Have you ever wanted to switch things up on the natural hair front, without a long-term commitment? We totally get it! If you’re looking for a new protective style, upgrading your look with Bantu knots is a great place to start. Bantu knot styles work wonders to provide versatility while keeping your strands in shape. Think you want to jump on the Bantu knot hairstyles bandwagon? Follow along to learn how to do Bantu knots and Bantu knot outs, plus get the scoop on various hairstyles you can try.
WHAT ARE BANTU KNOTS?
Before we dive into all of the stunning Bantu knot styles you can choose from—there are a lot—you need the 4-1-1 on this trendy style. If you think Bantu knots are actually knots in your hair, think again! Bantu knots are a retro styling technique that involves flaunting tiny buns throughout your mane. A great way to keep your strands stylishly tucked away, Bantu knots serve as a protective style and work to call attention to your features. Now that’s what we call a win-win!
WHAT ARE BANTU KNOT OUTS?
Now that you know all about Bantu knots, it’s only right that we introduce you to Bantu knot outs as well. A step up from traditional Bantu knots, this elevated style allows you to wear your mini buns as long as you like, then unravel them to reveal springy curls, hence the name Bantu knot out.
Distinctly different from the popular twist out hairstyle, Bantu knot outs provide your strands with tighter and more defined curls as opposed to stretched out waves. As you can see, Bantu knots serve two purposes: They’re a hairstyle in their own right and a heatless curl technique!
HOW TO DO BANTU KNOTS
Ready to try Bantu knots for yourself? While many protective hairstyles send you straight to the salon, this look is one we are confident you can do on your own. Below, we’re sharing a step-by-step tutorial to help you master Bantu knots and knot outs like a pro.
STEP #1: PREP YOUR STRANDS
First things first, your hair needs to be properly moisturized to create the perfect set of Bantu knots. Set the stage with the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Moisture Shampoo and L’Oréal Paris EverPure Moisture Conditioner to gently cleanse, nourish, and provide your strands with luminous shine.
STEP #2: APPLY LEAVE-IN CONDITIONER
Once your strands are washed, you’ll want to lock in hydration. This is where the L’Oréal Paris EverStrong Break Proof Lotion comes in. Formulated with goji, this lightweight leave-in conditioner strengthens fragile hair while helping to repair and protect it from breakage. Not to mention, it also comes in handy to defend against UV rays and heat styling and leaves hair feeling super soft. Part your hair in sections, re-wet your hair if dry, and apply the leave-in conditioner evenly through your mane.
STEP #3: ADD YOUR HAIR SERUM
For long-lasting moisture, you’ll need to oil up your strands, too. Grab the L’Oréal Paris Elvive Extraordinary Oil Treatment, which is formulated with coconut oil and will hydrate, nourish, and provide instant shine. Rub two drops between the palms of your hands and apply throughout your hair from root to tip.
STEP #4: PART & CREATE BANTU KNOTS
Next, you’ll need to create a one to two-inch section in your mane. Start twisting from the root to ends, and your hair will begin to twist into itself. Twist the section tightly around itself to form a tiny bun and secure with a hair elastic.
STEP #5: REPEAT
Continue forming Bantu knots until you have a mane full of tiny buns! Finish your look with a spritz of shine spray like the L’Oréal Paris Elnett Precious Oil Satin Hairspray, and you’re all set!
BONUS STEP: UNRAVEL YOUR BANTU KNOTS
Want to try a Bantu knot out on for size? Cover your hair with a silk scarf and leave your Bantu knots in place overnight. In the morning, undo each knot and gently finger-comb your hair to show off defined heatless curls.
HOW LONG SHOULD BANTU KNOTS STAY IN?
As we mentioned above, Bantu knots are considered to be a protective style, but they don’t live up to the same wear time as other protective styles you know and love. Instead of the usual six to eight-week window, Bantu knots should only remain in your hair for up to two weeks. Since you’re not using any extensions to achieve this style, your hair can start to look messy pretty quickly.
5 BANTU KNOT HAIRSTYLES TO TRY
Now that you know how to do Bantu knots and Bantu knot outs, there are a myriad of ways you can add this technique to your hairstyling routine. Keep reading for five Bantu knot hairstyles worth trying.
BANTU KNOT HAIRSTYLE #1: FAUK HAWK
Faux hawks are an increasingly popular hairstyle for a good reason. They’re super easy to style, and they work wonders to highlight your features. If you love to step outside of the box, consider trying the Bantu knot faux hawk on for size. To get the look, simply create a set of Bantu knots as you usually would. Once they’ve set overnight, unravel your tiny buns, apply a tiny bit of hair gel, like the L’Oréal Paris Studio Line Clean Style Gel to your roots, and brush your hair at the sides. Pin your hair in place and finger-comb your strands to amp up the texture, and you’re all set.
BANTU KNOT HAIRSTYLE #2: HALF-UP BANTU KNOTS
Want to give your mane the best of both worlds? Half-up Bantu knots will rise to the occasion. A great way to keep hair off of your face while showing off your length, you can’t go wrong with this hairstyle. Start by dividing your hair into two even sections and clip the bottom half out of the way. Create a set of Bantu knots on the top half of your hair. Release the bottom section of your hair, fluff up your strands, and your look is complete.
BANTU KNOT HAIRSTYLE #3: CLASSIC BANTU KNOT OUT
If you love to stay true to the classics, a Bantu knot out will suit your needs. It’s a foolproof way to flaunt your texture without having to use any heat. Simply create Bantu knots in your mane as we shared how to do above. Allow your Bantu knots to stay put overnight and unravel in the morning. Gently finger-comb your strands and mist a touch of hairspray all over your mane. If you’re not too shy to play with color, grab the L’Oréal Paris Colorista Hair Makeup Temporary 1-Day Hair Color Sprays to spice up your springy ringlets.
BANTU KNOT HAIRSTYLE #4: BRAIDED BANTU KNOTS
In the mood for a bit of weaving action in your Bantu knots? Well, it’s time to explore the wonders of braided Bantu knots! A chic way to level up this protective style, braids add a unique spin to any Bantu knot hairstyle. Get the look by creating a one to two-inch section in your hair. Plait your hair from the root to the ends and secure with a hair tie. Wrap the plait around itself to form a textured bun and keep it in place with a hair elastic. Repeat until you have a mane full of braided Bantu knots.
BANTU KNOT HAIRSTYLE #5: BANTU KNOTS WITH BRAIDS
Looking for a style that combines edge and sass? Bantu knots with Fulani braids are just the ticket. Sported by hair gurus on social media, it’s no surprise that this hairstyle is a top pick. Kick things off by creating an inch-wide part right above your ear and clip the rest of your hair out of the way. Starting above your ear, weave a small cornrow, and continue until you reach the ends. Secure with a hair tie, place wooden beads at the end of the braid, and lock them in place with a hair elastic. When you’re done, the length of the braid should fall along the side of your ear. Repeat on the other side until you have two braids. Release the rest of your hair and create Bantu knots as normal. Seal the deal with a spritz of shine spray all over your head. Voila!