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Fros Fashions and Finds Presents: Trending Natural Hairstyles for 2018

By Megan Davis
The Truth Contributor

It’s hard to believe it is already summer, considering spring had a delayed start. With temperatures in the 70s quite often and the rain, it feels as if spring is still with us. But there are no complaints in salons and barber shops across the city, where ladies and gents are staying fly, regardless! Last year, we saw color, shaved cuts and locs trending in natural hairstyles. While there are still a great number of people wearing color and shorter styles, new trends have taken over.

Let’s take a look at style trends by age group. For toddlers and young children up to third grade, braids with barrettes or beads are still trending. This is a variety of braids created on little boys (too young for haircuts) and girls’ hair that has been passed from generation to generation. For children who are in fourth grade through middle school, the trend is cornrows, also known as lemonade braids, tribal braids and also crochet box braids. These styles are the most durable for an active age group that doesn’t have a lot of time to dedicate to hair care and are still developing their personalities and routines. These styles can last one to two months, depending on how well they are taken care of. Cornrows still allow for the scalp to be moisturized. Box braids also do, since this type of hair can easily be separated on their cornrow base to reach the scalp.

For boys in the fourth grade to middle school, the trend is starter locs and sponge coils with tapered or faded sides. Many boys love the look of the coils and desire locs that can grow long enough to be styled back into cornrows or fishtails.

For young ladies in high school to early college ages, the style trend is chunky crochet braids, faux (pronounced pho) goddess locs and cornrow ponytails. These styles give a lot of body and length, which is every little girl’s dream-to have long, flowing hair they can swing back and forth. What’s more important is not having the headache of getting up everyday and trying to style their hair. For young men, by now, they have grown out locs to be long enough to style in “straight backs” (aka cornrows) or they have decided to cut their locs, typically 2 years old, and are rocking “360s.” These are the waves created with constant brushing and “ragging” a term used to identify keeping the hair tied down securely with a doo-rag or two. According to Toledo Instagram sensation and “top waver”, the Tsu Chef, the key to successful waves is moisturizing the hair, brushing in the right direction and ragging the hair regularly.

College aged students are the most diverse in hairstyles. Many young ladies go natural during their college years. It is more because they don’t have access to their regular beautician and second, because funds aren’t readily available for hair care. They become do-it-yourself stylists and often opt to cut their relaxed hair off and rock an Afro during school. When they return to their homes for the summer or breaks, they are most often getting sew ins. They get them because the hair, if they choose the right brand, is reusable and can be reused up to a few years in some cases. The hair can be washed and styled as their own, and even though it is a major financial investment, sometimes $400-500, students say it is well worth it because they leave their hair alone for the whole semester. Now this can be discussed further as far as whether or not it is the right thing to do, but it is often the case for students who feel they have no other choice but to do this to look nice while away at college. In some cases, they feel they are saving money by doing it this way.

For gentlemen in college, many are wearing locs (aka dreadlocks). Many choose to wear locs because of their cultural connection to Rastafarians or entertainers such as Wale, 2 Chainz and the legendary Busta Rhymes, whose locs from back in the day are still an inspiration today. They also see athletes wearing locs, especially in the NFL. There are still quite a few young men who choose to keep their hair cut low so they don’t have to worry about upkeep of braids and locs when it is time for a touch up. Again, money is a main reason why they would go short, but others will wait until they get to their hometown to get retwisted and styled.

As for college grads and people ages 25-35, the trend is natural looks from precision cuts to color, even for men who are wearing the top of their hair in copper or golden blonde like Kanye West. A contender for second is the various crochet styles available. At this age, many people are starting careers and families and know who they are and what they like. Many are comfortable in their own skin and aren’t worried about what employers or peers have to say about their hair. Ladies in this age range are learning their own hair and are trying styles like the wash and go or short, carefree styles. Men are wearing longer hair, not usually locked, but sometimes twisted up like DL Hughley and Jay Z’s current look. Women spend more time on the go, so they try to find low maintenance styles that they can maintain on their own. Preferring to look as natural as possible, crochet styles is the fastest growing trend in this age range. Crochet hair is often loose, even though it is called “braids” and mimics natural hair textures. The loose hair is looped onto braided hair with a latch hook and creates full, natural looking curls and waves. It can also be cut into shorter styles as well.

For people ages 35 and up, they have tried almost every style mentioned above by now. At this age, the top 5 styles are the silk press, lemonade braids, Sisterlocks (also braidlocks and interlocks), permanent loc extensions and the quick weave. For those wearing the silk press, these women have tried twists, knots, updos and the wash and go, so they prefer the straighter look. One benefit to the silk press is the body it has as opposed to relaxed hair, which is often more limp. For others, they love the fun designs that are created with the cornrowed styles, the most popular are those which vary in size, like a micro cornrow next to a medium one, then a larger one and so on. These braids are adorned with gold and silver cuffs, shells, wrapped in yarn and gold cords and straight at the ends.

Sisterlocks is a growing trend for professional women, but with a price tag starting at $400, many opt for micro braids on their own hair which can still grow out to be tiny locs, then they have the roots maintained with a tool. What women love about tiny locs is the fullness, the style versatility, and the non-scalpy look. They want body and texture without having to twist their hair up every week or getting extensions of some sort.

Permanent loc extensions is the fastest growing trend for people who have worn it all. As they mature, they choose locs because of the style versatility and the low maintenance of them. They love that locs can grow down to their waist, but often don’t want to wait 10 years for it to happen. Many also don’t want to go through the “ugly phase” of locking. So permanent extensions, created with human hair, is the newest trend. Men are opting for this method of locking too. Just a year or two ago, these extensions were braided into one’s own hair, now the extensions are premade by hand, costing up to $50 for just 10 locs. Then they are crocheted into the hair with a tiny metal hook. This method gives a more natural look than the braided and wrapped loc extensions and can cost $300 or more to install, taking several hours. Overall, people may spend $600 for permanent loc extensions to have the versatility and length natural locs offer over time.

Finally, the quick weave is still a trend. With improvements to the installation that are less damaging to the hair, many women choose this option because it is faster than a traditional sew in, and allows them to have a bold styles without affecting their own hair. Quick weaves often allow for shorter straight looks to be worn and look the most natural.

These style trends by age group are still not brand new to the culture. At some point in recent history, all these styles were worn in some fashion. Just take a look at the old music videos like Soul II Soul, Arrested Development and look at the Cosby show and A Different World. Check out African styles from the earlier centuries and see the wrapped hair, cornrow designs, copper and red colors, and locs of varying sizes and lengths. There is nothing new under the sun.

 
 

Copyright © 2018 by [The Sojourner's Truth]. All rights reserved.
Revised: 06/26/18 21:54:14 -0700.

 

 


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