Knotless Braids: How To, Styling, How Long Do They Last?

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knotless braids

Cute, versatile and trendy, Knotless braids will keep your hair tucked away and protected for a good amount of time.  

One quick search on Google will tell you that this cute hairstyle can be styled in plenty different ways.

Unsurprisingly, knotless braids have been popular season in season out even among celebrities. 

In this article let’s explore:

  • What are Knotless Braids?
  • How to do knotless braids
  • How long does it take to do knotless braids?
  • How long do knotless braids last?
  • Cost of knotless braids
  • How to style knotless braids

What are Knotless Braids? 

Knotless braids are a variation of the traditional box braids where braiding begins with hair and then braids are fed in continuously giving a seamless natural look.

Since braiding does NOT begin with a knot, these braids do not cause strain to the scalp and hairline.

They are also less likely to trap large amounts of build-up at the root of the braid.

Knotless braids were born out of a need for a style that is kinder to hair. Around 2014, this hairstyle became famous in areas such as Atlanta, L.A, and New York. 

Knotless braids have since been embraced across the world.

Related: Knotless braids vs Box Braids

How to do Knotless Braids

Step 1: Cleanse & Moisturize

Begin with clean, moisturized, and detangled hair.

Use techniques such as the LOC method or LCO method to seal in moisture effectively.

This will ensure that your style last for long without feeling itchy or getting build-up too soon.

Step 2: Section the hair

Starting from the back, section out some hair horizontally. Then part out smaller sections in your desired shape.

Step 3: Braid the hair

  1. Apply gel at the root of your braid for a firmer hold and neat look.
  2. On each smaller section, divide the hair into 3 strands and begin braiding.
  3. After 2-3 rounds of braiding the hair, start to feed in the braiding hair little by little. Do this until you achieve your desired length and thickness.

Step 4: Finish & Style

If the type of braids you are using recommends it, dip the braids in hot water to keep the hair neat and to prevent the ends from unravelling.

Otherwise use a holding spray and hair mousse.

Proceed to style. Knotless braids are flexible even immediately after braiding hence can be styled right away.

Knotless Braids Tutorial (Video)

For a more detailed and visual tutorial, here is a video by Tiffani Renae.

How Long Does it Take to do Knotless Braids?

Knotless braids can take anywhere from 5 to 9 hours depending on the size and length of braids, hair thickness and speed of installation.

In addition to the factors above, If you are doing the braids yourself, other life commitments may come into play, think picking calls, taking breaks etc.

How to Refresh Knotless Braids

Knotless braids

#1. Re-braid the Front and Back Rows

If you are looking to make your knotless braids look fresh, one trick is to re-do the front and back braids.

Front and back braids age faster since the hair is shorter and the suffer the effects of styling the most.

Therefore, re-braiding makes the entire hairstyle look as good as new.

#2. Cleanse & Moisturize

You can also keep knotless braid fresh by:

  1. Cleaning the scalp to remove any dirt and build-up. You can wide down using a cloth with shampoo and water or use dry shampoo. Apple cider vinegar is also a great alternative for keeping the scalp clean. 
  2. Once the braids are clean, use a leave-in conditioner to soften and nourish your hair.
  3. Lock in moisture with a light oil.
  4. Use gel to re-braid the edges of your braids.
  5. Lay your edges when styling.

How Long do Knotless Braids Last?

On average, knotless braids will last for 4 to 6 weeks if properly installed and well-maintained.

The following factors will affect how long your braid will last.

#1. Maintenance

Poorly maintained braids will not last long.

Follow these tips if you want your knotless braids to last longer:

  • Where a protective cover when sleeping. Invest in silk pillowcases or hair bonnets to reduce friction.
  • Clean and moisturize your hair
  • Lay your edges when styling. This simple step keeps your hair neat and looking as good as new.

#2. Types of Products Used

If you want your knotless braids to last longer, use light products.

Heavier products will cause build-up on the hair root and scalp leading to itchiness necessitating removal of the braids.

#3. Styling

Style mindfully.

Over-manipulating your knotless braids will cause strain causing damage and making them look older than they are.

#4. Hair texture

Wavy and loosely curled hair is likely to unravel faster as the hair ‘slips off’ the braids much more easily. On the other hand kinky hair has a firmer hold and is more likely to last longer.

How Much do Knotless Braids Cost?

On average, the hairstyle is likely to cost between US $160 to US $600.

Several factors are responsible for the fluctuations and the wide range in prices. For instance, the longer the braids, the higher the price.

Other factors such as the size (thickness of braids), location, and your hairstylists can influence the range of price.

How to Style Knotless Braids

Here is a round-up of quick, easy and stylish ways style knotless box braids.

#1. Half-up and Half-down

How to style knotless braids

To achieve this, split the hair into two and have two sections, at the front and back of your head.

Tie the front section into a high ponytail and let the back section lie freely.

You can opt to pull a few braids at the front of your head for an extra cute look. 

#2. High Ponytail

To achieve this style, gather all your braids into one ponytail. Secure with a hair tie and voila!

Something to note though, if your braids are particularly bulky, it might be helpful to hold and tie a bunch at a time until the entire hair is held up. 

#3. High Bun

how to style knotless braids

With the hair already in a ponytail, hold the base of your ponytail with one hand while wrapping the rest of your ponytail around it.

Proceed to secure and tie the base of the bun with a hair tie.

Make sure the bun is neat by tucking in any loose strands of hair inside the bun or with the help of a bobby pin.

#4. Pigtail

If you are feeling particularly adventurous, split the hair into two at the middle of your face and tie a ponytail on each side.

For some extra fun, make a bun out of each ponytail to end up with some pigtail buns.

#5. Braided

Section the part of your braids that you would like to style into a braid. Begin braiding till the end and tie with a rubber band at the end to prevent it from unraveling for a classy regal look.

You could opt to braid at both the left and right sides of your head and tie at the back for a braided crown look.


  • How long does it take to do knotless braids? 5 to 9 hours
  • How long do knotless braids last? 4 to 6 weeks
  • How much do knotless braids cost? US $160 to US $600

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