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Protective Styling Series: The Braided Wig

Let’s talk about braided wigs. Although they are convenient and save time, I personally am not a fan. Perhaps I haven’t seen great ones out there, but the ones I have seen tend to look like a hat sitting on a head. I love the natural way regular and crochet braids part and fall, and braided wigs don’t seem to have the same effect. Instead, it increases the size of your head somewhat. Am I going too far?

Braided Wig Archaic Human

Again, I would like to think I just haven’t encountered the great looking ones because they are definitely increasing in popularity. I just think it’s hard enough trying to get a normal wig to blend in with your hairline, but trying to blend in a braided wig? That’s got to be really challenging, hence the hat-like look most people get.

The major upside of all wigs is that you have the opportunity to continue your wash day regimen as per usual. Come wash day, you just whip it off, wash your hair, complete your routine and pop your wig back on.


Get your braided wig custom made to fit your head to avoid bulkiness in all the wrong areas.

Try to select braids with a fringe so that you don’t have to worry about blending it in with your hair line or having that hat effect.

Ensure that your hair is clean, using a moisturising shampoo, conditioned, well moisturised, sealed with a good oil serum and braided down flat to reduce awkward bumps.

If you are keen on customising the wig yourself, then consider braiding the first one or two rows along your edges using the regular single braiding method and then placing your wig behind these two rows to cover up the front wig line.

As always, ensure that you wash the braided hair before installing it to get rid of residual chemicals from the factory. Use either a shampoo or rinse it with apple cider vinegar (1 part apple cider vinegar 2 parts water). This will reduce your chances of having an allergic reaction to the hair, which may cause skin irritations and severe itching to your scalp.

If you are using synthetic hair, do not use a blow dryer unless it is stated that the hair is heat resistant.

Do not oil the hair if it is synthetic. Synthetic hair does not require oil because it is not human hair or natural. The oil will only sit on the hair, leaving it greasy and weighing it down. Add some heat to it and you are a walking fire hazard.

If you know any companies or people that are making beautifully braided wigs, leave a comment below with their details.

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  • Debra Rioga
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