How long does this style last? We get this question for cornrows and quite a few other styles on the menu of our mobile styling service, Yeluchi by Un-ruly. So, we decided to get some concrete, tried and tested answers.
How long a hairstyle lasts can depend on the style, your texture, lifestyle and how well you take care of your hair while it’s in a protective style. Sleeping with a silk scarf at night is one of the most important rules, but we also have an official guide for caring for protective styles here. Additionally, depending on the style and how much access it gives you to your scalp, you most likely won’t want to keep it in for too long. Two to eight weeks is a general rule of thumb–with styles like jumbo cornrows staying in for less time and styles like box braids (that you can wash easily) staying in for longer.
All that said, the first style we took a look at was simple all-back feed-in cornrows on our lovely client Quinn, who has a mix of 4B/4C hair. Quinn ultimately left her hair in for 21 days, which included not washing, and with some level of physical activity. But as she mentions below, by the last day she was due for a wash and deep condition.
[By the way, if you’re wondering if you’ve left your box braids in too long, this quiz will help.]
Quinn kept a little journal of how the style fared. You’ll see the frizz starts lightly creeping in about six days in. But, as celeb stylist Dr. Kari says, a little frizz is okay; it’s actually beautiful ;-). Check it out below and watch this space and this tag, as we add more hair textures and styles into the mix.
Quinn’s Hair Texture
“I have mixed type 4B/4C. It’s pretty coarse and low porosity. It’s just about chin-length when stretched.”
Here’s what Quinn’s hair looked like after her appointment. She booked our feed-in cornrows (3-10 braids) option with added hair, plus a blow out.
Her stylist, Latanya, used Goddess Lengths Edge Tamer and Shine ‘n Jam Magic Fingers Setting Mousse; and Quinn bought one 3-pack of RUWA pre-stretched braiding hair.
Days 3 – 7
“They are holding up well! Only other update is that I went bike riding on Day 6 and wore a helmet, so had some minor friction against the braids.”
Days 10 – 13
“[They’re still] holding up. Cornrows themselves are doing pretty well. The baby hairs along my hairline/nape are starting to get a little fuzzy (been occasionally using edge control to help but too much makes my hair a bit goopy); the loose part of the braid (just the extra hair) is getting just a little fuzzy I think from the friction against clothing, etc.”
Day 17 – 21
“Cornrows are still holding up but the loose parts of the braid are fraying and starting to show signs of wear. Worked out (and sweated a lot) on Day 17, which definitely didn’t help, lol. …Planning to take them out tomorrow since my scalp is feeling extremely dry/itchy and it’s definitely time for a deep conditioning!”
“And here are the cornrows right before I took them out on day 25.”