Summer is here and so are the hot temps and high humidity, so bring on the updo’s. While we love a good wash-and-go, summer is the season to sport protective styles for our, well, sanity. As much as we love our manes, big curly hair can make you hot, and no one wants that. That’s why summer protective styles are a must to keep us curly girls cool during the warm weather season. To keep you calm, cool and cute this summer season, we rounded up 10 of our favorite protective styles for summer. From top knots and rope twists to butterfly locs and braids, here’s your guide to keeping your hair up and cute this summer.
1. Bantu KnotsThis cute updo keeps your hair off your neck and face, which comes in handy on a hot summer day. It’s easy to create and can be done on all natural hair types, types 2, 3 and 4 included. To create bantu knots, you create a section of hair, braid or twist it and wrap the hair into mini top-knot style buns. Secure each knot with a bobby pin and voila! You’ve mastered bantu knots. It’s easy, fun and will surely garner compliments throughout the day.
2. Rope TwistsRope twists are like two-strand twists with an upgrade. These twists are created by twirling the two strands before twisting them together. The result is plumper, sleeker, elongated twists that last much longer than the traditional style. The best part is you can style your rope twists however you please. From a rope twist ponytail to a rope twist flat twist, the choice is yours. To keep frizz at bay on day two or three, apply a dime size amount of Monoi Oil Sacred Strengthening Serum to your rope twists before styling. This will keep them sleek, shiny and smooth for longer.
3. TurbanOn days when styling your hair just isn’t an option, reach for a head wrap. Turbans are accessories that make a statement, and no one needs to know what your hair looks like underneath. Sporting a turban for the day is also a great way to sneak in a deep conditioning treatment while you’re on-the-go. Before putting your turban on, apply a generous portion of Goddess Strength Repairing Cocoon Mask from roots to tip. If you want, add a few braids or twists to your hair to keep it in place and plop your turban in place. At the end of the day, shampoo and condition your hair as usual and you’ll have soft, supple, hydrated curls with very little effort.
4. CornrowsCornrows are one of those tried-and-true hairstyles that will never get old in the natural hair community. They’re essentially like the white t-shirt of protective hairstyles. These braids lay flat against the scalp and can be done in any design, size or shape. If you’re short on time, three or four cornrows will do the trick. If you have more time, try seven or eight cornrows. To keep braids shiny and moisturized, apply a quarter-sized amount of Black Vanilla Moisture Shine Hair Smoothie on each section before braiding. Bonus: Once you take your cornrows out, you can rock a braid out for a few days before your next wash day.
5. Top KnotThere’s no explanation needed here. Top knots are timeless and work for practically every occasion. From hitting the gym to brunch with your girlfriends to an evening wedding, top knots are always fitting. To keep your edges smooth and flyaways at bay, try the Wash Day Delight Gel to Foam Styler Rose Water. It offers a lightweight hold that won’t flake or get stiff and it keeps hair smooth and in place all-day long.
6. Box BraidsFor a protective style that incorporates extensions, consider box braids. Box braids can be chunky or thin, short or long and they’re really simple to maintain. When cared for properly, box braids can last for 6-8 weeks and give your natural hair a break from manipulation. They’re also a great option when traveling since they require little to no styling.
7. Faux PonyAnother protective style that incorporates extensions is a faux pony. From waist-length ponies to shorter ones, the choice is really yours. Since your hair would be tucked away for this style, consider applying a moisture-rich oil that will keep hair moisturized and protected. The Black Vanilla Moisture and Shine Pure Hair Oil is a blend of calendula, chamomile extract and safflower oil that softens hair and conditions hair without weight it down.
8. Braided CrownMedium to long-length hair can sport a braided crown or braided halo to keep your hair out of your face during the hot summer months. The crown braid is essentially a continuous braid around the entire head. This style is best for attending weddings, heading out to happy hour with your girlfriends or a romantic date night on the town.
9. Butterfly LocsButterfly locs take more time and commitment than the previous protective hairstyles, but they’re gorgeous and totally worth it. The locs aren’t the same as faux locs. Butterfly locs have curly loops throughout that give them a sort of distressed look. These do have to be installed and sealed, but with a little help from video tutorials, this look can be created at home.
10. Slicked Back PonyWhen in doubt, a sleek pony will do the trick. Slicked-back ponytails are chic, edgy and can be done on most hair lengths. Dress it up with a headband or ponytail cuff, and you’ve got a style that looks like it took hours to create but in reality only took a few minutes. To keep hairs smooth and in place, apply Wash Day Delight Cream Serum Hair Moisturizer Aloe throughout the hair and smooth down with a brush or fine-tooth comb.
Now that you’ve been inspired to try a new protective style for summer, check out these other protective styles.