One of my favorite things about natural hair is its versatility! You can honestly achieve so many fun styles and many of them are actually great for protecting your curls as well.
What is protective styling? It is practicing low manipulation on your hair while also concealing your hair. This ensures that your hair is tucked away and left to flourish on its own. An added bonus is that you have the ease of not having to touch your hair for the duration of the style. Some naturals protective style all the time for hopes of growth and some can barely keep one in for over a week. It all depends on you and what you're comfortable with. One thing that is agreed on, however, is that even the slightest time of protective styling will be beneficial to you and your hair will thank you!
There is a multitude of fun and unique styles out there that will help protect your hair. Some include a variety of twists with extensions, braids with extensions, updos, wigs, mini braids without extensions, or mini twists without extensions. I love them all, but for the summer of 2019, mini twists have been my curly girl savior!
All About My Mini Twists
Mini twists have recently become my go-to protective style because not only are they easy to do yourself, but the cost is so low. I don't add extensions to my mini twists so that means I don't have to pay extra for braiding/twisting hair. The only cost would come from my moisturizer of choice, but if you're like me you're already stocked with a plethora of moisturizers.
For my mini twists, I like to make sure my hair has been cleansed, deep conditioned, and THOROUGHLY detangled. Detangling will save you a lot of time and effort when making your parts for the twists. Some people go into their twists from old wash and go's. I have done that, but I find that sometimes my twists become too weighed down when I add my twist cream so I prefer to do them on freshly washed hair. Properly preparing your hair when going into a protective style like this is very important for the style being effective in actually protecting and allowing your hair to grow.
Once my hair is clean and detangled I start on my twists. I section my hair into four sections and work through one section at a time. I'm not uptight about my parts, but if you are then taking some time to make your twist parts neat and smooth is a good idea. On each twist, I put a bit of moisturizing cream of my choice, comb through it one more time, and then I twist. To seal the ends I twirl it around my finger and coil them up. My twists usually last up to 2 weeks, but I have stretched it to 3 before by leaving my twists in a bun the third week. This is definitely a low manipulation protective style, but they take me 5-6 hours so be prepared!
Mini twists in themselves are great because they allow you to do so many styles even though they are a style on their own. You can wear them in buns, ponytails, half up half down, space buns, and of course, you can also just let them be free and wear them down. Personally, I love switching it up and exploring different styles while I have mine in.