Style & Beauty

Styling Tips :: Senegalese Twists For The Fall & Winter

October 29, 2012

*** Note: To see an updated version of my twists, click here. (3/31/2013)

Every morning I find myself rushing to work after spending way too much time trying to get my hair to “act right” or look halfway decent. What ended up happening was that I was pulling my hair up (or back) into a bun, adding Marley Braiding Hair and jetting out the door. This caused a lot of tangling and shedding and I knew I had to do something so that my year and a half (maybe more) of hard work wouldn’t be undone. Not only did I need new ideas for styling my hair, the temperature drop meant I couldn’t wet it everyday like I was doing in the summer…which made styling it even more of a challenge.

So, I tried a hairstyle I’ve been wanting to try for months – Senegalese Twists.

Senegalese Twists originated in Senegal, West Africa. This style is very similar to box braids, but with twists instead. I didn’t really buy into the box braid trend, mostly because I hate the way braids look on me. It doesn’t matter what type of braids they are, my face and braids just don’t get along.Β Even though this style is very similar to braids, the twists give it more elegance in my opinion.

It took me three days (I took SEVERAL breaks lol) to finish the twists, and here’s how I did them:

First, I went to a local beauty supply store and purchased five bags of 100% Kanekalon Hair at $1.99 each. I bought five because most of the tutorial videos I saw on YouTube used 4-5 bags. I also bought oil sheen and spritz at the recommendation of one of the store employees. I haven’t used either yet, but with some of the styles I’m going to try, I’m sure I will.

I washed my hair and let it air dry as I started the twists. I didn’t want to use heat if I didn’t have to and as thick as my hair is, I knew that it would dry in no time. In hindsight, blow drying it probably would have been a better idea because I had to comb through it and it was very difficult in some areas because my hair had shrunk so much.

I tried two different methods of getting each twist started. One method was twisting it at the root and the other was braiding it at the root. Although the twisting method looked better, it unraveled each time I tried to finish a twist. After a full section was done the braided roots didn’t look so bad, especially when the twists were smaller.

To secure the ends, I dipped them in boiling water for about 30 seconds. After they were dry, I clipped any stray hair from the ends so that it looked as neat and polished as possible.

For style inspiration, there are a ton of videos on YouTube that should help get you going. If I can manage to successfully do any that I find, I’ll be sure to post them!






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  • Reply Tempestt Miller November 1, 2012 at 12:26 am

    Cute Twists

    • Reply Jessica November 1, 2012 at 8:43 am

      Thanks BFF! :-)

  • Reply Riann November 30, 2012 at 5:10 pm

    What kind of kankelon hair did u use i love it!

    • Reply Jessica November 30, 2012 at 10:55 pm

      Thank you! I can’t remember exactly, but I think it was a brand called Diamond. I know it was in a blue package.

  • Reply Valarie January 10, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    I love your twist I am considering trying them myself. I want them to be as full as yours were. I noticed the hair line you had smaller twist is that what you did? Fuller twist throughout the hair and thinner ones around the hairline?

    • Reply Jessica January 10, 2013 at 6:38 pm

      Thank you Valarie…yes they were a lot smaller around my hairline, mostly because I could actually see what I was doing and because I wanted them to appear like I had more twists than I actually did since I was too lazy to do them in smaller sections LOL

  • Reply Marquita Baldwin March 25, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    I absolutely love your twists. Do you have anymore pictures of the ends of your hair? Was it straight or curly? I’ve seen them both ways.

    • Reply Jessica Simien March 25, 2013 at 1:51 pm

      Thank you! My ends were straight, they were so long I could never get a photo that showed the ends. Sorry!

  • Reply Ashley P. April 11, 2013 at 8:49 pm

    Hi, your hair is so cute!! I am considering getting some for the summer, and I was wondering if the hair was very heavy? Also, did it help or damage your hair?

    • Reply Jessica Simien April 12, 2013 at 1:34 pm

      Thanks Ashley, yes the hair was very heavy. I only left them in for about a week and a half so it really didn’t do much for my hair either way.

  • Reply Makilya Goldsby June 10, 2013 at 6:05 pm

    I love your hair, and it looks just like Beyone in fighting temptations, it’s beautiful, your braids seem to be kind of thick, how much hair do you use in each braid, I’m doing mine myself and am curious..

    • Reply Jessica Simien June 10, 2013 at 6:24 pm

      I used two pieces per twist.

  • Reply ZIkiya loves u September 12, 2013 at 4:58 pm


    • Reply Jessica Simien September 13, 2013 at 9:07 am

      Thank you!

  • Reply samaria October 10, 2013 at 8:34 am

    this is so pretty how long do they last?

  • Reply PhoenixXII October 21, 2013 at 11:42 am

    You’re absolutely Gorgeous!! I love your hair!!

    I’m transitioning- I’ve been relaxer free for about 5 months now- rocked a short/cropped hairstyle for 4 years (which I absolutely love and miss)-

    I’m getting my senegalese twists done today and I’m so amped!!!

    Can you tell me if you found difficulty in styling them? (buns, updos, etc.)

    I have a very active lifestyle with the gym and I think this is the best move I can make-


    • Reply Jessica Simien October 21, 2013 at 11:48 am

      Thank you! They were fairly easy to style, it’s just that your buns end up really HUGE because of the length and amount of hair you’ll have once the twists are done.

  • Reply Alexis October 22, 2013 at 11:56 pm

    Do you know any good hair brands for natural hair that can be used for this style?

  • Reply Justice December 26, 2013 at 1:02 am

    I love your hair :) I’m getting some done this coming Sunday and I want them to look EXACTLY like yours. The person doing my hair does the braiding method, but hers are an okay size but how much hair do you use for each twist? As like in a finger width of hair or a finger and a half width of hair? Also what would be a good gel to use when getting them done?

    • Reply Jessica Simien December 30, 2013 at 9:23 am

      I would say a finger and a half width of hair. I used a curling gel/paste like product to make them hold.

    What do you think?