Creatas/Creatas/Getty Images

Braids are a hairstyle that is popular among many women. They are stylish, convenient and usually last a long time. Occasionally, though, the person wearing the braids gets tired of the texture, length or color. It is possible to alter the style and color of the braids without having to remove them from your head. The technique used is similar to dyeing a human-hair wig or extensions.

Shampoo braided hair twice to ensure thorough cleanliness. Towel dry after rinsing, but do not add conditioner. The more product hair has in it prior to dyeing, the less the hair dye will take to the hair. Gently detangle the braids by brushing through the entire head with a stiff-bristle brush.

Part damp hair into four sections on the head. Secure in place with hair clips. Place a towel or tarp over the shoulders to protect skin and clothing. Put on latex gloves to protect the hands, and remove all items from the surface on which you are working. Cover the surface with newspaper for protection.

Part off a small section of the hair, starting from the crown. Apply a small amount of hair dye to the section and gently rub into the hair. Do not apply to the scalp. Wrap the piece of hair with aluminum foil to seal the color in as well as prevent dribbling. Repeat this step until the whole head is covered. Set the timer for 20-25 minutes and allow the dye to set.

Remove all pieces of foil from the braided hair. Rinse hair until the water comes out clear. Towel dry, then apply a small amount of conditioner. Allow to set for 5-10 minutes, then briefly rinse again. Blow dry and style as desired.


It is much easier to dye lighter shades of hair darker than darker shades of hair lighter. To achieve the best results, consult with a professional cosmetologist before dyeing hair.

Always do a strand test before using hair dye.


Apply hair dye to hair on head only. To apply dye to eyebrows or lashes can cause blindness.

Do not apply hair dye to synthetic hair.

If hair dye gets on skin or in eyes, flush with cool water. If swallowed, contact the Poison Control Center immediately.

About the Author

Vree Tounzhel

Vree Tounzhel is a radio host and a published author. Her publication is a collection of poetry and commentaries. She currently holds two bachelor's degrees in communications and theater arts, and she resides in Houston, Texas with her cat, Frisco.