All About Protective Styles for Natural Hair

All About Protective Styles for Natural Hair | June's Journal

Earlier this month I participated in a “Natural Hair Nite” hosted by a good friend.  The last several weeks she had some great conversations with women about natural hair products, styles, and process.  So she decided to invite all those women to come together in person to have one big discussion on these topics.  And it was a blast!   The night inspired me to add some long overdue posts in the natural hair section of my blog.

This post will be about protective styles. What are they.  Why are they beneficial.  And why some natural hair gurus, like Kim Love of LUV Naturals aka Kimmaytube, say that wearing your hair in a “wash & go” state regularly is bad for your hair health.  In fact, let’s start with the latter.

Above, you can watch a video Kim Love created below called, “AFRO – Why I won’t wear my hair in one!”  Below, are additional videos regarding different protective hairstyles and how to achieve them.

A Playlist of Videos on Protective Styles

Here’s some more videos to check out concerning protective hairstyles.  Some are by Kim Love aka kimmaytube.  And some are by other YouTubers a part of the natural hair care community.  Enjoy!


14 Articles on Protective Hair Styles

Below you can find links to some interesting articles concerning protective hair styles for natural hair. Check ’em out!  Many of these articles explore in detail the benefits, myths, pros and cons of protective styles.

  1. Natural Hair Protective Styles | Black Girl with Long Hair
    Dec 19, 2011 – The primary reason why natural hair of African origin breaks is due to manipulation (i.e combing during the detangling process). However there

    Jun 26, 2012 – Protective styling; It’s a topic that comes up often in natural hair care down on the number of days that you keep your hair in protective styles.

  3. › CurlReading

    Mar 14, 2012 – There has been a long standing myth among the natural hair  The main gripe with protective styles is that the can become boring after a while.


    Feb 21, 2012 – Hey Guys! I’m asked, quite often, about my protective styling habits: If I do it, How often, and If I think it’s necessary… So I figured, it’s a good 

  5. › Style › Black Hair › Hair Styles

    Want to keep your hair protected from the elements and experience less breakage? Then try any of these protective styles, which work on relaxed or natural hair.


    Jun 21, 2012 – Tracee Ellis Ross on Her Natural Hair Journey! On the Couch with Natural Hair Wigs and Weaves: Would you try it? 5 Hair Care Mistakes 


    Feb 19, 2012 – Classic Protective Style for Natural Hair. Posted by CURLYNIKKI Let’s keep with the protective styles this weekend! Check out CharyJay’s 


    The best way to ward off these harsh conditions is to wear protective styles that hide the ends …. I need Protective Styles from Nov-Dec .  #natural hair #micros 

  9. › … › Hairstyles

    Jun 12, 2012 – If your like me you do not like to wear your hair in the same natural hair protective styles all the time. Because it just becomes so boring to say 

  10. Natural Hair: Protective vs Low Manipulation Styles | Mz Mahogany…/natural-hair-protective-vs-low-mani…ShareSep 22, 2012 – Split-ends & breakage hinder the natural hair growth process, turning Some protective styles are so “convenient” that you forget you have to ..
  11. Natural Hair Protective Style Challenge – Pretty Girl Rock…/natural-hair-protective-style-chal…Jul 30, 2011 – Pretty Girl Rock | Natural Hair, Beauty, Fashion and Makeup Blog  I’ve resolved to challenge myself to keep my hair in protective styles until 
  12. Protective Hairstyles for Natural Hair › … › Hair Care & Style › Winter Hair StylesSingle Braids; Natural Hair Products; TIP: DURING THE WINTER MONTHS; Senegalese Twist  Protective styles doesn’t always involve adding hair. There are 
  13. Styling guide thought that this could not be done but I was wrong!! Check out our “rollersettingnatural hair” video for instructions. Protective StylesProtective styles are styles 
  14. Protective Styling for Healthier Hair – The Science of Black Hair the use of protective styles throughout the week, the ends of the hair will Protective styles are a great way to push the hair past this growth plateau.

The Pony Tail is My Favorite Protective Style

When I first did my big chop, I wore my hair out.  Except on occasion when I’d do two-strand twists or coils.  But once my hair was long enough to fit into a pony tail, that was my protective style of choice.  Particularly at my workplace, a conservative law firm.  My hair grew tremendously during this time.  And I attribute the growth to my faithful pony tail.  While boring to some, I didn’t have interest or time for the necessary regimens for other styles.  I had a 3-year-old and was juggling a lot.  It lasted me a few days and looked neat and presentable for work.  I was at work to do my job, not impress anyone with my hairstyle while there.

Now I no longer work onsite.  I still work for law firms, but remotely.  From home.  No one ever sees me.  Except maybe an annual training session or office party.  So I can wear my hair any way I feel like.  A Mohawk even.  (Just kidding.)  So while I believe protective styles are important, and I will still wear them, including my pony tail, I can now explore other style possibilities.  Once I’ve had my fill of exploration, I plan big chop again.  I’ve satisfied the curiosity to see what my “natural hair” would be like once it grew out.   (From ages 9-37 I’ve only known chemically relaxed hair.)  So now I feel I can go back to the short style I prefer… my TWA (teeny weeny afro), which I can wear out, twist or coil.

So there you have it.  The good, the bad, and the ugly about protective styles.



Tell me by typing a comment below.

1 Comment

  1. daphyne shine on Mar 11, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    I wont do wash and go’s anymore (used to be my go to style) but my hair was weakest when wet. It has to be slightly damp or fully moisterized otherwise i experience horrible breakage.

Leave a Comment