10 Tips For Those Getting Braids For The First Time

African American woman with curly brown braidsBefore my healthy hair days, the days when I didn’t know that deep conditioning existed, I decided to get braid extensions in hopes that they would magically help my overly processed barely neck length hair “grow” (not retain length), notice how I cared less about health… health whaaaat?

Anyway, when I finally got them installed on my unhealthy hair here was my…ahem…”regimen”:

  • Keep them in for three months sometimes four.
  • Clean them once within those three months (this was usually the day before I got them redone).
  • No moisturizing and conditioning allowed.
  • Let the braids around my edges hang on for dear life.

On top of that I did not give my hair a break and got the braids installed back to back without even allowing my hair to sigh.

Needless to say that after a year, my hair was barely an inch past neck length and within a month went straight back to being neck length again.

These days we know that with a great hair regimen, braids are an excellent protective styling choice that allow your hair to retain length like crazy and finally make your long hair dreams a reality.

So with that said ladies here are 10 tips to help both the natural and relaxed among you get the opposite results of what you have just read above:

1. Do your research on the braid style that you want to achieve


Whether you want tree braids or poetic justice braids or micro braids, it is important to look up the pros and cons of the braid style that you want to see if it fits your lifestyle and hair goals.

This step, in my opinion, allows for you to be equipped with info about your braid style and confident that your choice will not affect the health of your hair.

2. Make sure that your hair is locked and loaded (with health that is) prior to getting braids

While it is super important to take care of your hair while in braids, it is even more important to make sure that your hair is spic and span before your installment.

If your elasticity is nonexistent and your porosity is off, make sure to address these issues before hand. To help correct these problems try this mini regimen a month before installing braids:

► Clarify your hair with the first wash of the month

► Deep condition weekly

► A week before the installment do a medium to strong protein treatment.

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About Danni


Hi All! I am Danni and I am a staff writer here at BHI. I am a Graphic Design major and a long time resident of Washington DC. I have been on a healthy hair journey for 3 1/2 years. Within those years , I have went through a relaxed hair journey, a natural hair journey in which I big chopped twice(2nd big chop occurred in November 2013) texturized and now I have big chopped a THIRD TIME! I am 100% natural and here to stay. I am super excited to share information that I learn along the way to those who are just as into healthy hair care as I am and wish everyone best wishes on their healthy hair journey!

About Danni


Hi All! I am Danni and I am a staff writer here at BHI. I am a Graphic Design major and a long time resident of Washington DC. I have been on a healthy hair journey for 3 1/2 years. Within those years , I have went through a relaxed hair journey, a natural hair journey in which I big chopped twice(2nd big chop occurred in November 2013) texturized and now I have big chopped a THIRD TIME! I am 100% natural and here to stay. I am super excited to share information that I learn along the way to those who are just as into healthy hair care as I am and wish everyone best wishes on their healthy hair journey!

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Louise GriffinSydney LaurenJordann AllenMai GarrettGuynelle McEntire Recent comment authors
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Andrea Sims

I love my braids!! Lol!!

Ashley N. Bowman

Kristie Inocencio, can you get this done to my cousins hair instead of cutting? Call me, we’ll discuss it! (:

Kimberly Champion

this is how iv been doing my hair for years after my big chop. i love braids b/c i hate doing my hair. they are very low maintenance and i experiment and change color as often as i like. now that my hair has grown so long, i feel i look out of place and over the top with these braids going all the way down my back though. whats a girl to do

Kristie Inocencio

Ashley N. Bowman I’m just so scared it will pull her natural hair out…

Hrh Caroline Ru Mandimika

I love braids!! I’m not a weave person. 🙂

Guynelle McEntire

Great info!

Mai Garrett

I had these same braids and taking them out was a mess because they knotted the ends when i finally got them out i lost alot of my edges but they are finally growing back not sure i will get this style again although i did love it when i had it in.

Jordann Allen

there are black women who have never gotten braids??

Sydney Lauren

Some that have never had braid extensions.

Louise Griffin

Prepare for the itch! lol 😉