The Beautiful Language of Braids

Black hairstylists and creative muses open up about their love for the iconic style.

The Black hair salon is a sanctified space, with each chair getting its believer closer to goddess-level status, from the wash bowl to the hair dryer to the styling chair. These shops are portals to transformation — equal parts magic and the sweat and toil of the artisans who lather, roll, bump, press, and braid day in, day out, with unparalleled results.

These parlors of beauty and style are also spaces of choice, converting even the most ambivalent and unsure into full-blown sirens simply with a decision pulled from the salon walls. There’s no shortage of potential styles to select from blown-up poster collages in full color, fashioned on models who look like you, your mother, and your friends, with a few sightings of our patron saints Beyoncé and Rihanna in all their coiffed Black-girl glory for good measure.

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