African American Short Hairstyles

Short styles are chic.

African American short hairstyles are sassy and sporty. They can also be easier to maintain than longer styles, depending on the look. Sometimes short cuts are necessary to remove damaged ends and prevent further damage in the hair.

The easiest to maintain short style for African Americans is the teeny weeny afro or TWA. This afro is a short natural hairstyle with neat, edges. The style can be worn curly, depending on hair texture. Curls in coarse, natural hair can be enhanced with moisture enriched gels. Some ladies prefer to wear TWAs with faded sides. Salon stylists or barbers can help anyone achieve this look. Anyone can wear a TWA and look great, but women who sport this style are considered brave and daring. The TWA is a basic wash and wear hairstyle that it perfect for a no-fuss professional look or it is an easygoing style for fitness buffs.

African American Short Hairstyles and Afros

TWAs can be transitioned into short, not teeny, afros. Wear a scarf or hair band around the afro to dress up the look. The hair can also be styled in a braid-out or a twist-out for additional African American short hairstyles. To create a braid out or a twist out, the hair is plaited or twisted and unraveled. Hair with a loose curl or hair that has been texturized, also looks great in TWAs. A texturizer is basically a weak relaxer, so the hair is not completely straightened, but hair that is kinky becomes curly. Like regular strength relaxers, texturizers change the hair's structure.


The classic bob is one of the classic bob hair styles that is worn by African American women with naturally straight hair or relaxed hair. An asymmetric bob look is achieved by using angular cuts on the sides and in back of the hair. A bang that rests just above the eyebrows is another detail in this look. The back of the hair may be cut shorter than the sides. The sides are angled toward the face, longer towards the cheekbones. The type of bob is exotic and sexy.


Layered hair styles never go out of style. Short hair that is straightened and layered on the sides and the back is a good in-between style that can be a good transition style for people who are letting their hair grow longer. The layered look can be as short as a pixie, or longer for a more versatile style. For layers with a stacked bob in the back of the hair, use a tiny curling iron to curl the back of the hair. Curl the shortest lengths in the style. Hair that is too short to curl can be slicked down with gel. The style also works well with shorter hair that is almost mid-length. Just make sure that the stylist is aware of your desired length of the style. Bring a photo of the style. The most talented stylists can cut and relax the hair into layers that move and are bouncy.


Relaxed hair that is super short can be waved. This sleek style is a remake of the 1920s style, worn by flappers. The style made a comeback in the 1990s, and is still lovely for ladies with short hair. Relaxed hair is waved with gel that hardens the hair into place. Don't try to comb the hair while it's in a wave that is set with gel. The style must be washed out. This is a temporary style, not to be worn consistently, because the gels used to create this style may cause breakage.


Up flips are a popular short hairstyle for African American women. The hair is cut into layers and flipped up, for a sexy, windblown look. Sometimes the hair is colored to highlight the look. Some styles like up flips that are meant for long hair can be adapted into shorter hairstyles.

Experiment with your hair and see what you can do. Shorter hair can be just as versatile as long hair. In fact, because of the hair's length some ultra-curly styles work better with short hair, because short hair can usually hold curls better. Have fun with African American short hairstyles!

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African American Short Hairstyles