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25 Natural Hairstyles That Let Your Inner Beauty Shine

smiling woman with natural hair

Wearing your hair in its natural state should make you feel confident and proud. Natural hair reflects your inner beauty, and there are many benefits to a textured look, including less maintenance, less expense, and less damage. You can find some ideas for natural hairstyles below to upgrade your look and give you a boost of confidence.

1. Bantu Knots

person with bantu knots

Photo source: Dahzhane Turner, a natural hair Pro from Charlotte, NC

Bantu knots are an African hairstyle that can protect your natural hair from breakage. This natural hairstyle is straightforward, but may take some time to install. Once you put in Bantu knots, you can keep them in for a week or more as long as you moisturize them.

2. Faux Hawk

person with faux hawk

Photo source: Maurice Benjamin, a natural hair Pro from Suitland, MD

If you’re intrigued by the mohawk, but you aren’t ready to shave the sides of your head, then you can try a faux hawk by braiding or pinning up the sides of your hair and letting your natural hair in the middle hang free. You can also use hairspray or gel to keep the middle hair standing up straight to get an edgier look.

3. Half-Up Space Buns

perosn with half up space bun

Photo source: Bianca Davis, a locs Pro from Lawrenceville, GA

You can get space buns by splitting your hair in two and creating small, puffy buns on the top of your head. If you want to get creative with this natural hairstyle, you can leave half of your hair down. You can also add twists or braids to your space buns to make them stand out. 

4. Curly Pineapple

woman with curly pineapple

Photo source: Godiva Tresses, a natural hair Pro from Philadelphia, PA

When your hair is curly, you’ll have many natural hairstyles to choose from. The curly pineapple is a popular look that shows off your curls while keeping them off your neck. By pushing your curls toward the front of your head, you’ll have an easier time sleeping on the back of your head without risking hair breakage. It’s one of the easiest hairstyles for curly hair to pull off.

5. Braided Half-Up Half-Down Top Knot

woman with braided half up half down top knot

Photo source: Godiva Tresses, a natural hair Pro from Philadelphia, PA

This braided half-up, half-down hairstyle can look beautiful on natural hair of all lengths and textures. By putting half of your hair up and leaving the other part down, you can show off your natural hair while keeping it out of your eyes. Adding braids to the half-up portion of your hair is where you’ll let your style shine. Try micro braids, cornrows, or box braids to round out this look.

6. Braided Space Buns

woman with braided space buns

Photo source: Neosha Leak, a natural hair Pro from Charlotte, NC

Space buns are a trending hairstyle that will give you an out-of-this-world, Princess Leia vibe. You can make your space buns unique by incorporating a Fulani-style braided technique. First, have a hairstylist braid your hair down the middle. Then add braids down both sides of your head. To complete the look, braid each of your buns before wrapping them up. 

7. Flexi-Rod Curls

woman with flexi rod curls

Photo source: Denise East, a natural hair Pro from Houston, TX

If you’re trying to achieve the perfect ringlet curls without heat, then flexi-rods are a tried-and-true method. Flexi-rod curls are long, foam curlers you’ll wrap your hair around and leave in overnight. Once you let your hair out of the flexi-rods, you’ll have bouncy ringlets with no damage done in the process!

8. Highlighted Tips

person with highlighted tips

Photo source: Amber Sherill, a natural hair Pro from Frisco, TX

Adding color to your hair can brighten up your look and bring out the texture of your natural curls. If you have dark hair, you can try highlighting the tips of your hair with a bright color to add contrast and dimension. An experienced colorist can help you decide on a color that compliments your complexion.

9. Pin Curls

person with pin curls

Photo source: Alicia Slaughter, a natural hair Pro from Dolton, IL

Pin curls are a heatless curling technique that will give you a retro hairstyle overnight. To achieve this style, wrap each piece of hair into a spiral and hold the hair flat against the head. Use a pin to clip the spiraled hair down and leave the hair to set overnight. In the morning, you should have tight and vintage curls.

10. Pixie Cut

person with pixie cut

Photo source: Saniyyah Sahar, a natural hair Pro from Los Angeles, CA

The pixie cut is a natural hairstyle that will bring out your eyes and smile. Short natural hair is easy to maintain and is one of the best ways to keep your hair healthy. You can dress up your pixie cut with large hoop earrings and a bold lip color. Or you can keep it simple by rolling out of bed and throwing in some styling cream. 

11. French Braids

woman with french braids

Photo source: Angiehairstyles, a natural hair Pro from Los Angeles, CA

French braids are a classic braiding technique you can do quickly on natural hair. When you want to make your hair feel polished and pulled back, having French braiding as a skill under your belt is helpful. These braids won’t go out of style and you can pull them off for a casual or formal event. 

12. Chunky Cornrows with Low Bun

woman with chunky cornrows and low bun

Photo source: Somer K, a natural hair Pro from Plano, TX

When you want a braided look that’s both protective and comfortable, you can try chunky cornrows. The larger your braids are, the less likely they are to pull on your hair. But thankfully, braids of all sizes can still keep your ends tucked away and protected. This natural hairstyle braids the hair back into a beautiful low bun so that your hair will stay put for a week or more.

13. Fulani Braids with Ponytail

woman with fulani braid with ponytail

Photo source: Jazmin Freeman, a natural hair Pro from Matthews, NC

The braided space buns had a taste of the Fulani style, but if you truly want to celebrate the Fulani people of Africa, then you’ll need all the elements of this braiding technique. Fulani braids include a braid down the middle of the scalp, braids coming down each side of the head, and two braids coming forward at the temples. You can add a ponytail to this braided hairstyle to keep your hair off your neck. 

14. Lemonade Braids

woman with lemonade braids

Photo source: Chicago Braider, a braids Pro from Chicago, IL

Lemonade braids were once called side braids, but the name changed after Beyoncé wore this braided hairstyle in many of her music videos from her “Lemonade” album in 2006. These braids can have many variations, but they must wrap around the head toward one side to qualify as lemonade braids.

15. Two-Strand Twists

woman with two strand twists

Photo source: Oge, a braids Pro from Dallas, TX

If you have thinning or fragile hair, these two-strand twists are an excellent option if you’re looking for a protective style that will last for a few months. You can gather and style them in many ways, and once you install them, they require little maintenance.

16. Fulani Braids

woman with fulani braids

Photo source: Favour Amaechi, a natural hair Pro from Dallas, TX

We mentioned the Fulani braiding technique in combination with buns and ponytails, but here you can see this natural hairstyle with long hair. This look shows colored string wrapped around the middle braid to bring out the color of the golden beads on the hair. 

17. Messy Bun

woman with messy bun

Photo source: Meshia Lee, a natural hair Pro from Hurst, TX

A messy bun is an effortless natural hairstyle that can be stylish when done right. The trick with the messy bun is to make it messy in the right way. You can put your hair in chunky twists before throwing it up to give your bun some volume. You can also let some of your strands hang down from the chunky twists for a tousled look.

18. Locs

person with locs

Photo source: Erin Duncombe, a natural hair Pro from Fresno, TX

Locs have a spiritual connection dated back thousands of years. Bob Marley revived the hairstyle in mainstream culture in the 1970s, and celebrities have been seen sporting them more recently on red carpets. Authentic locs can be difficult to install and are almost impossible to get out, but faux locs are a good option if you want to try this hairstyle temporarily.

19. Low Ponytail 

woman with low ponytail

Photo source: Taylor Rhae, a natural hair Pro from Chicago, IL

The low ponytail is a straightforward natural hairstyle if you have medium or long hair. When you want to get your hair away from your face, you can grab a brush and smooth back the hair on your scalp before gathering your hair at the nape of your neck. With longer hair, you can throw your low ponytail over your shoulder or let it hang behind you while you’re on the go. 

20. Pixie Cut with Deep Side Part

person with pixie cut and deep side part

Photo source: Mz. Nicky, a natural hair Pro from Blue Island, IL

The deep side part is a popular feature for pixie cuts. Whether you choose to do a long side bang or keep your pixie short on both sides, adding a deep side part will bring dimension to the hair and make the hair appear thicker on one side. With this curly pixie cut, the deep side part makes the curls on the wider side look like they are standing up higher. 

21. Stacked Bob

woman with stacked bob

Photo source: Natalie Aneil, a women’s haircut Pro from Carrollton, TX

A stacked bob is a good natural hairstyle to use when you want to add depth and volume to short hair. By creating a steep angle on the back side of the hair, the hair will appear thicker than it is. The hair should also get longer toward the face in a stacked bob, which brings attention to your eyes. 

22. Modern Pixie with Sideburns

person with modern pixie and sideburns

Photo source: Kenya Victory-Bryant, a natural hair Pro from Charlotte, NC

When you feel like the other hairstyles you’ve flipped through all seem overdone, then you should talk to your hairstylist about a more modern and original look. This modern pixie cut isn’t a cut you see every day. Unlike classic pixie cuts that feature a side bang or curls on top, this hairstyle features more of a bowl cut with sideburns. You will surely be a headturner with this look!

23. Buzz Cut

person with buzz cut

Photo source: LapLeezy, a barber from Charlotte, NC

A buzz cut is a natural hairstyle that can look awesome on those who want to show off their facial features. If you know a buzz cut is the perfect hairstyle for you because you’re low maintenance and like the feeling of a clean head, then reach out to a barber for the perfect fade. 

24. Braided Updo

woman with braided updo

Photo source: Asha’ Booker, a natural hair Pro from Atlanta, GA

Braided updos come in many variations, with each one bringing your natural hair’s beauty to life. Whether you choose to braid your hair with cornrows from the neck up like this picture or gather your hair down into a braided style, braided updos have a way of making you feel fancy. Working with a stylist can ensure your updo stays put for whatever event you have planned. 

25. Twist-Out

woman with twist out

Photo source: Nikki Curl Boss, a natural hair Pro from Marietta, GA

If you want your natural hair to look like perfect ringlet curls, you can do so with a twist-out. A twist-out involves dividing your hair into sections, splitting each section into two pieces, and twisting the sections before leaving the twists in overnight. In the morning, you’ll unravel the twists to reveal a bouncy twist-out hairstyle!

There are many natural hairstyles that can make you feel good about who you are. If you need help finding the right style for you, reach out to our community of natural hair Pros.

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