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What You Should Know Before Wearing Hair Beads

As a child, I looked forward to the days when my mother would adorn my hair with beads. It brought more flair to my girly look as the beads jiggled and clanged when I shook my head or ran about. My childhood days are over, but guess what? Hair beads are still on trend. And women keep rocking them like never before.

A black girl wearing fulamni braids with beads

These accessories are an excellent way to decorate your braids, dreadlocks, twists, and faux locs. Some have large holes, while some have small holes. Also, they come in different colors to suit all hair extensions and fashion styles. If you’ve always wanted to adorn your tresses with these accessories, here’s your sign to go ahead. To get you started, we’ll see why these beads are attractive and other crucial things you should know about them.

The Evergreen Allure of Hair Beads Always

different colors of hair beads

When you were a child, you decorated your hair with beads, and your daughter won’t be left out when you become a mother (if you aren’t already one). This goes to show how integral beads are to a woman’s beauty. These small decorative pieces have been women’s favorite right girlhood. They transform African braids from plain to chic, drawing more attention with the contrasting colors they add to your mane.

They’re versatile enough to embellish different coiffures. This is because they come in various colors like gold, brown, black, crystals, yellow, and lots more. Also, they have various shapes and sizes, depending on your preference or braids size. And they’re often made of plastic, wood, or metal and aren’t so weighty. 

These accessories will always stay in style. They’re a vital part of African culture and are used in creating box braids with beads, knotless braids with beads, cornrows, and other modernized evergreen hairdos.

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Why Black Girls Love Hair Beads

a pretty young lady rocking braids with hair beads

These accessories are a favorite among black girls for many reasons:

They Decorate Hair

By decorating the lengths of braids, beads add more accents to your hair. They give onlookers that extra substance to stare at when they look at you. In return, you get compliments that make you feel good about yourself.

They Secure Braids

Hairstylists use beads to secure the ends of your braids so they don’t loosen out. This ensures your hairstyle stays in place for as long as you want. Also, they secure unbraided hair as well.

They’re Symbolic 

Hair beads symbolize the strength and creativity peculiar to Black women. It’s a culture that has been passed down even before the days of slavery till today. So when you wear beads, you pay homage to the African heritage.

Furthermore, they help to convey your style, beliefs, or orientation. For example, adding clear beads to black braids suggests you’re a minimalist, while rainbow-colored beads may suggest you support LGBTQ pride.  

How to Attach Hair Beads

A photo showing how hair beads are attached to a girl's hair

Use any of these methods to install these accessories to your (daughter’s) hair. They work one braid at a time with any number of beads per braid, depending on your choice:

Rubber bands

Black or colorful rubber bands work for this. Run the braid into the bead hole and push it upward a bit. Then, fold the end of the braid to where the bead sits. Tie a rubber band around the bead and braid ends. Let the band sit above the bead.

Beading tools

Hook a section of braided hair into the cook of the wire. Pull the hair out through the bead. Afterward, place the pin on the part where you want the bead to sit. Then, slide the bead over the pin to secure it.


After inserting the beads through the braid, singe it with a little lighter or candle. Let the fire lightly burn the ends of the braids to create rough edges so the beads don’t slip out.

With the Hair Extension

After fixing the bead through an individual braid, roll the ends of the braid around the bead and tie it so it stays in place. 

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How Long do Hair Beads Last?

pretty girl wearing her braids into two buns while the back run loose

In general, the durability of hair beads depends on how you take care of the beads and your hairstyle as a whole. But unlike hairstyles that stay for about two to eight weeks, these beads can last longer than that depending on the materials used in making them. The best part is you can always reuse them to beautify other hairstyles or pass them down to a younger sibling or your daughter.

But first, you have to maintain the beads while they’re on your hair and after you take them off.

Are Hair Beads Heavy?

back view of a lady wearing different shades of brown hair accessories mixed with clear ones

The answer to this question is yes and no. And this depends on the size and type of material the beads are made from. Popular lightweight materials are wood, plastic, aluminium, and acrylic. But if you use them in big sizes, they’ll feel heavy. Metal beads are heavy and can weigh down your hair so you should use them sparingly.

Also, if your braids are too thick, the accessories will feel heavy.

Any Cons About Beads?

a white little girl wearing simple braids adorned with accessories

Whatever has an advantage has its disadvantage too, right? So, let’s see the bad sides of this hair accessory:

They Can Weigh Down Your Hair

If your hair is thin and your hairstylist doesn’t install your extensions properly, the beads can weigh your hair down by tugging or pulling on it when you attach them. In the end, it ruins your hairdo.

So, ensure you work with a hairstylist who knows how to install extensions properly: not too tight and not too loose.

Beading Takes More Time

Already, braiding takes much time to achieve. And when you add beading, you’d be spending an extra 20 to 30 minutes (or less) in the salon depending on the volume of your braids and the number of beads per braids.

Sometimes They’re Uncomfortable to Sleep on

Beads are an extra guest on your head. They’re hard, noisy from their dangling sounds, and fall on your face, too. If you sleep without a satin bonnet or scarf, you may find sleeping comfortably while wearing beads difficult. So, tuck your hair into a bonnet to avoid this. Besides giving you a sweet night’s rest, silk scarves help retain moisture and prevent your braids from aging quickly.

Give Your Braids a Facelift with Hair Beads

pretty little black girl wearing a short twist hairstyles made with wool, decorated with blue and white accessories

Beads are more than a hair accessory. They’re relics, shaping fashion and fostering self-expression. Attach them to your hair to add color and sparkle while expressing your personality and beliefs. With the many options available, finding what you won’t like is almost impossible.

Whether you’re looking for bright-colored plastic beads, clear crystal beads, glow-in-the-dark acrylic beads, or wood-like tube beads, there’s something for you. These beads suit different hairstyles, from box braids to faux locs, twist hairstyles, and many more.

So go ahead and add a dose of personality and style to your look with hair beads. They’ll definitely elevate your hair game.

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Victoria B. Willie

Writing has always been a part of me. From writing stories as a young child to studying Communication Arts in the university, it has always been more than a medium of expression to me.

And then one day, I found myself toeing the path of an entrepreneur and becoming a fashion enthusiast. This made me develop an interest in content marketing and copywriting which I've been chasing alongside my fashion career.

That aside, when I'm not sharing style articles, selling with stories, or creating fashion-forward pieces for Ria Kosher, you'll find me telling wild stories that always come with a twist.

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