How Long Do Natural Hairstyles Last

How Long Do Natural Hairstyles Last?

Defining what a natural hairstyle means is somewhat complicated, and it’s not hard to see why. There’s only natural hair, and whatever hairstyle you install on a natural hair can be referred to as a natural hairstyle. Going by that definition, how long do natural hairstyles last?

Natural hairstyles are very expansive, and the duration will depend on the hairstyle you’re talking about. Since two-strand twists and braids have wildly different longevities, you shouldn’t expect any two random natural hairstyles to last for a specific length of time.

In this article, I’ll try to visit as many natural hairstyles as possible, while showing you how long they last on the average. You’ll also get some tips on how to make different natural hairstyles last longer to prevent you from reinstalling your hair every few days.

What is a Natural Hairstyle?

Before going on to explain how long a natural hairstyle lasts, it’s crucial to define what a natural hairstyle means exactly. While the introduction has said a bit about it already, there’s still a lot to say. So, what exactly is a natural hairstyle?

A natural hairstyle can be used to refer to any hairstyle that doesn’t require you to enhance your hair using heat or chemical products before, during, or after installation. These hairstyles can be installed on all forms of natural hair, hence, the name.

However, the term “natural hairstyles” is used very infrequently since it covers an extremely wide collection of hairstyles. Almost any hairstyle can qualify to be one, making it impossible to answer specific questions about them confidently.

Another important thing to know is that people do refer to protective styles as natural hairstyles in some cases. Since protective hairstyles are almost exclusively done by ladies with natural hair, that wouldn’t be entirely incorrect.

With this definition out of the way, it’s time to answer the real question of the article: how do natural hairstyles last exactly?

How Long Do Natural Hairstyles Last?

Before going into an in-depth analysis of how long you should expect “natural hairstyles” to last, you should understand how I’ll regard natural hairstyles first. In general, I’ll take protective hairstyles to be what you mean as natural styles before going specific to show the duration of common hairstyles.

Talking about protective hairstyles on natural hair, the expected duration depends on the specific style, as you may already expect. It could last for not more than a week, and you may be able to keep your hairstyle for several weeks or even months before taking it apart.

If that isn’t as specific as you’d want, don’t fret; you can continue reading to see how long natural some specific natural (protective) hairstyles last. Without further ado, here you go.

1. Braids

You can style braids into many different hairstyles, but since the idea is roughly the same, every kind of braids hairstyles should last for roughly the same length of time. Properly done braids should last you for up to six weeks before they start to look terrible. For tiny box braids, you may even be able to keep the style for eight weeks with little or no issues.

2. Twists

Two-strand twists do not last very long in your hair, especially when you compare them to something like the braids hairstyle. Depending on what kind of hair you have, you may need to take it apart in as little as one or two weeks.

If you installed the flat twists hairstyle, you may need to take it apart even sooner. Not only will it look terrible under two weeks, but it will also become difficult to take apart, causing breakage or even frizz during the process.

3. Buns

While I don’t really see buns as a hairstyle per se, most people do list it as a separate example of a natural hairstyle, and it deserves a place on here. As you all know, a bun can last for only a couple of days before you’ll have to redo it.

That duration isn’t bad when you consider that it takes only a few minutes to tie your hair up in a bun. If you’re wearing a braided bun or something similar, you’ll have to worry about redoing two different hairstyles, but it’s not as hard as it sounds.

How to Make Your Natural Hairstyles Last Longer

While I’ve outlined the expected longevity of some of your favorite natural hairstyles, you should note that your mileage may vary. Depending on your hair’s curl level and how you installed the hairstyle, your hair could actually last a lot longer, or shorter.

You can’t control many of the factors contributing to how long your hair lasts, but there are many controllable ones. To make your hair last longer, you may want to implement a couple of tips that are proven to ultimately result in that effect.

A popular way to ensure your hair lasts long is going for a hairstyle that’s known to last very long in the first place. For instance, getting tiny braids will almost certainly guarantee that your hair lasts longer, while flat twists will do exactly the opposite.

Also, you should also ensure you’re protecting your hair from unnecessary moisture by only washing on occasion. Wrapping your hair at night with a silk or satin scarf or using a silk pillowcase should also help to prevent frizz and hair breakage, preserving the looks of your hair.


Natural hairstyles are already hard enough to define; trying to come up with a magic number of days or weeks they must last for is significantly harder. The reasons are pretty simple: numerous hairstyles fit under the “natural hairstyles” category and the looks of your hair also play a part.

The best advice is to stick to a particular hairstyle until you can no longer tolerate it. For most hairstyles you’ll wear on your natural hair, that should be between two and eight weeks, depending on how much time you care to invest on maintenance.

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