Rocking braids over the summer is always a given, but have you ever considered wearing them in the winter? Unfortunately, cold weather can be damaging to our hair. The damp, cold season can leave our hair dry and brittle, which most times results in breakage. Hairstylist Susy Oludele, who is behind Solange’s coveted locks, gives us the inside scoop on why braids are a great alternative for the winter and how to get the best out of the style.

EBONY: Can you explain what it is about braids that make them ideal for the wintertime? 

Susy Oludele: Usually in the fall and wintertime, people are busy with work and school, there are a lot of holidays to prepare for, etc. Box braids become an efficient protective style for any winter lifestyle. My box braids are neat, parted into perfect boxes that allow the braids to have versatility. You can create head-turning updos in 15 minutes or leave it how it is and still have a beautiful hairstyle.

EBONY: What do you recommend readers know before getting braids?

SO: There are three things I recommend for women to do before installing box braids. First, make sure to moisturize and detangle your hair before you get attachments. It’s always important to preserve edges. I recommend women to talk to their hairstylist about how much pressure they use when attaching hair around the edges. It’s always better to braid with ease or simply just not a lot of pressure when protecting hair around the edges. Lastly, I recommend women to get hair according to the hair on your head. If you have thick or full hair, do not be afraid to use 12-16 packs to complete a box braid hairstyle.

EBONY: Can you give our readers insight on what products/ steps to avoid when getting braids?

SO: Avoid using products that will cause build up. Try to use more water-based products.

EBONY: What are your go to products for your hair?

SO: Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie, Coconut Oil, Jamaican Castor Oil, 100% African Shea Butter, NuNaat Products and good ol’ H20.

EBONY: What are the most commonly made mistakes when getting braids? 

SO: The most commonly made mistake when getting braids is getting them done too tight. Too much tension of the scalp can result in hair damage.

EBONY: Are there any special tips or tricks you can share with us? 

SO: The secret to beautiful looking braids are sections. It is important to section your hair into parts so your braids look neater and fuller all around the hair.

Find out more about Susy on her website,