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How To Do Bantu Knots In Eight Easy Steps

Last updated Sep 27, 2023

Bantu knots are a great protective style versatile and can be worn with various hair textures and lengths. You’ve likely seen some of your favorite celebrities, including Rihanna, Mel B., and Beyoncé sporting them. So how to do Bantu knots? Keep reading to find out more about how to achieve Bantu knots by yourself effortlessly.


What Are Bantu Knots?


Bantu knots are a hairstyle where the hair is sectioned off, twisted, and wrapped in such a way that the hair stacks upon itself to form a spiraled knot. While often worn as a protective hairstyle or as a no-heat stretched-out style, Bantu knots are also sometimes referred to as Zulu knots. More importantly, it has already been around for over 100 years.

How Do You Do Bantu Knots By Yourself?

Here’s how to create these truly versatile Bantu Knots on natural hair:

Things You’ll Need:




A wide-toothed comb;

Rattail comb;

Curl cream;

Hairpins or small elastic ponytail holders;

Step 1 Wash And Condition Your Hair

First of all, you need to wash your hair with a sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner to reduce frizz.

Since Bantu knots leave a large portion of it exposed, your scalp needs to be very clean. If you have too much product buildup, grime, and flaky skin on your scalp, the style can become itchy and lose some of its glamour.

Not to mention that conditioner offers a layer of protection for your hair, which can help prevent breakage as you coil, twist, and wrap it into knots.



If your hair dries out easily but is not notably prone to flyaway strands, a rinse-out conditioner is recommended, while a leave-in conditioner is recommended if the hair gets especially dry and frizzy when you work with it.

Step 2 Dry Your Hair

Use a towel to dry your hair until the hair is still damp to the touch but no longer wet enough to wring moisture out of it.


There are conflicting opinions concerning whether to work with wet, damp, or dry hair, but the general consensus is that damp hair is best for setting both knots and knot-outs. After all, dry hair tends to be more difficult to set, dripping wet hair may become limp as a result of being over-saturated.

Step 3 Detangle Your Hair(Optional)

If necessary, please use a wide-toothed comb to brush your hair to make it as smooth and shiny as possible.


Step 4 Separate The Hair Into Multiple Sections

Use the end of a rattail comb to part hair into multiple even sections according to your length and your desired look.

If you have shorter hair, keep the sections about 1/2 inch (1.25 cm) wide or smaller.

If you have longer hair, you can create sections that are roughly 3 to 4 inches (7.6 to 10 cm) wide.

If you’re unsure of how to divide your sections for each knot, please remember this: The shorter the hair is, the smaller the sections should be.

If you plan to create knot-outs, consider the final texture of the curls you will create when determining the width of your sections.

For wavy hair, use medium to large knots ranging from 1 1/2 to 3 inches (3.8 to 7.6 cm) wide.

For more defined curls, use small knots that are roughly 1 to 2 inches (2.5 to 4 cm) wide.

Step 5 Apply Curl Cream

Use your fingers or a styling comb to apply a curl cream to the hair from root to tip, evenly coating the entire length of your hair, which can allow your hair to set in place easily and will eliminate frizz.

During the process, you need to opt for a styling cream with a light-to-medium hold to create knots that hold their form without becoming stiff.

Step 6 Do Twists

Twist each section of hair for a few turns in between your fingertips, as though screwing in a screw or turning a doorknob, until wind the hair enough to create a short spring-like coil against your scalp.

Then gradually wind the remaining hair in the section around the base coil to make the end of each section must be as close to your head as possible in order to hold the knot in place more effectively.

When working with longer hair, the knots will take on a pyramid or funnel shape.

When working with shorter hair, the knots will look more like rosebuds or baguettes.

Step 7 Secure The Knots

If the coils are tight enough, you can usually tuck the ends under the coil to hold them in place.

If the knots are a little too loose, try to retwist them to make them tighter. If this doesn't work, you can use hairpins or small elastic ponytail holders to hold the end of the knots in place.

Step 8 Repeat The Above Process

Wrap the remainder of each section around its corresponding coil and tuck or pin the ends in place.


You should also apply the same styling product to each section before beginning to twist and wrap the knots in place.

If the hair starts to dry out as you work, you can lightly mist it with water from a spray bottle to keep it damp.

Now the Bantu knots are finished!

The Video About How To Do Bantu Knots

If you are interested in it, look at the following video.

Except for natural hair, you can do Bantu knots on weaves.

There is a video about how to do Bantu knots on weaves for you as a reference.


1. Can you sleep in Bantu knots?

Yes, you can. You can sleep in your Bantu knots for a few days in a row, but in order to preserve your style, it's important for you to take good care of your hair even when you sleep, especially if you want to prevent frizz and breakage.

2. Are Bantu knots a protective style?

Bantu Knots are not only a common protective style for natural hair in the black community but it's also a great way to achieve heat-less waves or tight curls for all hair types. The smaller the knot is, the tighter the curls are.

3. How long can you keep Bantu knots in?

You can wear your Bantu knots as a style for up to 2 weeks at a time. After about 2 weeks, you should restyle your hair, or else it will likely look messy. When you take them down, you can wear your knot-out curls as a style, as well.

4. How do you sleep in Bantu knots?

At night, you should pin your hair up and wrap the sides with a scarf. You can also sleep on a satin pillow to avoid damaging your hair as much as possible.

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