Senegalese twist braids is a popular African-American hairstyle. Its popularity is increasing by the day with more and more women adopting this hairstyle. It can be easily styled and is also easy to maintain. They give a chic and funky look to the conventional straight or curly hair. They add a twist to the regular cornrow braids, by using a doubling up technique, which results in tight cornrows having extra coils at the end of each twisted segment. They are compatible with the various natural hair textures as well as synthetic extensions. To enhance their effect, hair extensions of different colors can also be used when braiding. Making twist braids is easy, but may be time-consuming. If you have somebody to help you make them, it will get done faster and adding extensions would require a certain level of skill and of course, lots of practice. To do it yourself, read the following instructions on how to do Senegalese twists.
- A course teethed rat tail comb.
- Filigree tubes (a kind of colored twisted wire) or hair rubber bands.
- Hair clips.
- Hair softening wax or gel.
- Before you can start making these twists, make sure your hair is well washed and dried.
- Comb your hair thoroughly to eliminate any knots that can be a hindrance.
- Apply the hair softening gel or wax it, once you are done with combing your hair.
- Run your hands through your hair a couple of times to make sure the gel or wax is applied uniformly along the length of your hair.
- Step 1: Using the rat tail comb, make equal sized partitions of your hair.
- Step 2: Take tiny segments of hair of medium thickness from each part and stretch them out gently. Comb through the entire length to make sure it is free of knots.
- Step 3: Separate a section of hair from the root by pinching the hair near the root. Then, hold it with your fingers or clip it with a hair clip, tightly securing the section, from those outside the section of hair.
- Step 4: Once the section of hair has been tightly clipped, start twisting it. Twist it until the section of hair has twisted completely and starts to double back on itself, to create a second layer of twists.
- Step 5: After the second layer of twists has been created on the first layer, fold the twisted sections of hair, holding the ends of the section tightly, by placing a finger in the center of the twisted hair segment. Bring the tip over your finger, towards the roots of the twisted segment.
- Step 6: Continue to twist the twisted segment, while allowing both the sides to coil around each other naturally. This will create a braid-like structure with the loop around your finger, that was placed at the center of the twisted segment. Turn your finger within the loop for a few times and continue to twist until the braiding has reached the point, where the hair clip has been clipped on.
- Step 7: Remove your finger, and allow the segment to coil further. The twisted segment will now remain coiled and you can make some adjustments to make it appear neat and balanced. Secure the tip of the twisted segment and the clipped root, with a filigree tube or a hair rubber band.
- Step 8: Repeat the above mentioned procedure with all the sections of your hair and you will have your Senegalese twisted braids hairstyle.
It is essential to care for this hairstyle in order to appropriately maintain them. You can care for them by following the instructions mentioned below.
- Treat your scalp with a regular oil massage.
- Shampoo only twice or thrice a month.
- Dilute your shampoo to prevent scalp dryness and the formation of a dull film on the braids.
- Massage your shampoo into your scalp with your fingertips.
- Use a small comb to groom the braids and clean between them.
Senegalese twists are suitable for long as well as short lengths of hair and may last up to three months, depending on the way you maintain and groom them. It is advisable to unlock your hair after three months to avoid locks and hair breakage.