123 African Braids Designs That’ll Put Your Hairdresser to the Test

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African braids have been a part of the culture for aeons. They have been evolving from their humble beginnings and now people are getting super creative and coming up with some absolute masterpieces. Here is a bunch of African braided hairstyles pictures for your viewing pleasure and inspiration.

 

african-braids

The Skinny Cross Over

Alicia Keys is rocking the skinny braids with in both vertical and horizontal directions. They even form a cross pattern on the top. This is a more formal yet funky style.

Phat Rasta

Phat as is cool and rasta as in Rastafarian. These large braids take no time at all to do and are great for when you wanna chill around the house without your hair getting in the way.

Psychedelic Swirl

African hair braiding styles have progressed a lot through out the years and the designs have become more and more intricate. This style uses thick and thin braids to add texture dimension.

The Braid Hawk

There are many different types of African braids and this is one of the more elaborate ones. Part braid, part Mohawk this amazing design must have taken some serious time and planning. This is the work of master.

The Long and Wavy

African hair braids have changed over the years as rappers and public figures have been seen getting around with some really unique styles. The long and wavy style has been around for long time and was the beginning of when things started to get funky.

The Nubian Princess

This glamorous braid is fit for princess. This woman is lucky enough to have hair that can pull it off. Look how thick and beautiful her pony tail looks.

The Lucky Charm

Apart from the intricate braid work you can see this stunner has had charms and jewellery attached. She has also mixed up the colors for a very cool effect.

Let’s Get Spiritual

The top knot has been adorned by Yogis and Samurai for many years. This lady has incorporated it into her braids and the result looks great.

The Two Tone

There is nothing to elaborate about this woman’s braids. They nice and simple, but the two tone brings them to life and adds an extra element. This style is very simple but looks great.

The Medusa

These braids look like they could have a life of their own. They have a similar appearance to the legs of a tarantula. The actual braiding is quite simple but the color is the standout feature.

Spice It Up With Trinkets

In my opinion one of the coolest thing about braids is the trinkets and add on you can put in them. Your only limited to your imagination. A girl at my school used to use the heads of lego pieces.

Big is Bold

These big and bold braids look great paired with some huge hoops for that street level hip hop lover. She looks gansta AF.

Neat and Clean

African hair braiding styles don’t always have to be in your face and extravagant. This model displays some beautifully clean and neat braids that would look good in any occasion.

The Braidy Bun

I said the Braidy Bun. Not the Brady bunch. The bun looks great and its a practical way of tying your braids back when you have some serious business to attend to, like doing your nails.

If in Doubt Bling it Out

This model is popping with her African inspired jewellery all throughout her braids. She has really put some effort into it to create balance and centerpiece on in the middle completes the look.

Thick to Thin

This techniques creates amazing contrast and texture. Varying the size of your braids can really turn a dull hairstyle into a think of beauty as this model has done exactly that.

The Crown of Princess

This model has taken her braids to the next level and created a crown that has been adorned with some beautiful jewels. Again she has alternated between thick and thin braids and has created a masterpiece.

Thin and Manageable

Thinner braids may take longer to do but once they are done they are easier to maintain. They look a bit more subtle and are ideal for work or school.

Every Queen Deserves A Crown

This queen’s braid look amazing and what better way to top it off than give yourself a crown of sparkling jewels. The jewels also frame the face and provide some balance to the overall look.

The Lop Sided Part

The lop sided part is a great way to get that sweeping look over your face and really add some glamour.

Nubian Leia

Star Wars fans rejoice Nubian Leia is in the house. Even if you aren’t a Star Wars fan this is great look with two bun either side of the crown of the head.

The Thick Crown

If you are heading to a formal occasion and you are wondering what to do with your braids put them up into a crown. The higher the better. It works great with thick braids and requires minimal effort.

A Side Affair

The beauty of braids is that once you have you do almost anything you want with them. They sit nicely on the head will not move out of style as easily as not braided hair.

Golden Ray of Sunshine

These golden luscious locks glimmer in the sun. If your sick of your own hair color why not mix it up with some vibrant colors that let the world see your inner glow.

Creating Texture

Alternating braid size creates texture and if you leave the some hair unbraided, it will create even more texture. This model is sporting some smaller braids with her lavish main creating a waterfalls effect at the back.

Alternating Braids

Alternating the thickness on individual braids can make for very interesting looks. But be careful because if they aren’t done right it can turn into a down right mess.

Fifties Chic

This style incorporates African style braids with a fifties hair style of a charlatan. The result is a banging do that you could wear to a ball.

Simply Classic

Sometimes simple is best and this shoulder length hair looks amazing with nice small braids to give it a bit of an edginess.

Starting your braids all from the same point can make for interesting patterns in the hair and give you look some uniformity. Notice how the braids taper outwards from the center.

 

The High Priestess

This look is achieved by wrapping the braids around and around then fixing them in place with either a hair tie or a bun helper. The result is a goddess with a crown that reaches the sky.

Red Ropes

Everybody loves red rope candy. So it makes sense that everybody would love hair that looks like red rope candy. I know I do.

The Pony

This little cutie has got one very cool pony tail going on. Paired with her neat little, she looks cute as a button and cool as a cucumber.

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Minimal Pig Tails

Kim K is rocking some braids that have been tied into minimal pony tails. This is ideal for the Pocahontas looks and could be worn in any scenario.

Long and Luxurious

These long and luxurious braids look amazing paired with a little black dress and would be the ideal outfit for a night out with the girls or a stroll down the red carpet.

At Home Chillin

This is the perfect at home chilling style. A nice casual look with the braids done up in a loose top know. I love the color of her golden hair.

The Hair Tiara

This is a cute little tiara that matches this model beautiful ringlets of hair. They are very loose braids and have a very different look to tightly woven ones. So why not mix it up a little?

Sometimes adding a few tiny splashes of color here there will have more impact than a lot. As you can see this model has just one purple braid and it looks amazing.

The Elvis

I’m not exactly sure what’s going on here but it reminds of Elvis’s big old quiff with an African twist. The stylist really had her work cut out for her on this job.

This model has gone for bright and vibrant colors and matched her make up to her hair. Overall it’s a great look for a night out on the town.

The Undercut

It’s not often you see men with braids but paired with an undercut the results seem to work out ok. It’s also a good way to control annoying and unruly hair.

 

Braid Cuteness

Kids are cute in general. Well most of them are, some are little monsters. But this girl looks great with African braids and a cute little blue butterfly in the back.

 

Her mother really spent some time getting this little girl ready for school. No doubt she was the envy of all her friends.

The Queen B

Beyonce rocking out yet another amazing look and that’s why shes earned the right to the thrown. The blonde streets really give her hair some texture and the part down the middle is as cute as it gets.

 

Aleisha Keys is famous for her African braids and here she is again looking spectacular with long unruly braids with a hint of rock and roll.

Messy is Sexy

These messy yet formative African braids twist and turn and fluff out at the end. It’s a bit crazy but somehow works to perfection.

Kim K rocking the part with beautifully done braids. If only we all had her hairstylist. This is a very cute look and is practical for the girl on the go.

Rappers Delight

Well Hello. This is a masterpiece. The hairstylist has really excelled in this case. These interwoven braids are out of this world the color is fantastic.

 

A Work of Art

All I can say is WTF. These are some fat braids and the contrasting colors really make it stand out. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing.

Here are some cute little braid for a cute little munchkin.

The Princess Plait

This lady has one long pony tail. The beauty of having long hair is that it can be styled in many different ways.

Another work of art that combines braided hair with straight hair. The contrast and structure work well together to create a balanced piece of hair mastery.

The Big Boosh

This is a singular braid that hasn’t been tied off at the end creating this spectacularly large boosh at the end. You go get it girl!

 

Formal and Flawless

This is a great look for those formal occasions when you want look your best but don’t want to stray away from your much loved braids.

This style has multiple elements going on. You have the braids then you have the straight hair and to top it all off there is the I dream of Jeanie pony tail on top. Its fire.

Another interesting use of the minimal brads with some beautiful curly hair. Sometimes less is more.

The Pom Pom

When it comes to hair the saying goes ” the bigger the better”. This lady may have taken it a bit too far. She would have trouble going on most rides at a theme park.

The Wrap Around

This is cool way to wear your braids. Simply braid the hair from the side then wrap them around to the other side.

Yes indeed this girl has it going on with her beautiful golden hair and one single braid draped down to the side.

The Birds Nest

If you are going to try this at home please approach with extreme caution and make sure you have at least three hours on hand. It’s very hard to do and even harder to pull off but this model seems to be doing alright.

This is some nice simple braid work that has been pulled up into a side bun. It’s simple, fun and looks great.

 

This woman was blessed with a beautiful head of hair and by the look of this picture she doesn’t mind letting the world know. I would be the same if I had them locks.

Here are some nice and thick African braids in a criss cross pattern. They look like they would bounce and spring as she walks.

Long Hair Don’t Care

There is some serious length going on in this woman’s hair. This must have taken her years to grow and the pay off is evident. It looks amazing.

Regardless of what braid style you choose, don’t forget to accessorize. This can make or break an outfit.

african-braids

This is a simple and sassy little number done to perfection. The braids are tight and all the same size which is harder to do than it looks. This model makes it look easy.

The Unkempt Look

Whether it’s by choice or by default the unkempt look is pretty cool. It shows that you are not that vein and are prepared to leave the house without spending an hour in front of the mirror.

 

I See Red

This is a fantastic surreal look. I’m not sure how the stylist achieved it but it works. Medusa each your heart out because this model is coming for you.

The Free Spirit

This model is rocking the look of a free spirited soul ready for adventure and to ride the whim wherever the great magnet of life takes her.

The Weave

This style is great alternative to the bun and it’s a little more classy so it would suit the more formal events.

It’s not secret that most of these models are sporting some bling. There is a reason for it. Big hoops and nice chokers compliment braids so well and provide a welcome contrast.

This is what happens when you remove your braids. You get a nice full body of beautiful curly hair. Rock it with the part down the middle to keep it out of your face. 

This youngster loves getting crazy with beads and other hair jewellery but who can blame her.

Hoops. Check. Big sexy braids. Check. A night out on the town with girls. Well that’s about to happen so I thought I would take a quick selfie before things start to go down.

Some nice and skinny braids can be fun and whimsical.

These skinny braids have been done with small pieces of color added to give them that shimmering effect.

When it comes to jewellery sometimes less is more. This queen has used just one and it looks funky.

Big,bold, and beautiful.

 

 

Get Colorful

This lady has used colors on just the tips. It’s a fresh and unique look on some of the braids we have seen earlier on the list.

The Jazz Cat

This hip cat is going straight to the jazz bar with her beautiful braids paired with a funky hat.

The Wave

I love the natural wave created where the braids have started and the size of the outer hair only accentuates it even more.

Another stunning example of diversifying the size of the braid. Throw in some color and your ready for any occasion. Even singing at the Grammies in front of millions of people.

The Tapered Effect

The tapered effect creates definition and as your hair is blowing in the wind the skinnier part will thrash around and draw attention your way as your strutting your stuff.

Yes mam. This is a practical way of wearing braids to keep your hair out of your face while on the go.

Go Big

Sometimes subtlety isn’t an option and if your gonna go big, go big in style with some brazen colorful that will rock the caspar.

This is a classic example of simple, chic and elegant. This is an example of true natural beauty.

Hoops and braids are a winning combination in any situation.

These are nice skinny braids done right and worn right. Not too much and not too little. Just right.

This model is looking stunning with her braids slung to the side and minimal hair jewellery. She knows where shes at.

She’s blinging it up. The hair jewellery accentuates her other bling and works nicely in unison.

This model is rocking the bead in her braids. If your tired of your braids have some fun with it and accessorize.

This model is absolutley babin with a dash of color and a touch of bling.

The Interwoven

This interwoven look has been done to perfection. There is not a hair out of place.

The Redder the Better

This is a sentiment usually said by wrangers but in this case it’s the truth. The crimson really sets this hairstyle on fire.

Before and After

A nice after and before shot. I can’t decide which one I like the best although they both look great.

Not everyone is blessed with hair that you can put African braids in. These ladies should consider themselves lucky.

These African braids are nothing short of perfect and so shiny too.

This hairstyle has clearly taken inspiration from the mother land and is paired with an African styled hair piece.

The Flying V

The flying v looks great and pair that with pigtails and you have yourself a big bunch of cuteness.

Wow this is a throwback to the eighties but this shoulder length golden main looks fab.

Yes your braids are amazing and don’t we all know it.

Someone spent a lot time on this girls hair.

The Bohemia

This is a great style if your hitting the festivals this summer. The boho look is in right now. Well it never really went out.

After and Before. Which African braids look better? You decide.

Now they are some nice fat braids. Braids work well with shoulder length hair. It’s all about how you wear it.

Sometimes length does matter but not necessarily in hair.

This is some fantastic work. It must have taken hours to get it right. Kudos to the stylist.

Here are some examples when you take your braid obsession to the extreme.

Here are some nice and tidy smaller braids. The best thing about smaller braids is that they can be styled easily.

My beads hit the dash as I’m rocking out to my favorite Jay Z song.

Laid Back and Loving It

Minimal Braids, maximum coolness.

This is an interesting color choice for African braids

This model is sporting some banging golden highlights.

I love the shorter style braids. They look fun and low maintenance.

Wow. I want my African braids all the colors of the rainbow.

Some more braidy bunch goodness worn well.

This gives a new meaning to word Goldie locks.

I love the jewellery in this one. Her braids are done to perfection as well.

These African braids are the work of a professional.

This Queen has a crown and wears it like a rock star.

This is another great example of partially braided hair and the dimension it creates.

I got big african braids and I cannot lie.

The Psychedelic Princess Leia Rocking African Braids

African braids in a dystopian future style of the amazon goddess.  

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