Protect the curls: Protective hairstyles for winter

It’s still February?! Somehow yes. And this means the cold air may still be wreaking havoc on your curls. We’ve talked about how to keep your hair safer from the cold, including microfiber towels, diffusers, and all sorts of nifty tricks. We’ve talked about the best deep conditioning treatments to try and offset the winter air. But sometimes, it’s just time to go for a good old fashioned protective style. 

Protective hairstyles are an amazing way to keep your hair safe and avoid too much manipulation. You might be trying to grow out your hair, grow your hair back, or, like we discussed, you might be worried about environmental damage. In the winter months this is extra important, since your hair is struggling to stay healthy with cold dry air constantly fighting against it. In other words, protective styles in the winter are the perfect way to give your hair a much needed break. They’re also gorgeous- so let’s dive in. Our favorite protective hairstyles for curly hair below. 


1) Braids

When it comes to protective hairstyles for winter, braids are unparalleled. They last for weeks, and require little to no maintenance. Whether you go with cornrows, fulani braids, or any number of other options, you’ll be set. They’re super versatile, and serve as both a winter natural hairstyle and a serious glow up. Plus you can accessorize them a million different ways (from beads, to color, and beyond). They’re also pretty easy to refresh and keep hydrated, simply apply a moisturizing hair cream to your hands to smooth the braids as needed.


2) Faux Locs

With a bit more freedom than braids, faux locs are an amazing option for winter protective hairstyles. They are low maintenance and low manipulation, and can last anywhere from four to six weeks. To keep your hair hydrated when rocking faux locks, spritz them gently with a combo of water and conditioner. 


3) Twists

Twists are an easy and great way to keep your hair safe, protected from the cold, and gorgeous. Go long or short - wear them down, up in a ponytail, or however else you see fit, they’ll always look gorgeous. We’re obsessed with @joynavon’s entire look, especially her Marley twists (named for the legendary Bob Marley). With proper care, Marley twists can last anywhere from 6-8 weeks. 


4) Bantu Knots

We’re especially full of love looking at the gorgeous @thekalemama rocking bantu knots alongside her perfect baby girl. Bantu Knots originated with the Zulu people of South Africa, and are a gorgeous protective style. They are created by separating small sections of hair and twisting from root to tip to create coiled knots. These gorgeous knots are then pinned against your head with small elastics. Bantu Knots can provide up to two weeks of protection and beauty. Just make sure not to twist too tightly, otherwise you risk stressing your scalp and causing potential damage or breakage to your hair. 


Are you as full of love as we are looking at all that beauty? Is there a protective style we missed? Let us know in the comments!

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