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How to Maintain Box Braids: Tips & Tricks

You might want to keep your box braids for as long as possible, but eventually, it isn’t a good idea. Don’t worry, you’ll find out here what happens if you do that. Anyway, there are some tips to make them look better in time and tricks to make them look good even if your roots have already visibly grown.

What Should I Do to Keep My Box Braids Looking Fresh?

Making Your Braids Look Fresh
Model Inashan, Photographer Baciu Foto

First, you should never sleep, never touch or move your head, never be in the rain or wind, and stop the growth process of your hair. Kidding, but those might be the right reasons for your hairdo starting to lose its freshness.

So what can you really do in order to keep your braids looking fresh as much as possible?

My no. 1 tip for keeping your hair away from frizzing, and the best investment you can make for your own comfort and beauty, is to use satin or silk bed sheets.

Glossy bedding prevents hair from frizz and tangling while sleeping and, more than that, it also limits the appearance of wrinkles, so it is a great deal that will help you in many aspects without making any other effort.

So for my first tip, you only have to sleep on better sheets and you’ll have benefits even when you don’t wear box braids.

Sleeping and washing your box braids are the most usual things that might cause frizz and make your braids look dated. However, you can’t avoid sleeping, and avoiding cleaning them can also make them look worst.

My next tip is to wash your braids as many times as you need to do this, but wash them carefully and squeeze them well. Wet braids are heavier, and that can make them loose. Using a hair dryer can cause electrification of the hair, making your baby hair come out, so I do not recommend it if it is not absolutely necessary.

How to Clean My Braids Right?

When you wash your braids, do it in a delicate way, with the tips of your fingers on your scapula and your hands along your box braids, and don’t use conditioner if you have caucasian hair – only shampoo, which can be diluted with water. Rinse with plenty of water, squeeze the braids as well as you can, and keep them in a towel.

If you don’t clean your braids you’ll feel like scratching yourself and that’s not nice. It can also be visibly dirty and start having dandruff or who knows what else.

What Can I Do if I Have Hair Coming Out Of the Braids?

box braids maintenance

You can cut it.

Kidding; you can only cut it if there are ends you don’t need, or if it’s not your natural hair.

Another solution for this problem is to use a special crochet hook with the help of which you can insert the strands of hair back inside the braids. You can also do this to the baby hairs or arrange them nicely on the forehead with the help of a mascara brush and hair glue.

If you find fallen hairs with visible roots (like a white dot), caught in braids, you can remove them with a tweezer.

How to Style My Braids Safely?

When you tie your box braids in a ponytail or other styles, try not to tighten them more than they naturally come together. Also avoid wearing a motorcycle helmet, hats, or less silky materials on your head. You can also use some oil on your braids from time to time, to restore their shine.

Depending on whether you have a caucasian or afro hair type, you’ll need less or more moisturizing. Caucasians have silkier hair so moisturizing can make the braids get loose.

It also triggers the grown roots to show up faster, so you lucky afros, you can keep them longer, but it’s fair enough, as for afro hairs, it’s not just for the love of braids but they actually really need them, as this type of hair is much more difficult to deal with.

What Can I Do if My Roots Are Visibly Growing?

how to style box braids
Model Inashan, Photographer Baciu Foto

When your roots are growing and you still want to keep your braids on, there are a lot of styles and tricks to make your hairdo look amazing.

Curl your braids and wear buns or different styles that help you hide your roots.

Another trick is to use accessories like scarves or bandanas while styling your braids in ponytails/buns or other hairdos. If you do this since the beginning of your braids-time, try to use silky fabrics.

You can also try my favorite accessories – jewelry at the roots. It can also be threads or other materials to cover the visibly grown hair.

What Happens if I Don’t Take My Braids Out?

It might be very hard for you to say goodbye to your box braids after discovering so many ways you can maintain their fantastic aspect. Despite this fact, I do not recommend you to keep them for too long because your natural hair is going to form dreadlocks and it will be very difficult, or even impossible to handle it without damaging it afterward when you finally decide to take them off.

Here’s a picture of some perfect braids kept for way too long (1 year):

Caucasian model

In conclusion, I’d say you can’t keep your braids forever, but you’ll have enough time to try everything on. Instead of trying to do your best to keep them as long as possible, better take care of your hair, too so you can do it again!

Keep loving your hair and enjoy every moment!

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