Mexican braids are one of the most popular and unique hairstyles around. With their intricate weaving and colorful additions like beads and ribbons, Mexican braids allow you to make a bold fashion statement.
In this article, I’ll provide a brief history of braids in Mexico and outline 7 stunning Mexican braided hairstyles that are sure to turn heads.
A Brief History of Braids in Mexico
Braids have been a part of Mexican history and culture for centuries. Many indigenous civilizations that lived in Mexico, like the Aztecs, Mayans, and Zapotecs, used braids as a way to differentiate social classes. Braiding techniques were passed down through generations and represented one’s marital status, age, and rank within the community.
When the Spanish colonized Mexico in the 16th century, they brought Spanish customs and traditions, including new braiding styles. As Mexican culture evolved over the centuries, braiding remained an important beauty tradition. The braided hairstyles we see today blend indigenous braiding methods with Spanish influence. Even the word “trenza” meaning braid in Spanish comes from the Latin “tricae” meaning to plait hair in three pieces.
Now let’s take a look at some incredible Mexican braided hairstyles for yourself.
7 Best Mexican Braids for Latina Hair
As a Latina woman, I love experimenting with different braided hairstyles. Braids are a classic look that allows me to embrace my Hispanic heritage. They’re also an easy, quick way to style my hair when I’m short on time. After years of testing out various braided styles, I’ve narrowed down my top 7 favorite Mexican braids. These braids not only look beautiful, but they work with all hair lengths and textures. Keep reading for my guide to the best Mexican braids!
1. Latina Box Braids
Box braids are one of the most iconic Mexican braided styles. This protective style involves sectioning the hair into squares and braiding each section into long, thick braids that hang straight down. Box braids are perfect for women with thin or thick hair. The many braids give the appearance of thicker, fuller locks. Box braids also help contain very thick or curly hair in a neat, stylish way.
How to Do Latina Box Braids:
- Part clean, dry hair into a square section at the front top of the head
- Divide the section into 1-2 inch squares and begin braiding each one down close to the scalp
- Continue sectioning hair into squares and braiding until all hair is complete
- Dip braid ends into boiling water to prevent unraveling
- Apply hair oil or serum to avoid dryness and maintain shine
I love rocking long box braids down my back. But you can also pull them up into a cute topknot bun. Box braids give my hair a fun, fashion-forward look while protecting my strands from damage.
2. Crown Braid
What woman doesn’t love feeling like a princess? Crown braids are regal, romantic, and ultra-feminine. Unlike box braids, crown braids don’t require sectioning hair. Simply gather all your hair at the top of your head as if creating a ponytail. Then, braid the hair round and round until you’ve formed a braided crown. Leave face-framing pieces loose in the front for a soft, whimsical vibe. Crown braids are perfect for date nights, weddings, or any occasion where you want an elegant updo. The loose tendrils prevent it from looking too stiff or tight.
How to Do a Crown Braid:
- Brush hair smooth and free of tangles
- Gather all hair on top of head as if for a ponytail
- Begin braiding the ponytail by crossing right strand over middle
- Continue braiding round and round the head to form a crown
- Leave desired face pieces down and out of the braid
- Secure ends of braid together with bobby pins
- Mist with hairspray if needed
Crown braids make me feel like a boho princess! They work beautifully with wavy or curly hair textures. I like to enhance them with a delicate hair vine or floral accessories.
3. Side Braid
Want a braid that’s edgy and unique? Try a side braid! Unlike conventional styles braided down the back, a side braid offers an unexpected, artistic element. Section off a slash of hair starting at one temple. Braid this hair diagonally across your head toward the other side. Leave the rest of your hair loose and tousled for maximum impact. Side braids are fun statement pieces on their own. But you can take them up a notch with colored highlights. For example, weave bright pink streaks into the braid for an eclectic punk rock vibe.
How to Do a Side Braid:
- Part clean, dry hair deeply to one side
- Take a diagonal section of hair starting at the temple
- Begin a 3- or 4-strand braid slanted across the head
- Braid normally until you run out of sectioned hair
- Secure end of braid just past the opposite temple
- Leave remaining hair down in a loose, natural style
- Add highlights to braid as desired
I’m naturally a redheaded Latina, so side braids help me show off my bold hair color. They’re edgy yet still feminine. I’ll wear my side braid paired with skinny jeans and boots for a night out.
4. Braids with Beads
Add unique personality to your hair with colorful beads! Beaded braids allow you to customize your style. You can choose beads that match your outfit, reflect your mood, or make a cultural statement. Start by braiding small, micro-style braids close to the scalp. Make them as thin or thick as desired. Then thread beads onto the ends of each braid. For an ultra-long look, attach hair extensions below the beads. Or keep the braids short for a cute curly style. Let them hang freely or pull them up into a colorful, beaded bun or updo.
How to Do Beaded Braids:
- Part clean, dry hair into small sections
- Braid each section into micro-braids close to the scalp
- Dip braid ends into boiling water to prevent fraying
- Thread desired beads onto the ends of each braid
- Attach hair extensions if wanted
- Repeat process until all hair is beaded
The colorful beads in my hair always get tons of compliments! I love coordinating them with my outfit to show off my fun personality. They work great for festivals, parties, or just everyday wear.
5. Mexican Braids with Ribbon
Sometimes simple is best when it comes to braided styles. Ribbon braids are a traditional Mexican hairstyle made modern. Part your hair down the middle into two sections. Braid each section into a long, basic plait that hangs over your shoulder. Then tie ribbons around the ends of the braids to add a pop of color. Choose ribbons that match colored highlights in your hair for a cohesive look. Or go bold with contrasting ribbon shades. This easy protective style works great on all hair lengths and textures.
How to Do Ribbon Braids:
- Part clean, dry hair into two equal sections
- Braid each section into a basic 3-strand braid down past shoulders
- Dip ends of braids into boiling water to prevent fraying
- Tie 1-2 ribbons around the end of each braid
- Trim ribbon ends into cute shapes as desired
Ribbon braids make me feel cute and girly. Sometimes I’ll curl the lengths of my hair before braiding for extra volume and bounce. The ribbons add a dash of innocence to complete the sweet style.
6. Latina Braid for Long Hair
When you have seriously long locks, you want to show off all that length. A loose, messy braid is the perfect way to style Waistlength or hip-grazing hair. Simply throw your strands up into a big, chunky braid at the crown of your head. Leave it loose and imperfected for that effortless vibe. Then top the braid with fresh flowers or other accessories. This breezy updo is ideal for a day at the beach or a laidback summer wedding. The looseness prevents pulling on delicate long hair.
How to Do a Loose Mexican Braid for Long Hair:
- Brush out any tangles from freshly washed long hair
- Gather all hair together at the top/back of head
- Start braiding chunky sections loosely down the length
- Wrap ends of braid into a knot and secure with bobby pins
- Tuck real or faux flowers into the top and sides of braid
- Pull out pieces along braid to look messy and carefree
I love how this messy crown braid makes my long hair feel lighter and cooler. The flowers add a pretty, feminine touch. It’s perfect for keeping my hair contained on hot summer days or at the beach.
7. Braids with Bun
If you want a braided style that’s office-friendly, try braids paired with a bun. This two-in-one look pulls back hair from the face in a professional yet stylish way. Start by parting clean, dry hair down the middle. Braid a small chunk of hair on both sides of your head near the temples. Make the braids tight and sleek, bringing them around the back of your head. Gather the rest of your hair into a low loose bun at the nape of your neck. Leave a few curly strands out along your hairline for added softness.
How to Do Braids with a Bun:
- Part clean, dry hair into two sections
- Braid a small piece of hair on each side of head
- Secure braids together at back of head with bobby pin
- Gather remaining hair into a loose low bun
- Leave out a few curly strands along hairline
- Mist bun with holding spray to keep in place
The double braids add stylish detail to an otherwise basic bun. I can wear this look to the office on weekdays. Then let my hair down, take out the braids, and go out at night! It transitions beautifully from day to evening with little effort.
As you can see, Mexican braids open up so many options for creative expression. You can blend techniques like fishtail plaits and Dutch braids for new textures. Don’t be afraid to add your own flair with bright ribbons, flowers, and other accessories either. Your braids will turn out unique to you!
I hope these ideas have inspired you to try some Mexican braiding styles yourself. Their roots run deep in Latin culture, but the beautiful designs work on anyone wanting to make a bold fashion statement. You’re sure to turn heads the next time you rock freshly braided Mexican hair!
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