Box braids is a classic hairstyle for a reason — they’re protective, easy to maintain, and last for months. But while most box braid styles leave the hair straight just as the braiding hair comes in the pack, you might want to add a twist and curl the end of your box braids. It may seem daunting, but it’s actually pretty easy to get braids with curly ends. Here, our guide to curling the ends of your box braids, as well as how to maintain box braids with curled ends.
How to Do Box Braids With Curly Ends
Follow our step-by-step tutorial to create beautiful box braids with curled ends.
1. Cleanse and Condition
Start by washing your hair for a clean foundation. Try the L'Oréal Paris Elvive Dream Lengths Curls Moisture Push Shampoo and L’Oréal Paris Elvive Dream Lengths Curls Moisture Seal Conditioner, as the duo will both cleanse and hydrate your scalp, which is important for braided hairstyles.
Detangle your hair using a wide-tooth comb. If you decide to also blow dry your hair, be sure to use a heat protectant like the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Sulfate-Free Weightless Blow Dry Primer.
3. Separate Your Hair into Sections
Next, divide your hair into four sections using your comb to break up the braiding process, while also keeping hair that you’re not braiding out of the way with a clip.
4. Apply Cream
Apply a bit of leave-in hair cream or the L'Oréal Paris Elvive Dream Lengths Frizz Killer Serum Leave-In to the lengths of your hair to protect and further moisturize your hair before you start braiding.
5. Create Your Braids
Make a part and separate the hair into three strands for braiding. Most people will make a part of one to two inches, but if you’re having trouble keeping it straight, the L’Oréal Paris Studio Line Mega Gel can help define and smooth your parts.
Now, you have two options here: You can either take your three strands and braid all of the way down the length of your hair, stopping once you get to the end. Repeat this process all over your head until every section of your hair is braided. Another option is to part and braid your hair as normal, but leave your hair unbraided for about 3-4 inches at the end, or wherever you want the curl to start.
6. Curl Your Ends
Whichever option you choose, the curling part will be the same. Grab some flexi rods and take a section of your hair, then wind and twist the flexi rod around the ends of each section up to about the lower half of your hair. If you want tight curls, you’re going to separate your hair into smaller sections, and if you want looser curls, make the sections bigger.
Once all of your hair is in flexi rods, heat some water until it’s boiling and then pour it into a bowl. Very carefully (this part is easiest with someone to help) place each section into the hot water and leave it in the bowl for three to four minutes. Once you remove the ends of your hair from the water, place them on a towel to absorb the excess water so you don’t get burned. Repeat this process with each section until all your hair has been curled, dipped, and dried. Then, remove the flexi rods from your hair by unwrapping them, and you should have lovely curled ends.
7. Finish the Look
Apply a generous amount of the L'Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle CURVE IT Elastic Curl Mousse to your scalp and braids to seal the look, tame any flyaways, and soothe your scalp.
How to Care for Your Box Braids With Curly Ends
Your box braids should last for about six to eight weeks, and the good news is maintenance won’t be any harder because of the curls. Because box braids can be kept in for up to two months, they require their own hair care plan. Read our four tips for how to care for your box braids with curly ends.
1. Oil Your Scalp and Hair
Use a hair oil of your choice about once or twice a week to keep your scalp moisturized. an oil spray like the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Sulfate Free Simply Clean Sheer Oil will keep your braids looking sleek and shiny as well.
2. Protect Your Braids At Night
Make sure to sleep with a silk bonnet or scarf over your braids to keep them intact and smooth, and to keep your scalp frizz-free.
3. Re-Curl If Needed
If you feel like your curls are dropping or are looking less than stellar, you can re-do the flexi rod and hot water routine to revive them.
3. Take Your Braids Down in a Timely Manner
Leaving your braids in for too long can snag and damage your natural hair, and as time goes on the hair will become matted at the scalp, so it's important to take down your braids and unbraid them after about six to eight weeks.
Written by: Témi Adebowale, Photo Design: Sarah Duvivier
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