In anticipation of our 2018 ESSENCE Street Style Festival , we’re excited to launch our new series, Style Starters. Each week, we’ll be highlighting a fashion or beauty trend created or made popular by Black women and telling you a little about how we made it our own.

This week, we’re taking a look at braids.

Get your tickets to the 2018 ESSENCE Street Style Block Party

A long-standing cultural tradition in the Black community that dates back centuries, braided hairstyles are often one of the first styles we get as young girls. While these styles have been since been embraced by countless other cultures across the globe, some of today’s most popular styles—such as Fulani braids, box braids and Senegalese twists—have undeniable connections to our African roots and even sacred cultural significance in our history.

Despite the number of people who appropriate and willfully ignore these roots without giving proper just due, we here at ESSENCE will continue to celebrate the beauty and truth behind what’s become one of today’s most popular “trends.”

As we prepare to celebrate Black style, fashion and beauty at the 2018 ESSENCE Street Style Festival, scroll through to join us for a quick trip down memory lane, highlighting the evolution of Black women and braids.

Share :