I’ve spent hours on Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube researching my next hairstyle. I look to these resources for recommendations on brands/curl patterns, maintenance and style tips. However, there’s nothing better than stopping a woman with fabulous hair on the street (or at work or on the train) and getting the details on her look. In this post, I’ve done that for you!
I caught up with three women that have been rocking crochet styles to protect their natural hair. I got the lowdown (and pics) of their favorite crochet styles, brands, maintenance and how they keep their natural tresses healthy underneath the crochet styles.
First, let’s meet Krystal (@misstallnred), pictured wearing Ocean Wave by Kima Brand. The busy bride to be and financial services professional has been natural almost four years. In that time, crochets are the only protective style that she’s worn.
Tisun Beauty: With so many protective styles to experiment with, why have crochet styles been your go-to?
Krystal: I chose crochets because of the versatility of the style. Also, I like the convenience of the maintenance and the style being able to withstand my daily workout routines. I wanted to get back heavy in the gym, but I didn’t want to deal with the headache of doing my own hair on a daily basis, so crochets were the best option for me.
Tisun Beauty: You have a LOT of (natural) hair! How long do you wear your crochet styles and how do you take care of your natural hair?
Krystal: I know! My hair can be overwhelming so I love keeping it protected with crochets. I’ve had my current install for 6 weeks. I detangle the crochet hair weekly or as needed. I cleanse my scalp with a co-wash or shampoo. I add almond oil, which keeps my natural hair healthy and growing. I go to my stylist for regular trims and deep conditioning treatments.
I sat down for lunch with clarity strategist and entrepreneur, Destiny (@reap7_) for over an hour before I realized that her box braids were crochets!
Tisun Beauty: Why crochet box braids over traditional box braids? How long do they last?
Destiny: Honestly, for the convenience, affordability and to shorten the amount of braiding time. I wear them for at least two months. I get a touch-up for some of the crochet braids, which loosened after about 6 weeks.
Tisun Beauty: What brand and hair type is your current crochet style?
Destiny: My current crochet braiding style is box braids (pictured above). I used Afri-Naptural 3x pre-stretched box braids.
This beauty has been natural since 2013. Crochet styles have given her the opportunity to be versatile with her hair.
Tisun Beauty: How do you maintain the style?
Destiny: I protect my crochet braids with a satin bonnet and sleep on a satin pillow. Plus, I limit the amount of styles to wear with my crochet braids to prevent unraveling or cause them to look frizzy before due time.
Apri-Joi is a 9 year naturalista that is as fit as she is frugal! AJ follows step by step instructions from her favorite YouTubers to install her own crochet styles. Her main objective is to create looks that mimic and blend with her natural texture.
Tisun Beauty: Tell me about your experience with crochet styles.
April-Joi: The way my natural hair and my workout life are setup, crochet braids have been the most convenient style to date. I’ve been wearing them off and on for at least 5 years now and have never regret a crochet set. They are the easiest and quickest to install, the maintenance is beyond easy, and the transition from down and cute to up and out of the way for a workout is unmatched. While I love traditional box braids, I do not enjoy the amount of time required to install them, the weight and length often associated with them, and the stress on my hair as they grow out. Another thing I love about crochet is the ability to choose various textures and curl patterns (sometimes the options are overwhelming!) and even find many that are similar to my own God-given curls.
Tisun Beauty: You style your own hair. How do you maintain it to increase the longevity of the style?
April-Joi: Typically, my hair is braided down with the crochet hair attached to the braids. I periodically cleanse my scalp with an astringent and oil my hair for the 4-6 weeks to keep the crochet style. I don’t usually tie them down at night — that’s legit how much freedom crochet hairstyles give me! And I shake, shape with my fingers, and go in the morning. For my current style, I decided to experiment with some leave-out. I flat twist that part down at night, tighten down the edges, as that’s where much of my leave out is, and slumber like nothing ever happened. The next morning I un-do the twists, blend it with the crochet hair, and walk around like this is my hair all day long!
Is it her real hair or crochets?
Tisun Beauty: What is your go-to hair?
April-Joi: I LOVE the Jamaican Bounce curl. I usually stick to the Freetress brand. I love their variety of curls.
I’ll definitely try out these ladies' tips and recommendations this summer.
How do you maintain your crochet styles?