Flat Twists vs. Two-Strand Twists; What’s the Difference

Flat Twists vs. Two-Strand Twists; What’s the Difference?

Twists are twists, aren’t they? As long as hair styling is concerned, they’re not all the same, and that can be quite confusing, as you may expect. There are flat twists, cornrow twists, two-strand twists, and others too numerous to mention. But what exactly are the differences between flat twists and two-strand twists?

While flat twists lay flat on your head to form a cornrow-like appearance, but with only two strands, the proper two-strand twists hairstyle isn’t typically flat; it stays in individual strands on your head. In short, the flat twist is the flat version of a regular twist-out, as it should be.

While that does a good job of describing the most basic differences between twists and flat twists, there’s still a lot to know. Of course, you want to know how to make both of them, why you should choose either, and the cons of both; this article will explain all that.

a ponytail made from two-strand twists

What are Two-Strand Twists?

Before comparing both protective hairstyles and deciding which of them is better, it’s crucial to understand what each term means. Here, I’ll start with the more popular one which you probably already know about: two-strand twists.

Two-strand twists refer to a protective hairstyle that involves twisting a section of your hair against another somewhat equal section to form small twists. Repeating the activity across the surface of your head creates a couple of twists, all of which form the iconic hairstyle.

Of the two hairstyles I’m comparing today, two-strand twists are easier to make since you only need the ability to twist two things against each other. However, if you’re going for a hairstyle that’s made to last, you’ll need expert help to create the perfect twist with your hair.

The hairstyle is more common with Afro-textured hair since it offers much-needed protection against external factors that may cause damage to your hair. The purpose of most two-strand twists is to protect the hair of the wearer, creating an enabling environment for their hair to grow.

Flat Twists vs. Two-Strand Twists; What’s the Difference

What are Flat Twists?

While the term “twists” is generally used to refer to two-strand twists, the existence of flat twists is proof that that’s not the only kind of twist in existence. But what exactly is the flat twists hairstyle and how does it differ from two-strand twists?

Flat twists are almost the same as two-strand twists, only that they’re done on the scalp, as opposed to individual strands with the regular kind of twists you know. It may look somewhat impossible at first, but when you get the hang of it, it’s just as easy as two-strand twists.

Of all the hairstyles I’ve seen, flat twists appear to be the most aptly named, especially when you already know what twists are. If you can imagine twists laying flat on your head like cornrows, you already have an idea of what the average flat twists hairstyle looks like.

While it does look pretty similar to twists, it’s technically different and a bit more difficult to make. There are more than a few differences, so much that it’s possible to base an entire article on comparing these two hairstyles. Without further ado, let’s jump into the differences between these kinds of twists.

Differences between Flat Twists vs. Two-Strand Twists?

At this point, it’s already clear that there’s a sea of differences between flat twists and two-strand twists. Already, the names are different; flat and two-strand are not the same, but that’s a very unimportant point.

There are far more important differences between both of these kinds of twists that you should care about. Here are some to help you decide what hairstyle to get.

1. Longevity

One of the most crucial factors that determine what hairstyle a lady gets is how long the style lasts on their hair. Protective hairstyles like flats twists and two-strand twists are famous for lasting very long, especially on natural hair, but how do the two compare.

In terms of longevity, two-strand twists should last a bit longer than long twists with every other factor being equal. The hairstyle is the closest thing to braids, which hold tighter to your scalp than the other competitor. If you’re looking for a style that you can keep for a pretty long time, two-strand twists will make a better pick.

2. Tension

Another plus point for protective hairstyles generally is the little stress they apply to your hair, reducing the chances of breakage compared to regular styles. So, you’d naturally expect both hairstyles to have light tension on your scalp. However, which of the two wins out in this category?

Flat twists generally tend to have more tension than two-strand twists because of the process required in making the hairdo. Since flat twists are always in long rows, you’ll also have to worry about tension to a larger surface of your hair, which may ultimately lead to breakage.

However, light tension isn’t without its disadvantages. You’re more likely to experience frizz with two-strand twists primarily due to the low tension at the base. With that said, you should note that a regular twist could have very high tension and two-strand twists may have low tension, depending how on they’re styled.

3. Styling

If you’re looking to create beautiful works of art with your hair, one of the two options in this assessment beats the other massively. However, the issue in this assessment isn’t black or white, and you’ll understand with more explanation in a bit.

If you’re referring to styling the hair after making the twist, two-strand twists are better. You can make them into a ponytail, a bun, or some other basic styles after the fact. In a general sense, however, flat twists are massively better, and it’s not even close.

You can replicate any hairstyle that’s possible with braids using flat twists. However, you can’t change the style of your hair once it’s done, unless you’re willing to take everything apart. So, the best one for you depends on what you intend to achieve with your hair.

4. Cost

Flat twists are not as sophisticated as two-strand twists; they can stand on their own without necessarily dampening your hair or adding any mousse or creams. That doesn’t mean strand twists will cost you money either; in most cases, you won’t even have to pay a dime.

However, you’re more likely to invest more in two-strand twists rather than a flat twist for the exact reasons mentioned above. Given that you can carry the former many times as long as the latter, the extra cost seems justified.

5. Tangling

One big complaint that people seem to always have about protective hairstyles is the tendency for them to get tangled up when left for longer than usual. Surely, flat twists and two-strand twists don’t get tangled up at the same rate; which of them is worse at this?

If you hate to deal with your hair getting all tangled up, you want to stay away from flat twists generally. While there’s also a risk of tangles with two-strand twists, the former is predictably worse because it interacts directly with the scalp.

Are Two-Strand Twists better than Flat Twists?

With every information from the preceding section, it’s finally time to answer the question: should you choose flat twists over two-strand twists? You’ve probably decided on what to choose, but you can also use some opinion.

When it comes to which of the two is better, it ultimately depends on your aim for your hair. If you want the best-looking hairstyle and you have the time to redo your hair every week, flat twists will make a great option for you.

On the other hand, if you’re looking for a style you can simply make and forget about, two-strand twists are better. It lasts longer, requires less maintenance, and puts less tension on your scalp than most kinds of flat twists you can get today.

It’s also crucial to note that the way either style will affect your hair depends on how you made your hair in the first place. If you opted for very thin two-strand twists, you’ll end up putting a lot of tension on your hair, bringing up reactions similar to that of flat twists.

To get the best of anything you go for, it’s crucial to use the services of an experienced hairstylist. Not only can they recommend the best style for your hair type, but they can also make the twists so beautifully that you’ll wish it will never get old.


All protective hairstyles should protect your hair from damage, enabling proper growth, but they’re not all the same. There are several kinds of protective hairstyles out there, and each of them has unique characteristics that may or may not appeal to you.

This article zeroes in on two of the most popular types of protective twists: flat twists and two-strand twists. If you’ve contemplated getting either, here’s the ultimate post that will show you which is better, and why.

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