26 African-American Hairstyles and Haircuts To Get You Noticed

African American hairstyles

Modern, edgy, and classic African-American hairstyles always stand out in a crowd.  Like the perfect accessory, they bring a whole look together. Whether you prefer simple and chic or textured and funky, these black hairstyles are sure to get you noticed!

So before your next hair appointment, check out these inspiring photos of the most popular African-American hairstyles and haircuts.

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Curly Pixie for Short Natural Hair

Curly Pixie for Short Natural Hair
Instagram @drazticchick

This African-American hairstyle is a perfect naturally curly pixie cut, made by hair designer Dominique from Texas.

Ladies need to know that short hair does mean maintenance. However, it’s all in the haircut. A good haircut can make or break any style. Dominique specializes in pivot point cutting. “This allows me to give each lady a cut especially for them, their head shape, their lifestyle. So, yes, the stylist who provides this cut should personalize it for you,” Dominique notes.

When it comes to products, less is best. This style is very soft. Dominique explains, “I use essential oils on the hair, so it’s very healthy. Heat is at a minimum. Just have fun with your hair long or short, discuss with your stylist in detail, and don’t forget to ask questions.”

Wavy Lob for Black Women

Wavy lob for black women
Instagram @thestylistqueen56

A wavy lob for black women can be effortless and chic with any hair texture. This look will introduce body and movement to your tresses when styled with a curling iron for soft waves. A good thing about this style is that women can go longer than a week without adding heat to it.

Chic & Eccentric Swirls and Braids

Chic & Eccentric Swirls and Braids
Instagram @touchofkay

This African-American hairstyle is described as chic and eccentric by stylist Kay of Hampton Roads, VA.

This style can be worn as shown or taken out and worn as curls. Kay advises that knowing the hair texture is very helpful to determine which products to use and whether it would be better to do the style on dry or semi-dampened hair.

Feed-In High Ponytail

Feed-In High Ponytail
Instagram @_slayitnae

A feed-in high ponytail is very versatile. It was styled and created by professional braider, Janae Brice of Georgia.

“You can put it to the side, directly in the middle, or into a large bun! This look can be worn for any type of casual or professional event,” says Brice.

Waterfall Devacut

Waterfall Devacut
Instagram @dgubeauty

Consider a very long, luxurious, signature Waterfall Devacut on for natural black hair. This is the type of locks that create a stunning high messy bun or just a low bun.

Minneapolis-based stylist Daisy Giles-U’u states, “My favorite thing is the drama that the length brings. A close second would be the additional curls that the added shaping in her interior brings.”

African-American hairstyles like this are for black girls who have either think hair with a very strong curl pattern that doesn’t dilute much with length or those who have a weaker curl and don’t mind heavy maintenance and diffusing with each cleanse and condition.

Fulani Braids Hairstyle

Fulani Braids hairstyle
Instagram @redd_bangzz

This style is called “Fulani Braids”. Stylist Reya of the UK created the box braids at the back of the head, while the front of the head is a row of cornrows. It’s like taking parts from two separate African-American hairstyles and turning them into one hairstyle.

According to Reya, “This long hair can be styled a handful of different ways because the braids at the back of the head allow for easy styling and manipulation. Ultimately, these braids can be worn in an updo, a ponytail, half up half down, or even in a bun.”

Reya recommends tying down the braids at night with a silk headscarf to prevent frizzing. It’s also important to moisturize, whatever your hair type, before and after braiding to prevent the hair from drying out. Remember that this is a protective style, so make sure you protect your hair and scalp.

Short Edgy Razor Cut for Black Women

Opt for disconnected and edgy razor-cut bangs with stunning highlights and a caramel base for black women.

Created by stylist Loriane Jackson of Chicago, this color can be achieved with Wella 7W, Blonde Brilliance bleach, and 20 volume developer by Wella. This dynamic and edgy bang was shampooed with Joico K-Pak and conditioner and molded to the shape of the head with It’s a 10 leave-in and the Nairobi foaming wrap.

Jackson states, “She was placed under the dryer for 45 minutes, then combed out. I added a pea-sized amount of grapeseed oil for styling, rubbing it throughout the hair. I used a 1/2-inch flat iron to silk out and finish the hair.”

Trendy Waves for Short Hair

Trendy Waves for short hair
Instagram @t.techniques

Here’s a wavy look that’s classic with a modern twist! Waves are definitely trending. Georgia-based stylist Tynisha Escobar says, “The waving technique allows me to be as detailed and creative while giving a woman optimum longevity.”

Escobar adds, “I recommend this look to any lady who enjoys a low-maintenance and trendy style. It’s ideal for those with short, chemically relaxed hair.”

Side Cornrows Braid Style

These side cornrows are super edgy and worth a try!

Designed by hair artist Madaline of Georgia, she says, “it fits every woman’s face shape and it makes your appearance more appealing because it brings out your jaw structure and facial features that would normally be covered. It contours your face and neck naturally. It also makes a woman’s face look slimmer and more chiseled, no matter the body type.”

Madaline only uses one product when doing these side braids. “I use Beeswax because it slicks down any hair texture and makes it easy for me to carve my way around. Beeswax also grows your hair really fast and keeps it moisturized from the time I apply it until the time they take down the hairstyle,” Madaline explains.

Vintage-Inspired Waves

Vintage-Inspired Waves
Instagram @hairbydelvina

These vintage waves are very classic. The style really speaks to the vintage 1920s flapper look that has resurfaced over the past few years. Virginia-based stylist Delvina Jeffries says, “My favorite thing about this style is that it’s effortless for a stylist to achieve this look and easy for ladies to maintain at home.”

This style really works best on fine or relaxed hair. It’s a great low-maintenance, get-up-and-go hairstyle that can work with most face shapes.

Protective Bob Braids

This braided bob is a protective style for most Black/African-American women. It’s an average short bob that’s perfect for the hot summer. “What I love about it is that you can just get up and go in the mornings,” states stylist Stella Styles of Palm Beach, FL.

To recreate this look, you will need six to ten packs of braiding hair and a protective styling hair jam/grease, as well as a flamed candle or flat iron to burn off the tips into the desired length.

Styles adds, “The type of women I would recommend for a braided bob would be those who would like a protective style that is less maintenance.”

No-Fuss Hair Coils

Opt for natural, no-fuss hair. The best thing about this look, created by hair designer Genevieve of Ohio, is that you can see those curls with flair!

Genevieve goes on, “The highlights help to enhance her curl type. With tighter curls, sometimes the curls can get lost, but this style helps to show them off.”

Five-Strand Feeding Braids

Five-Strand Feeding Braids
Instagram @styledbyesss

Consider five feeding braids with little braids in between. It’s simple and versatile at the same time, giving you an edge without being too extreme. Stylist Esther Contant of New York created this style, which is a nice day to day look that you can dress up or down.

“For this look, I used one pack of Xpression braiding hair, as well as Shine and Jam to keep the parts and braid clean. I followed with mousse, tied it down, and placed her under the dryer for about ten minutes,” Contant explains.

Loose Shoulder-Length Waves with a Side Part

Loose Shoulder-Length Waves with a Side Part
Instagram @adashofjass

Here’s a loose wave style by stylist Jasmine Flagg of Cincinnati, OH. By using this method of straightening, it allows any texture of hair to have bounce and body.

Flagg emphasizes, “My favorite thing about this style is that it is a nice, soft and elegant style. It also allows flexibility with or without chemical, since many African-American women have transitioned from using relaxers to natural hair.”

She explains, “This look rarely fails. It’s nice and sleek, yet youthful. It also doesn’t add any tension, so it’s a nice way to let your hair breathe from your normal day to day styling. The only upkeep would be to wrap it at night and cover it with a silk scarf.”

Weightless Modern Long Curls

Weightless Modern Long Curls
Instagram @torrensalicia

This African-American style of locks shows a diamond shape that accentuates the facial features. It’s nice how it falls weightlessly and how effortless it looks with her defined curls. The hair was cut curly and fully dry to create this shape. The curls were cut where they live!

Stylist Alicia Torrens of Florida advises, “Use only water-soluble products to recreate this look. Innersense Organic is one of my go-to product lines! I cleansed her hair with Hydrating Cream Hair Bath shampoo and Hydrating Cream conditioner. I styled her hair with Quiet Calm curl cream and I Create Hold gel.”

Torrens adds, “I made sure to apply the styling products on sopping wet hair, adding the cream first and finishing with the gel for hold. I scrunched the hair to remove excess water and to allow the product to penetrate. We let the hair fully dry without touching the hair.”

Once this hair is fully dry, scrunch it to break the gel cast. The curls will be plumped, soft, and hydrated!

Medium-Length Pixie with Red Highlights

Medium-Length Pixie with Red Highlights
Instagram @cutz_up

A medium-length pixie makes a fun, playful, sexy look. Florida-based stylist Simone Ho-Sang loves how it’s a soft style overall with just a bit of boldness to it with the color.

This pixie cut is for the woman who is up for a soft, cute and edgy look. It’s great for women who want to take a little risk with their color. The ideal lady does need to have a bit of density in her texture to achieve this look, though.

Sassy Short Pixie

Sassy Short Pixie
Instagram @tylerjamessalonlofts

It’s fresh yet glamorous – this boyish pixie cut will leave you feeling breezy all day without the hassle of your hair getting on your pretty face.

Long Pixie for Straight Hair

Long Pixie for Straight Hair
Instagram @khimandi

When it comes to African-American hairstyles, this Hollywood favorite short cut is sensational! Combine this with full bangs and show off the beautiful face line you’ve got.

Short Afro-Textured Hairstyle

Short Afro-Textured Hairstyle
Style by Nancy Hamilton, Lady of Grace, Peoria, AZ

Short afro-textured hair has an allure of its own. Show off your gorgeous short natural locks in this super cute short hairstyle.

How to style:

  1. While in the shower, apply a leave-in conditioner
  2. Gently dry hair with an old t-shirt and apply a generous amount of curl crème
  3. Lightly twist ends with natural curl pattern.
  4. Allow hair to air dry.
  5. Fluff curls as desired.

For defined and conditioned curls, on your African-American hairstyles, try Kinky Curly’s Knot Today conditioner. This pixie style on natural curls will work for all face shapes.

Sleek Angled Bob on African-American Women

Sleek Angled Bob on African-American Women
Instagram @shanamaire_

A cool blonde shade on straight strands is perfect for any season. Match it up with a sassy bob cut and you’re good to go!

Glamour Blowout with Long Waves

Glamour Blowout with Long Waves
Instagram @rachel_redd

Wear the right blonde with these super stylish loose curls. Bring out the S-shape of your hair and be strikingly stunning!

Super Straight Hair with Blunt Bangs

Long Straight Hairstyle with Bangs
Style by Nicki Glasgow, Studio Seven Salons, Columbia, SC

For head-turning African-American hairstyles, try pairing strong, full bangs with super straight hair.

How to style:

  1. Prep towel-dried hair with a blowdry lotion.
  2. Section hair into 4 quadrants and blow dry straight using a small paddle brush.
  3. Blowdry bangs by alternating blowing them down and from side to side.
  4. Flat iron hair by working in small horizontal sections.
  5. Flat iron bangs straight down and with a light bend on the ends.
  6. Finish style with a small amount of dry oil.

Try the Drybar’s 100 Proof Treatment Oil for lightweight shine. This style will work for all face shapes.

Lightly Curled Long Bob

Lightly Curled Long Bob
Style by LACEY SINGLETON, Upscale Hair Salon, Savannah, GA

This lightly curled long bob is a soft and sweet hairdo that speaks volumes. Try adding curls just to the ends of your long bob for a sweetly chic attention-grabbing style.

How to style:

  1. Apply a blowdry lotion to towel-dried hair.
  2. Using a medium-sized round brush, blowdry hair.
  3. Blowdry bangs using a small round brush and slightly over the opposite side.
  4. Using a flat iron, style bangs as desired.
  5. Curl hair with a 1-inch flat iron.
  6. Set style with a soft hold hairspray.

Finding the perfect round brush is difficult, but Olivia Garden’s 2-inch 100% natural Boar Bristle Round Brush works well to achieve a perfectly smooth blowout. When curling hair, don’t curl any higher than mid-ear to achieve the perfect curl on the ends look. This style will for oval, triangle, and oblong face shapes.

Knotted Updo

Knotted Updo
Style by Shwanda Williams, Kenneth Shuler Schools, Columbia, SC

African-American hairstyles are perfect for both naturally curly and relaxed girls.

How to style:

  1. On air-dried hair, apply a moisturizing oil.
  2. Part hair from the top of the ear to the other ear.
  3. Pull the top section into a tight ponytail near the part.
  4. Pull the bottom section into a tight ponytail near the part.
  5. Create 5 sections in each ponytail.
  6. Divide sections in half and create a 2 strand twist.
  7. Secure twists with a clear elastic.
  8. Wrap 2 strand twists around ponytails as desired and bobby pin into place.
  9. Fluff twists for extra volume as desired.
  10. Finish style with a shine-enhancing spray.

Try Kinky-Curly’s Perfectly Polished to moisturize and add shine to your locks. This updo style will work for all face shapes.

Braided Frohawk

braided frohawk hairstyle for African-Americans
Style by LASHONDA HOWARD, First Impressions, Ft. Walton Beach, FL

Take on the world and get noticed when flaunting curly hair and a braided faux hawk style!

How to style:

  1. On air-dried hair, section offside where you want braids to be.
  2. Create 4 cornrow braids that go from the front to just behind the ear. Secure braids with a clear elastic.
  3. Spritz the rest of the hair with water and apply a curl cream.
  4. Allow hair to air dry and fluff curls as desired.
  5. Finish with a medium-hold hairspray.

Try Moroccan Oils Luminous Hairspray in medium for a flexible hold hairspray with tons of shine. This less dramatic mohawk style will work for all face shapes.

Jaw-Length Bob with Bangs

Jaw-Length Bob with Bangs African-American Hairstyle
Style by PAULA RUSSELL, Kenneth Shuler Schools, Columbia, SC

For a style that’s not too short and not too long, try this jaw-grazing bob with strong bangs.

How to style:

  1. On towel-dried hair, apply a blowdry lotion and thermal protectant.
  2. Working in small sections, blow dry hair using a Denman brush.
  3. Flat iron hair and gently bend the ends under.
  4. Flat iron bangs as desired by adding a slight bend to the ends.
  5. Apply a shine-enhancing oil to the ends.

Use Josie Moran’s 100% argan oil for super soft and shiny locks. This style would work best on triangle and oval face shapes.