Natural Hairstyles for African Hair

Updated July 13, 2018

Showcasing the natural beauty of African hair can highlight your love for yourself and your ancestral roots. In a society that often showcases other hair types as the standard for beauty, proudly showing off your natural hair can make a statement and help to change standards of beauty in powerful ways. African hair has a beauty of its own, one that is easy to wear when you know what your options are.

Afro Time

Wearing an Afro can be a great way to show off your hair's natural beauty. An Afro will require regular trims to keep an even shape. Be sure to use a pick to keep your hair from becoming tangled and matted, especially on the side you like to sleep on. Using some organic, food-grade oil, such as avocado, carrot or olive oil, will help to keep your hair moisturised. Shampoo only when needed, be sure to use shampoos and conditioners that are very moisturising, and do oil treatments once every two weeks or so to keep your hair strong.


Fades and other short haircuts are a great way to wear natural African hair and are easy to maintain. Some people feel short cuts are only for men, but women can showcase the look beautifully by wearing some fashionable earrings, keeping eyebrows well maintained and finding a make-up look that suits their personality and skin tone. If you have a short haircut, visit your stylist or barber once every two weeks or so to make sure your look is clean and attractive. Shampoo and condition your hair once every week or so and make sure to use oil on your hair and scalp daily to keep your hair strong and your scalp looking beautiful.

Natural Curls

If you have curly African hair that is not suited to an Afro, you may be able to grow your hair out and wear natural curls. Be sure to visit a stylist for a cut that will showcase your hair type. Deep condition your hair every two weeks, wash it once a week, and use olive or coconut oil to help keep your hair moisturised on a daily basis. You will need a pick or wide-tooth comb to help you comb your hair. It will probably be easiest to comb your hair while it is damp or wet, when you have a bit of oil or leave-in conditioner in your hair.

Locks or Twists

Dreadlocks or twists may be a good option for natural hair. A visit to a stylist specialising in locks and twists will help you get started. The stylist can divide your hair into sections and get the dreading or twisting process started, give you some products to use and show you how to maintain the style at home as your hair grows. As with other styles, washing your hair about once a week and moisturising with oils should help to keep your hair in good shape.


Most major cities have African hair-braiding shops where you can get your hair braided into a variety of designs. Try surfing the internet to look for a design you like or arrive for your appointment early so you can look through some of the pictures in the waiting area of your salon. You will need to have your braids redone every few weeks as your hair grows to keep your roots looking tidy. Wash your hair once a week; moisturise it with natural, food-grade oils; and wear a cap over your head at night to keep your braids looking fresh.

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About the Author

Anne Kinsey is a writer, business woman, minister and coach who is passionate about inspiring others to walk out their career dreams and believe in possibilities. She resides in rural North Carolina with her husband and three children, where they enjoy the great outdoors and serve at-risk youth together.