3 Cute Protective Styles that Can be Done in 15 Minutes


I am a huge fan of low maintenance, protective hairstyling and attribute this part of my regimen to much of my length retention. In the beginning of my healthy hair journey, however, I wasn’t quite sure how to style my hair in a way that would protect my ends without taking up an inordinate amount of my time.  Moreover, protective styles were not just about protecting my ends, but making sure that my edges didn’t suffer in the process.

Over the last few years I have developed some staple styles that I found to not only help maintain healthy hair, but have also allow saved me time. Below are three styles that take about 15 minutes to accomplish.

1. Wash Day Easy Do

This is a style I came up with in a time crunch. I needed to wash my hair but I also need to go out in public in a few hours so the normal 10 random braids I wear to stretch my hair wouldn’t work. This style allowed me to stretch my hair while wearing  a sleek style. At the end of the day or night you will want to remove the hair accessory you’re using in order to give the roots at that section time to fully dry. Please note that there are a lot of possibilities with this style.  In this tutorial I chose to twist the front but you can make one large twist or even make smaller twists.  I like twists because they limit the stress on the edges of my hair.

2. The Cinnabun

I love this style! What I love most is that it can work for those of you who do not yet have the length to style their hair into a traditional bun.  Because of the thickness and shrinkage of my hair I was about bra strap length before I could wear a regular bun without using a gazillion bobby pins. In the interim this cinnabun provides an elegant and, what I think, an easy alternative. You should note that you can cut down the time this style takes by using larger sections to make each mini-bun. Also, when smoothing down your edges I recommend lightly misting your edges with water and tying you hairline with a scarf. This will eliminate the need to brush.  If you do use a brush, which I have done in the past, be sure to be gentle and only use it the for the first day that you wear the style.

3. Easy Twisted Updo


A number of you inquired about this style in my very first post. I also wanted to included this style because you can see how much shorter my hair was at this time. I was around shoulder length, so this style can work for those of you with varying lengths of hair. For those of you with shorter hair you can accomplish this style as well. You will likely need to twist the hair in smaller sections. Still, it should be an easy go to style for the office or for a night out.

With all of these styles remember to have fun with accessories.

What are your favorite 15 minute (or less) hairstyles? Please share!

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Island girl raised in the most royal of NYC's boroughs. Proud nerd, social scientist, educator and recovering awkward black girl. When not listening to NPR, trying to grow spiritually, or detangling my fro, I'm searching for the best shrimp and grits in the Queen City.

  • Candice

    Your hair is beautiful! Thx for these style tips! Perfect for summer!

    • They are ugly a little bit so freak that

      • careece

        ummm that was not nice

      • Candy

        So is that girl in the pic. See how that wasn’t nice. Stop being rude.

      • jes

        your ugly

  • msboogee

    Common sense……

  • Elaine

    Cute. Where’d you get the hair pin in the first video!

  • honeybrown1976

    I’ll try the cinnabun.

  • ambi

    what was used to slick the front back? putting product (grease, oil or gels would make my hair kink up or puff up

  • mangomadness

    My favorite 15 minute (or less) hairstyles are cinnabuns and donut buns (aka sock buns). I like them ’cause they are simple, cute and protective.

  • G

    They lady in the first video currently has waist length hair, the video posted here is 2 yrs old.

  • eidole

    LOVE THIS ARTICLE! Gotta try this cinnabun

  • Diva_Ri

    That cinnabun is fierce.

    • Candy

      True! Will do!

      • Dumb

        • Candy

          That would be you….

  • I’ve always thought the cinnabun was too cute. It doesn’t work so well on my hair, however. My hair is a little longer than I’ve seen this style on others, so it doesn’t roll down as neatly or easily and doesn’t secure to the base well.

    • Sue

      Try twisting the sections before pinning them down. I think that might make it easier to have it stay in place.

  • TWA4now

    Nice! Simple and easy #finally<3

  • Pingback: The Cinnabun | Belle HAir()

  • marsha

    I absolutely love the cinnabun and can’t wait to try it in my hair! What do use to pull your hair away from your face (before you start rolling and pinning the parts if the cinnabun)?

  • Pingback: Natural Hair:15 and Less Minutes Hairstyles You Can Do. | Kahill Insights()

  • cinnabuns use to be one of my go to styles after my hair grew out a bit. Need to revisit this style


  • Larissa

    Thanks a bunch. Everything was very helpful.