How to Create a Striking & Protective Braided Updo Step by Step

6 Materials
5 Hours

If you’re looking for a striking and intricate protective updo style, then you’ve come to the right place. Welcome to my braided updo step-by-step tutorial, where I’ll show you how to braid hair into a protective style that is sure to impress.

This braided updo for black hair takes time but is straightforward to follow and the results are truly glamorous. Let’s get braiding!

Tools and materials:

  • Comb
  • Bobby pins
  • Hair gel
  • Hair ties
  • Hair butter
  • Edge control
Sectioning off the top of the hair

1. Section the hair

First, separate the top section of hair. We'll work on this later, so quickly braid it and pin it out of the way.

Sectioning the sides with a curved part

Section out the sides. Can you see that I parted it in a curve? That’s because the design of my braids will be curved.

This is why it’s good to map out your steps before you start so that when you section the hair, it’s sectioned with the next steps in mind. 

Braiding the side sections of hair

2. Braid the sides

Starting from the front side, section a small piece of hair and begin braiding in a curved, upward motion. 

Braided hair updo tutorial

Repeat the process, as shown. When you’re done, head on to the other side and do the same. 

Braiding hair up the back middle part

3. Braid the back middle part upwards

Now, go ahead and braid the back. Part the hair first, and then braid a middle section that should be as centered as possible. 

Parting the hair into sections at the back

4. Braid the back section in a criss-cross pattern

Part the rest of the hair into four sections. You’ll notice the top section is longer than the bottom. However, both bottom sections should be the same size and likewise for the top. 

Now, the aim here is to overlap and connect the sections opposite each other. So, the bottom right section will connect to the top left section. Then, the bottom left will connect to the top right. 

How to do a braided updo

Braided updo for black hair

Start your first braid on the outer bottom right section. Then, you’ll overlap it to the outer top left section, so it’s cohesive and flows accordingly. 

Watch the video to see exactly how I do this if you're unsure.

Overlapping braids at the back of the hair

So braid the outer section all the way up. Then, overlap and combine it with the top outer section. 

Criss-cross pattern of braids

Repeat this process on the other side. You should have a criss-cross style. 

Braided updo hairstyles for black hair

Now, repeat this process with the other section. Make sure to part out all your sections beforehand so that they are even. 

Overlapping braids in a diamond shape

This is what it should look like afterward. This is what I like to call the diamond design! 

Braided updo step by step

5. Part and braid the back side sections

The next two side sections should be parted evenly. 

Braiding hair upwards

Then, braid each section upward. Also, repeat the same for the other side. 

Hairstyle with upwards braids

This is what it should look like when it’s complete. 

Styling the top section of hair

6. Braid the top of the hair

When you’re done braiding, this is what the hair should look like. Now, it’s time to style the rest of the hair! 

Splitting hair to make two large braids

Split the hair in half and make two braids. The positioning of both braids is key.

Creating one braid closer to the hairline

You’ll notice that the braid on the left side is braided closer to the hairline.

Draping the braid across the hairline

Grab some bobby pins and begin draping the left braid around the front of the head, as shown. 

Pinning the braid in place with bobby pins

Positioning the top two braids

Pin and adjust where necessary. 

Sophisticated braided updo

Braided updo from the side

Braided updo from the back

Braided updo step-by-step tutorial

These are the final results! Thanks for joining me on my braided updo tutorial; it was so much fun!

I really enjoy showing my followers how beautiful and creative protective hairstyles for black hair can be. It’s such an art! See you next time. 

Products used

  • Mane Choice - Doesn't Get Much Butter Than This
  • Eco Style Gel - Olive Oil
  • Edge Control - EBIN 24 Hour Edge Tamer
Suggested materials:
  • Comb
  • Bobby pins
  • Hair butter
See all materials

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