15 Beautiful Braided Buns for Black Hair

Buns are such a practical hairstyle for the modern woman. There are endless options about how you can style and wear them, not to mention the variety of occasions they will look great at.

A stylish up-do is always appropriate but buns can endure hardcore sessions at the gym without getting ruffled or messy and they look sophisticated for a formal dress-code event. Perfect for school, work, home, or just about anywhere else. 

Braided Bun

Every girl with braids should learn a good bun style or five to keep her hair out of her face and look gorgeous at any time of day or night. Here are some beautiful examples of how you can style your braids into a bun for different looks and occasions. 

1. The Chunky Braid Bun

The chunky braid bun

This beautiful bun is ready to party with a single twisted braid wrapped in a donut shape. It really adds a sense of regality to your silhouette and will make you walk a little taller for sure. 

2. Twisted Topknot Bun

Twisted Topknot bun

This baby will see you through from day to night and the height of the bun really accentuates your cheekbones and elongates the profile, so it’s especially good if you have a wider face, but you want to look tall and slim.

3. The Colorful Eighties Inspo

The Colorful Eighties Inspo

Adding colored rubber bands to your braids adds a touch of fun to this carefree style. The wispy weave hair provides a perfect, simple casual look that will still look exactly how you placed it hours later. 

4. The Color Explosion

the color explosion

We’re not saying the yellow works as a sophisticated up-do, but it sure is eye-catching. If you want to turn heads with your new hairstyle, this will certainly do it. Of course, this style can be done using any colored braiding hair, so you don’t have to look like you’re smuggling a corn snake through international borders. 

We might humbly suggest that a pink, purple or tasteful red might have been a better choice, but then it depends on the look that you’re going for. 

5. Tribal Chic

Tribal chic

This intricately braided bun with gold thread seamlessly weaved through is probably a little too extra just to roam about the supermarket with, but for a special occasion or to go with a particularly stunning outfit, this hairstyle will see you right. It’s really got a charm about it that is a nod to tribal heritage.

There’s no need for rings or clips in this stylish hairstyle. The gold thread is all the accessories you need. 

6. The Messy Goddess

Messy Goddess

We women may be goddesses but we need days off too. For the perfect casual braid look, leave those wavy ends out for a carefree style.

If you have goddess braids, this style will be perfect for you. We think this has got just the right combination of sassy and stylish for a fabulous everyday look. 

7. The Golden Blend Bun

The Golden Blend Bun

This is a sunkissed braided bun like no other. The multi-tonal braiding hair is a beautiful choice for a multi-dimensional effect. A perfect work or holiday look as it’s elegant and functional with a serious touch of class. If you’re jetting off to sunnier climates, this beach babe hairstyle will look so great in those holiday pictures.

8. The Feminine But Fabulous Cornrow Bun

The Feminine But Fabulous Cornrow Bun

An artistic twist on a classic braided bun, this beautiful close scalp braiding is stunning. It adds a little bit of femininity and personality to a standard coiled braid bun and will be perfect as it is for everyday activities or you can dress it up a bit with some metalwork.

Whatever you do, though, don’t cover up those beautiful cornrows. Let those babies shine. 

9. Smooth Waves

Smooth Waves

This stunning braided bun is made particularly striking by the curved direction of the braids. It looks like the sea styled it for you in curved, but smooth lines.

There’s something a little mesmerizing about how the braids sweep up the head and almost make a neat coronet as a crowning glory.

The downside to purposely braiding your hair upwards is that it restricts the styles you can manage as it won’t look right if you try to wear them down. If you’re a fan of up-dos generally though, this is a great base for most of the usual ones. 

10. Double Or Nothing

Double or nothing

This beautiful double feature is a little girlish for the mature woman, but it’s a fun play on pigtails or the space buns that are favorites with younger people. We particularly love the tiny, miniature braids around the thicker ones that make it look like little ornaments or streamers decorating them.

The more you look, the more you see with this hairstyle, so just watch out that you don’t get distracted by your fabulous hair in the mirror if you have anywhere to be. You could get stuck staring at your reflection for quite some time. 

11. A Tail Of The Sea

Tail of the sea

Access your inner siren with this blue braided bun. We just love the shade of light blue they’ve chosen for this masterpiece. It makes her look almost mythical like a mermaid or a daughter of Poseidon with those beautiful ocean-inspired locks. 

Keeping a braid or two hanging by the ears is an easy way to make a traditional braid bun look just a little more feminine and makes a stronger vertical line to accentuate the natural lines of your face.  

12. Make Some Waves

Make Some Waves

With the perfect blend of freedom and functionality, you’ll be turning heads and making waves with this effortless-looking bun.

For a carefree, casual look, this style will work perfectly, but you could also dress that waterfall of curls up for an occasion with some accessories or a splash of color.

Or for everyday errands, pair this with an off-the-shoulder oversized sweater for the perfect ‘don’t care, gorgeous hair’ casual look. 

13. Beautiful Box Braids Bun

Beautiful Box Braids Bun

A lot of the featured styles are made by braiding the hair upwards to the top of the head, but if you ever want to let your hair down with those kinds of braids in, it won’t look quite right. You have plenty of options with box braids though.

You can wear them up, down, or a mixture of the two without having to rebraid anything. This classic bun with box braided hair proves why box braids are so popular.

You can do just about anything with them and they will look tidy and beautiful. Dress this classic bun up with some tribal hoops and clips, or keep it simple depending on where you’re planning on going. 

14. The Edgy Bun

The Edgy Bun

We just had to include this one. What a dramatic style this girl has. The combination of the shaved side section with the multi-toned blonde braids are beautiful, yet distinctly daring.

The choices we make about our appearance define who people think we are, so make sure some of your personality shines in your hair styling. No one is better at being you than you are and we bet most people aren’t half as fabulous.

This style boldly says ‘I don’t care what you think, I’m living my best life,’ and it makes for one sassy style. 

15. The Zig-Zag

The Zig-Zag

We think this fun but functional braid bun is pretty awesome. It’s neat and professional enough for work, but stylish enough for a night on the town.

We especially like the top section where they’ve braided the braids together to make a sort of chain or rope effect. It looks so interesting and the clean lines of the zig-zagged braids just finish the look perfectly. 

Final Thoughts

As a woman of color, it can be tough to find representation in the beauty industry.

Despite the fact that we have so many strong powerful black women in places of power and influence, when you search ‘braided bun hairstyles’ you still have to search quite a way before you see anyone of color or with a full head of braids in a bun.

There are millions of bun hairstyles for caucasian or Asian smooth hair that feature a little braid to make it more interesting, but where is our representation of functional, modern, black beauty? It’s right here, that’s where. 

The braided bun is a staple hairstyle for black women, but that doesn’t mean it’s run of the mill or boring. There are thousands of variations and options for you to choose from that all result in a practical, professional, yet stylish hairstyle that’s representative of your personality.

Braids are beautiful and buns are practical. Put them together and you’ve got something really special that will keep you looking unrufflable wherever your day takes you. 

Tanya Taylor