DIY Protective Style: Havana Twists

Since posting this picture last December I have received so many questions about this style “Where can I get this done?” “Where can I buy this hair?” “Can you show me how to do this?” While we know that this style originated from Afrigenix Salon in New York and that the style is just really thick kinky twists the question remains for those of us outside NY how to achieve this look. Well you are in luck because all of these question and more have been answered!

Fingercomber.com retailer of the Havana Twists bulk hair has put together a tutorial on how to create this style at home.  To achieve Havana Twists, you need Havana hair which is different than the hair used for puffy twists, kinky twists, or marley hair.  From the website:

Havanna Hair is a soft, yet highly textured man made hair fiber that is created to blend well with a broad range of natural hair textures. It is created to be long lasting and re-usable. It should be washed and treated in the same manner of natural hair, and it benefits from the application of natural oils, co-washing and water-spritzing. It can be used to create a variety of natural hair styles, but it is most popularly used to create “Havana Twists”. To create Havana Twists, you will need between 5 and 7 packs, depending on the thickness of your hair, and the desired density and fullness of the look you are aiming to achieve.

So once you have ordered the hair you need to install it.  The installation method is the same as other twist extensions used for yarn twists, kinky twists, etc. but if you are not familiar you can check out the tutorial here with full pictures. This style is definitely on my list of protective styles to try during the fall/winter months. What about you, are you feeling these Havana Twists?

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The Takedown: Removing Extensions from Natural Hair


Me, Tanya and her micros

So lets talk about extensions.  This summer my curlfriend Tanya decided to give herself a break and had microbraids installed.  Her braids looked great and gave her a little vacation from styling her natural hair.  However, once the thrill wore off it was time for the dreaded takedown.  This is by far the worst part of getting extensions; the removal process takes forever and there are just so many of them.  *sigh*  In my home I always elect to throw a takedown party where you invite friends over, rent a couple movies, order in some pizza and work together to Amistad that hair! 

Here are my tips on having a successful takedown:

  1. Trim off excess extension hair.  Always err on the side of assuming your hair is longer as to avoid cutting it.
  2. Steam your hair to loosen build-up and aid in the extension removal process.

    Steaming

  3. Begin unbraiding using a tail comb and adding conditioner to any snarls to gently ease the extension hair out. We used YoGaChi Signature leave-in conditioner.
  4. Detangle as you go! This is the most important step.  After removing the braid or twist use a conditioner or spritz and gently detangle removing shed hair.  Failure to do so will result in a matted mess of hair.

    Shed-hair-ball

  5. Cleanse your scalp well with a clarifying shampoo at least twice.  Your hair despite your best efforts will have some build-up and it will not be removed within one wash.  If your hair is still not clean after two washes switch to a gentle moisturizing shampoo and repeat.  We used Suave Clarifying Shampoo and Alaffia Honey & Shea Moisturizing Shampoo.
  6. Deep condition or deep treat your hair based on your moisture to protein needs.

    Clean, conditioned and detangled

Start to finish I think this process took about 4 hours between the four of us.  I can definitely say that although Tanya was tired, she was definitely glad to be free of her micro-sized captors and enjoyed the pampering of having her hair cleansed, conditioned and styled for her.  Watch her vid to hear her talk about the experience. That’s exactly what curlfriends are for!