Male braids along with dreadlocks for men are ever so popular. If you have a great barber that can keep you tapered up the look is hot. Of course, your braider has to have some skills as well to create the awesome designs we see in the streets.
The protective style keeps the moisture in the hair locked in better and aids in less manipulation. The more you leave your thirsty roots alone the more they will grow. (Provided you have a good maintenance routine too). *WINK