.
26. Pull Through Braid Styles
Women will adore the super sweet impact of pull-through braids. The braid itself has a Rapunzel-like vibe with its long, flowing hair that was beautifully styled. We recommend it for ladies with thick hair and highlights – just look how well it makes them pop!
27. Waterfall Braid Styles
To feel like a princess or even the queen herself, think about getting a waterfall braid with curls. It will look great and work even if your hair is straight – simply curl the strands that weave through the horizontal braid.
28. Braided Pigtails
Regardless of the braiding technique, these stylish pigtails have an urban glam edge to them that will certainly make heads turn. Low braided pigtails are among the hottest trends of these past years – but traditional pigtails are a classic look that will likely always be in style!
29. Fishtail Braids
The fishtail braid is an absolute staple of beauty and one of those braid styles that look so hard to achieve but is, in fact, quite simple. While you might not get it perfect from the first try, keep trying and you will get the perfect fishtail braid in no time!
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IV. Braided Updo Styles
30. Braided Updos
Have a super important event coming up? You can count on a braided updo for an unforgettable appearance! In this example, see how the goddess braids were created diagonally for a more elegant shape. They’re twisted in a spiral bun at the back for an extra ouch of class.
31. Cornrows and Twisted Bantu Knots Updo
Here, cornrows of different widths are combined with twisted Bantu knots – all in order to make a super cool faux hawk. This is one of those funky and cute braid hairstyles for kids that can also be worn by teens and adult women alike.
32. Goddess and Micro Braids Updos
What if you want to combine two or more braid styles? Challenge accepted! Two of the most popular options for doing so are goddess braids and micro braids – especially when they’re all up in a graceful updo.
33. Braided Double Buns
Are the 90s still roaring in your heart? Then have fun with a funky fresh braided hairstyle like this one. In a nutshell, the braids are cornrows with a feed-in start at the top center of the scalp. After that, they were styled into adorable double buns – similar to space buns, in fact.
34. Huge Wrapped Up Braids
Having an abundance of braids has its ups and downs. A slight disadvantage might be the discomfort created from them falling in front of your eyes. Nonetheless, here’s where a big advantage comes in – they can also be gathered up in a huge bun for a practical and impressive hairstyle.
35. Braids Styled Into Buns
On that note, how about a pretty hairstyle to emphasize those box braids? If you’re on the run but still want a cute hairstyle to complement them, bend your head down and wrap them all up in a wonderful bun. Bonus points if the braids were also dyed in a cool color – as the shades of purple above.
36. Braided Buns
Updos are some of the best ways to experiment with different braiding techniques in one hairstyle. Here, for instance, admire the micro cornrows at the base and the sleek jumbo twists that make up the bun. Feed-in goddess braids were added in between to complete the look.
37. Half Up Braided Buns
Box braids ladies have a bunch of options at hand for additional hairstyles for their braids. A trending style these last few years has been the half-up bun – especially in a top knot style. Style tip – this works best for women with narrower box braids.
38. Half Up Braided Ponytails
Aside from the fact that we’re in love with this intense burgundy hair color, we especially admire the hairstyle chosen to enhance the braids. These Senegalese twists are styled in a half-up ponytail that gently flows into the rest of the hair.
39. Half Up Pulled Back Braided Hairstyles
You can frequently see Keri Hilson sporting amazing hairstyles of all kinds. In this shot, she went back to her roots by wearing a splendid set of box braids. What makes the look truly memorable is the half up and swept-back styling.
40. Half Braided Hairstyles for Natural Hair
Want to flaunt your natural afro-textured curls but still wear braids too? Then consider a half braided hairstyle. In this example, three loose goddess braids were created on top of the head – leaving the rest of the ravishing ringlets free to bounce around as they want.
41. Halo Braids
Now this is an angelic look you’ll surely fall in love with! Halo braids get their name from the illusion created at the end – exactly like a halo that rests delicately on the head. You can either get yours with some help from extensions or by relaxing natural hair – provided it’s long enough, that is.
42. Crown Braid
Crown braids are the sisters of halo braids and the similarities between them are easy to point out. However, the crown braid stands out through thanks to its angled braiding method. In most cases, there will be a side or middle part, as opposed to the all-around circle of a halo braid.
43. Wrap Around Braided Updos
This wrap-around braided hairstyle is another remarkable updo for those important events in ones life. It starts from one side as a crown braid, then wraps around into a sharp spiral at the back of the head.
44. Twisted Faux Hawk
For a grand appearance at any fancy or glam event, rely on a big twisted faux hawk. Here, the sides were expertly slicked down to create the illusion of a mohawk. For that extra bit of something special, incorporate two or three micro cornrows on the slicked down part.
45. Braided Ponytails
Another way to rock your braids is with a sky-high ponytail. However, do note that you’ll have to get this style braided directly this way- including the upside-down braids in the back. For even more allure, add some silver or gold beads here and there.
46. Braided Long Bobs
In most cases, you’ll see braids that are as long as possible, with some even reaching thigh-length. Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean that they can’t look just as extraordinary when they’re short too! For an out of the box approach, consider getting your braids in a long, inverted bob hairstyle.
47. Braids with Headwraps
Some of the prettiest hair accessories to accompany African braids are headwraps. You can sport one in a great number of ways – either with your hair half down or even entirely wrapped up at the crown, as above, for example.
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V. Colorful Braids
48. Blonde Braids
Want to make your braids pop? Then color is key! Blonde braids will contrast amazingly well with a rich skin tone and make the braiding stand out even more. A daring color like platinum blonde will look spectacular, but so will most any other dye shade – so just experiment away!
49. Ombre Braids
Want to add a splash of color to your braids without going too over the top? Then ombre will be your best friend! This dyeing method looks especially lovely on braids as these help bring out the gradient better than most. Silver is a trending ombre choice but do get yours in a favorite or matching color.
50. Multicolor Braided Hairstyles
Multicolor braids are yet another way to add personality to your hairstyle. Sport the look either by adding highlights in as many of your favorite colors as you want – or by going for extensions.
So, What Is YOUR Hair Motivation?
To conclude, there are so many braid styles out there that you won’t have problem finding one that is generous on the hair, versatile, and a sheer joy to admire.
From box braids, goddess braids, and cornrows, to braids suitable for Caucasian women, and to universally fitting styles, the possibilities are limitless! Whether you choose to get your braids with your natural hair or with extensions, the outcome will nonetheless be breathtaking.
Try out different styles and don’t forget to wear each one with confidence – and to tell us what you went for!
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