Wearing Braids (Kinky Twists) While Transitioning

I just took out some kinky twist extensions about a week ago.  I had them in for 6 weeks.

I really love wearing braids because they’re such low maintenance, but I probably won’t be getting them too often because they stress my hair out.

My edges broke off a bit (nothing drastic) so that was enough to scare me away from wearing them too often.

Braid Maintenance

Despite my edges, I didn’t have as much shedding/breakage overall as I’ve had before.

Maybe because I took the time to keep my braids moisturized (olive oil) and I conditioned them several times a week with Carol’s Daughter Black Vanilla Leave In Conditioner.

It’s important to keep moisturizing and cleansing your scalp regularly while your hair is braided.  I love the African Pride Spray On Braid Shampoo because it lathers on contact.  I was able to keep my weekly wash routine with the braids.

If you’re going to wear braids I think it’s important to give your hair a long break in between.  You should also not keep them in longer than recommended by your stylist.

I think two months should be the max and three months may be pushing it unless you have micro braids or some style that is supposed to last that long.

If I do get them again it will be months from now and I’ll try to keep from getting them too small.  Smaller braids seem to cause the most tension.

Read about extensions and hair growth here.


  1. Asia says

    I have naturally curly hair and. To give an Idea of what it looks like. It’s a mix between Diana Ross and Leona Lewis … my question is that I have been wanting to get rope twist braids for the longest but I am scared that it’s going to mess up my curls or pull my hair out… now my question is are rope twist braids bad for my type of hair if I don’t have them mess with my edges and the will be medium size twist as well ? Please help ..

  2. Tevin H says

    Wearing them for 2 months? EWWWW! that’s fucking gross. Maybe it’s different with weave but every 2-3 weeks (those rare occasions a month if the stylist is on vacation or it’s a holiday) I get my long naturally grown hair (not permed) hair rebraided. I don’t wash my hair during that time because it’s fucks up the braids but man the dirt buildup is serious. Going 2 MONTHS without washing your scalp? That’s asking for people to say you stink and it’s not even because of your body.

    • lisa says

      Umm…. who said I went 2 months without washing my scalp? I sure didn’t. lol My scalp starts itching after a week so I don’t know how ANYONE can go longer than that.

      I washed my hair weekly because I agree…. it’s GROSS and ain’t nobody got time for funk! lol I’ve mastered the art of cleaning my scalp weekly without messing up the braids. The key is to tie your hair down in a silk scarf and tight! Also there’s a way of shampooing your scalp gently and effectively while keeping your braids intact.

      • says

        Lol! I know what you mean about dirty hair. I wash my hair every 1-2weeks as needed; depending upon the styles and the way I wear my hair. With Braids, I cleanse every 2wks (some people can get away with washing once a month!). In the cold winter months I wash biweekly when wearing small box braids. I don’t have sweaty-oily scalp or build up winter season.

  3. Breanna Smith says

    Hi im 13 and I am in braids right now I have so many questions ……. I was wondering if I can just go natrual while wearing braids becuase I want my hair to be the length I want it before I wear my real hair

    • lisa says

      Yes but make sure they aren’t too tight and take a one month break between installs to give your hair a rest. Also be sure to condition your hair and shampoo it regularly while in the braids. We have a tendency to neglect our hair when it’s braided up but it can get very dry and brittle and then when you take them down your hair could be in worse condition.

      Look on Google for “how to maintain hair while in braids” for some tips.

  4. Margie says

    Hi Lisa
    I have not used a perm in my hair since October of last year. I decided that I wanted to go natural. The only concern/ problem that I have is that I grey from the roots. I did full sewins, wigs and twists from the roots then rodded the ends. It’s been working but needing to use a rinse every two weeks. I want to do braids but have concerns of grey popping up. Any suggestions?


  5. natalie says

    Hi, naptural I am currently 9 months almost 10 into my transition I would just like to ask since august I have been transitioning to natural with braids. Is that bad and also as soon as I take out my braids I would redo them straight away because my hair is super thick and its not easy to get it in the styles I want. Currently my hair is just up to my neck so I was hoping to carry on transitioning with braids until my hair reaches the length that I want it. Thanks natalie

  6. Lisa says

    Hi Lisa

    I am glad to have found your site. I really don’t know how long I have been transitioning. My preferred style was wearing either sew-ins or braids. I have not had a perm since last year and decided to chop my permed ends off, which I did myself. And I tell you it felt good. I went to see my stylist because I wanted to know if my hair was long enough for her to braid for another sew-in and she said yes, and that I have about 3 inches of natural and still permed hair, so I didn’t do a good job with the self-chop LOL. Anyway, I was wondering if it was ok to wear wigs or braids until I get the length that I want to start showing off my natural hair. I am getting different answers and wanted to get your opinion. I am still self-conscious about wearing my natural hair because I don’t like combing my hair at all. I like to get up and go and wearing either a wig or braids will help me transition much better. What do you think?

    • lisa says

      Braids and wigs are fine just give your hair a break (especially from the braids) so it can breath and alleviate all that pulling and tension. So wait 2-3 weeks in between getting new ones put in and make sure you continue to deep condition your hair and moisturize it while in the braids/wig.

  7. Angie says

    Hi Lisa,
    When you used the African Pride spray on shampoo, do you use it like regular shampoo or do you spray it on your braids and then use a towel to wipe your braids off? I’m about to get some box braids and they’re a little bigger than your kinky braids & I plan on keeping them for at lease 6 weeks so I really need to know how to care for them without my hair breaking off. By the way in only 2 months into my transitioning.

    • lisa says

      Hi Angie

      I’ve done it both ways where I spray and wipe or I put my hair in a stocking cap and rinse. The stocking cap is to prevent the hairs from getting too unruly.

  8. Trina says


    I’ve been transtiioning since Jan 13 and i’ve been getting braids off and on since then. I usually waiting 2-3 weeks before i get them put in again. And I currently have Kinky Twist I got them on 8/15 and right now they are itching like crazy!!! I don’t know if it is the hair or what!! I’ve been using African Pride Braid Sheen and that has helped and the Tea Tree oil sheen. I will be going to the Beauty Supply store to get the African Pride shampoo and Jojo oil and oilve oil…Can I be allergic to the hair?

  9. Kisha says

    I have been transitioning since oct 12′ .’i recently took out my seneglese twist and for the first time in my transition I noticed length! (Its been growing, but now its noticable.. so dont give up if your not seeing growth in the first few months)I just want to share the good news. I had kinky twist prior to these and they was great too. But with this style I was able to keep my hair regimine as usual, cowash weekly, moisturize and seal with oils, and green house. (With other braids, i was told braid spray only)I also noted that I wore them about 5 weeks and with any braids that I ever have I would have build up around my hairline and would lose some edges, but not this time. I had about a golf ball size of shed hairs overall, I’m ok with that. I’m getting them again next week, this time I feel more comfortable to rock them 8 weeks! I pay about $140 to a African Braider , she supplies the hair.(btw I live in Midwest , might be cheaper elsewhere) . This is a great transition style. I hope this helps :)

    • Kemaya says

      Hi, I’m a new user to this website and I want to know if you could help me ? So I’ve relaxed my hair basically since I was around three years of age , I recently just turned fifteen & last month I decided going natural is best for me. so to start , last month while in school my hair was relaxed and after a week or so I decided to get box braids because I was tired of my hair. While wearing my box braids for only 1 month, I want to transition. Where do I start , I still have my braids in ? Btw after taking these down next month which will be August, before school I plan to let my hair breathe at least a week or two , and get more box braids or twist , but the big question.. What to do in between ? I really don’t know where to start , I’m lost & I need your help.

      • lisa says

        I would try rod sets (I have a tutorial here) and use very small perm rods so you can get a coily look. That is one of the best styles for transitioners because it blends your textures.

  10. KC says

    hello i want to get rope twists to give my hair a break, im a recent transistor. and my hair is very thin in the font especially on the left side im a little bald. do you think it will be okay to get rope twist in my hair?

    • Kisha says

      I think it depends on “how many weeks post relaxer you are” if it has been over 2 months since your last relaxer or if you all natural? Then I think you will be fine. Since you are thin, keep in mind the rope twist can be a little heavy. So talk to your Braider and let her know your concerns. I just came out of rope twist and my hair is fine, but it worked out well for me. I would recommend them. Just be careful on the thin parts

  11. Shae says

    I am about 9 months into my transitional period. I have kinky twists now that I absolutely love. I am about to take them out but really am not sure what to expect when I take them down. I know that I need a trim the remainder of my permed ends out of my hair to become all natural. What style would you suggest I rock after I remove my kinky twists?

  12. Alana Smith says

    I often get braids and am more used to wearing them instead of my own hair (even though I just recently began transitioning). I’ve never had a problem with my edges thinning because my mom (who is pretty much the only one who braids my hair) doesn’t braid them. She always leave a little bit of them out because they are sensitive and the braids will more often then not rip at those hairs.
    Also, you are completely right Lisa about everything. However, I guess because of how frequently I get braids, I have stretched it and have had braids in for more then three months though I would NOT recommend that for anyone else.

  13. Whitney says

    Hi! My last relaxer was on December 1st and I’ve vowed that it would be my last! My cousin who also happens to be a hair stylist specializes in taking women from relaxed hair to natural hair… But I’m already thinking about getting the “Poetic Justice” braids maybe about 5 months into my transitioning process. Would you recommend these type of braids or even the twist?

    PS- I’ve been on your site EVERYDAY since I discovered it :)

  14. Jo says

    I’m going on vacation and I want to get cornrows. My hair is relaxed and comes to the middle of my back. Will getting cornrows damage my hair?

    • lisa says

      As long as they aren’t super tight and you give your hair a break between the takedown and getting them done again, you’re fine. :)

  15. Shannon says

    Hi, I’ve been back and forth on this website about everyday. I havent relaxed my hair since April I think. I haven’t done anything with my hair i was just wondering if it was safe to rope twist my hair ?

    • lisa says

      Hi Shannon,

      As long as the twists aren’t too tight, it should be fine. Try not to put too much stress on the hair with tight styles.

  16. Dodie Marshall says

    First I would like to say thank you for sharing your transiting experience, it has been really informing and interesting. I just recently decided to transition and it’s been a couple of months since I’ve had a relaxer. Today i had kinky twists put in and I was reading your maintenance suggestions and I have a question about the olive oil use. Should that be put on the root/scalp or the actual twist?

    Thank you again for sharing your transition journey!

    • lisa says

      Hey Dodie,

      You can do both. I have very dry scalp so I sometimes add a couple of tea tree oil drops to my olive or jojoba oil to keep my scalp from itching. It works great! I’m not a big fan of oiling my scalp, but when it comes to itch relief the tea tree/oil combo works so well. It would probably work well with braids too because they often cause itchy scalp.

  17. says

    I am planning on getting two strand twists exstenions soon but IDK what hair to buy. Does anyone know what brand or what type of hair I should buy and how much it will be? I already know what color I should get but I just need to know the type of hair

    • lisa says

      Thanks, girl. I honestly don’t remember what hair was used. The shop I went to supplied the hair so I didn’t have to buy it.

  18. Alanna says

    ok so i have a question. My hair broke out really badly in the 7th grade, so i started to do kinky twist (which i’ve actually only done twice). I hadnt gotten a perm for almost four months before my kinky twist that i got recently, and i got those 3 months ago. Is my hair considerd still relaxed? or is it transitioning?
    And i wanna thank you so much, you very inspirational. I don’t really know how to take care of my hair all to well so my hair hasnt exactly been growing the way i want it to, but i have an idea on what to do now.

    • says

      If you still have permed ends that you haven’t’ cut off, then you’re still transitioning. Transitioners have permed hair with Lots of Natural New Growth .Once you do a big chop, wearing only your natural Hair, then you’ll be completely natural. Some 3-6months of Growth. At this time you’re ready to co completely Natural. Hope this is helpful.

  19. Nikea says

    Hi! I was wondering what is your recommended length of time between braided hair styles. I ask because I recently took out micros at the end of July that were in starting Memorial Day Weekend (weeks 13-22 post relaxer). I am considering getting kinky twists on week 26 for an upcoming vacation and because it is SO HOT in my state but I don’t plan on keeping them in past 6 weeks. I just wanted to know a general rest time. Thanks!

  20. Gerrie says

    i am transitioning to and its only be two months and my hair just breaking off so im thinking about using braids to transition and this was very helpful!

  21. Ms. Brown says

    I’ve been Natural for 6mos now. I grew my perm out over the summer of 2010. I did a BIG CHOP in October…been Natural Ever Since. I didn’t do the Transition. The Moment My Natural Hair Grew to a Certain Length (Man’s Hair Cut) I chopped all of it OFF!..leaving the Raw Natural Hair. THE PROCESS TOOK ABOUT 9MOS.

    Now I have my Hair Back (from when I was a little Girl) and don’t plan to go back to a Relaxer.

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