Last year, or the year before that, the Cleopatra Bob Braids hit the hair scene and everyone who I considered cool plaited them. It was all over Pinterest and the girls truly embraced it like it was the best hairstyle that they had ever plaited.

Well, I couldn’t jump onto this band wagon then, because my hair was long and I was not about to cut it or even have it folded. When I eventually cut my hair as I was transitioning (you can read about my transition journey here), I decided to plait these braids. I had always wanted to do them and now that I had the perfect length, I was like ‘whoop whoop’ why not!  So, I had them installed and I must say I liked, no, loved them, the length and the size were perfect: only while I was at the salon. With every step I took further away from the salon, I kept knitting my eyebrows.

With Shiela Ndinda and Lydia, but lets just focus on the Bob Braids i had then.

 Without further ado, these are the 6 points that no one ever told me (even my close friends) about this hairstyle and why I will never do it again. Though, I found some solutions to all my negative points so that I don’t spoil the Cleopatra box braids for you. So here goes;

  1. The braids will be all over you face.

I really do not like hair whipping all over my face. Its irritating and it tires my hands from the constant pulling it back…lol I joke. Anyways, I couldn’t seem to bend or do anything without it flying out of control.  I have an oval shaped face so maybe that’s the reason why my round shaped face friends were having a better time at keeping the hair out of the way.

Solution:

a) On the second day, I went to the salon so that they can sew the bob box braids into a permanent hairstyle, ensuring that my hair was held back even if I jumped up and down.

b) Also check out these hairstyles that Tshani Marithe had to keep them out of her face.

Source: Pinterest at Tshani Marithe

  1. The burnt ends will poke your neck.

Guys, I cannot even put this in words, but just imagine 600 pencil nibs poking your neck. So irritating!

Solution:

a) Wear collared shirts, wrap a scarf around your neck…(this might be a joke despite the fact that  actually did that)

b) Have the braids plaited longer. See how Joan from Imigani had no neck problems.

Source: www.imigani.com

c) I  saw a post of a technique that involved rubber bands instead of burning.

  1. Some of the burnt ends will unfasten

This was weird because I imagined the hair dresser burnt all of them.

Solution: Did not find one.

  1. The boys will make a meme

Three people sent me this meme in one night and I genuinely laughed. Unfortunately, my hair was in this exact style so when the meme made its rounds, I felt like people were pointing at me. It was funny though despite the fact that they made our teeth look like that.

Solution: Laugh with the crowd

Source: Whatsapp Rounds

  1. You just might get a rash.

 When, I finally let my hair out from the permanent hairstyle, I got some unwanted visitors on the sides of my neck and face where the braids were in contact. It was horrible and as if that were not enough it was so itchy as well.

Before I fully blame the braids though, I must admit that i also gave thought to the hair products that I was using plus the braids were not the cleanest at the time (I had had them for 4 weeks). So, it could have been a mixture of everything; the piled hair oils, synthetic hair and the fact that all that was in contact with my skin. It was at this point when I immediately called it quits and un plaited the hair.

Solution: Lydia advised me to rinse my hair with diluted apple cider vinegar to cleanse the braids. Unfortunately, I didn’t love the style that much to go the  extra mile.

PS:

-This hairstyle is from the 90’s and made a big come back last year. However, if it ever comes back in my lifetime and I contemplate plaiting it, please refer me to this post.

– ‘round shaped face friends’: I forged this phrase, but it those friends of mine who have round faces. 🙂

Comment down below what you guys think or thought of the Cleopatra Bob Box Braids (what a mouthful ..lol)

xxxx

Rowena.

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