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5 min read

The Most Talked-About, Popular Braid Hairstyles of 2018: Tips & Ideas

The Most Talked-About, Popular Braid Hairstyles of 2018: Tips & Ideas

Braids are a great protective style (put away those heat tools!) and a summertime go-to. One of the best, and perhaps most daunting, aspects of braided hairstyles is that there are so many options to choose from!

Box braids, Senegalese twists, Nubian twists, yarn braids, Ghana braids...and that’s just scratching the surface! With all these variations on the styles, accessories, lengths, it can all be a little bit much, so take a look at this list of braided hairstyles for your next look’s inspiration.

Lemonade Braids

Well, if Beyoncé is doing it…

The album may be a couple of years old, but the hairstyles that Beyoncé rocked in Lemonade’s videos are still going strong. Though all of the looks were layered with meaning and paid homage to history and culture, “lemonade braids” refers to a sleek, fierce, side swept cornrow style.

Channel your inner Queen Bey with caramel-colored braids, rock a natural darker color, or add in pops of whichever hue suits your mood.

Faux Dreadlocks

Zendaya made quite the stir a few years ago when she walked down the red carpet at the Oscars with faux dreadlocks. Commotion aside, Zendaya looked elegant with the half-up look.

Faux dreadlocks are a great way to try the style out without having to commit to the keep-them-or-cut-them-off nature of real dreadlocks, so if you’ve been on the fence, give this a shot!

Bold, statement-making style? Check. Flexibility if you want to change it up? Check. Participation in the redefining of and conversation about what is beautiful? Big check.

Ombre Box Braids

There has never been as much freedom to change up your hair color as there is today. Everywhere you look, people are flaunting every natural color and every color of the rainbow.

Amp up your box braids game by creating an ombre effect, adding in the color that speaks to you. Icy, platinum blond is a bold, cool look, or you can jump on the unicorn train and mix in splashes of pink and purple. Your imagination (and daring!) are the limit! The best part? You can try bold brights or soft pastels without damaging your hair by using colored extensions.

Let the Ends Go Loose

Leave the ends of your box braids loose and wavy for a carefree elegance that begs for a relaxing day at the beach. This is perfect for those times when you don’t want to spend all day at the salon.

Senegalese Twists: The Lob

Summer isn’t over yet, and there’s still plenty more heat to come. Give the long braids a rest and cool off with a lob. Small Senegalese twists are the perfect braids for this light hot-weather-worthy look.

Cinnamon Roll Buns

They’re not just for a certain star-traveling warrior princess. Sweeping, swooping cornrows can be styled into a more reserved swirl-shaped bun at the base of the neck, or can be twisted onto the crown of the head for a stunning, elegant hairstyle.

Don’t Stick to One Braid

Beyoncé was already on this list, but it wouldn’t be complete without Solange.    

In the mood to shake things up? If you’re feeling adventurous, try out Solange’s edgy, mix-and-match style. The mix of different kinds of braids would be a statement all on its own, but pair that with Solange’s platinum color, beads, and white thread? Now you’ve got a knockout combination that isn’t for the faint of heart.

Take the style and make it your own with by taking inspiration from all or part of this look.

Beads and Beads and Beads

You can’t go wrong with the beautiful, distinctive pattern that you get with Fulani braids. Play it down with just a few beads, or go all out with as many beads as your heart desires.

Add in pops of color, use different shapes and sizes, and even disperse a few throughout the lengths of your braids to shake things up.

Loose Edges

Kerry Washington wore straight-back cornrows in a cover shoot where the edges were left loose for a grounded, easy vibe. The style, accentuated by a few gold cuffs, manages to be laid back and put together at the same time. Paired with her flowing gown, she looks like very definition of a nature goddess.

Braids are full of history and cultural significance and have become a way to not only express your personal style, but to change the norms of what is considered beautiful in Western society.  

Whichever style you choose, whether it’s bright pink lemonade braids á la Nicki Minaj or Kerry Washington’s unfussy cornrows, braids connect you to that wealth of history, community, and culture.

But there’s nothing wrong with choosing a style just because you think that it’s pretty.

At Hair La Vie, we know that your hair is an integral part of how you present yourself to the world and shape your authentic style.

Join our private Facebook Community for a safe, human-moderated space to share your Hair Journey, discover new natural beauty, and take steps towards becoming “you” with the help of an understanding, supportive community.

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    At Hair La Vie, we know that your hair is an integral part of how you present yourself to the world and shape your authentic style.

    Join our private Facebook Community for a safe, human-moderated space to share your Hair Journey, discover new natural beauty, and take steps towards becoming “you” with the help of an understanding, supportive community.

    Join now for instant access to livestreams, discussions, and exclusive access to new products!

    JOIN THE GROUP