Find­ing the right style is an essen­tial part of a suc­cess­ful nat­ur­al hair reg­i­men. It’s impor­tant that you feel good about your hair on a dai­ly basis, and have a cou­ple go-to styles that you can eas­i­ly pull off. Here are 5 ques­tions that will help you find the right go-to style for you.

1. What styles can you manage with your level of ability?

Not every­one can do a fan­cy updo, some can only man­age a basic puff. Get an idea of what you can and can­not man­age, and lim­it your styling options to looks you can eas­i­ly pull off.
Easy styles: Wash and Go, Puffs, Sim­ple Buns, Pony­tails
Medi­um dif­fi­cul­ty styles: Twists, Curl­form­ers, Twist-Outs, Braid-Outs, Roller Sets, Roll and Tuck Styles
Dif­fi­cult styles: Updos, Corn­row Styles, Flat Twist Styles, Braid or Twist Exten­sions, Pro­tec­tive Weaves and Half-Wigs

2. Based on your styling ability, will you need the assistance of a natural hair stylist?

If the extent of your styling knowl­edge is know­ing how to wrap hair at night, then you might need the assis­tance of a nat­ur­al hair styl­ist. To save mon­ey go for styles that you can keep in for at least three weeks.
Salon Style Options: Twists, Updos, Corn­row Styles, Flat Twist Styles, Braid or Twist Exten­sions, Pro­tec­tive Weaves and Half-Wigs

3. How fragile is your hair and how much protection does it need?

This ques­tion is CRITICAL because it will deter­mine how much lat­i­tude you have with styling. If your hair is strong, then you’ll have more options, because you won’t need to be as con­cerned about break­age. If your hair is on the frag­ile side, you will have to lean more heav­i­ly on pro­tec­tive styles or styles that require very lit­tle dai­ly manip­u­la­tion.
Styles that can ONLY work on strong/non-fragile hair: Dai­ly Wash and Go, Dai­ly Puffs, Dai­ly Pony­tails
Styles for frag­ile hair: Pinned-Up Twists, Updos, Corn­row Styles, Flat Twist Styles

4. How fine/thin or thick is your hair?

If your hair is on the fine side, iden­ti­fy styles that will give your hair the illu­sion of full­ness and vol­ume or that don’t require a lot of vol­ume to look good. On the oth­er hand if your hair is thick, you might want to stay away from styles that require sev­er­al indi­vid­ual braids or twists (unless you’re going for a long-term pro­tec­tive style), because they will take FOREVER to put in and take down.
Rec­om­mend­ed styles for thin hair: Braid outs, Twist outs, Updos
Styles to avoid with thin hair: Twists worn down

5. How long do I want the style to last?

This is tied into the ques­tion on hair fragili­ty because if your hair is on the weak­er side, you’ll want to keep styles in for longer to cut down on manip­u­la­tion.
For strong hair: Styles can be adjust­ed dai­ly or every oth­er day
For frag­ile hair: Styles should remain in for at least 4 days at a time
For VERY frag­ile hair: To retain length, styles should be kept in for 10 or more days at a time

Ladies, what are your go-to styles, and why do they work for your hair?

Black Girl With Long Hair

Leila Noel­liste, founder of Black Girl with Long Hair (April 2008). Social media, pop cul­ture and black beau­ty enthu­si­ast. bell hooks’ hair twin…

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27 Comments on "How to Find the Right Go-To Style for Your Hair"

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Pat

I like to keep my hair rou­tine sim­ple so I love short­er hair so the wash n go is my sta­ple. I can’t deal with a mas­sive amount of hair.

Michelle @Radiant Brown Beauty

Great advice. I only dis­agree with the part about the sug­ges­tion of putting fine hair in corn rows. Doing corn rows takes a LOT of manip­u­la­tion and caus­es some hair break­age. Being a very fine nat­ur­al and know­ing quite a few, the styles that work best for our hair are buns and twists (prefer­ably larg­er twists)

IMHO :-)

Natalie
As my hair has grown I have changed my go to style. When my hair was nose length at the front I did flat twists and corn­rows, this style last­ed for about 6 months. Right now my hair is at my low­er lip I usu­al­ly do a sim­ple pony­tail with a pom­padour or some oth­er fan­cy thing at the front some­times I do vari­a­tions of the Kim­may tuck and pin style. If I am going out and want to jazz it up I’ll do a flat twist twist out and now I can also do a giant afro puff. My next go… Read more »
Gia

Updos are eas­i­er for me than twists and corn­rolls lol
My easy go to styles are wash and gos and updos and when I want some­thing a bit more chal­leng­ing I do flat twists and twist outs

wellnessminded

My go to style will always and for­ev­er be a medi­um size twist out. Been nat­ur­al for 5 years and my hair just looks fab in it. I have also found cre­ative ways to adjust the twist out and use head bands etc… The prob­lem I always had which is the most com­mon is retain­ing mois­ture geez. My sis­ter just told me about The Gud Stuff. Its the best mois­tur­iz­er and sealant iv ever used hands down. http://bit.ly/get-The-GUD-Stuff So hap­py to see so many sis­tahs going nat­ur­al. Its the most beau­ti­ful site ever! Good luck to you all…

Star
I am about 8 months nat­ur­al after a 10 month tran­si­tion and my hair is almost shoul­der length when com­plete­ly stretched. My curls range from 3c-4b, and I have fine, medi­um, and course strands. My go to style is a twist out–I love, LOVE!! Through­out the week I pin up the twist in the back and take down the upper front half and the sides for a curly updo. When I work out I put on a head band and retwist the twists that I have tak­en down and that’s it. Twistouts and twists are low manip­u­la­tion styles that have… Read more »
LillianMae

23 months post relaxer…BC June 30. 

Dur­ing my tran­si­tion, my go-to style has been pro­tec­tive styling :)
Hides the ends, low manip­u­la­tion, length and mois­ture reten­tion, and easy to sleep in
http://www.lillian-mae.com/transitioning-guide/protective-styling-it-aint-always-glamorous-but-it-always-works/

When I’ve want­ed to be fan­cy, I’ve done twist/braid-N-curls…however the braid-N-Curl is what works best for me. After I am tired of the style, I recy­cle it in to a pret­ty up-do :)
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B

How much relax ends do you have left after 23 months?? YOu look all nat­ur­al…

Lillian Mae

It varies in dif­fer­ent places…I have less relaxed ends in the back of my hair. The front of my hair has about 3 inch­es.
Here’s a pic of what’s left of my relax­er :)
http://www.lillian-mae.com/transitioning-guide/transitioning-whats-left-of-my-relaxer/ kuhh

B

Thanks 4 rely­ing and shar­ing your pics, your hair looks great. After, 2 yrs of no relax­er how have you han­dled any break­age?

Alexandra

You have very beau­ti­ful hair!

Lillian Mae

Thank you :)
I can’t wait til it’s REALLY all nat­ur­al!

B

8 months post relax­er and Braid-out n curl is my go to style. No blow dry­er or flat iron, I want my relax hair to look my curly new growth.

Karen

This is such a time­ly post. Been try­ing a lot of ways to wear my hair. I fine, thin hair (9″ long)and a “baby face” so I also need styles that make me look more grown up and less teenag­er-ish.

O0oro0O

My go to style is mini-twist they last 3–4 weeks I’m able to style them in var­i­ous way and keep tak­ing care of my hair (wash, pre-poo, mois­tur­ize and seal­ing…).

Selah

I def­i­nite­ly appre­ci­ate this arti­cle. I have thin hair, approx­i­mate­ly 4 inch­es all around. I hate wash n go’s with my hair and I used to wear braids (Exten­sions) but that caus­es more dam­age than good. My puffs are def­i­nite­ly easy for me to do but my edges are thin and I can’t do puffs every­day b/c of that. I’m still a bit inse­cure wear­ing my twist/braid outs so I’m still kin­da won­der­ing what exact­ly my go-to style can be… I’m going to try curl­form­ers and see how that goes…

Alexa

For your thin edges you can use cas­tor oil.Not to much though because it will weigh your hair down

Natalee

Its iron­ic this top­ic was post­ed because I’ve been try­ing to per­fect a wash and go for a cou­ple of months and real­ized it just isn’t for me. I also tried puffs, but fit­ting my hair into a hair tie with­out break­ing is hard. Twists and braids are the eas­i­est, cheap­est (don’t have to buy hair, just a lit­tle shea but­ter), and although it takes a lit­tle time, I can wear them for a while in var­i­ous styles.

Nisha

I have real­ly thick hair so I use the elas­tic head band with­out the met­al piece and wrap 2 or 3 times to cre­ate my puff

Alexandra

I have thick, fine hair. I always have an issue with get­ting my hair to look fuller with braid outs and twist outs. I usu­al­ly put on a Scunc­ci head band when I do my braid outs and I have issues with get­ting SKS when doing twist outs. I’m in that in between stage so I’m still learn­ing what styles works for me.

So far this is what I like:
*Wash n’gos- every­day, now that it’s get­ting warmer. This is my go-to hair style
I some­times do braid outs and twist outs.

Thanks for the post!

flowergirl72

My goto style is the KCC wash n go my hair look so full and curly and I don’t mess with that much. The only issue is shrink­age but I’m good, cause when it’s time for my Afro to out “you bet­ter watch out” it’s get­ting big­ger each time.

Mai
My go to styles are 2-strand twist styles, curl­form­ers, and twist outs. I wear 2-strand twists most of the time because they cut down on time styling and mois­tur­iz­ing (I just spritz with water and oil mix­ture every day, and most days just put my twists in a bun). But for the week­end and on spe­cial occa­sions, I like to keep my hair out and stretch my hair with curl­form­ers or wear twist outs. I’ve tried to go back to wash n gos, but I just can’t do them any­more. They were a sta­ble my first year nat­ur­al, but now that… Read more »
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mangomadness

My hair is ~11–12 inch­es long and has a kinky, tight­ly coiled, spongy tex­ture. Braid-outs and buns (on braid-out hair or band­ed hair) are my go-to styles. They work on my hair for the fol­low­ing rea­sons…

Braid-outs
-easy to achieve
-low manip­u­la­tion & heat­less style
-stretch­es hair well
-easy to main­tain (satin bon­net night­ly, re-moi­tur­ize & re-braid mid-week)
-con­verts to oth­er styles well (buns, updos, puff, etc)
-easy to detan­gle on wash day

Buns (on stretched hair)
-easy to achieve var­i­ous looks (cinnabun, donut bun, high or low place­ment, etc)
-pro­tec­tive & heat­less style
-keeps hair stretched
-bet­ter mois­ture reten­tion
-easy to detan­gle on wash day

B

I re-braid my night­ly if I take them down, on days I dont leave the house they stay in braid n stain rollers for days.
By, re-braid­ing night­ly the style last at least 10 days min­i­mum.

LBell

Fun­ny I should see this on a day where I’m wear­ing fine loose twists hang­ing down, lol…

The one vari­able I would add to this is “Length of hair.“ Wash-and-gos are great for short hair (3” or less) regard­less of its tex­ture or thick­ness. If they start becom­ing more com­pli­cat­ed as the hair grows, then some of the oth­er style options may come into play.

Ma B

Good List. How are half-wigs dif­fi­cult? they are my go to when i have absolute­ly NO time to do any­thing to my hair.

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