The History of Goddess Braids
Goddess braids have been a popular hairstyle in the African American community for centuries. The style originated in West Africa, where women would braid their hair in intricate patterns as a way to express their cultural identity. These braids were not only a form of self-expression but also served as a way to protect the hair from damage caused by the harsh African climate. Over time, the tradition of braiding hair was brought to America by enslaved Africans. Today, goddess braids are a popular protective hairstyle worn by women of all ages and backgrounds.
What Are Goddess Braids?
Goddess braids are a type of braided hairstyle that is typically created using large cornrows. These cornrows are braided in a circular or straight pattern and can be styled in a variety of ways, including updos, buns, and ponytails. Unlike traditional cornrows, which are braided close to the scalp, goddess braids are braided further away from the scalp, creating a thicker, more voluminous look.
The Benefits of Goddess Braids
Goddess braids are a popular protective hairstyle because they offer several benefits for natural hair. Here are just a few of the benefits of wearing goddess braids:
1. Low Maintenance
One of the biggest benefits of goddess braids is that they are low maintenance. Once the braids are installed, they can last for several weeks without needing to be retouched. This makes them a great choice for women who don’t have a lot of time to spend on their hair.
2. Protects Natural Hair
Goddess braids are a great way to protect natural hair from damage caused by heat styling, chemical treatments, and environmental factors. The braids help to keep the hair moisturized and prevent breakage, which can lead to longer, healthier hair over time.
3. Versatile Styling Options
Another benefit of goddess braids is that they offer a wide range of styling options. Whether you prefer an updo, a bun, or a ponytail, there are endless ways to style goddess braids to suit your personal style.
How to Install Goddess Braids
While goddess braids are a great protective hairstyle, they can be tricky to install if you’re not familiar with the process. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to install goddess braids:
Step 1: Wash and Condition Your Hair
Before installing goddess braids, it’s important to start with clean, moisturized hair. Wash your hair with a gentle shampoo and conditioner, and then apply a leave-in conditioner or oil to keep your hair hydrated.
Step 2: Section Your Hair
Using a rattail comb, divide your hair into small sections. The size of the sections will depend on how thick you want your goddess braids to be.
Step 3: Start Braiding
Starting at the nape of your neck, begin braiding your hair in a circular or straight pattern. Use a small amount of styling gel or pomade to help keep the braids smooth and in place.
Step 4: Finish the Braids
Continue braiding your hair until you reach the ends. Secure the ends with a small elastic band or wrap the ends of the braids with thread.
Step 5: Style Your Braids
Once all of the braids are installed, style your hair in your desired updo, bun, or ponytail.
Caring for Goddess Braids
To keep your goddess braids looking their best, it’s important to care for them properly. Here are a few tips for caring for your goddess braids:
1. Keep Your Scalp Clean
While goddess braids are a great protective hairstyle, they can also trap dirt and oil against your scalp. To prevent buildup, it’s important to keep your scalp clean by washing it with a gentle shampoo and conditioner every week.
2. Moisturize Your Hair
To prevent your hair from becoming dry and brittle, it’s important to keep it moisturized. Apply a leave-in conditioner or oil to your hair every few days to keep it hydrated.
3. Protect Your Braids at Night
To prevent your braids from becoming frizzy or tangled while you sleep, it’s important to protect them at night. Wrap your hair with a silk scarf or bonnet to keep your braids smooth and in place.
Goddess braids are a beautiful and versatile protective hairstyle that can help keep your natural hair healthy and strong. By following these tips for installing and caring for your goddess braids, you can enjoy this stylish and low maintenance hairstyle for weeks to come.