Why do you use braids and protective styling?
I learned about protective styling after an unfortunate mishap that ended in me having to shave my sides and cut significant length off my hair.
I use it to help maintain healthy hair and scalp.
I use it because pre-washing, washing, conditioning, masking, oiling, drying, plaiting, hydrating and styling my own hair is a nightmare that can take hours that I don't have.
I use it because, unlike my sisters, my hair grows at a mind-numbing pace (about 3"/year) no matter what I do...
Finally, I use it to express myself. Like many with mixed hair, my mood and style is often a reflection of how successful I am taming my hair.
Since using protective styles my hair has grown more, my curls are back and i feel fierce every day.
Protective styling is both a need and a want.