Hair Advice at Your Fingertips!

50 Protective Hairstyles That Are Surely Worth Your Attention

2. Protective Lemonade Braids. Why have braids straight down to your back when you can braid in both directions around your head? This style will work for thin edges.

You might think protective hairstyles can be hard to come by, but you’d be wrong! These days there are so many ways to style your hair. Rock beautiful braids at an evening event, sport quick sassy protective styles based on a natural afro, or give a little attitude with an edgy updo.

Scroll through 50 pictures of stunning styles below and head down to your hairstylist. When you walk out that door, you’ll feel like a completely different person! You’ll also have a pile of new hairstyles to try next time you’re stuck!

1. Neat Braids with Cuffs. For black hair, neat curvy braids will have you looking like a queen.

2. Protective Lemonade Braids. Why have braids straight down to your back when you can braid in both directions around your head? This style will work for thin edges.

3. Low Braided Updo. Double braids on each side and feed them into a cute pretzel-shaped bun at the nape for a classy updo, eye-catching from every angle.

4. Fancy Protective Style. Protective styles for natural hair certainly aren’t boring – this stunner looks more like a crown!

5. Protective Cornrows and Curly Ponytail. Tightly coiled natural hair looks best when down and wild or up in a princess pony.

6. Easy Peasy Half-Protective Style. Wake up and go with a simple side braid pulled through beads on 4c hair.

7. Dramatic Low Bun Style. Not a new idea, but still a good option to try on 4c hair, this braided updo brings drama to the top and a lot more to the bottom with a rounded braided bun.

8. Two Puffy Boxer Braids. Look like a queen with edgy braids pulled apart once braided for a thicker, more impressive appearance.

9. 6-Stitch Braids. A protective hairstyle that is as luxe-looking as it is protective. The well-defined, clear segments of stitch braids is a sight to behold. This hairstyle also doesn’t put much strain on your scalp.

10. Easy and Quick Braided Pony. Need hair out of the way but still want to look pretty? A braided pony is classic and quick protective style.

11. Smooth and Silky Top Bun. Check out this sleek stylish bun! Look your best at an evening date with a silky straight weave hairstyle.

12. Boxer Braids for Natural Hair. Taming 4c hair is easy when you work them into braids fit for a princess.

13. Curled Bob Braids. Make your protective styles for natural hair as chic and fashionable as you prefer. Curly ends of your braids add a fresh, glamorous twist to the style.

14. Chunky Braid with Faux Undercut. This braided updo with delicate cornrows at the nape puts all other styles for curly hair to shame.

15. Geometric Cornrows. Turn heads with an updo boasting angled cornrows and curled baby hairs.

16. Cornrows Hair Art. Lots of small cornrows are fed into two braids and given warmth with an added color. Brilliant!

17. Extra Tall Chunky Braided Bun. Got long hair with extensions? Twirl it into a huge crown bun for an impressive yet easy updo.

18. Protective Senegalese Twists. Be the star of your own show with Senegalese twists, throwing in bold beads for special accents.

19. Two Big Afro Buns. Cute Minnie Mouse buns are perfect for girls and women with afros who don’t mind a simple and fun hairstyle.

20. Protective Bantu Knots. By now many girls have tried so many braided hairstyles from cornrows to box braids, Senegalese twists and all kinds of intricate braided patterns. This head full of quirky knots is good when you want to rock what you have without adding any extensions.

21. 2-Strand Twist Braids. Part your hair into small sections and twist each section from root to tip. Twist braids protective hairstyles for black women stay neat for weeks.

22. Very Long Twists. A great option for protective braid styles, Senegalese twists give you a flawless look and a desired length.

23. Shapely Natural Updo. For African American hair, a flattering updo with twist braids is easy, elegant, and fit for any occasion.

24. Upside Down Braid and Bun. A single-braid updo with a tightly twisted bun is classic and eye-catching. Good for medium relaxed hair.

25. Chunky Flat Twist and Side Bun Updo. Several chunky flat twist braids around your head can make for a statement updo. Direct them to one side and pin the ends for a fresh take on the low bun.

26. Protective Hairstyle with Kanekalon Hair. Don’t you mind using some extensions? Try this cute updo with multiple Kanekalon braids featuring an added color.

27. Flat-Twist Updo Hairstyle. An elegant updo like this one with flat twists shows off the neckline and that cute pair of earrings you’ve just bought!

28. Twists and Combcoils. A different take on a twisted updo, this style brings long twists up and leaves cute little combcoils to frame the updo around perimeter, like an undercut would.

29. Touchable Buns with Tiny Braids. For natural hair, incorporating tiny braids into bunchy buns is a great way to show off your mane!

30. Sassy and Stunning Faux Mohawk. The curly updo with faux locs makes for a beautiful mohawk. The thin braids that protect edges keep it pretty but edgy.

31. Thick Colorful Braids. For African American hair, chunky braids fed into buns help show off any color you add in.

32. Protective Halo Braid. Look like an angel with a highlighted halo braid!

33. Atomic Blonde Faux Locs. Want to check if blondes really have more fun? Wear these for a couple of months and find out. It’s a relatively quick protective style done with a crochet method. We love!

34. Protective Twists and Bun Updo. Need a protective style for hair growth? Look no further! A natural protective hairstyle like this one encourages hair to grow and looks pretty feminine at the same time.

35. Knotted Mohawk Braid. This beautiful protective updo hairstyle is feminine and edgy. It’s a great choice for any formal event.

36. Natural Hair in a Big Low Bun. There are protective hairstyles that do not pull that hard at your edges and encourage healthy hair growth. This natural updo is a good example.

37. Glossy and Sleek Protective Twisted Bun. A quick protective style for black hair: a twisted bun with an upside down braid.

Protective Upside Down Braid to Bun Updo
By Noi

38. Extra Long Braids with String. Very long braids are gorgeous, but even better with beads.

39. Feed-In Braided Pineapple Bun. Inspired by a pineapple, this unique style gathers different kinds of braids into a bold bun.

40. Jumbo Twist Braids with Zig-Zag Parting. Hair extensions give your braided hairstyles extra body and length. Use colored extensions for extra glow.

41. Half-Protective Curly Style. For curly hair, this half updo unleashes curls and throws in little details, such as a twist from ear to ear accented with charms.

42. Protective Cornrows with Curls on Top. Cornrows decorated with bobby pins create a fun version of the Mohawk updo and ensure you look your best wherever you’re off to!

43. Feed-In Braids in a High Ponytail. To braid natural hair protective styles, your stylist will gradually feed in hair extensions to your cornrows. The outcome is a chic and graceful updo.

44. Natural Updo with Voluminous Top. An updo with a little wave action! The sides get their own attention too, with a few smaller sectioned off pieces.

45. Four Dutch Braids. Short on time? Bring four rows of braids into two low buns or just tie the ends of each two braids together.

4 Braids Updo for Natural Hair
By Nola

46. Fulani Braids. Hairstyles that protect edges don’t have to be boring. Working beads onto face-framing braids gives that extra oomph.

Fulani Braids with Beads
By Noi

47. Golden Accents in Faux Locs. Looking to add a little something to your hairstyle? Incorporate a gold string or beads for an ultra-flattering updo.

48. Protective Coiled Bun Updo. The intricate braids look like a rose when arranged around a bun.

49. Huge Natural Flat Twists. Show off your dense 4c hair texture in a thick natural flat twist updo. Bring twists to the back of the head and gather into a chunky bun.

50. Flat Twists Updo for Shorter Hair. Move from rocking cute cornrows this week to wearing gorgeous curls the next week, all in one single hairstyle. Protective styles like this updo yields the cutest 4c curls when undone.

The next time you’re struggling to find new interesting protective hairstyles, take a look through our galleries for natural hair. There’s a simple or intricate design for every taste and occasion!

by Serena Piper
Serena graduated from the University of Oregon where she majored in magazine journalism. She is a published writer both in print and online. She currently lives in Daytona Beach where she works at the Early Learning Coalition, an organization supporting children of low-income families. In her free time she enjoys spending time with family, reading, country music concerts, exploring Florida, and of course, the beach.
  • Yalla

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    I didn’t find your Instagram page though, do you have one?


    • hadviser

      Hi Yalla,
      Here is our Instagram page:
      Thank you for your feedback!

  • Storm

    I don’t have curly hair, but I’m using these pictures to help me draw different hairstyles! They’re very helpful.

  • Brenda manning

    i love these hair styles

  • Love it so much