Issa Rae’s Natural Hairstyles Are Self-Expression At Its Finest

She’s always mixing it up.

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Since her early days on screen, even before HBO’s Insecure, Issa Rae's love for beauty experimentation has taken her 4C hair from puffs to box braids, bouncy curls, and back again. Ahead, take a look through Issa Rae’s best natural hairstyles of all time — they're all proof of her icon status.

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Leave it to Issa Rae to make classic box braids look totally fresh and innovative. Plus, the touch of honey-blonde highlights added a radiant warmth to her already sunny ensemble, creating an effortless glam vibe.Robin L Marshall/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Bantu knots always make a statement, and in this case, they gave Rae’s more casual-glam look an elevated feel. The small knots formed a crown shape around the star’s head, which seems appropriate given her star status.Jason Koerner/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Rae went all out as an honoree at ELLE’s 2022 Women in Hollywood event. The actor and producer wore a dramatic bubble ponytail draped over her shoulder, but she didn’t stop there — a smattering of crystals were adhered to her head, creating a stunning, ethereal moment.Charley Gallay/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
While she typically prefers more intricate styles, Rae also loves to show off her natural curls. Here, her shoulder-length locks are parted down the middle and have a slightly reddish hue, which majorly complements her hot pink outfit.Dominik Bindl/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
This look worn by Rae at Insecure’s final season premiere is pure art. The intricate rows of braids form a faux-hawk-like style that begins at the top of her head, working its way down to the nape of her neck before falling down into separate braids down her back.Emma McIntyre/WireImage/Getty Images
It’s not clear whether Rae was intentionally channeling any particular pop diva here, but her slicked-back wavy ponytail certainly could dominate a stadium. The ultra-long length and voluminous texture are next-level great.Robin L Marshall/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
This kind of sculptural style has become a go-to for Rae over the years. Here, her honey-highlighted braids are swept to one side of her head and tucked under for a boldly elegant look.Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Subtly crimped pieces of hair and a pair of barrettes make Rae’s curly ponytail puff even more playfully chic.Dominique Charriau/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
It’s rare that Issa Rae straightens her hair, but this silky-smooth, shoulder-length bob at the Emmys is just flawless. The cinnamon-red color is so warming while the bob’s neat, blunt ends are the definition of polished.Momodu Mansaray/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Issa Rae’s combination of free-flowing curls, Fulani braids (complete with gilded beads), and an off-center bun creates a totally unique look. With curls so glossy they’re nearly reflective, it’s no wonder she founded her own acclaimed hair care brand. Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic/Getty Images

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