African-American Kids' Hairstyles

Updated February 21, 2017

African-American hair has variations in texture and curl pattern, but in general, it is curlier and more dry than other types. For African-American kids, low-maintenance hairstyles may be the best choice, as some children may need assistance with grooming.

Micro Braids

Microbraids are appropriate for both boys and girls and can last approximately 3 months. These thin braids over the entire head work best on short hair but are acceptable for long hair. To manage them, kids just need to moisturise the scalp and braids a few times per week.


Cornrow braids are a common African-American hairstyle. They differ from other braids, such as microbraids, as they are flat against the head. Cornrows begin behind the fringe and end just before the crown of the head. Cornrows are a unisex hairstyle. They adapt to a plethora of styling options, including wearing it up or down. Cornrows also reduce frizz. They can stay in the hair for up to 6 weeks.


Twists are a type of African-American hairstyle that works only on very short hair. While worn by some girls, twists are more commonly seen on boys. Twists are easy to style and easy to maintain. The hair is put into twists all over the head by wrapping sections of hair around each other. They are easy for kids to maintain: they can just retwist them daily or every other day to keep the shape.


Long hair can be manipulated into many styles but is higher-maintenance than other African-American kids' hairstyles. Long hair needs to be moisturised often to remain long and healthy. In addition to wearing it loose and down, long hair is easily pulled up into ponytails or half up-dos.

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About the Author

Yvonne Van Damme is a freelance writer based in Seattle. She has been writing for several years with a focus on criminal justice and legal topics. In addition to various websites, she has been published in several academic journals. Van Damme holds a Bachelor of Arts in law, society and justice and sociology from the University of Washington.