How to Seal the Ends of Your Synthetic Box Braids With Water

Heat locks the ends of braids in place.
... Hemera Technologies/ Images

Big old box braids not only look great, they are super easy to care for and style. If your natural locks don’t have the length you crave, synthetic hair can achieve the look in no time. One major downer with synthetic box braids is that they have a tendency to curl or unravel at the ends. You can solve this little style nuisance using a little heated water, which locks the style in place.

Heat a saucepan half full of water on the stove until the water starts to boil.

Pour the boiling water into a bowl or large mug, taking care not to burn yourself.

Open a bottle of baby oil and pour the oil into the bottle's cap until it almost reaches the top. Pour the oil into the bowl or mug of water.

Place a towel around your shoulders and set the mug on a table near a comfortable seating location. The mug will need to be close enough so that you can bend over it.

Gather all of your braids on one shoulder. Pick up the end of one box braid and dip the last 1/2 inch of it into the hot water.

Hold the braid in place for five to 10 seconds and then remove it from the water.

Dab the braid lightly on the towel to catch the water drips, and then hold it in your hand for 30 to 60 seconds while it cools.

Place the braid over your opposite shoulder so that it stays separate from the others. Pick up a new braid and repeat the dipping process.

Continue dipping each braid into the hot water until all of the ends are sealed.

  • Never burn the ends of your braids to seal them.
  • If you prefer, you can heat the water up in the microwave instead of using the stove. Simply fill the bowl or mug with water and heat it on high for one minute. Remove the bowl or mug from the microwave using an oven mitt, as it will be hot.

Kimberly Johnson is a freelance writer whose articles have appeared in various online publications including eHow, Suite101 and Examiner. She has a degree in journalism from the University of Georgia and began writing professionally in 2001.