Ghana braids represent a type of hair plaiting originally from Africa. These braids look stylish, especially if they are long. In addition, they are now considered fashion choices. We are saying that because they used to mean much more among the African tribes. Even so, the plaiting technique itself is not hard, but it requires some skill nevertheless.
Unlike other regular braids, Ghana braids are done with the insertion of synthetic hair into a cornrow. Synthetic or natural hair is always used in order to obtain slightly thicker plaits. So, Ghana braids are suitable for women of all ages, regardless of their hair length. They can look cute, or they can confer a fierce look. It all depends on the wearer’s style as well.
Also called Cherokee cornrows or banana cornrows, Ghana braids may also be referred to as Ghana cornrows or even pencil braids. Regardless of how you call them, what’s important is that they can be done in various patterns and combinations. What we mean is that you can get thin Ghana braids, thick Ghana braids and everything in between.
Even if banana braids look best long, they can be done in short lengths as well. Since they can also be styled in various and countless ways, you can look different every day. Add charm and extra beauty to your appearance by trying one of the 182 hairstyles below that feature Cherokee cornrows. In addition, we will talk about various hairstyles and accessories suited for these types of plaits. Care and price information is also mentioned.
Ghana Braids – Main Considerations
Besides the aesthetic element offered by Ghana braids, they offer something more. We are talking about it being a protective hairstyle. More specifically, if you decide on braiding your hair together with synthetic hair in order to sport a full head of braids, your natural hair will be protected. You will not have to style it anymore for as long as you wear the braids. In addition, you will not apply any harmful products such as hair spray on your locks.
As for the styling of banana braids, you won’t have to go through that hassle every morning. If you are not in the mood to do anything nice with your braids, you can just wear them free or secure them in a low ponytail. However, if you’re enthusiastic and tend to become flashy with your braids, then you can choose to accessorize your braids with beads, pearls, bow or anything else you like.
For some people, the amazing patterns created with cornrows are enough and they don’t use accessories anymore. So, if you also wear or will wear a complex design on your head, try not to overdo it. Less is more, don’t forget that!
What are Ghana Braids’ Advantages and Disadvantages?
African braids can visually make hair longer and thicker, as well as bring comfort to your everyday life. They represent a convenient way to experiment with your appearance. Even so, they come with both advantages and disadvantages. As it follows, we will mention a few benefits and drawbacks of wearing cornrows.
The Advantages of Banana Braids
- you can wash your hair less often (once every five to six days);
- your new hairstyle does not require daily styling;
- the plaits can be braided to any length;
- convenient for an active lifestyle, travel, sports;
- you can change the length of your natural hair;
- the need for styling products and devices will be no longer present;
Cherokee Cornrows – Minor Disadvantages
- not suitable for weakened hair;
- if you have problems with dandruff, this hairstyle will look untidy;
- if special materials are used for weaving, you can’t go to the sauna or take really hot baths. This is because the synthetic hair can melt and damage your natural hair;
- women with a round face shape are advised to try other types of braids as these can make them look plump;
- tight weaving can cause you headaches;
- as your roots grow, you will have to undo your hair or do it again;
There is a common myth according to which you will loose a lot of hair after removing these braids. We are calling it a myth because it is only half true. You will indeed see lots of hairs falling when you take the synthetic hair off. However, those are the hairs that fell naturally while your hair was braided. The feeling that there’s more than usual is conferred by the fact that you see it all at once. So, there’s nothing to worry about. Just make sure to care for your hair more than usual after you remove the braids.
Types of Ghana Braids
Ghana braids differ in thickness, type and weaving techniques, as well as the use of additional materials. As it follows, we will talk about a few variations of this hairstyle.
Classic Cherokee Cornrows
Banana braids are woven from three strands. To add length, a synthetic material is used, namely Kanekalon, which is woven into the hair. This option is suitable for owners of any face shape and appearance. However, if your face shape is round, ask your hairstylist to cover your cheeks with braids. If all the braids start away from the face, this hairstyle will not look flattering.
Ghana Braids Plaited With Threads
Weaving with threads allows you or your hair stylist to increase the length of your natural hair. In addition, threads of different colors can be used. This allows you to also change the color of your hair or add beautiful effects to it, such as ombre.
Thick Banana Braids
Unfortunately, thick banana braids live less than thin ones. In fact, this aspect applies to all types of braids. The thicker the braid, the less it can be kept well-groomed. However, thick banana braids are a stylish and fashionable option. In addition, they are a way for people with thin hair to find out how it is to have thick hair. The thickening of the hair is done with the addition of synthetic strands, called Kanekalon.
Banana Cornrows in Multiple Colors
Colored banana cornrows are not for everyone. First of all, it is necessary to have clean skin without visible flaws, as colors will only emphasize your minor imperfections. Second of all, such an option will only suit the owners of expressive features (for example, brown eyes). Too many colors will just confuse anyone who looks at your hair.
Since this would be an opportunity to change your hair color without actually dyeing it, you can try contrasting combinations that are fashionable. Just browse for the most trendy hair color combinations at the moment when you need to decide.
Who Should Wear Ghana Braids?
Ghana braids are ideal for owners of oval, diamond-shaped, square, rectangular and triangular face shapes. However, there are a few exceptions. More specifically, women with a high forehead should try to cover it partially. In addition, women with a round face shape should try to cover their cheeks or emphasize face contouring with the help of makeup.
In general, hair weaving is suitable regardless of age and gender. Even so, people with dandruff, itchy scalp, thin hair or those with wounded scalp should avoid this hairstyles. Moreover, difficulties in plaiting may occur on hair shorter than 2 inches or 5 centimeters.
Ghana Braids for Short Hair
For short hair, you can add length with the help of synthetic hair. However, keep in mind that is would be unrealistic to want that if your hair is really short. Your natural hair length should be at least 2 inches or 5 centimeters. Otherwise, there’s not enough hair to add extensions to.
Cherokee Cornrows for Medium Long Hair
Medium long hair is an ideal length for hair experiments and comfort. The hairstylist can quickly and easily create plaits with or without color, depending on your desires.
Banana Braids for Long Hair
With long hair there is only one difficulty. More specifically, if your natural hair is long and thick, it will take a lot of time to weave. Most often, long hair is braided by more than one hairdresser at the same time. In this case, of course, you should expect higher fees for hair plaiting.
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Hairstyle Choices With Ghana Braids
Besides the chosen patterns in which the hair is braided, you can also create various hairstyles with the plaits. Depending on how your hair was plaited, you can opt for low buns, high buns, space buns, weaving braids and others. Using hair accessories is another way to style Ghana braids.
Banana Braids Styled in a High or Low Bun
Gather your braids at the top or back of your head and secure them with an elastic band. This is a casual and convenient option that works really well for long braids.
Cherokee Cornrows Secured in Space Buns
Space buns are those two buns that we secure on both sides of the head, in the crown area. This look is youthful, playful and it can be worn during casual meetings with friends, a walk in the part, at the gym, at the movies and wherever you want.
Thick Braid Made of Plaits
A thick braid made of plaits is a simple and effective way to create a romantic and trendy look. At the same time, it represents a way to keep the hair away when you need to.
Accessorize Your Braids
Unusual accessories are well suited for children’s weaving: colored threads, strands, beads and special jewelry. Even so, there are also elegant and classy decorations for plaits. Depending on the color of your hair, as well as outfit, you can purchase various beads or rings to accessorize your plaits.
Tools Needed for Banana Cornrows
With a little skill and a lot of patience, you can create Ghana braids yourself. In addition, you will also need time to spear and the following tools:
- hair brush;
- large tooth comb;
- elastic bands;
- hair clips for separating the strands;
- threads for weaving;
In case you’d ever like to try Senegalese braids, you must know there is a special machine for creating them. Even so, its use requires special skills, as it is easy to get confused and damage the hair.
Tools for styling are only needed in case of short-term styling. When creating braids that you want to wear for an extended period of time, you can’t style them with heat because they will lose shape and deteriorate.
Braid Care – Just as Important as the Braids
Shampoos should only be applied on the scalp. Moreover, you should wash your hair just once per week. Conditioning your hair might not be a good idea though. This is because the hairs will become fluffy and start loosening from the plaits. So, use shampoos for deep cleaning and for added hair strength.
Basically, it is recommended to avoid friction on the cornrows. So, pour some shampoo in your hand and then squeeze the plaits. Try to rub them as little as possible. For added freshness to your look, you can wear a satin cloth at night or use a satin pillowcase.
Surprisingly, you can apply hair masks on plaits. Even if it is rather difficult to apply a mask on braids, its benefits are not cancelled. Just make sure to properly rinse the plaits. Try to only apply a hair mask if your hair looks too dull.
For fair-skinned people, it is recommended to protect your scalp with sunscreen from excessive sunlight.
Ghana Braids – Continuous Wear for Months
The durability of the Ghana braids is very important. The later is based on the approached weaving technique, as well as on the skills of the person who braids the hair. Therefore, the durability of plaits may vary from a few days to full months. In addition, if synthetic hair is woven in, then the life of your plaits is extended.
It is recommended to remove the braids after three to four months. However, it all depends on the growth rate of your hair. If it grows quickly, then two months after your roots will have tangles in them. It is for this reason that you should not wear them for longer. If you do so, this protective style will become damaging. In case you can’t make an appointment with your hairdresser to remove the braids, you can do so at home. Here are the instructions:
Even if it would be ideal for the braids to be removed by the person who has first installed them, if you can’t make it, then you can try removing them yourself. In the process of removing the braids, nodules and tangles may appear. So, arm yourself with the most non-traumatic comb.
Divide your hair into several parts and then gently cut off all the sealed ends. In case the gum is located at the end of the braids, then just remove it. Next, reverse the process of weaving. Comb your hair thoroughly. As soon as you are done, you can wash your hair and apply a nourishing and repairing mask on it.
Basic Cornrow Plaiting Technique
The hair must first be divided into small sections. Next, these sections will be intertwined. Although this may sound simple, the hairdresser must make sure the resulting braids are close to the scalp. The whole beauty of Ghana braids comes from how neatly and precisely they are braided, as well as the patterns created through plaiting the hair. Between the rows, the scalp must be visible. Moreover, rows are create because a new section is woven into an existing braid again and again.
Depending on the chosen braiding style of the cornrows, you can create from 1 to 100 rows that can be accommodated on a person’s scalp. As you may already know, the simplest cornrow version is the one that starts from the front and ends in the back. These are called straight rows.
Time and Cost Considerations for Ghana Braids
The duration and cost of plaiting Ghana braids depends very much on the desired complexity of braiding. The time required can therefore be between 30 minutes and 5 hours. In this way, the price will also be set accordingly. So, you must first discuss your wishes with a professional before finding out exactly how much it costs. Also, you must think whether or not you buy your own synthetic hair or you pay for the one offered in salons.
More Hairstyles With Ghana Braids
As it follows, we will leave you with even more photos of Ghana braids. They present various hairstyles and patterns variations that can be created in order to obtain an ideal look. In case you find something that you like very much, don’t hesitate to share it with us in the comments below. We would like to hear from you and about all your experiences with African braids in general and Ghana braids in particular. Is this the first time you are thinking about getting cornrows? Are you worried your natural hair is not healthy enough for such a hairstyle? Let’s discuss!