TWA Hairstyles for Women with Natural Hair

twa hairstyles
African American female with natural hair rocking a beautiful TWA style

TWA hairstyles are really popular right now as more women big chop while going natural. For the new naturals, TWA stands for teeny weeny afro.

Some TWA styles are absolutely fabulous and very easy to maintain. TWA hairstyles may appear to be limited initially, but this article will prove that there is quite a bit of variety for TWA styles.

TWA Hairstyles for Women with Natural Hair

Here are more than twenty pictures of awesome women rocking TWA hairstyles.

Blonde Curly Afro

You don’t always have to stick by with the textbook definition of TWA. You can grow out your curls a bit longer and add a little blonde hair color for that sweet buttery hue. Then you’ll have a pretty hairstyle that can frame your face perfectly.

Pink-Colored Ombre Curls

You see all those ombre hairstyles on Pinterest, and you notice they are usually posted by people with long hair. Did you know that you could also get in on the ombre fun with a TWA hairdo? Pastel colors work extremely well with afros. If you ever get tired of the usual pinks and blondes, you can try a rainbow-colored one!

A photo posted by @dye2bnatural on


Bright Blondie

What better color to illuminate your face than with a bright blonde hue? This ultra-short TWA style is perfect for those who feel very adventurous with their look and the color is just right. This style also works really well for those ladies that have high cheekbones to show off.


Beautifully Buzzed aka The Amber Rose

Beautiful style that reminds me of Amber Rose’s hairstyle. Channel her style by keeping a shaved afro hairdo. Don’t worry about looking nearly bald. You can keep the top of your hairdo a bit longer and have only the sides shaved low if you like.


Stripes of Color

Another great way to make your TWA stand out from the rest of the crowd is to decorate it with colored stripes. Choose colors that work well together or those that have a nice contrast.

A photo posted by Natural Gyrl (@naturalgyrls) on


Dare to be Different Afro

A girl knows no boundaries, even when it comes to her hair. If you’re raring to try something new, edgy, and innovative with your hairstyle, then get that razor out. Try shaving the sides of your head, leaving just a little bit of hair on top for character. Extra points if you opt to dye your tips for a unique look. The key is to have fun and be willing to create unique TWA hairstyles.


Razored TWA Style

Edgy is your middle name and also, how you style your hair. This hairdo involves shaving a clear path around your head for a look that is as epic as it is unique. Edgier still, if you opt to give your TWA a little bit of color on top.


An Afro in Scarlet

Forget the boring old blues, pinks, and blondes that most people go for nowadays. Just kidding, but if your TWA needs a unique color that can freshen it up, what better color would it be than a deep red? This color says sassy and chic in just one go.


Caramel Goodness

All that caramel goodness up on top is basically what this hairstyle is all about. Just keep the hair on the top of your head long and add a little bit of blonde to make the curls caramel colored. Then keep the sides short and sweet (pun intended). It’s better if you style your curls on top a bit funkier for that extra cuteness.

A photo posted by @sxvllen on


Naturally Exciting

If you’re the type of girl who wants to keep her hair natural, don’t fret, you can still have a lot of fun with your afro. Try having an interesting shaved design on your head or getting a colorful asymmetrical cut.


Ice, Ice, Baby

We already covered warm colors such as blonde, pink, red, and orange but how about if we go the opposite route? A cool, stark white blonde style will be as striking as hair dyed in any other color.


Flat Top With a Twist

Yes, the flat top is a hairdo as old as time, but you can try spicing things up by getting a shaved angle on the side. This, in turn, can add definition to a side part. The top should be a bit longer and styled in a squarish shape for that no-nonsense yet stylishly cool look.


Plain Natural

Just embrace your ultra-tight, uncolored ringlets and let them hug your face and show off your best features.

A photo posted by Erica (@glammzmore) on


Cute Trimmed Curls

Having a buzzed afro is as simple as you can get. The best thing of all, this style requires minimal styling. Just remember to get regular haircuts to keep the length short if that’s the look that you’re trying to achieve.


Honey Bronzed Afro

A bronze or honey hue is something that can give life and dimension to any TWA. It still looks natural but has a warmer feel to it than any other color.


Chestnut Brown Ringlets

A chestnut brown hue works well with TWA hairstyles because of the fact that if you grow it out, you’ll get a natural ombre look. It’s one of the best TWA hairstyles.

A photo posted by Loop Salon (@loopsalon) on


The History & Etymology of TWA Hairstyles

The teeny weeny afro (TWA) is also commonly referred as a “fro” or “natural”. TWA hairstyles are usually worn by people with naturally kinky, curly hair types.

This style is also frequently worn by women who have recently transitioned from relaxed to natural hair by big chopping.

People without naturally curly hair (i.e., straight hair) can adopt this hairstyle with the help of hair products, such as gels or creams to create the afro look.

This hairstyle was very popular in the early 60s within the African American community.

During this time, African American would use an “Afro Pick” or a wide-toothed comb to maintain the shape of their afro during the day. The term “afro” actually comes from the expression “Afro-American”.

This hairstyle, especially the shorter version, was referred to as a “natural” because the hair is worn in its natural form. The style could be created without the use of any hair products, chemicals, straightening agents or relaxers.

Note that this same style is now commonly referred to as a TWA style.twa natural hairstyles
TWA Styles Throughout the Years

Before the 1960s, some African Americans wore afros in tight kinks. These hairstyles were described as nappy, cottony or coarse.

These traits were almost the exact opposite of what was supposed to be the standard of beauty in European American norms. Therefore, afros were often seen as unappealing.

As time went on, straight hairstyles became more popular among African Americans. The key to straightening the hair is through the use of relaxers like lye and other caustic substances.

An experienced hairstylist is needed to relax the hair, to avoid burning sensitive parts of the head, such as the ears and the scalp.

Hot combs were also used in the 1960s to straighten natural hair temporarily. Today the hair can be straightened temporarily using a flat iron.

There were also other ways to style the hair if the individual didn’t like their hair straightened. For example, braiding hairstyles, like the popular goddess braids, were worn by many women.

Many of these hairstyle preferences could cause damage to the hair shaft if done incorrectly. This could lead to problems such as hair loss later on in life.

During the 1960s and 1970s: The Impact of the Civil Rights Movement

One of the effects the Civil Rights Movement had was a profound renewal in the African American sense of identity.

The community redefined their sense of style and moved away from the norms of white society, going back to their roots in black aesthetics.

This movement was known as “Black is Beautiful” and restarted the practice of many women wearing natural hair. The afro was used as an icon of black pride.

Some critics dismissed the notion of the afro being used as an icon of black pride.

Kobena Mercer, in his book titled ‘Welcome to the Jungle: New Positions in Black Cultural Studies‘, mentioned that the contemporary, mid-20th-century African society didn’t see the afro as an African staple.

Brackette Williams, in her book titled ‘Stains on My Name, War in My Veins: Guyana and the Politics of Cultural Struggle‘ also stated that the adoption and popularization of the afro was a nuisance with some African nationalists because some see it as Western arrogance.

The afro was an inexpensive style. It also provided an alternative from the usual straightened, relaxed or braided styles that many people wore.

The hairstyle expanded not only within the African American community, but it spread outside the community as well.

Some of the most notable sociopolitical figures and entertainers who wore giant afros include Jimi Hendrix (rock star), Pam Grier (actress), Angela Davis (activist, scholar, and writer), and The Supremes and the Jackson 5 (R&B groups).

TWA Hairstyles Are Very Popular in the 1990s and 2000s

The afro “came back” as a favorite hairstyle in the 90s and continues to be popular today.

It also has evolved to many different forms, with some afro hairstyles making use of twists, beads, and braids in various sizes. As this article shows, TWA hairstyles are very popular right now.

Some of the more notable celebrities who wore afros include NBA basketball star Kobe Bryant (in his early days). Renowned musicians include rock star Lenny Kravitz and singer and songwriter Erykah Badu.


    • Hi Edith!
      The blonde curly fro is nice and spicy! To achieve a similar look and style, it will work great on short (above the ear) natural (non-relaxed) hair. The hair must be colored a shade of blonde (please seek advice from a colorist to help minimize breakage). To get the coily look, if the hair doesn’t natural coil when wet or when gel is applied, you can use a comb and comb coil the hair by sections. After the hair dries, it can be gently pulled apart to give the hair a fuller look.


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