I have been protective styling consistently and plan to continue doing so until my hair is at my shoulders in an unstretched state. When I am tired of my braids and wigs, I revisit Bantu knots.
I’m really on the fence about Bantu knots.
True: they’re a regal, striking style, but I can’t help but remember the time Denis Dasilva, co-founder of Devachan, warned me about the breakage Bantu knots can cause. To make matters worse, according to Denis, the twisting technique causes a diagonal pattern of breakage up and down your strands, making it very difficult to correct with a trim.
Why would he scare me like that?
Soft Bantu Knot-Out
I have been protective styling consistently and plan to continue doing so until my hair is at my shoulders in an unstretched state. When I am tired of my braids and wigs, I revisit Bantu knots, making a few changes to reduce tension and the possibility of breakage.
My favorite way to do my knots is on dry hair because I get a bit more elongation this way. I also like them to look like big soft curls as opposed to defined ringlets. For this I only use products with a moderate level of hold. I used the ORS Smooth n’ Hold Pudding with the Cantu Dry Deny Gel Oil. For more definition you can use a foam or a gel with more hold like ECO styler.
I start by misting my hair with water to make it easier to part and to add moisture. You can make your knots as big or as small as you’d like. I made mine semi chunky to get a fluffy end result.
I applied the pudding then the gel before starting the knots. Be sure to leave some slack at the root before you start coiling the bun. The more you coil, the more the Bantu knot starts to twist at the root on it’s own. This means that there’s no need to twist this area. Trust me, twisting at the root will result in a very tight set of Bantu knots that will be difficult to sleep in.
Next, I secured my knots with colorful Ouchless rubber bands.
I sleep really wild and simply tucking the ends in just doesn’t work for me. Bobby pins are another alternative, but for some reason I can’t make those work either. I stick to my colorful Ouchless rubberbands secured on the tip of the knot only.
In the morning, they’re easy to spot and cut out. (Black rubber bands? Not so much. I’ve definitely cut my own hair trying to cut those babies out!)
The next morning, I carefully removed the knots and used my DevaDryer to ensure the curls were 100% dry before reaching for my Afro pick. Check out this video on the entire process from start to finish.
If you're a short curly girl who wants Bantu Knots, learn how to make it happen by visiting Do A Bantu Knot-Out (Even On Short Curly Hair).
Here's a quick tutorial on How to Avoid a Bantu Knot Fail.
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