A braid is a complex structure or pattern formed by interlacing three or more strands of flexible material, especially hair.
Braiding has a historical origin, as it has been used for defining tribes, social status, and other societal classifications.
It has also been used for mapping escape routes for enslaved people. Braids are used today to celebrate and honor ancestral roots and express personality and fashion.
There are different types of braids for women, and each style has its unique look and personality.
Braided hairstyles are the oldest way of styling hair. Women of all ages and hair types can braid.
Braids also protect the hair from harsh environmental damage while keeping it beautiful.
In this article, we shall delve into the enchanting world of different types of braids, how to style them, and each distinctive feature that makes them unique.
There is a wide range of hairstyles for everyone, irrespective of tribe or ethnicity. This article lists diverse braiding styles to explore and try out.
Different Types of Braids for Women
1. Ghana Braids
Ghana braids were first seen in sculptures dating as far back as 500 B.C. This style originated in Africa and has significantly influenced Ghanaian cultural traditions since then.
Ghana braids can be made close to the scalp, similar to cornrows. The only difference is that ghana braids start small, then move to a larger pattern until tapering off at the ends. This style of art is impressive and beautiful when done well. It can be worn in high ponytails or wrapped buns.
2. Goddess Braids
This work of art, creativity, and precision is another braid style for women. Goddess braids were often adorned with metal accents. They also date back to Ancient Africa and have a comparable history and appearance to cornrows.
This intricate style is designed by braiding closely to the scalp, and the braids are thick, raised, and highly defined. They can be adorned with elegant hair accessories to exude an air of royalty and grace. It can be rocked as a single goddess braid cascading down or multiple braids styled into an updo.
Cornrows are the original braiding style among the different types of braids for women. The patterns in which this braid is made indicate the tribe the person belongs to and their stature within the tribe.
Dating back to 3000 B.C., warriors and kings used cornrows to show their societal status.
First seen in Africa, this style can now be seen worldwide in Sudan, West Africa, and throughout the Horn of Africa.
In some parts of Africa, braids signify a person’s age, marital status, religion, personality, or kinship. This style is designed by keeping it close to the scalp and braiding it straight down. The style can be worn alone or with flowers, coral, glass, or shells.
Cornrow bobs, cornrow buns, two cornrow braids, swirly cornrows, side cornrow braids, cornrows with curvy parting, and cornrow updos with curls are different ways to style cornrows.
4. Box Braids
A woman who can afford this style has been believed to be a woman of wealth. Box braids take time and are slightly more expensive than other styles.
This sleek style is created by sectioning the hair into small boxes or squares, giving it a neat and organized look. Long, flowing box braids are amazing, but they can be kept short or shoulder-length, depending on your choice.
Colorful extensions can be added to make it more unique and stylish or keep it natural for a chic and timeless appearance. There is a sense of confidence and elegance that comes with box braids. Embrace it!
5. Faux Locs
Many believed that Faux locs originated in Jamaica. However, this was different, as this style originated in Africa. This style was first seen in The Vedas, where the Hindu god was said to wear dreadlocks. Locs were seen in Egyptian carvings, drawings, and ancient artifacts.
This style was also seen in the Himba Tribe in Namibia, where hair was used to indicate the person’s age or marital status.
These braids are characterized by thin, delicate sections of hair braided in intricate patterns. This hairstyle is seen worldwide today, representing several meanings for various cultures.
6. French Braids
This hairstyle has been a classic for ages. This is one of the types of braids for women and is perfect for all ages and hair types. A French braid involves crossing strands of hair over one another.
Clean sectioning makes a French braid stand out among other styles. This sectioning helps the braids remain polished from the beginning to the end.
Due to its versatility, this style is an excellent choice for any hair length, texture, or thickness. However, this style can be challenging for people with shorter hair. There is a way out; a pomade, gel, or molding cream can keep even the shortest strands in place.
7. Dutch Braids
There has always been controversy about Dutch and French braids. Most people think they are the same hairstyle. However, Dutch braids differ from French braids in the sense that Dutch braids involve crossing strands beneath one another. Dutch braids can be referred to as reverse French braids.
Dutch braids look like detachable inside-out braids. It can serve as an excellent base for more elaborate and fancy hairstyles. It is one of the top choices for a wedding or prom.
There are different Dutch braids and hairstyles for women to style and rock exceptionally. You can’t go wrong with Dutch braids, from Two Dutch braids to a Dutch braid bun and even a fishtail Dutch braid.
If you think your hair is short and a Dutch braid is not your style, you are wrong because there are Dutch braids for short hair. For office women, there is a Dutch braid hairstyle for you.
Office-approved Dutch braids are what you need to spice up your everyday office look. This double Dutch style looks formal and helps keep all hair in place, with no hair out of place.
8. Crown Braids
The different types of braids for women do not only include French Braids, Dutch Braids, and Cornrows (though those are the most popular). Crown braids are also another unique way of styling your hair. Crown braids make you feel regal, like the queen that you are.
This style is exceptional for people with thin, loose hair. Weaving one part of the hair into an open style lets you get texture into your hairdo.
The crown braids can be made messy to steal the show. This style is mostly an unbeatable choice for bridesmaids, creating a romantic and elegant vibe.
9. Snail Braid Updo
A snail braid updo is another type of braid a woman can wear. It is simple yet elegant. Neither too extravagant nor sophisticated. It gives you the most unique and simple look you could ask for.
This low-braided bun is for everyone. If you have long hair, you are good to go. Short hair? It’s not a problem; it can be done with extensions. The bun is coiling like a snail in its shell. This work of art is an excellent hairstyle for women!
10. Micro Braids
This fun and extensive work of art gives a stunning result when done well. This hairstyle goes well on short to medium-length hair, as it can be heavy when long.
Micro braids have a lot to do, but the result is fantastic. They are created by weaving small sections of the hair into thin, uniform strands. That is why keeping the length short and not too long is advisable.
Despite their size, they make a bold statement and give off an air of impeccable style. Feather, or million braids, is a short micro-braided hairstyle. It involves creating numerous tiny braids close to the scalp, giving the appearance of a feathery, textured mane.
11. Fancy Braids on Auburn Hair
Suppose you want to be the masterpiece of the occasion, the center of all attraction. This is the hairstyle for you if you want to turn heads halfway and gain people’s attention with little effort, either at that party or a small get-together with friends and colleagues.
Fancy braids consist of two popular braids: French and Dutch braids. The middle strand is braided into a French braid, while the side tresses are done into Dutch braids. This hairstyle is an excellent choice for models’ hair types and complements the brown shade of the model’s hair.
12. Fulani Braids
Fulani braids are another style among the different types of braids for women. Named after the Fulani people of West Africa, this hairstyle is characterized by a central cornrow braid adorned with either beads or cowrie shells. It could even be decorated with other intricate accessories.
These braids celebrate tradition, individuality, and the timeless beauty of African heritage. The rest of the hair is left loose to give off a sleek appearance.
13. Crochet Braids
This fun style is another way of exploring different types of braids for women. Pre-twisted hair extensions are attached to natural hair for a fashionable and stunning look.
A fun fact about this hairstyle is that it can be done on natural hair and makes it look good. This hairstyle transforms your look elegantly, keeping your natural hair safe and healthy.
14. Stitch Braids
Stitch braids are one of the different types of braids for women. They are a form of intricate artistry that gives the wearer a captivating look. It takes an expert to perform wonders with this style.
This fantastic hairstyle involves braiding the hair into smaller sections and using a stitching technique to secure and enhance the patterns. The result is lovely and stunning, showcasing the woman’s attention to detail.
15. Peekaboo Braids
As the name implies, you can also get playful with your braids. Your braids do not have to be the same pattern all the time; get playful and stylish.
Peekaboo braids involve creating small, hidden, colorful ones underneath a layer of braids or loose hair, allowing them to peek out and intrigue your admirers.
16. Viking Braids
Inspired by the fierce and empowering style of the legendary Norse warriors, these braids evoke strength, resilience, and a fearless spirit. They are often characterized by tightly woven patterns styled into multiple braids or a single braid adorned with rings or beads to give off that Viking spirit.
17. Jayda Wayda Braids
Characterized by waist-length, thick, and voluminous braids. This hairstyle exudes confidence and luxury, influencing you to make a statement and embrace your femininity. This hairstyle is perfect for those who are fearless about showcasing their uniqueness and beauty.
18. Senegalese Braids
This style is popularly known among the people of Senegal, West Africa. This protective hairstyle involves twisting extensions or even your natural hair into individual braids, which can either be left loose or styled in various ways.
19. Twist Braids
Another fantastic type of braid among the different types of braids for women is twist braids. This hairstyle offers a variety of styling options for a woman.
Twist braids are there, whether you want to go for chunky or smaller, intricate twists. They add a unique and trendy twist to everyday looks by making them charming and artful.
20. Tree Braids
Tree Braids are for you if you want to get in tune with nature, allowing your hair to become a lush and captivating forest with tree braids.
It involves attaching loose braiding hair to small sections of your natural hair to create a cascade of voluminous and textured trees. Enjoy the beauty of nature with your hair!
21. Jumbo Braids
Hairstyles can create a bold and outstanding look. Jumbo braids feature thick sections of hair that make the hair eye-catching. You can stand tall with these striking and attention-grabbing braids.
22. Fishbone Braids
Herringbone braids, or fishbone braids, are a stunning style of rock. This style features small and tight braids resembling the pattern of a fishbone. They are created by alternating small sections of hair, giving an artistic and patterned look.
23. Allen Iverson Braids
Celebrities inspire some braids. Allen Iverson is a basketball legend who wears an iconic braided hairstyle. Iverson braids are characterized by tightly braided rows of hair that extend from the forehead to the back of the head. This hairstyle represents a fearless and rebellious spirit with a fusion of athleticism.
24. Boxer Braids
It sounds like box braids, but not to be confused with them. This hairstyle offers a stylish and practical option for women who lead an active lifestyle.
This is for you if you want a low-maintenance hairstyle that can withstand any challenge. This style features two tightly braided cornrows on either side of the head. Female boxers practically inspire it.
25. Criss Cross Braids
Among the most intricate and visually striking braids, criss cross braids stand out. This style features multiple braids and weaves them together in a crisscross pattern. It has an eye-catching and outstanding design. It involves a practical work of art for traditional braided hairstyles.
26. Locs Braids
Locs braids are another unique type of braid among the different types of braids for women. This style combines the natural beauty of locs and the cultural significance of braids. This style is evidence of self-expression, artistry, individuality, and embracing of one’s roots.
It involves sectioning the hair and braiding each section individually. It comes in various lengths, sizes, and styles, giving off that personalized look reflecting cultural heritage and personal style.
27. Ethiopian Albaso Braids
Originating from Ethiopia, this style pays homage to the traditional braided hairstyles of their culture. This style, also known as habesha braids, is characterized by thin, delicate braids tightly woven close to the scalp. They can be styled in various ways, and accessories can be added for beauty.
28. Spiral Lemonade Braids
Creating a unique and eye-catching hairstyle gives off an elegant look. Spiral lemonade braids are stunning and intricate braiding styles incorporating a spiral pattern. It offers a unique twist and can be beautiful if you seek a bold and creative hairstyle.
29. Bang Braids
Another unique hairstyle among the different types of braids for women is bang braids. Bang braids resemble a fringe or bangs.
They start at the hairline and sweep across the forehead. This hairstyle offers a touch of playfulness and a fresh and fashionable twist on traditional braided looks.
30. Afro Braids
This hairstyle incorporates braids on one side of the head while leaving the other open for an extension or a sew-in.
The braided side offers texture, dimension, and a touch of creativity, while the other provides length and volume. This creative hairstyle is readily available for people with either long or short hair.
31. Gypsy Braids
Characterized by a loose, messy, and effortless appearance, this hairstyle evokes a sense of wanderlust and carefree beauty.
It often features a combination of thin and thick braids intertwined with loose strands of hair. They can be adorned with feathers, ribbons, or beads.
32. Flat Twists
This hairstyle creates a braided-like pattern that can be done on natural hair or with hair extensions. Flat twists, unlike regular twists, are done by dividing the hair into two sections and twisting them flat against the scalp without incorporating additional hair.
33. Skunk Stripe Braids
Skunk stripe braids create a bold and striking statement. It involves incorporating a section of contrasting colors to give off that chic look.
The color can either be white or blonde, and it is incorporated into the braids to resemble the distinctive stripe of a skunk. This hairstyle offers a unique and edgy look, adding a touch of rebellion and a carefree attitude to the style.
34. Braided Halo
This exquisite hairstyle is another unique, artistic, and charming one that creates the illusion of braids turning into halos encircling the head. It involves braiding the hair in a circular pattern around the crown of the head.
35. Sister Locs
Sister locs are a great style for people with natural hair. They are a form of dreadlocks created using the Sister locs method. Smaller, uniform-sized locs are created using a specialized tool.
They are usually smaller in diameter compared to traditional locs, giving off a more refined and delicate appearance.
36. Alicia Keys Braids
Inspired by the famous and iconic singer Alicia Keys, braids exude confidence and femininity with a look of beauty and empowerment.
This hairstyle is characterized by long, sleek individual braids that can be worn in various ways, cascading down the back, gathered into a ponytail, or styled into a braided crown.
37. Sleek Braids
Also known as Gel braids or slicked-back braids, this hairstyle is another unique style among the different types of braids for women. It is a contemporary and polished variation of traditional braided hairstyles.
The hairstyle involves braiding the hair smoothly against the scalp and using styling products, mostly hair gel, to create a sleek and polished look. The gel helps hold the hair in place and keep it in touch.
38. Braided Bantu Knots
Combining the unique beauty of traditional Bantu knots with intricate braiding techniques, this hairstyle elevates style to new heights. Each knot is carefully braided to create a mesmerizing pattern, adding depth and texture to your look.
39. Inverted Cornrows A.K.A Didi
Inverted cornrows are innovative, bringing in a realm of unique styles. This hairstyle flips traditional cornrows on their heads, with the braids starting at the center and weaving outward.
This hairstyle offers a striking visual effect with a captivating pattern, adding a touch of intrigue to the hairstyle.
40. Spider Braids
Resembling the intricate web spun by a spider, these braids are a trendy and complicated hairstyle combining elements of traditional braiding with a unique twist. It involves multiple small braids strategically woven together.
41. Geometric Braids
As the name implies, this unique hairstyle involves creating geometrical and symmetrical designs with the hair. This hairstyle is factual proof of the braider’s skill and creativity because it involves incorporating triangles, squares, and other geometric shapes into the process.
It requires meticulous attention to detail and allows you to transform your hair into a living masterpiece. It captivates and captures everyone who sees the hairstyle, leaving them in awe of the fantastic masterpiece.
42. Waterfall Braids
This impressive cascade is another type of braid among the different types of braids for women. This hairstyle exudes romance and femininity.
It adds an enchanting and romantic element to any hairstyle, making it a popular choice for weddings, parties, or anywhere else. This hairstyle features strands of hair that are meticulously intertwined to mimic the gentle flow of a waterfall.
43. Basket Weave Braids
Different types of braids for women involve artistry. Another artistic type of braid is the basket weave braid. This hairstyle offers a visually stunning and tactile experience to the wearer.
Basket weave pays homage to the rich cultural heritage of traditional weaving, adding a touch of art. This technique involves intertwining the hair to create a basket-like effect, with individual braids crafted and woven together.
This article has covered great lists of different types of braids for women, and there is no doubt about it. By now, you would have been thinking of how to try out various styles. You should breathe, relax, and try them out one after the other. After all, this article is going nowhere.
Braids have existed for ages; they can never stop living. New styles can only be incorporated into the world of braids. And by new styles, I mean new artistic designs because braiding is art. Braiding showcases the stylist’s artistry and brings out the wearer’s beauty.
If you found this article helpful and informative, refer it to your friends who need clarification about what style to make next!