Cornrows are thick braids that are woven in a way that makes them appear to be "attached" to the person's head instead of loose and hanging. This hairstyle, like other forms of braiding, originated in Africa, and is a popular choice in small African braiding shops in America. Cornrow styles can be complex, requiring hours of work. There are a variety of styles that are popular among women of all ages.
One popular style for cornrows on women are called goddess braids. These are large cornrows, about one to two inches thick, that are braided in a variety of styles around the crown, side, and back of the head. The scalp is more visible as well, which makes the design even more elaborate. The braids can end at the side of the head or nape of the neck, or you can have them twisted into an attractive up-do. The up-do style is popular for weddings, dinners and other formal events.
Straight Back Into a Ponytail
Another cornrow style is where there are about 12 to 15 braids of medium thickness (about a half inch to an inch wide) running straight backward from the front hairline to the very nape of the neck. The braids can then continue down the back, hanging loose, or you can leave the rest of the hair straight and unbraided or wavy. This is a very simple, understated, yet elegant and feminine cornrow style, which is perfect for both casual and semi-formal settings.
Circular or Overlapped Cornrows
A circular cornrow style runs forms a series of braided half circles starting at the front edge of the hair (there is a part down the middle) inward to the back crown of the head. Sometimes the braids overlap a bit. This can be finished off with a bun or ponytail. The braids can be thin (less than a half inch) to medium in size. This is a complex style that you need a very experienced hair braiding professional to create because it is difficult to make all of the circles come together just right. It's a striking yet casual hair style that is fine to wear in everyday settings.
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