Mulattea is a blog written by Skye Haynes. Her posts explore mixed identity, feminism, race, religion, and privilege.

Broadening Your Hair Horizons: 5 Overnight Styles for Natural Hair

Broadening Your Hair Horizons: 5 Overnight Styles for Natural Hair

You guys have heard my hair story -- a tale of woe, bleach, and nappy nights. I have been through it in every way imaginable, and there was a point in my life where I genuinely wanted to be bald. Because at least then I'd be free from the weekly flat ironing or the biweekly braidings.

That changed when I met Courtney in the 6th grade. Like me, Courtney had one of those flat ironing phases, but at some point she realized you could do so much more with black hair.

Courtney and I from 9th to 12th grade.

Courtney and I from 9th to 12th grade.

Don't laugh, we thought we were so cute with our straight hair. Anyways, over time Courtney learned overnight styles, and she taught them to me out of the goodness of her heart. And now I'm putting them on Mulattea for those girls out there who think there isn't much to do with black hair other than weave, flat irons, perms, or braids. Or for those moms (like mine at one point) who figured "Why not just put it into two braids?" Hopefully this helps you broaden your hair horizons.

Three Disclaimers:

DISCLAIMER 1: I can't recommend these styles for non-black hair, I've seen firsthand that a lot of these styles don't transfer well on other hair types.

DISCLAIMER 2: One of the videos below says it best: to do these styles, you'll need a moisturizer and a styler. Moisturizer could be oil, water etc.. and a styler usually is a curling cream, but I use leave-in conditioner. Each video lists the products they use, so definitely utilize that.

DISCLAIMER 3: 'Cause three is a magic number. A key to doing all of these styles flawlessly is your parting. If you don't part your hair correctly, this could all look a hot mess. On top of that, you can't really part your hair correctly if it's tangled. So detangle your hair! Even if it's a hassle (which it always is). 

#1. Pincurling

Whenever I pincurl my hair, people always ask if I just got my hair done. It creates tight, defined curls that slowly drop throughout the day, which makes you look like the queen of hairstyles. 

My pincurls usually come out super defined because I do them as soon as I come out of the shower. With fresh, clean, wet detangled hair, I incorporate my Mixed Chicks Leave-In Conditioner (for kids) (available at Target) and part my hair into four sections.  Each of those four sections gets four rows, and each row gets about four pin curls. Rule of fours. I only use bobby pins, not those metal clips that most people use, mostly 'cause bobby pins are way cheaper and get the job done fine.

So here's how pincurling looks for me before, during, and after the process:

As you can see it comes out with super tight, short curls, but trust me they drop as time goes on. Doing it on wet, curly hair (with a leave in conditioner) definitely keeps them short and defined. Here's a video (done on dry, straighter hair, so it doesn't look the same as how I do it) that should help for first time pincurlers:

#2. Twist Outs

I'm just going to be real: Twist outs usually don't look right on me. It's either because I am terrible at styling the back of my head, or I'm just terrible at twists in general. Only recently have I done a proper twist out, and that's because it's summer and I have a lot of time to patiently part my hair and go back and redo the ugly twists. That being said, no one does twists better than my friends:

It's all about parting your hair out and twisting with two strands of hair at a time. Very self explanatory, but somehow it's still too difficult for me. Check out this video that walks you through the process:

#3. Perm Rods

By far the most painful overnight style, perm rods give you those salon style curls. I used to do them all the time, but it really hurts! It's plastic rods that you have to lay on for 8 hours! Not fun!

Courtney decided to brave perm rods and document the experience for me:

Courtney's instructions for a proper perm rod style:

  1. Spray the leave in treatment 
  2. Apply small amount of curl enhancing smoothie 
  3. Add foaming wrap mousse 
  4. Roll the perm rod on a small section of hair 
  5. Sit under a dryer or let air dry over night

So yeah, they're super uncomfortable, but the result is beautiful.

#4. Braid Outs

A braid out is basically cornrowed hair, but you can also just have a bunch of braids in your head. It's up to you! I never learned how to cornrow other people's hair, let alone my own, so I just have a bunch of braids. After washing your hair, incorporate your moisturizer and a styler, and section your hair into small to medium sized sections. Moisturizing as you go along, simply braid each section. This video shows you what it should look like when you're done:

#5. Bantu Knots

I haven't done bantu knots in quite some time, but they usually give me the biggest fro ever. Protip: Don't do bantu knots only around the crown of your head, get some in the middle of your scalp. Otherwise you might look like a mushroom. I have.

Bantu knots are fairly easy on black hair, since it coils naturally on itself. After applying a moisturizer and a styler, simply roll your hair tightly until it starts to twist on itself, then continue until it forms a little stalk. Hard to describe, but it's really easy. Your curls come out looking bouncy and full. Here's a video that describes the process very meticulously: (Also I just love smartistabeauty's videos)

That's all I've got for today, but I'm definitely looking into some more hair related stuff for my future articles. If you have any comments or questions, drop them below!

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