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The Pros and Cons of Mini Twists for Natural Hair

Avatar • Jan 31, 2014

minitwist5

(Circa 2010)

By Chinwe of Hair and Health

Mini twists are essentially tiny twists, much smaller than the diameter of a pencil.  In some cases, mini twists are so small that the hair may appear loose rather than twisted.  

THE GOOD:

Mini twists last longer — anywhere from three to six weeks — than larger twists. Because they are so small, they tend not to frizz and age as quickly.  This is great news for those who want to leave their natural hair alone for several weeks at a time.

Not only do mini twists last longer, they also allow for more versatility in styling. Because they are so small, it is much easier to achieve a range of styles than with larger twists.  A lot of the styles can mimic those on loose natural hair.

minitwist1

(In 2013)

THE NOT SO GREAT:

Mini twists can take hours to a day or two to install or take down.  This can be a challenge if you have to be somewhere or you just do not have the time or patience.  In terms of helping with patience, watching a few movies or television shows can help pass the time.  When it comes to needing to be somewhere, some naturals prefer to start their mini twists in the front or along the perimeter of their hair so that they can “fake the finished look” if they haven’t completed the twists in time.

THE BAD:

Single-strand knots and locking are more likely to occur in mini twists than in larger twists, especially for those with tightly-coiled, kinky strands.  In order to prevent locking, try not to wear this style for longer than four weeks.  Five or even six weeks might be pushing the limit, but then again, if your hair can handle it, then go for it.  (Twisting technique also matters; the tighter and stronger your twisting, the longer you can wear the style.) Additionally, redoing the twists (weekly or biweekly) along the edges and nape may be necessary to minimize locking and meshing.

minitwist3

(Smallest ever done; in 2010)

ARE THEY FOR YOU?

If you lack patience, then mini twists may not be for you.  Patience is necessary during the installation and takedown in order to avoid breakage.

If you wash your hair frequently, then mini twists may also not be for you.  Washing the protective style can encourage single-strand knots and locking over time.  Naturals with tightly-coiled hair should be extra cautious when wearing this style being sure to monitor their hair for meshing and locking.

If you desire a long-term protective style that offers versatility, but do not quite have the patience to install mini box braids, then these sort of twists may be a viable option.

If you have fine strands, then there is a chance that mini twists may not be for you.  I find that a lot of fine-haired naturals experience more single-strand knots, tangles, and ultimately breakage with this style due to the diameter of their strands.

At the end of the day, do what works for you and your hair!

Ladies, what has been your experience with mini twists?

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About Chinwe

Healthy hair care tips and more! http://www.healthyhairbody.com

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Aly
Aly
6 years ago

Man…I may be anti-mini twists after this last debacle. I typically have my hair in twists 2–3 weeks out of the month. This last time I tried a new product and tried to make the twists a little smaller than usual (I usually have small, but not mini twists). After about two weeks I decided to take them out only to realize that they had started locking! I have 4C hair but that has never happened before and totally freaked me out. Thank goodness I didn’t leave them in for 3 weeks like I originally planned! I can’t figure out… Read more »

KP
KP
6 years ago

Sadly, I have found that mini-twists are not for me. I love the look, though! Just wish I could actually wear it!

I’ve tried mini-twists before and on my head they don’t last longer than regular sized twists. After about a week, the frizz starts up and the thought of redoing all those twists makes my arms sore. Plus, in the back, my hair laughs at me when I try to twist it so small. It doesn’t hold small twists well at all. It unravels. ‑_-

Adrienne
Adrienne
6 years ago
Reply to  KP

Im the exact same way. For the amount of time it takes to install mini twist I expect them to last longer than a week. But they don’t unfortunately. Also, the hair in the front of my head refuse to stay twisted. I love the look of mini twists, but they’re just not worth the time

Me
Me
6 years ago

Definitely not for me. I’m not patient enough. Taking them down can be a nightmare. I struggle with regular twists too.
They are really cute though — just not for the faint hearted!

kay
kay
6 years ago

i so wish i could do the mini twist im a think haired natural and unfortunately it just looks to scalpy on me

kay
kay
6 years ago
Reply to  kay

thin haired*

Kellee*aka*justleavingacomment
Kellee*aka*justleavingacomment
6 years ago
Reply to  kay

Do them on dry hair. It helps a ton with the ‘scalpiness’ issue.

LBell
LBell
6 years ago

I experimented with minitwists last year and despite their protective and styling benefits I’ve had to rule them out for myself, due especially to the patience part, which is something I sorely lack when it comes to doing my hair these days. However, I will say that I noticed a difference between the type of twists I’d always done — basically just twisting two small sections around each other — and rope twists, in which you take each section and twist it independently in one direction before crossing one section over the other in the opposite direction; YouTube videos exist that… Read more »

phy356
phy356
6 years ago

I think that they are absolutely wonderful! I take a couple of hrs to put them in, but once they’ve been installed, I fall in love with them. The time and effort I save once they’re done is well worth the hrs sacrificed to put them in. So many cute styles I can do easier than if I had my hard loose 🙂

shay
shay
6 years ago

I luv mini-twists! Especially in the summer time, that is my style.I normally part my hair on the side so the twists swoop to one side and then I pull them back into a ponytail at the base of my neck and make a bun. Some times I’ll wear them down or different styles. Mine also started to lock one time so 3 weeks is the max for me. I don’t do them that small but a small/medium size. And you can actually do them bigger in the middle, depending on how you’ll wear them. If I’m putting my twists… Read more »

elsy
elsy
6 years ago

They caused a lot of hair loss for me the last time I did them in 2010. I kept them in too long. Laila just did a video about her hair loss post mini twists. Their cute but worth it.

Ugonna Wosu
Ugonna Wosu
6 years ago
Reply to  elsy

she just went back to school, so stress could be a factor. As well, perhaps she had them on a little tight? They are small, I can see the temptation to want to “firm them up” for them to stick. I guess I’m just saying we don’t know.

Ugonna Wosu
Ugonna Wosu
6 years ago
Reply to  Ugonna Wosu

also, maybe 5 weeks was too long for her, so she had more tangles which caused more hair loss(perhaps).

Tabatha
Tabatha
6 years ago
Reply to  elsy

OMG! I would have cried too! I mean I expect to lose some hair when you do braids or twist, but to me the ball of hair looks like A LOT to me too. Your hair is adorable though. I wish that I could do it myself, but for some strange reason my hands and looking in the mirror just does not work out. I don’t know what happens, but it just doesn’t come out right.

JazzWife
6 years ago

I love mini-twists. The longest I maintained the style was 4 weeks. when my hair was at its longest, the twists at the nape of my neck snagged more than I would have preferred. I have found that mini twists on my hair looked best and kept longer when I used oil (jojoba) to keep my ends lubricated. Luckily, I have quite a bit of patience with my hair but I will admit that the install and the take down can be very challenging. These days I’m wearing thicker twists and trying to lengthen the number of days I keep… Read more »

Adia Sinead
6 years ago

I personally love mini-twists. But I haven’t done them in so long because my hair is so long now. It takes well over 6 hours to do them, and in that case it’s much faster and more effective to just do marley twists, which only take me about 3 hours and give me the same protective styling results.

http://adiasinead.blogspot.com

lablooplah
lablooplah
6 years ago

twists are def not for me. For one they always shrink up and i end up looking so awkward. also the locking is too much. and i realize i loose more hair and have more breakage after wearing twists. And detangling twists is one of the most annoying things ever.

Leah
Leah
6 years ago
Reply to  lablooplah

I hate that shrinkage too :-/

Camille
Camille
6 years ago

I luv mini twists, & have found that redoing them every 3 wks & leaving them actually grows my hair when ever i cut my hair off & i decide to grow it bk

Emma J B W
Emma J B W
6 years ago

I rely heavily on twists to make my hair manageable for the working week. I can also flat twist the twists to give the twists a bit if shape and volume (I hope that sentence makes sense!) it helps with the scalpy thing some of you have mentioned.

cacey
cacey
6 years ago

i love them but my scalp itches so bad that i could never leave them in past a few days because i would just rub and rub and rub at the roots, thus tangling the twists like crazy. no more minis for me. 🙁

Benitha
Benitha
6 years ago

I love mini twists.… I do them twice a yr once in the spring and once in the fall.… They take me about 9–10 hrs to install so I always make sure I have 2–3 days to install them…I leave them in for about 4–5 weeks and when taking them down I make sure I have 2–3 days off to devote to them .… I love them because I never wear my hair straight and this style shows my length, plus it really helps with growth and maintaining length .…as my hair gets longer the longer it takes to install… Read more »

Sequitta
Sequitta
6 years ago

My hair is too thin/ fine in the front…mini twists look sooo “scraggly” on me and they unravel so easily because of it! I hate the way they look on me! But I would love to be able to wear them! 🙁

Dee
Dee
6 years ago

I’ve done them twice during my “journey”;they’re in about a month per year. I try to DC well before installing and after removing them. Pros–shows some length,get to swang yo hurr, more versatile than larger twists, last a little longer than larger twists. Cons–during detangling I had a bit of knotting leading to snipping and/or breakage (I have mostly fine hair) so I gotta use plenty of slip and carefully section detangled sections, takes a while to install/remove. I’ve taken tips from youtube ladies: 1.ThinkandGrowChick,–“How To Do Minitwists…” 2. Naptural85, as far as stretching them across my head and a… Read more »

Nancy
Nancy
6 years ago

I loved my mini twists but I had a problem with locking even after only four weeks. I decided to not do it any more.

It does take a lot of time. 15 hours if I did it in one day. After a while I just made medium size twists then for a few days untwist a few and re-twist them smaller.

Ify
Ify
6 years ago

I love mini twists that’s my protective style right now the only problem i have is that it frizzes so easily but i love them

Tabatha
Tabatha
6 years ago

I thought about doing mini twist, but I was on the fence about it. Unfortunately this didn’t help my decision making either. I’m patient, but I do have the kinky/ curly blend of hair, so I don’t know.

Toni
Toni
6 years ago

I love mini twist, I do my hair every two to three weeks. It takes about 8 hours but it is well worth it. Once I take them down I wear a twist out for about a week and I shampoo my hair and start over.

Nika
Nika
6 years ago
Reply to  Toni

I plan on doing the same thing. 3–4 weeks of twists, out for a week then start all over again. Installing them do take forever but its worth it.

Rina
Rina
6 years ago

I LOVED getting my hair in mini twists. what helped my hair to not lock up was actually after the beautician did my mini twist she would run a flat iron over my hair to bump the ends and make the twists more cleaner looking. I loved it cus I have the type of hair that tangles really badly. Flat ironing my hair after the twisting helped to keep my hair from tangling and it was easier to take my hair down too. Mini twist are so versatile!

Shirley
Shirley
6 years ago
Reply to  Rina

@Rina,Thanks for providing this awesome tip. I never though about using flat iron on my hair after twisting. What products have you used on your hair and do you have your twists done on dry or wet hair. I too have 4b,4c and maybe even 4d(lol) hair and after one week of having twists I find myself have to redo the sides Nd back of my hair due to frizz and early locking. Of I would get frustrated and just take them out little at a time while in class or at work or just watching tv. So thanks for… Read more »

Liz
Liz
6 years ago

I did it once, but I believe my hair was already too long. It took forever, but it was very nice to have–no one could even see my twists I did them so small! But like I said, my hair was too long, that take-down was epic, and I shook my head, and continued to do singles if I don’t want to do my hair.

Abeni Randle
Abeni Randle
6 years ago

I dont wear mini twists anymore because my hair is fine and after two weeks they look a mess and are tangled. However my daughter loves mini twists because I dont have to comb her hair and she like the versatility, I love that they last for four weeks.

Chandra
6 years ago

I Love Mini twists, but the longer my hair got, I got tired doing them and moved on to medium sized twists which don’t last as long. Sometimes I am tempted to revisit them, because you can do so many styles with them.

NaturalV
6 years ago

i love mini twists the styling options are endless,but the installation and take town process takes too long.

Sonya
Sonya
6 years ago

I love mini twists!

Nat
Nat
6 years ago

I love mini twists, but after a few days mine look really frizzy. I push it to two weeks. But there’s no way I can keep them in longer than that. What can I do to minimize frizz? I have used Eden Bodyworks curl cream and Shea Moisture curl enhancing smoothie to twist.

AGrlCanMAC
6 years ago
Reply to  Nat

Hi Nat! My hair is super frizz prone in the front. What I found was that I just have to retwist the front to keep it looking frizz free. I don’t keep my twists in for longer than 3–4 weeks at a time so by week 2, I’d just re-twist the front and I was good to go again. It’s annoying but it’s the only way I could get the benefits of long term protective styling without looking like a frizz ball after week 2. Lol. Hope this helps.

whylie2010
whylie2010
6 years ago

Mini-twists (or micro mini twists as I liked to call them) were my go-to style for years…when I was younger and had thicker hair. As I’ve grown older, my hair has thinned out some and the mini-twists are no longer an option. I miss them so. I used to do the bottom half one day and finish the top half the next. Or you could do the perimeter on day, and wear it in a high bun until you can finish the middle. The best thing about it for me was the twist out afterwards. Loved it. Miss it. :o(… Read more »

AGrlCanMAC
6 years ago

I have fine hair but I love mini twists! They did right by my hair. I don’t wear them anymore because they simply take too long to install and my hair is pretty long now so I wear small-medium size loose twists and love them. They make my fine hair appear fuller, don’t take me longer than 2.5 hours to install and I leave them in for about 3 weeks at most. Easy peasy. I love protective styling with twists.

Sandrine
Sandrine
6 years ago

no way with mini twist in my thin hair i finish by having knots and tangles… i tried it it was cute but no way… never again!!!

Nakia
Nakia
6 years ago

I love these little things. I love the length, but keeping them moisturized and healthy is more important to me now. I wet my hands and apply Shea Moisture’s — Deep Treatment Masque 2–3 times a week. My hair is growing in thicker, longer and way healthier than I’ve ever seen it!!! 😀 And yes, with chemicals, that didn’t happen at all!!! I usually keep them in for months at a time, but as my hair grows, I take one down and retwist it. The longest I’ve worn them, was 2.5 years. The rate it grows now, if I had… Read more »

Pseudonym
Pseudonym
6 years ago

I’ve taken to going something b/w mini and medium twists recently. Takes about 2 hours to put in and lasts 2 weeks (probably would be better if I could learn to become one of those people who wraps their hair at night and can keep it for the entire night). I washed and conditioned today with the twists still in, then just took them down and retwisted one by one to save time on parting and such. This may be my new “go to” “don’t want to do or detangle my hair for an extended period of time” style. 🙂

SweetTeaAC
SweetTeaAC
6 years ago

That’s all I’m rocking summer 2014! I usually spend the spring/summer in box braids with extensions and kinky twists with extensions. Well about a month ago I took out my kinky twists and noticed my hairline disappearing! No body got time fo that! 😉

So I decided to rock mini twists / cornrow & mini twists styles. I LOVE IT. I can do most of my favorite loose styles, flexi rods, roller sets etc…without direct heat. Wet sets for the summer? Yes please!

TCole
TCole
6 years ago

Well, I have a love/hate relationship with mini twists. I have 3b‑c hair, and it just won’t stay twisted. I love the versatility and not having to do something with my hair everyday. But for me, the install process is sooo long. I did it about 2 weeks ago, it took about 10 hours, but they wouldn’t stay twisted. I re-did them with 3‑strand twists a week later. It took about 14 hours. I loved the result, I did a Bantu knot out and it was super cute. But I think my hair is now too long for this style,… Read more »

franki
franki
4 years ago
Reply to  TCole

try rope twists I have 3a 3b hair rope twist hold a lil longer

Jyl
Jyl
5 years ago

I don’t have the patience to do them that small so they end up not lasting that long.

carmatogo
carmatogo
5 years ago

I wear mini twists and I LOVE them. My hair cannot hold big twists long. I take them down and give my hair a break bi weekly for two weeks. So I do them once a month but only wear them for 2 weeks.

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