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What Are Invisible Braids?

Pamela Pleasant
Pamela Pleasant

Invisible braids are individual tiny braids that can barely be seen. The braids are so thin that at first glance they appear to be individual strands of hair. Synthetic or human hair is braided into the existing hair, to make it appear thicker and longer. Braids start at the roots and the synthetic or human hair is tightly braided onto these roots. Depending on the length and fullness of the hair, this process can take up to five hours to complete.

The invisible braids stop an inch (2.54 cm) down from the roots. This is another reason they are so difficult to see. Braids stop at this point and the remaining hair is left free on the ends. Natural hair is combined with the synthetic or human hair for a fuller look but a particular style can be incorporated after this process is finished. These braids work best with shorter hair.

Woman in breeze
Woman in breeze

Longer hair can become damaged if invisible braids are placed into it. The remaining unbraided hair flows freely and breakage can be seen where the inch- long braiding ends. With shorter hair this typically does not happen. Most of the real hair is braided, so there is no danger of extra breakage. The braids can also be used to keep the real shorter hair healthy and neat while it is growing out.

Textures and colors have to be considered when purchasing synthetic or human hair to be used for invisible braids. For example, if the natural hair is curly then the synthetic or human hair purchased must also be curly. This ensures that there will be no hair breakage problems when styling the hair. The color of the synthetic hair should also match the natural hair. Slightly lightened synthetic hair can be used to add highlights to the natural hair.

Invisible braids can be left in the hair for a long period of time if they are properly taken care of. Shampoo and conditioners should only be used once a week. Over washing can cause the braids to become loose and unsightly. If a conditioner is needed to control the hair, a mix of water and coconut oil can be sprayed on the hair.

Removing these braids is not a quick process. It can take twice as long to take them out as it took to put the braids in. Do not tug on the synthetic hair or attempt to pull out tangles. This can damage the hair and cause breakage.

Discussion Comments


@Mae82 - I have had extensions attached by invisible braids before and found that they added a ton of volume to my hair. What appealed to me was how long I could keep them in for. It seemed like really good value for my money.

I must admit though, getting them in is torture. You have to sit still for hours, and if you have them taken out, expect it to be an entire day and night adventure.

Caring for them can be a bit rough too. Shampooing the braids once a week was fine for me, as my hair was shiny and healthy. Unfortunately, I found the braids got tangled easily which was a huge pain.

I say try invisible braids for yourself and see if you like them. Just be aware there can be some hassles with them.


I have considered getting extensions for a long time because I don't like how my thin hair hangs so limply. No matter what products I use I can never seem to get any volume going.

Has anyone had any success with using invisible braids to add synthetic hair to their own to get volume?

I don't think that I could afford to purchase real human hair, but I would certainly consider adding some synthetic hair to my own.

Also, as far as caring for the braids goes, is it difficult to keep them looking neat or is it fairly easy? I worry about only being able to wash my hair once a week if I go through with invisible braids as a way to add hair.

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