Raven McMurry on March 8, 2019.

For some Montanans, winter is their favorite time of year. I get it! There are beautiful snow showers and hot toddies in every downtown coffee shop. But if you have thick and curly hair, like me, it can be your worst nightmare. Kinky curls need moisture, just like straight hair, but one spritz of coconut oil is not enough. To maintain my curly-Qs, I’ve used three different protective styles during the season to ward off winter breakage.


Cornrows and box braids have been popularized by celebrities. But, the Kardashians did not invent the box braid style. These braids take time in order to do them right and have them last. Both cornrows and box braids are made using a three strand technique. If you see someone with beautiful cornrow designs or box braids down to their waist, remember this one very important thing: do not touch their hair just because it’s a different texture.

Wigs and Weaves

Wigs are my go-to for manic Missoula weather. I put my hair in a scrunchie and place a wig cap across my hairline. My wigs have small hair-combs to stay in place. Quality wigs can be expensive, but it’s worth it for something to cover your natural hair. Weaves braided into your natural hair, like extensions, are also a good option. Finding high-quality human hair extensions is important because some synthetic-blends can cause scalp irritation. 

Scarves and Hats

Head scarves are cute and fun escapes from an everyday look. They’re also less expensive than getting a weave installed or a lacefront wig. On Youtube, I’ve found different tying techniques to make my scarves look more intricate. But if all else fails, hats come in handy. My afro in full swing will not fit in a beanie, but maybe yours will.


Raven McMurry on March 8, 2019.