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For the Styling Challenged: Easy Havana Twist Tutorial

• Jul 30, 2015

Disclaimer: This style was the FIRST time I ever installed twists/braids in my hair. I mention this just to highlight that this is a great style for beginners and those who are a bit challenged when it come to adding extensions.

A few weeks back I wrote about my failed twist out here. A few days later I came across a number of Havana twist tutorials on Youtube and a light bulb went off. I had been contemplating going to the salon to get Senegalese twists or another long term protective style sometime next month. However, watching the ease with which dozens of women installed Havana twists made me consider doing them myself.

I’ve learned from experience that if possible it’s best not to spend hours upon hours on a style I’m attempting for the first time. There’s nothing worse than styling for 4 hours only to realize that the style is either a fail or that my level of incompetence will require another 4 hours to complete the style. With this in mind I decided on a style that would be half my own hair and half twist extensions. Because of the kind of braiding hair I used my natural hair and the twists would look seamless.

Hair Prep

I recommend styling on dry, stretched hair. My hair was already stretched with the three large flat twists that I originally created for my (failed) twist out and a bun with the other half of my hair. I added the twists to the back half of my hair following the advice of a number simple tutorials, such as this one, and then re-twisted the flat twists. Overall this was two-hour hair style.  Again, this is my experience as someone who had NEVER installed hair before.  For someone with more experience, this style might very be accomplished in an hour and a half.


Start with stretched hair.

Products Used

As I Am Smoothing Gel, Bee Mine Curly Butter, Kinky Curly Knot Today, Grapeseed Oil, Water, Wide Toothed Comb, Flexirods or perm rods (if you want to curl the ends).



Mali Twist Hair by Zury (In Color #2)


My hair is on the left, the braiding hair is on the right. Pretty similar texture, right?



Completed Style

Completed Style

Completed Style


You can re-twist the flat twists every 4 days or as needed. I was able to go a week without re-twisting the flat twists by spritzing them with water and securing my hair with a satin scarf. Lightly mists the twist in the back with a moisturizing spray every 3 days or as needed.

You can choose to take down the style in 2 weeks or you can choose to wash the hair. If you choose to wash, you will want to take down the flat twists in the front and wash as you would normally wash your hair. I find this to be especially helpful since the front of my hair tends to accumulate more oil/dirt and that back.  To wash the twists in the back you will use an applicator bottle with diluted shampoo (2 parts water, 1 part sulfate free shampoo) to clean the scalp. Once you’ve washed the hair you will simply re-twist the flat twist in the front and allow the twist in the back to dry. This style can last for 4 weeks if necessary, which is pretty good considering that it doesn’t take much time to initially install and refreshing the style is a quick process.

Ladies, have you tried to install Havana twists (or any other extension style) in your own hair? How did it go?

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6 years ago

Great job. My first set of twists were so loose. Si got them done at a salon recently.

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