From Micro Braids to Invisible Locs—These 5 Natural Hairstyles Are About to Be Everywhere This Year

01/24/2023

When it comes to natural hair, there are truly so many brilliant ways to cut, color, and style curls and coils. While having such a variety of different natural hairstyles at our fingertips can be a blessing for stylists, it can also be massively overwhelming.

That’s why it’s great to look towards the latest hair trends for a little inspiration. If you’re curious about what natural hairstyles are set to be everywhere this year, you’ve come to the right place. We scoured the Internet to find all the natural hair looks that absolutely need to be on your radar—from next-level braids to the coolest protective styles.

Ahead, here are five natural hair trends that are expected to dominate 2023.

Experimental Braids

In 2023, braided hairstyles will be bigger and bolder than ever before. Braid lovers will look to traditional African braided hairstyles to inspire statement-making and gravity-defying creations that celebrate Black hair in all its glory. With that said, expect to see more intricate braided looks that toe the line between a beautiful hairstyle and a full-on sculpture—like the sculptural braided flower updo that hairstylist Issac Poleon styled for Gabrielle Union’s Strange World premiere look—in the months ahead.

Invisible Locs

If you’ve been anywhere on TikTok in the last few weeks, you probably already know that invisible locs are having a serious moment right now. Similar to most faux locs, invisible locs give the illusion of traditional locs minus the commitment. However, unlike regular faux locs that are crocheted at the roots, invisible locs are twisted into the natural hair before they are then twisted around another section of hair. Given how incredibly versatile and low-maintenance this protective style is, it’s not all surprising to see so many people wanting to join the invisible loc bandwagon.

Disco Curls

Thought we were done embracing the ‘70s hair? Think again! Disco curls are going to be huge this year, so consider this your sign to break out your blow dryer diffuser as well as your wide tooth combs and picks. No matter your hair texture, anyone can embrace major disco energy with their hair by tapping into major volume and striking shapes. And with these larger-than-life curls, frizz and fluff are totally welcome!

Close-Cropped Afros

While the afro will never ever go out of style, this year, ultra-short versions of the cut will be taking center stage. As opposed to the big, glorious afros that we are so used to seeing, many people will instead opt for chic 1-inch length cuts that are more low-maintenance and grant versatility with regards to styling. So, if you find yourself growing sick of your length and ready for change, now might be the perfect time to finally get that big chop!

Micro Braids

Micro braids were all the rage back in the ‘90s thanks to stars like Brandy and now the protective style is on the rise once more. While these teeny-tiny braids do take forever to install—up to 12 hours!!!—the time spent is well worth it as this hairstyle can be styled in so many different ways. As Marsai Martin has proved, micro braids even look good with a bold hue, like platinum blonde, woven into the style.

If you experiment with any of these natural hair trends, be sure to share your creations with us on Instagram @readthetease

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Camille Nzengung

Camille Nzengung is a Features Editor at The Tease, where she covers all things hair. You can find her writing about the best hair products, the coolest hair trends, and all the exciting new hair launches. Send her a pitch: cnzengung@thetease.com.

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