Short afros are usually worn by African-Americans with textured hair. When individuals decide to braid their afros, they usually put them in cornrows. Cornrows are braids close to the scalp that usually follow a vertical, horizontal or diagonal pattern, which resemble rows of corn in a field. Cornrow braids are low-maintenance hairstyles, which allow you to protect your hair from breakage. Braiding short afros can prove challenging because of the length of the hair. Understanding the braiding steps can help you create professional-looking braids from your short afro.
Shampoo and condition your hair before braiding it. Consider using a conditioning shampoo if your hair is heavily coiled and tangles easily. Lightly pat your hair with a towel to absorb some of the moisture. Avoid allowing your hair to dry completely.
Comb your hair with a wide tooth comb or afro pick. Continue to comb all of your hair until you detangle it entirely. Use a leave-in moisturizer if you cannot detangle your hair easily. Use a wide-tooth comb or an afro pick to prevent pulling out your hair, which may happen with a small comb.
Section off part of your hair with a comb to start braiding your first cornrow. Part your hair in the direction you desire your cornrows. Spray water from a spray bottle to dampen your hair if it dries during the process. Dampen it by sections to moisten it right before braiding. Use a clip to keep the remaining hair away from the section you are working on.
Take the first section and separate the hair into three strands. Choose your starting point and begin braiding. Cross the far right strand over the middle stand and cross the far left strand over the middle strand. This is considered a stitch.
Pick up hair along the way as you braid the hair and complete another stitch. Keep the hair close to the scalp to avoid braiding your hair too loosely. Continue stitching until you reach the end of your hair. Section off another row of hair and continue the braiding process.
Place beads or rubber bands on the ends of your hair to secure the braids. If you do not want to wear anything on the ends of your hair, you can also twist the ends of your hair with your fingers to keep the braids from coming loose.