Protective styles just as the name suggests aim at limiting the stress that environmental factors cause on your hair. They also help you avoid the need to use harsh chemicals and hot tools on your strands. However, the only limitation to these hairdos is that they look best in thick, dense hair, and this is the reason why the hairstyles are very popular with African Americans. Most of them entail a lot of knitting, and so you have to use some extensions. The protective hairstyles also look very stylish, and if you add this to the fact that you get to retain your length, then you have the perfect headdress for a modern woman. The 55 styles below will give you some ideas on how to create the protective hairdo on different lengths.
# 1 Big Crochet Braids
Crochet braids are a perfect option for ladies with any type and size of hair because they entail crocheting some extension to your natural hair. To create some adorable ones like these, you should use some chocolate brown extensions and finish by accessorizing with a few metal beads and styling them into a face frame.
These shoulder-grazing protective braids are also crochets, but they are bigger than the traditional ones. They also have a beautiful dark tone but their styling that entails twisting the ones on the crown into a high knot is what makes this a top notch hairdo.
# 3 Super Cool Blue Mambo Twists
Protective styles are easy to create, but most look the same. However, you can still make a distinct one like this one by using some colorful extensions. The design uses some blue extensions to create some extra cute medium length mambo twists that you should style by sweeping to the side to create a face framing design.
# 4 Goddess Braid Rows
Some ladies have a long and naturally dense hair, and so they do not have to use any extensions to create a flawless protective hairdo. This style is a perfect example of such hair, and it entails weaving it into some rows of chunky goddess braids that flow from the front to the back diagonally to hang over the back.
# 5 Curly Locks and Knots
As chic as this hairstyle may look it is still very easy to create, and this is more so for ladies with a naturally curly hair. This style entails side sweeping the long textured and natural looking curls over the face and then using the ones on the other side to form some small intricate knots for a stylish finish.
# 6 Curly Crochets
Crochet braids are very versatile, and so there are almost unlimited ways of wearing them. In this design, you do not have to weave them all the wavy, and you should instead only knit the roots and then insert the rest of your extensions into hot water to create some beautiful curls or waves.
# 7 Natural Sew-In
Weaves also make fabulous protective hairstyles, and so you do not have to sticks with the traditional braid design. However, you should choose some full extensions with some firm curls on the ends and make sure that you sew them in flawlessly to create an adorable hairdo like this one.
# 8 Mini and Long Box Braids
If you have the time and patient to sit down for many hours as someone works on your hair, then you can create this extra cute design. It entails adding some extra-long black extensions to your hair and then using them to knit some thin box braids that you should finish by sweeping back.
# 9 Shoulder Length Box Braids
A summer hairdo like this one will not only make you feel comfortable but also ensures that you maintain a stylish appearance even under the scorching sun. It is a traditional box braid design with medium size twists but their shoulder length, and the colorful red extensions make the headdress look distinct.
# 10 Neat Feed-In Rows
There are limitless ways of knitting hair and so you should not always stick with the typical designs. Instead of having some regular cornrows you can spice things up with some funky Feed In rows like these. And to make them look even more amazing, you should give them a slight curve to create a beautiful wavy pattern.
# 11 Two Size Cornrows
Protective styles like this one will also offer you another way of wearing cornrows so that you do not always have to stick with the traditional design. It entails weaving some jumbo rows with some small ones in between to create a unique pattern and then spicing up the look with some adornments on some of the big twists.
# 12 Two Tone Locks
These shoulder length braids with medium thickness are all about the bright extensions. The twists have some lovely blue and pink extensions that brighten them up and also make them look unique. And to style them you will only need to use a few of them to form a small top knot and then sweep back the rest.
# 13 Chic Curly Afro
Some natural looking curly locks like this are not only protective, but they also look very chic. To create them, you should crochet some short curly extensions on your natural hair and then give them an afro-like design to create the charming hairdo. Although you can have the curls in any color, black is the best option, and this is because it will make them look very natural.
# 14 Funky Blue Crop Cut
The weive cut in this design is what makes this a trendy and elegant hairdo. It is a simple crop cut, but the haircut is round and almost equal length around the head, and this gives the style a bowl look. You should also give it an undercut at the back to spice it up. The magical blue shade with some purple streaks is also fantastic, but you can still have the style in any color that you want.
# 15 Twisted Top Bun for Box Braids
Box braids create breathtaking hairdos but these are extra neat, and they also have a unique dazzle. They are also quite long, and this is what makes it possible to create this hairstyle. Once you have the braids, you should pull them to the top of the head and twist them into a massive high bun hanging over the forehead.
# 16 Jumbo Kinky Twists
Kinky twists are one of the most popular protective hairstyles, but this one takes things a little further by making them extra big. The twists are also very long, and so you have to choose your extensions well if you want to create this design. Their dazzling dark tone is also fantastic, and you also need to make them look neat and style with a simple side sweep.
# 17 Fancy Box Braid Knot
Protective styles are not only about how you create them but also the styling because it makes or breaks your headdress. These long box braids are very simple, and so any stylist with basic braiding skills can replicate them effortlessly. However, they have a beautiful brown tone and a very inventive styling that entails twisting the ones on the crown into a cute and tight top knot and leaving the rest to flow to the back freely.
# 18 High Bun for Crochets
Your summer crochet braids should not always look dull and boring because you can spice them with inventive styling. Braids are not just for protecting your hair, but they can also give you an adorable style if you design them well. The ones in this style entail pulling all the crochet twists to the center of the head and then using them to form a tight and high bun with some metal beads for accessorizing.
# 19 Dreamy Faux Locks
Faux locks are the closest thing to natural dreadlocks that you can get if you are not willing to form the dreads. These faux locks have an amazing blue color that makes them look magnificent and unique. They are perfect for ladies with long hair but when making them it is important to ensure that they are tight and neat especially at the roots as this is what makes them look chic.
# 20 Gorgeous Kinky Coils
The brown and copper shades in this design give the hairdo a fantastic tone, but this is not the only thing that makes this a top notch design. This design also has some lovely kinky coils that will not only protect your hair but also make a woman look very majestic. To finish the look, you should adorn the locks with some metallic beads and style with a side sweep.
# 21 Tiny Cornrows Feeding Into a Crown
This fantastic headdress is perfect for ladies who want to wear a formal protective hairdo without any free flowing locks. It entails weaving some tiny cornrows that start at the center of the head and flow in different directions to feed into a massive braid crown that wraps around the head.
# 22 Natural Kinky Curls
You will not need any extensions or sophisticated knitting to create this fabulous hairstyle. It is a simple design that you can create through finger detangling to produce some natural kinky coils. You also need a side part and to fluff out the hair to give it an afro like appearance.
# 23 Relaxed Twists Out
The length of your hair should never prevent you from wearing protective hairstyles because there are many designs available for different lengths. This design is a perfect example of one such style that you can create with medium size or short hair. It is a straightforward style that only entails twisting out your strands to form, some natural looking kinky coils and then designing them with a side part and sweeping the coils sideway and in layers.
# 24 Medium Two Toned Box Braids
These box braids are a medium size in width but very long, and the wearer has thick hair, and this is what makes them plentiful on the head. Although they will take quite some time to create the look that you get makes them worth the wait. They also use different color extensions to create a stylish two-toned appearance, and you only need to sweep them back for styling.
# 25 Magical Bantu Knots
Sometimes you have to get a little inventive with your protective style if you want to stand out. These Bantu knots provide you with one way to do this, and they are perfect for ladies with a medium size or short hair. To create them you should first relax your strands and then section them into several equal portions and twist each part into a small and tight Bantu knot.
# 26 Highlighted Natural Braided Ponytail
African American ladies are very lucky to have a thick natural hair because it is what makes it possible to create a hairdo like this one. It is a fabulous headdress that entails adding some black and brown extensions to the natural hair to create some adorable highlighted braids. When creating the twists you should start them in different places but direct them to the center of the head where you should use a few of the locks to form a braided ponytail.
# 27 Sleek Top Knot Bun
The jumbo braids in this hairstyle have a glossy black shade with a few purple ones that create a highlighted appearance. Although the color pattern looks amazing, the size of the braids and the styling are what makes this an elegant design for a modern woman. Once you have the neat jumbo size twists, you only need to pull them to the center of the head and twist them into a tight top knot bun.
# 28 Brazilian Wave
The burgundy shade in this hairdo is the first thing that will catch your attention because it is just perfect and looks amazing with the wearer’s skin tone. These extensions look very natural, and it is hard to believe that they are not the wearer’s real hair, and so if you have some with beautiful waves like these, then you can be sure of a refined hairdo.
# 29 Pretty and Huge Senegalese Twists
If you choose the right extensions and use the services of a person that knows how to knit hair flawlessly, you can be certain of a top notch protective hairdo like this one. It entails using some bright burgundy extensions to create some huge Senegalese twists and styling them into a face framing design.
# 30 Asymmetrical Face Framing Bob Cut
A weave-in bob cut like this one is one of the easiest protective hairstyles that you can wear. It is a straightforward design that you can create by chopping your straight strands into an asymmetrical bob cut and then styling it into a face frame design from a side-part line.
# 31 Easy Twisted Box Braids
The twisted design on the crown of this headdress makes it look complicated but it is not. In fact, these braids are one of the easiest protective styles that you can wear if you have a natural kinky hair. It is a smooth hairdo that will make you look fantastic, and you can create it with almost any hair length by adding some extensions.
# 32 Sophisticated Marley Twist Updo
Marley twists are easier to create than the traditional three and four strands braids, but they still look very stylish. The ones in this design are medium size and also very long, but their inventive styling is what makes them stand out. It involves pulling the twists to the back and using them to form a sophisticated and classy braided bun.
# 33 Glossy Protective Afro Braids
The shine on this hairdo is what makes it one of the most flawless protective styles that you can wear. The only shortcoming is the fact that the afro braids are thin, and so they will take a long time to create. The glossy appearance comes from using some dark-toned and shiny extensions when weaving the hair.
# 34 Dreadlock Updo
If you do not have a problem with transforming your hair into some natural dreadlocks, this hairstyle will be perfect for you. These dreads are very long, and so they will still look gorgeous without any styling. To give them this classy updo you should retouch them with wax for a neat appearance and then bring them to the top of the head and wrap them into a tight top bun.
# 35 Full Goddess Sew-In
A sew-in design like this one is perfect for a woman who loves to wear protective hairstyles but does not wish to knit her strands. To create this design you should sew in some extensions and ensure that you have minimum leave out. Also, make the hair curly on the ends and then style by sweeping it to the sides and over the forehead.
# 36 Crochet Senegalese Twists
These adorable twists are a product of crocheting but there are in a Senegalese twist design, and this is what makes them look distinct. The twists are in three different lengths but the color of the extensions and the choice of size are also perfect, and they help make this a top notch hairdo.
# 37 Yarn Twists with Beads
Jumbo yarn twists like these are perfect when looking for a hairstyle that will keep you warm especially in winter. They are a very straightforward design and any person that knows how to twist hair should be able to make them, but if you want yours to be uniform and neat, you should use an experienced stylist. Also, accessorize it with some metal beads as they will help to give it some extra elegance.
# 38 Neat Afro Spirals
This fantastic hairdo is another example of protective styles that will not require you to use any extensions to create them. It is a perfect design for ladies with a short, thick hair, and you can form it faster than most other hairstyles. All that you will need for this one is to make your thick strands curly and then finish by fluffing them out to create an afro-like design.
# 39 Sew-In Ponytails
It is hard to believe that this hairdo is a sew-in weave because everything looks very natural. However, this shows that the styling is the work or an experienced and professional hairstylist. And so if you can have a thick sew-in weave like this one with some nice curls on the ends then you can be confident of an elegant hairdo. Using a few of the strands to form two ponytails on the sides is all that you need to create a top notch hairstyle.
# 40 Thick and Curly Protective Weave
This beautiful hairdo also entails using sew-in weave to create an adorable and protective hairstyle. The sew-in weave in this style is quite thick, and it also has an excellent texture with some nice curls and waves on the ends. And so once you have it a simple center part, and a face frame style is all that you need to create a chic headdress.
# 41 Inventive Faux Locks
Faux locks are cute hairdos, but if you want yours to look unique, you should create them inventively. These particular ones are quite straightforward because you only need to make them thin and then make the ends curly to give them a distinctive and adorable appearance.
# 42 Protective Style with Cornrows
Nothing beats natural hair when it comes to creating protective hairstyles, and this is not only because it is easy to work with but also because you can almost be certain of a head-turning appearance. This style demonstrates the beauty of natural hair perfectly, and it entails weaving some neat rows at the front and then finishing them into a thick afro with some coils.
# 43 Elegant Top Knot
These faux locks look fantastic and if you can replicate them you will look splendid. They are all uniform in size and also very long, and this gives you the freedom to style them any way you want. However, pulling those on the crown into a tight knot and leaving the rest to flow to the back will give you a refined hairstyle.
# 44 Textured and Twisted Kinky Hair
This natural updo is fantastic, and any woman with a thick dark toned hair can create it effortlessly. It involves sweeping the hair frontwards and then twisting it at the front to create a stylish updo and leave the massive textured twist hanging over the forehead.
# 45 Braided Blonde Ponytail
One of the best things about protective styles is that they give a woman the opportunity to have color on her strands without coloring them. In this hairstyle, for example, the braids entail using some bright blonde extensions and weaving them into cute virgin locks and using a hairband to tie them into a beautiful ponytail.
# 46 Layered Copper Curls
This design is very straightforward, and any woman with a short or medium size hair can create with it with ease. To wear this design, you will need to crochet a weave on your short hair, but you should choose one with a dark copper shade and some lovely curls and style by layering the curly strands.
# 47 Curly Dread Head
The popular misconception that dreadlocks will restrict you when styling your hairs should not discourage you from having dreads because it is not factual. There are many options available for this design and to create a look like this one you will only need to use curlers to give your locks a curly appearance and finish by accessorizing with some metal beads.
# 48 Stunning Crochet Spirals
Even if you do not like protective styles like the crochets, it will be hard to say no to an amazing style like this one. It is a chic and natural looking hairdo that entails creating some thick spiral crochets and styling them with a side part and fluffing them to give them a full appearance.
# 49 Pretty Box Braid Top Knot
These stunning box braids will make any woman look and feel beautiful. Everything from their size to length is just perfect, but their color and inventive styling are what will make most people want to have them. The styling is also very simple as you only need to use some of them to form a knot at the top and leave the rest free flowing to the back.
# 50 Thick Free Flowing Curly Mane
Even if you do not have a perfect natural mane, you can still have a style with one by using a sew-in weave. This copper mane is a good example of this, and it shows that any woman can look stylish even if she does not have a perfect natural hair. The only other thing that you need for this style is to side-sweep the hair into a face frame.
# 51 Soft Fluffy Curls
Although this hairdo is a sew-in, any woman with a thick natural hair can still create it. The most important thing in the design is to get the color variation right and apart from this you also have to give the curls a side swept and fluffy appearance.
# 52 Glamorous Faux Dreads
If you are always admiring dreadlocks and your hair cannot make perfect ones then some faux locks like these are the second best thing. And to ensure that they look as natural as possible they have a beautiful dark tone, they are also impeccable and long. For styling, you can tie them at the back to form a half up design or pull them into a top knot.
# 53 Funky Cornrows
There are limitless ways of wearing protective hairstyles and so you do not always have to go with the same old designs. This headdress gives the traditional cornrows a modern touch by having them in different sizes and making the braids flow in various directions.
# 54 Natural Bubble Ponytail
Your natural kinky hair will give you many options when you want to wear a protective headdress. In some styles like this one, you will not even need to do anything complicated or knit your strands because a few elastic bands are all that you need to tie your long hair into a ponytail bubble design.
# 55 Dark and Impeccable Crochets
Ladies with a dense African American hair can wear any braided design effortlessly because of their hair type. However, crochets are what most prefer because they are easy to make, they look neat, and you can keep them for a long time. The dark tone of these locks and their length makes them even more attractive, and you can have them for any hair length.
Protective styles are for a woman who wants to protect her hair against the element and also one that does not wish to use hot tools or chemicals on her strands. These styles also work for ladies who do not have a perfect natural hair and would like to improve it or just hide its appearance. However, any woman that wants to look elegant can wear these hairdos. Go through the 55 styles above for ideas on the best protective headdress for you.