31 Of The Best Afro Hairstyles

Published By Brooke
Updated 01-18-2022

Natural afro hairstyles can be hard to come by these days. It’s somewhat of a legendary look that has been worn with confidence by celebrities, politicians, musicians and other icons.

The afro can be worn short or long, by men or women. It’s quite a versatile look that takes some patience and care to achieve. However, with some regular basic care, the afro can be a fairly low-maintenance hairstyle.

Check out some of the best afro hairstyles for a little inspiration if you wear your hair natural or want to switch back to this textured style.

Afro With Red Lips

Afro With Red Lips


You don’t need a lot of makeup to make a statement with a hairstyle like this. Matte red lips and strong eyebrows can define your face so that it doesn’t get overshadowed by your glowing hair, however.

An ideal accessory to wear with a shorter afro is massive earrings. This is a great way to emphasize your laid-back style.

The Headpiece

The Headpiece


You don’t have to let your curls go wild to rock an afro. Gather your hair slightly, and secure it at the side with multiple colorful pins.

This headpiece touch will completely change the look of your natural curls, turning a typical Afro mane into an elegant and unique trendy hairdo.

Scarf-Wrapped Afro Hairstyle          

Scarf-Wrapped Afro Hairstyle


Wearing a scarf can be a boon on a bad hair day. However, it can be hard to figure out how to wrap the fabric around all that hair so that it ends up looking chic instead of bulky.

This simple accessory creates height on top of your head and frames your face.

Space Buns

Space Buns


When you want to get your hair out of your face, place it in two pigtails at the top of your head. The curls will shrink, creating playful poufs at the crown. Leave a few tendrils out around the ears so the pulled-back style isn’t too severe.

Vintage Natural

Vintage Natural


Let your hair grow long, and use rollers to create larger curls that aren’t too kinky. You’ll get a longer look that you can pair with some retro glasses. Don’t worry about creating a part. Just let the shorter layers around your forehead flop wherever they end up.

Soft, Brushed-Out Brown

Soft, Brushed-Out Brown


The more you brush your natural hair, the softer and more blended it will appear. Don’t style your hair this way if you want defined curls. However, for thick, fluffy tresses, use a brush to bring out the best in your hair’s texture. Your hair can be easily damaged if you brush it too much while it’s dry.

Detangle it in the shower with a wide-toothed comb so that brushing it is easier later. If you want it to grow this long, get the ends trimmed regularly, and make friends with moisturizing treatments. Although you may be tempted to blow dry your hair because it takes a long time to dry on its own, don’t do it. Blow drying is one of the most damaging things you can do to natural black hair.

Short Silhouette

Short Silhouette


This short, sweet look is shaped to surround the face neatly. A few tendrils fall down over the eyebrows, and the back of the hairstyle comes almost to the collar. Leave the top a little longer than the back and sides to mimic this shape.

Silver Natural

Silver Natural


The afro is an ageless style. These curls are tinged with grey, white and black. Together, the colors create a shimmering effect. Go natural even with your hair color, and own the end result.

Super Long Afro

Super Long Afro


Although it can be tempting to avoid cutting your hair if you want to grow it to this length, that’s not a good idea. Hair with damaged ends won’t grow as quickly. You’ll have a better chance of growing it out if you get regular trims. You don’t have to chop off a lot of length; just lop off any damaged tips for healthy hair that seems to go on forever.

Cute Rockabilly Afro

Cute Rockabilly Afro


Keep your hair up with rocking metal beads to create an intriguing effect. Instead of using it to pull the hair off your face, gather your hair up and off of your neck.

This is a perfect way to wear your hair on a hot summer day. Tie the band just in front of the crown of your head, leaving the front thick and curly. This will bring attention to your eyes and can add height to a round face.

Gathered Puff

Gathered Puff


Gathering your hair on top of your head can create height. Allow some of your curls to fall over your face. This hairstyle draws attention to your locks.

Make sure that you’ve moisturized them well. Olive oil works as a wonderful moisturizer. Seal in the softness by using hair butter or oil.

Afro Sunshine



Hair that extends from your face like rays of light captures the eye. The spirals are long, loose and defined. To keep your long hair moisturized, wrap your hair before going to bed. A cotton pillowcase will absorb the oils in your hair, leaving you with dry tresses in the morning. If you’re too tired to cover your hair while you sleep, consider buying a satin pillowcase. It won’t absorb as much of your hair’s natural moisture.

Smoky Dome



If your hair has naturally gone gray, showcase this new sense of style. The neutral color can be complemented with a head wrap or scarf in any color. If you haven’t gone gray yet, you might want to stay away from using chemical dyes and products. Coloring your hair can cause damage if you’re not careful.

Parted And Defined



You can define your afro by creating a deep side part. It’s a chunky look that adds shape and structure to your hairstyle. You don’t have to keep every curl defined. Pick out the afro for a soft look that brings out your facial features. Some think that the side part prevents the undefined afro from looking too retro for today’s modern style climate.

Afro Mohawk



Keep your hair confined to the center by gathering it up and letting the curls loose. You can secure it with pins, or you can braid it up the scalp, leaving the ends loose. This is a beautiful nod to ‘80s style. It’s more versatile to wear than you would expect.

Short And Shaved



Your afro doesn’t have to be long to look amazing. Keep the top short and upswept, and trim the sides short. Shave an interesting design into the hair along the sides for added interest.

Protective Halo



Braiding and twisting your hair can protect it from damage. Instead of taking the time to create tiny braids, consider creating a twisted halo around the head. Extreme temperatures can take a toll on your hair. Using a deep conditioner before putting hair up in a protective style can add moisture to your hear. Wearing the style for at least a week will prevent you from damaging your hair by manipulating it too much.

Short Afro Puff



You can style your hair into a puff even if it’s as short as one inch. If you’ve recently chopped off your hair, this is a great way to give it some style. The trick is to use a headband to gather it instead of collecting it into a tight ponytail.  Spray your hair with water, and apply moisturizer to it. Pull a headband over your head and leave it around your neck. Add pomade or gel around the edges.

Smooth them with a soft brush. Slide the headband up as you smooth it over the edges. The higher you bring up the headband, the smaller the puff will be. Pick out the puff, or use your fingers to bring out the curls.

Afro On Relaxed Hair



What if you want to go curly after you’ve relaxed your hair? Braid the entire scalp. Then, spray all of your hair with water before saturating them with a styling product. Once the hair is completely dry, remove the braids. Alternatively, you can wrap tiny sections of hair around tight rollers.

Red Afro



Although chemically coloring your hair can damage it, treating it once a year or so can give you a new look. Using semi-permanent color can be less damaging than bleaching your hair. Use a bold magenta hue only at the ends of your hair for this multifaceted look.

Ombre Weave



Weaving hair into your cornrows can give you a curly style while protecting your natural hair from breakage. If you dye your weave, you’ll also prevent your own hair from becoming chemically damaged. Keep the ends lighter than the roots for a trendy look that’s a little sun-kissed and beachy.

Bright Blue



If you have already lightened your hair at some point, infuse it with color. A bold, primary hue will show up well on lighter locks.

Fancy Puff



If you’ve perfected the puff, dress it up by twisting a halo of hair around it. You can accessorize with a headband around your forehead, or secure pretty clips into the puff or twist.

Super Defined Curls



If you love the look of glossy, separated curls, stay away from the hair pick or brush. Use a lot of moisturizing product before transforming small sections of hair into two-strand twisted cornrows. Leave this in overnight. Separate each twist carefully after you wake up. Don’t run your fingers through the spirals, or you’ll puff out the curls.

Black Pixie



It’s easy to sport the pixie haircut when your hair already has texture. If your hair is dry, use as much styling product as you want. It will add a ton of gloss and keep the hair smoother at the edges.

Front Bun



Instead of creating a bun high at the crown, move it toward your forehead. How do you create this style if you don’t have the length or thickness to make the bun big? Flip your hair forward, and hold your head upside down. Add gel or styling cream to the underside of your hair. Tie your hair into a ponytail at the front of the top of your head. At this point, pin down any short pieces that are falling out. Attach a hair piece to the existing, and wrap it like a pompadour around itself. Secure it with pins.

Honey Afro



If you have dark hair that’s all one tone, make it pop by adding lots of lighter highlights. You can have them painted in for a more blended look.

Crossed Cornrows



Create thick cornrow twists at your scalp, crossing them as you move back to make a pretty design. Gather hair into a ponytail, and fluff the ends. Add a hair piece to the ponytail if you desire more fullness at the crown.

Sideswept Bangs Updo



If you’re wearing your hair up, part it on the side. Leave out a large chunk in the front. After you’ve secured the bulk of your hair, drape the front over your forehead. Pin it near your ear.

Afro Mini Twists         



Mini twists provide some protection for damaged hair. Twist tiny sections of hair using two strands each. You can wear these for as long as you wish.

The Twist-Out



If you’ve worn your hair in twists for a while, you can unravel them and wear them as tidy twist-outs. The night before you’re ready to remove the twists, spray your head with a moisturizing product mixed with water. Wrap it in satin. In the morning, use jojoba oil to help you untwist each strand carefully. You’ll end up with tight, orderly curls.


What hairstyles can you do with an afro?

Afro puffs and natural Afro hairstyles are not the only options for girls with natural texture.

Indeed, natural hair type is challenging to style, you can’t just wash and go: even for a classic Afro mane you’ll need special care and styling products meant for curly natural hair to make it look healthy, shiny, and win-win.

Here are some ideas of Afro hairstyles for long and medium-length Afro hair:

  • Braids in Afro style
  • Teeny weeny Afro twists
  • Gorgeous Bantu knots
  • Fun banding hair Afro style
  • Updo natural hairstyles with playful curls (chignons, Afro top knots, half-ups, space buns)

How do I style my short afro hair?

To give your short Afro a win-win twist out, get inspired first. Look through our gallery of hairstyles for natural texture and choose the natural Afro that will compliment your face.

Wash and go – yes, this is about a short curly classic look. But still, you have to follow some Afro hair rules:

  • Do cleansing and conditioning with ultra-hydrating products
  • Use high-quality hair products created specifically for Afro puff
  • Apply the detangling and smoothing cream on damp hair
  • You’d better avoid bleached bold colors and switch the blow-dryer to low heat

In Conclusion

An afro is a versatile style, but it can be prone to damage if you manipulate it too much. Alternate your afro with protective hairstyles to allow your hair to grow and to give your strands a break. Some of these wedding hairstyles for black women are great examples of protective styles. If you want to change up your afro, you can see more black women hairstyles here.

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