how to make box braids protective hairstyle

18 Pretty Box Braids Protective Hairstyles You’ll Love

Box braid hairstyles make one of the most common protective hairstyles, and it’s not even a debate. There are many kinds of box braids as you’ll see later, but they all work to protect your hair in a similar way.

Talking about box braids, there are knotted (regular) and knotless box braids. Some other hairstyles that fit into the umbrella of box braids include boho braids, mini braids, and tiny braids.

Here, you’ll get a free tutorial on how to make box braids protective hairstyles easily. Before continuing, however, you’ll get answers to some of the pressing questions about the hairstyle on the internet, as well as some necessary clarifications.

Do Box Braids Destroy Your Hair?

There are so many things that could eventually lead to hair damage, and box braid is not one of them. Regardless of what you’ve heard elsewhere, box braids fall under the protective hairstyles category, and as you’d expect, they do protect your hair from some forms of damage.

Unless you’re implementing some really terrible hair care advice, installing box braids shouldn’t do anything remotely close to destroying your hair. However, if you strongly believe it is, there are tons of other protective hairstyles you can try.

How Long Do You Keep In Box Braids?

The answer depends on how much time and effort you’re willing to sacrifice to maintain the hair. If you can afford to redo the hairline whenever necessary, you may be able to carry it for up to three months, but it shouldn’t last more than eight weeks otherwise.

Ultimately, box braids can last for as long as you’re willing to keep them. It’s even better if you’re skilled enough to redo the split ends and hairline yourself since those are the only challenges that may force you to undo the hair.

Do Braids Make Your Hair Grow?

Your hair has a stable growth rate that’s determined majorly by genetics and partly by your diet. The kind of hairstyle you wear has little or no effect on making your hair grow, even the protective styles you know.

While braids will protect your hair from some forms of damage that could threaten its growth, it doesn’t actually do anything to make the hair grow quicker or better. So, don’t expect any magic just because you’re wearing braids.

Can I Get My Box Braids Wet?

Getting your hair wet without drying can cause adverse reactions, regardless of what hairstyle you’re wearing. However, it’s clearly more pronounced when wearing certain hairstyles compared to others.

For box braids, you shouldn’t have any problems with getting them wet casually. As long as you ensure it dries properly after getting wet, the hair should always look as good as new. However, you should always try as much as possible to keep your braids away from water.

What Do You Need for Box Braids?

To make the perfect box braids, there are a couple of items and tools you need to put in order. While some of these items are optional, some are absolutely necessary if you want something remotely close to those amazing box braids you see on Instagram.

Here is a list of the things you need to make box braids.

  1. Shampoo and conditioner for the initial wash before you even start making the hair. It’s recommended to wash at least one day before the installation to allow the hair to air-dry naturally.
  2. Six to eight packs of hair, depending on how long and thick you want the style to turn out. If you only want short and thin braids, five packs of hair should do, but getting six keeps you on the safe side.
  3. A parting comb and a couple of clips to part your hair into sections and hold them together.

How to Do Box Braids Protective Hairstyle

To make box braids yourself, you need to start by shampooing and conditioning your hair. Of course, you’ll need to take your hair apart if you have one installed previously.

Then, using shampoo and conditioner, wash your hair properly to ensure it’s at its best state. It helps to complete this step around a day or two before installing the hairstyle to ensure it air-dries properly. If you don’t mind using heat, you can wash and use a drier on the same day to make the process quicker.

After washing and drying your hair, you may want to detangle it with a comb. Removing the tangles makes your hair easier to braid, which helps a lot if you’re installing the style yourself.

Also, you may want to trim your hair if there are split ends to ensure you have a clean-looking result eventually. The trimming process marks the end of prepping your hair for box braids; at this point, you can jump into the hairstyle proper.

To start, follow the steps below.

Section the hair

The first step in doing box braids is sectioning your hair. There are different ways to go about it, but my favorite is sectioning your hair into two roughly equal parts. Using the clips you got earlier, clip one half to prevent it from getting in your way while plaiting.

Then, divide the unclipped part of your hair into two roughly equal parts to create two new sections and clip one of the sections down. At this point, you can apply any styling products you intend to use to the loose part.

Section the extensions

Just like with every other step in this tutorial, sectioning the hair extensions can be achieved using many different methods. Whatever gives you what’s plenty enough to make your hair will work.

It’s crucial to note that human hair extensions are longer-lasting, but you’ll be dealing with a lot of frizz. On the other hand, synthetic hair extensions give you an escape from frizz but will be less likely to survive immersion in water.

Start braiding the hair

In the small unclipped section, take a pinch of hair and braid it with some hair extension to form a single strand. Instead of making it to be cornrow-style, you should go for straight braids that leave the sections looking like little boxes.

Complete the entire section and move on to the next section

Depending on how large you want the braids to be, the individual sections should have about 20 braids. Once you’re done with the first quarter, unclip the next and start braiding it just like the preceding one.

After braiding the first two sections, head over to the other half and separate it into two sections like the one you’ve just done.

If you want some extra flair to the style, you may try some modifications to the default look; like changing the color of the extensions, making it extra tiny, or making it extra large. Here are some examples to inspire you.

18 Pretty Box Braids Protective Styles You’ll Love

1. Shoulder-Length Mid-Sized Box Knotless Braids

Shoulder-Length Mid-Sized Box Knotless Braids

2. Long Small Box Braids

Long Small Box Braids

3. Top Bun Box Braids with Curls

Top Bun Box Braids with Curls

4. Box Braids with Neat Edges

Box Braids with Neat Edges

5. Brunette Curly Box Braids

Brunette Curly Box Braids

6. Black Long Knotless Box Braids

Black Long Knotless Box Braids

7. Waist Length Box Braids

Waist Length Box Braids

8. Jumbo Long Box Braids with Curls

Jumbo Long Box Braids with Curls

9. Jumbo Shoulder-Length Box Braids with Curls

Jumbo Shoulder-Length Box Braids with Curls

10. Small Knotless Braids with Curly Ends

Small Knotless Braids with Curly Edges

11. Mixed Tone Box Braids

Mixed Tone Box Braids

12. Red Long Knotless Box Braids with Curly Ends

Red Long Knotless Box Braids with Curly Edges

13. Love-Shaped Box Braid Hairdo

Love-Shaped Box Braids

14. Classic Black Knotless Box Braids

Classic Black Knotless Box Braids

15. Red Straight Box Braids

Red Straight Box Braids

16. Ombre Knotless Box Braids

Ombre Knotless Box Braids

17. Pink Box Braids with Curls

Pink Box Braids with Curls

18. Simple Box Braids

Simple Large Box Braids

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