by Lil­lian Mae of


I’ve worn tons of styles since going nat­ur­al.  How­ev­er, elas­tic bands take cen­ter stage as the go to tool for the major­i­ty of styles that I’ve worn.

Who doesn’t love a big, boda­cious, blind­ing puff? I know I do; the big­ger the bet­ter! The style is con­ve­nient, sim­ple, easy to achieve and can be worn with­out hav­ing to restyle on a dai­ly basis

I just knew my puff was on point!

While tran­si­tion­ing, my bun was always sin­gled out by the TSA to be checked for weapons of mass destruc­tion.

Full High Bun

And the mod­i­fied ver­sion of the clas­sic bun, the cin­na-bun

Back to Basics

I’ve worn pro­tec­tive styles such as the Sim­ple, Charm­ing Updo bor­rowed from Nap­tural85, which is great for any occa­sion!

Sim­ple and Charm­ing Updo Week 1

These styles would not have been pos­si­ble with­out an elas­tic band.

Elas­tic bands are inex­pen­sive, ver­sa­tile and eas­i­ly attain­able, which make them sta­ples for many nat­u­rals. Final­ly, stretched elas­tic bands make great head­bands (right before they start to wear out)!

Exposed Rubber from and Elastic Band

Exposed Rub­ber from an Elas­tic Band

The down­side to using elas­tic bands is that over­time, they will lose elas­tic­i­ty and/or may pop alto­geth­er, and more impor­tant­ly cause unnec­es­sary break­age. No bueno!

Check out the DOs and DON’Ts below to help pro­tect your strands when using elas­tic bands:

DON’T pur­chase elas­tic bands that have a notice­able seam. The heat-sealed seam can cause unnec­es­sary break­age around the hair­line. My favorite seam­less bands are made by Goody and Scrun­ci.

DO imme­di­ate­ly dis­card any elas­tic bands that have the rub­ber exposed.

DON’T wear the bands too tight­ly; to achieve a puff, usu­al­ly wrap­ping the band twice is enough. In the past I’ve expe­ri­enced headaches from ten­sion caused by bands that were on too tight.

DON’T sleep in them when wear­ing them as head­bands! I’m all about edge reten­tion! No need for unnec­es­sary stress on the edges; give them a break when sleep­ing

DO keep a large stash of elas­tic bands of all col­ors, because you WILL need them :)

Make Your Own! If you’re a DIY girl like myself, you can cre­ate your own ouch­less, adjustable elas­tic bands!

Do you use elas­tic bands in your styling reg­i­men?

The Knot­ty Nat­ur­al hails from the DMV, cur­rent­ly resides in Orlan­do, is a test engi­neer by day, beau­ty con­sul­tant, nat­ur­al hair blog­ging enthu­si­ast by night! At, I hope to inspire women to embrace & love their tress­es! Check me out, as I chron­i­cle my expe­ri­ences as a Knot­ty nat­ur­al liv­ing in a kinky world!

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21 Comments on "How to Use Elastic Bands on Natural Hair Without Causing Breakage"

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it’s hard for me to find satin hair ties so instead i’ll tie a head­band. has any­one found smooth satin like hair ties? the col­or­ful rub­ber band ones work ok

Napturally Kia

jeal­ous of all those who can achieve a high puff *squints eyes*

Knotty Natural

It comes with time :)


Great arti­cle, thanks for shar­ing! Am I the only one though who buys tons of hair­bands and hair­clips & yet los­es all of them with­in a few weeks? Lol I have no idea what hap­pens to them but it doesn’t mat­ter how many I buy I can nev­er find more than one or two when I need them!

Napturally Kia

i use old con­tain­ers of hair prod­ucts i use. most of them being deep con­di­tion­er con­tain­er bc i go thru that pret­ty quick­ly

Knotty Natural

Hi IB!

I’m glad enjoyed the arti­cle! I actu­al­ly used to lose all of my bands as well, but then I start­ed to keep them in a make-up bag and the prob­lem was solved. As for the flower clips, I just start­ed to clip them to my jew­el­ry stand! :)


That’s such a good idea, I’m def­i­nite­ly going to start doing that!


Nice arti­cle, thanks for post­ing!

Knotty Natural

I’m glad you enjoyed it; thank your for read­ing and com­ment­ing!


I real­ly like the Scun­ci evo­lu­tion bands. My break­age from puffs seems great­ly reduced since I switched to them, and I think it’s because they’re round­ed rubber–the cloth coat­ing and glue seal on tra­di­tion­al elas­tics always caught on my hair.

Knotty Natural

I think it’s a good idea to stay away from the met­al and glue sealed elas­tics; both lead to unnec­es­sary break­age.


What kinds of elas­tic bands are rec­om­mend­ed for band­ing the hair? Cur­rent­ly I have a tapered cut where the back is too short to twist/braid so I have been band­ing with Goody Ouch­less bands. But I’m always look­ing for a health­i­er or gen­tler alter­na­tive if there is one.

Knotty Natural

Ouch­less bands are per­fect! I’d stay away from any and all bands that have the met­al piece attached to it.

You just real­ly want to dis­card them after they are so worn that the elas­tic becomes exposed.


nap­tural85 has the best tuto­r­i­al either on her hair chan­nel or style chan­nel


Scunchii has these new elas­tics that don’t pull it snag my hair at all. I love them, their like a round­ed thick rub­ber­band. They’re real­ly smooth.


I use those as well…have for the pass few year after dis­cov­er­ing them..they are awe­some and glide out of my hair with ease…


They don’t have that cloth mate­r­i­al wrapped on them.


I like those ones too, they’re real­ly good. No met­al part, no fab­ric, no seams for hair to get caught on. Best elas­tics I’ve ever used.


Exact­ly, I tried to like your comment…but it gave a thumbs down instead and wouldn’t let me change it.

I only use elas­tic bans for pony­tails most­ly I used to use it with buns but it had to be done tight to get the hair to stay put with­out my hair slow­ly push­ing it of mak­ing a tinier bun as the hours passed, it also would cause angles along band where hair would get wrapped around the elas­tic. So it was a no no for pro­tec­tive styles by when my gets longer where I don’t have to wor­ry about it nav­i­gat­ing down the hair maybe I can do it more and loos­er. But not right now for my while… Read more »
Knotty Natural

Bet­ter safe then sor­ry! :)