11 Best Box Braids Hairstyles for Men in 2022
Box braids not only serve as a protective style for natural hair but also as a statement hairstyle.
This hairstyle originated in various parts of Africa over 5,000 years ago but resurfaced in popularity as a fashion trend during the 90s, particularly for black women. This is largely credited to Poetic Justice, a 1993 movie where Janet Jackson’s character sports this now iconic style.
The box braids hairstyle consists of dividing the hair into multiple sections and braiding hair in each section into a single plait starting from the scalp. These braids are often parted into squared, box-like sections, which explains the name.
With its recent revival in the 2010s, both women and men can be seen wearing this hairstyle. Today, it’s considered an upcoming look in men’s hairstyles.
Read further to learn more about this awesome braided hairstyle and how you can achieve amazing box braids.
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1. Box Braids on Natural Hair
Since have been traditionally a practice in African cultures, they are best suited for coily, tightly curled, textures.
These textures of braided hairstyles better than looser textures of since tends to coil and lock into itself. This is also beneficial if human or synthetic is added into the in either classic or feed-in . tend to hold
Braided hairstyles like are also beneficial for , as it allows the to remain in a for a longer period of time so that less tension is placed on it through brushing, casual tugging, and getting caught in the environment.
2. Box Braids on Curly Hair
is slightly looser than , but still has some of the benefits of holding in braids. To make sure braids are secured, use styling gel. This can help control stray to stay in place while braiding the .
Controlling the bulkier shape of can give the appearance of a much sleeker , especially when artificial or natural human is added when braiding the . on the hairline can be either shaved off or controlled with gel as well.
3. Box Braids on Straight to Wavy Hair
Smoother textures like straight and wavy , but they are still achievable nonetheless. Both braiding the by itself or adding as it’s braided are viable options. may not be the most common type to wear
Since these so it can last longer. Aside from applying gel when braiding, using small elastics at the end of each is a straightforward way of securing the braids as well. There is also the option of braiding the as far down to the ends as possible. textures tend to be looser, it is crucial to take steps to secure the
that tapers off at the ends tends to last longer since smaller, more intricate braids take longer to unravel. This can be finished off by thoroughly saturating the ends of the braids with hairspray to seal everything together.
4. Short Box Braids
One may be concerned that they cannot achieve if they have , but that isn’t always true! If you have hair that is at least three to four inches long, depending on texture, it is possible to make short and to achieve this .
Anything that is under six inches after being braided is considered short. With extra , smaller sections of are easier to attain, as the is pulled across a narrower area of the scalp for the .
5. Long Box Braids
Length can add a more dramatic effect when wearing . This is not only limited to those with but also achievable to those with , where human or synthetic can be incorporated into the person’s and braided down in a way that it stays attached, which is a common practice for those seeking to add more volume and create the illusion of long braids. In contrast, presents both the possibilities of braiding the alone or adding hair extension while braiding.
6. Box Braids With Hair Extensions
in are not only an effective way to add length and bulk to your braids but are also an opportunity to integrate different colors and materials into the . This can be done by using both natural and artificial colors of or even combining colored yarn into the mix.
Rather than various damaging color processes, , furthering the protectiveness of the . This can be done by using an installment of hair starting at the beginning of the or feeding in at intervals earlier in the braiding process to make added hair look more blended with the person’s actual . can easily be made to appear colored when braiding in colors different than your
Feed-in are also a healthier option since classic produce a knot where the braids start at the scalp, which aggravates tension and can result in loss.
7. Large/Wide-Sectioned Box Braid
Not only thickness but sections of can be broadened by parting the into wider sections. This draws more attention to the scalp with a more dramatic approach to sectioning, providing more leeway to show off intricate and varying shapes with each section.
This also makes the braiding process go a lot faster, as there are fewer braids to do when sections are larger. This is most compatible with since needs to be snatched from a larger area of the head.
A popular alternative to box-shaped sections are triangular-shaped sections for this . As the name suggests, each is grasped from an area of the scalp in the shape of a triangle, creating a more dynamic effect. This is also helpful when sectioning on more angular parts of the scalp, such as between the temples and ears.
If one is going for a symmetrical , it is important to plan out the sectioning first. A helpful tip is to first divide the with horizontal lines across the head before dividing these sections into smaller, alternating, triangular sections.
8. Box Braids with Fade Undercut
Fade haircuts also feature shaved sides and back but are slightly more dramatic than taper cuts, as they fade directly into the skin and blur the hairlines. There are also varying types of fade undercuts to choose from, from low to high fades, temple fades, burst fades, and drop fades.
The shorter length of a fade also leaves more room for customized cut designs. Higher precision also means that they are higher maintenance, as the shortest of the fade begins to grow over the skin within a couple of weeks.
9. Box Braid Ponytail
To , a is a simple choice that can get the out of your face but also still display your braids and undercut if you have one.
Shorter lengths of braids and higher ponytails allow for a more playful look with more bounce, while lower and longer ponytails look more laidback and relaxed. For a tighter , using a classic elastic is best, but for giving your a break, spiral “phone cord” ties are the top recommendation, as they sit loosely on the and don’t leave strong dents that elastic ties do. Minimizing tension on the scalp is especially important when wearing tight braids.
10. Box Braids with Hair Jewelry
A popular way of spicing up is by accessorizing them with jewelry. Among the most common forms of jewelry are beads. The clip-on versions of these are easiest to acquire and apply.
They are essentially a loop with a latched opening on its side that can be pulled open and clicked back together on the desired location of a , worn on every other , placing several on a single , or other placements.. There is a lot of freedom with placements, where it can be kept minimal with just a few on the front
11. Box Braids with Color
Color is always a dimension to be considered when adding to a . This can include more subtle styles, such as coloring the ends of your braids a few shades lighter than your , or more dramatic, non-natural colors that may take over your whole head.
This can be achieved by coloring your or by using colorful . These can be incorporated by starting right at the scalp, or in the form of feed-in braids, where it is styled by slowly adding pieces of colored while braiding, creating an ombre effect in your . before braiding it into
As mentioned earlier in this article, other materials can also be braided into the .. Colorful yarn is a popular choice when it comes to non- material that is integrated into
Box Braids vs. Dreadlocks and Cornrows
To someone who is not as familiar with box braids, they can often be confused with dreadlocks or cornrows.
Dreads use the method of teasing, tangling, and coiling the hair into locks that become more defined as they are worn. On the other hand, cornrows are created by braiding hair in rows or patterns tightly against the scalp instead of single braids.
However, some hairstyles combine cornrows with box braids. The name should also not be confused with “boxer braids,” a term that became prevalent in the mid-2010s, when wearing two underhand braids became a trendy braid style and rebranded with this term, even though they are simply two cornrows or Dutch braids.