We have just welcomed 2019 with a bang and with that being said, the world of fashion is also prepared for new trends. Of course, it includes hairstyles that are extremely important in the fashion world.
Last year, beauty junkies were gearing up for this year’s beauty trends ranging from clothes, makeup, and hairstyles. But for most women, the hair is extremely important in the fashion trend. This is because it’s the conduit to beauty and style.
This year’s hairstyle trend is the wavy or messy hair, but that doesn’t mean that braids are not in. Fulani braids have been women’s hair craze for years. They don’t go out of style and they’re very fun to explore with.
While there is a ton of braid hairstyles out there, the Fulani braids inspired by the Fula people are absolutely stunning. Men and women are into it no matter the race or ethnicity.
This hairstyle is perfect during summer and even on other seasons as it goes with any weather, fashion, and occasion. Those who have tried wearing braids won’t be a stranger to this hairstyle although the pattern is different from the usual.
Braids are the lasting fixture of every fashion regardless of how modest the occasion will be. It may not sound interesting when you hear the term, but wait until you see how it looks like.
It shouldn’t be too much of a pain when you go for this hairstyle because anyone should have the chance to wear this. All you need is an experienced or professional hair braider to guarantee the safety of your locs.
It is extremely important that you hire a good braider – someone who doesn’t hurt your hair and scalp from too much pulling. Hurting your scalp might destroy your hair.
Why is this hairstyle called Fulani braids?
Technically, the Fulani braids are inspired by the Fulani or Fula people of Muslim idyllic tribal group in the continent of Africa. They spread out all through West Africa and some areas in the East. The pattern used in the braids, in particular, is based on their culture and tradition.
The Fulani girls have long hair with beads and cowrie shells accessories. This is where the braids got the inspiration, which is usually adorned with beads when worn. The women usually make five long braids, leaving them to hang around or rounded on the sides.
They also put other decoratives such as silver coins and amber (a relic tree resin commonly used in jewelry) on their hair. These accessories were normally antique that has been passed down from generation to generation.
The Fulani women started the braids that involve extremely intricate and detailed patterns during their social event called herding. It is where their husbands and friends return from parading with their cattle on foot throughout the African land.
Apart from braiding their hair, women usually decorate their houses and paint the floor. They also dress up for their husbands and other family members to celebrate their homecoming.
The Fula people are known for being leaders in most countries of West Africa such as Gambia, Nigeria, Senegal, and Sierra Leone. Some of them are also international institution leaders, including Mohammed Sanusi Barkindo, the OPEC Secretary-General as well as Amina J. Mohammed, the United Nations Deputy Secretary-General.
With roughly 40 million by population, the Fulas are culturally rich. The hairstyle proves it in so many ways.
Check out these amazing Fulani braids below.
Kim Kardashian rocks the braids with her natural hair color
Reality star Kim Kardashian West has a natural black or dark hair. She has explored so many hairstyles and hair colors, including braids that most Black women often wear.
Her hair choices have inspired many women and even the young children want to copy her hairstyle. When the KKW Beauty founder wore the protective style in 2018 during the MTV Movie & TV Awards, she came under fire.
The beauty mogul received overwhelming criticisms after she appeared wearing the Fulani braids and called them Bo Derek braids in an Instagram post. For those who are not familiar with Derek, then you’ll have some time to catch up. Derek is an American actress who wore this protective style in her 1979 film titled 10, where she rose to fame and received universal acclaim.
Kardashian, on the other hand, explained that she absolutely knows the origin of this protective style. Myriad people complained that the reality star is very disrespectful to the Fulani people. They claim that if a Kardashian wears the braids it’s definitely cool, but if Black people wear them, they’re called unprofessional.
The 38-year-old socialite though explained that she wore the braids because her daughter North asked her if she can get matching braids with her. She went on to say that she was only trying to honor her daughter’s biracial hair.
Nonetheless, her fans were still glad seeing her wearing the protective style as her hairstyle. She always makes headlines with her fashion and her hairstyle, in particular, is definitely one in a million.
Despite many arguments about her hair choice, Kim Kardashian doesn’t go out of fashion. She makes it a habit to stun anyone when she’s out and about.
Different styles for the Fulani braids perfect for women
Don’t confuse yourself about Bo Derek braids and Fulani braids because these two are the same. Well, at least the pattern and the style are no different. It’s just that it was Kim Kardashian who referred the name of this protective style to Derek.
To clear things up, the hairstyle has been really famous to black women around the globe. But even the white people have also tried wearing these braids generally for fashion.
To this date, beads as hair accessory are still popular among women who wear the braids. Normally, a center braid is placed cornrowed in the front of the hair although others don’t do it.
One or two braided strands from the back to the front are also hanging loose on each side of the hair. There are plenty of hairstyles for these braids that women have tried such as high cornrow ponytail and two low or high buns.
As I’ve mentioned earlier, the Fula women often adorn their braids with hair accessories, including cowrie shells. This too is still popular among women who are wearing the protective style.
Others also try doing box braids at the back of their hair or maintain the cornrow style to make it look less thick or complex. Some women also enjoy adding fine metallic threads with different colors or even mix it with beads.
Many women also try to explore more styles wearing these braids such as putting a bun in the middle part with two braids hanging loose in each side. Others even try to have it only in the front with their natural Afro-textured hair puffing in the back.
The styles are endless and limitless. You just have to be confident enough to wear them.
Someone’s rocking the space buns in braids
Traditional Fulani braids
The photo right here traditionally describes the Fulani braids with a braided strand at the center of the head. The braids are also adorned with beads, amber, and the adorable cowrie shells.
She’s absolutely rocking the hairstyle like a queen!
More braids ideas
The puffing Afro hair
Here’s a good example of the braids with the hair puffing and hanging around at the back. It’s certainly cool enough to just let those two braided strands hang loose on each side of the hair.
So, if you have a natural Afro hair and wants to try this protective style without having to braid all your hair, try this one out.
More breathtaking hairstyles for women in all walks of life
When you already have your natural hair colored, but you want to try wearing this protective style, it’s absolutely fine. However, you will have to bear in mind that you need to take extra care.
Colored hair is already vulnerable as it has gone through chemicals for you to achieve the color that you like. Doing braids isn’t dangerous, but your hair becomes more susceptible to damage. This is because of force pulling while doing the braids.
Thus, it is very important that you choose a professional hair braider who have gentle hands in doing your braids. Too much pulling can damage your scalp that will lead to unhealthy hair.
Of course, that won’t happen for as long as you follow the hair care tips before getting braids. There have been a lot of women wearing this protective style who have enjoyed their hairstyle without damaging their hair.
Try not to wash your braids as often as you want. I know that it can be itchy if you don’t want, but there are things that you can do to keep it clean.
Wash your hair at least once a week, or maybe twice. During the days that you don’t wash them, you can always use dry shampoo. Or you can choose to dry wash your braids using shampoo, a little water, and a cloth.
Dampen the cloth with water and shampoo then divide your braids into sections to start wiping your scalp down to the ends of your hair. This will help clean up your hair without having to wash them all the time. You can do this regularly to keep your hair and scalp clean and healthy.
This is also to protect the color of your hair and keep it last longer.
Take care of your braids
Your Fulani braids are not just the typical protective style. It’s culturally rich and it’s very traditional to the Fula people. Therefore, you should also treat it just like them.
Taking care of your braids doesn’t require too much time. You just need to set at least a few minutes and they’re all good.
As soon as your braids are done, give it at least a week to adjust and loosen. You may feel uncomfortable for a few days because they might be too tight for you. However, they will be manageable in just a week and you can start styling them.
But do not keep doing up-dos. Constant high ponytails can pull your hairline tightly that will lead to hair breakage, especially when you decide to take off the braids. Too much pulling can weaken your hair.
You may try to do the up-do style at least three times a week to avoid damaging your hair and scalp. Avoid doing it every day. Let your braids rest for a few days.
Your hair might go dry while wearing braids, but that can be prevented. When you sleep at night, use a satin pillowcase so your roots won’t try out. It will also protect the edges of your braids that will keep it longer.
You might also want to wrap your hair using a satin scarf while sleeping. Or you can do both to ensure that you still have a satin pillowcase in case the scarf falls off. Do not tie your hair while you’re sleeping because it will only cause friction. Use the satin scarf and pillowcase instead.
Remember, you already have incredible Fulani braids. Don’t waste your time and effort in having it if you’d just destroy your hair.
Keep your hair and scalp moisturized
Just like any other living things, our hair needs to survive and that means we need to take care of it too. Your scalp, most importantly, needs moisture to live and doesn’t take you a long time to do it.
Keep a spray bottle with you and put clean water. Spray a little amount all over your scalp to keep it moist and clean. Think about watering a plant. It’s just the same.
Apart from spraying water on your scalp, your roots also need moisture to keep soft and manageable. Use a sealing product like homemade shea butter to soothe your scalp and protect from the heat that we usually get from the sun. It will also seal in moisture.
You may also use a styling butter to add moisture to your hair and controls frizziness while you’re wearing braids. It also contains vitamins and minerals that give proper nourishment to your hair and scalp.
Avoid using unnatural hair moisturizers like a mineral oil so your hair and scalp won’t develop build-ups. It will only clog your pores. Instead, use natural moisturizers such as almond oil or coconut oil. These are perfect for keeping your hair’s natural moisture and help soothe your hair without hurting your scalp.
If you feel that these oils are too greasy for you, try using natural leave-in conditioners. They’re very easy to apply plus they will help you keep your hair moisturized and your scalp healthy.
Additionally, when you are styling your hair, never pull it too tightly to avoid damage or breakage. Your scalp will get irritated, which will lead to unhealthy hair. You don’t want that to happen for sure.
Ensure your hair and scalp’s safety to enjoy wearing protective styles without worrying about your hair’s health.
Braids accessorized with wooden beads
Here’s an example of incredible black Fulani braids adorned with beads. For starters, you may think that putting beads is tricky. However, it is not the case as your professional braider will do it for you.
There are also beader tools that you can get at any hair care shops. You may also check the guide on how to put beads on your braids. But if you have more time, let your braider do it for you instead.
Here’s one more close-up look at Kim Kardashian’s braids
Even her husband Kanye West adores her braids without criticizing her. She has been rocking too many hairstyles and is not a stranger to switching her looks. To her fans, she is a living example of a fashion icon who’s not afraid to explore the world of hairstyles.
The beauty mogul also colors her hair with bright colors, but I personally like her platinum blonde hair. Of course, getting this hair color is not for the faint of hearts. It requires patience and determination that you will go out of the salon wearing a very different color.
Well, Kim Kardashian has had it and she was stunning.
Fulani braids are absolutely beautiful, especially on women who love changing their hairstyles most of the time. Just don’t wear the protective style too long. Let your natural hair rest for at least two to three months before you wear it again.
While it’s easy to wear the braids, it may not be too good for your hair if you wear for a long time. Make sure that your professional hairdresser talks to you about hair care because they know everything.
Get the right hair products that won’t hurt your hair, and of course, your pockets. There are hundreds of natural hair care out there that you can purchase without hurting your budget. Braids are very low maintenance. You can always get good hair products that will help your hair healthy and strong.