By Choya Randolph
Taking care of our natural hair can sometimes feel like a part-time job. Wash day can take up an entire day. The LOC and/or LCO method can be tedious, especially when putting our hair in twists. And don’t even get me started on detangling. Who needs an arm workout when your unstretched hair is in need of some detangling?
That’s why us naturals love a protective hairstyle. They tuck our hair away, giving our ends and arms a break. They can last up to a month and they’re cute. Plus, there are so many options: box braids, havana twists, feed-in braids, rope twists, faux locs, knotless braids, and the list goes on.
Also, winter is upon us and we’re already battling ashy knuckles and seasonal dryness of our hair. Some of us put in the extra work to keep our hair hydrated during these cold times. Some of us ain’t got time for alladat. It’s cuffing season. We got partners and family members who want some of the time we give to our hair. That’s why a holiday protective hairstyle feels like a must and crochet hairstyles are top two and not number two.
To some, crocheting sounds like a knitting method but to us naturals, it’s when we braid our hair down like Shemar Moore in Diary of a Mad Black Woman. Then we take our crochet tool and crochet our hair of choice in. The first reason why crochet is that girl is because she gives us options. You can crochet Marley hair in and fool people into thinking you’re Chaka Khan. You can crochet kanekalon hair in and fool people into thinking you got a blow out and inches down to your back. From bouncy wand curls to deep wavy hair to bahamian curls, crochet styles serve versatility.
For those who love their plaits, twists and locs but don’t feel like doing all the twisting and braiding, you can crochet that style in. This is great for my girls who don’t feel like putting their hair in box braids and then wrapping a bunch of kinky hair around it just to look like you got locs. You can buy a couple of bags of locs at your local beauty supply store, crochet those in and call it a day.
One con of protective styles is that they pull at our edges. Sometimes those feed-in braids eat up your edges. Though we can take steps to protect our hairline, the variety of crochet styles can give us more protection. Protective styles tend to expose the scalp but many crochet styles hide our scalp which can protect our edges. Plus, when braiding your hair to prepare for crocheting, you can leave your edges out to avoid pulling. Leaving your hairline out when doing twists or braids simply won’t look the best but you can get away with it when crocheting.
Crochet hairstyles truly give us variation. There aren’t many hairstyles that you can’t somehow crochet into your hair. It takes the protection part of protective styling to the next level by also protecting our edges. Plus, depending on the crochet style, the way you braid your hair won’t matter too much. Feed-in braids will expose you but crochet braids won’t.
Because of this, crochet styles are DIY friendly. If you mess up a braid in the back, you can cover it up with some Marley hair. You can’t do the same with box braids. Many protective styles require a professional which means you may have to drop a bag to get those twists. Crocheting rope twists into your hair is way easier than twisting that kanekalon hair in. So as you contemplate what protective style you want to go for, don’t leave our good sis crochet out of the conversation.