African braids, with their roots deep in African culture, are more than just a hairstyle. They carry history, tradition, and are a representation of unity. For kids, especially those with a super active lifestyle, these braids are a blessing. They are durable, protective, and, above all, stylish. Here are some popular African braid styles suitable for kids:
- Cornrows: This classic style involves braiding the hair close to the scalp. You can get creative with designs, from straight lines to intricate geometric patterns. They’re neat, and the close braids ensure longevity.
- Box Braids: These are individual plaits, usually divided by small squared-off parts or boxes. They can be adorned with beads or cuffs for an extra touch of style.
- Ghana Braids: Also known as banana cornrows, these braids start off with thin cornrows and get thicker as they reach the back of the head.
- Twists: While not strictly braids, Senegalese or Marley twists are made by twisting two strands of hair together. They’re simpler and quicker to install than braids and give a similar protective advantage.
- Crown Braid: It’s a circular braid that runs along the edge of the head, encircling it like a crown. Perfect for special occasions.
- Mohawk Braid: The sides are either braided closely to the scalp or brushed down sleekly, and the center portion is styled with raised braids or twists, mimicking the look of a Mohawk.
- Beaded Braids: Incorporating colorful beads into braids not only adds a playful touch but also helps in weighing the braids down a bit, preventing them from unraveling.
- Layered Braids: Multiple layers of cornrows are made, one below the other, creating a tiered look.
- Bob-Length Braids: Keeping braids shorter ensures they’re lighter and even more manageable for kids.
- Heart-Shaped Braids: Cornrows are braided in the shape of hearts, adding a cute and fun touch.
- Fulani Braids: Inspired by the Fulani people of West Africa, this style combines thin-to-thick cornrows, braids at the crown, and sometimes a single braid running down the middle of the head. Often, golden accessories or beads are added.
While African braids offer the durability and low maintenance that many parents and caregivers seek for their children, it’s essential to remember a few things:
- Ensure the braids aren’t too tight, as it can cause tension and potential hair damage.
- Keep the scalp moisturized.
- Encourage wearing a silk or satin scarf or bonnet at night to reduce friction and maintain the braids.
With these styles and care tips, you can ensure that your child’s hair is not only stylish but also well-protected.