Crochet braids online guide
Flat irons, pressing combs
I recently learned about a new way to add braid extensions to your hair. I did not know about this method previously. As an African American woman, I go through stages when it comes to hair. I do not like chemical relaxers and stopped using them a few years ago. Nevertheless, I would often get frustrated with my natural hair. I would still try to achieve a straight look with a flat iron or pressing comb but the hair would often get frizzy again and back to its natural state after exposure to just a bit of moisture.
This causes great limitations on rainy days and you are also less inclined to exercise daily as you should because you do not want to sweat too much in your scalp. When you try to maintain a straight look with natural hair, you might end up applying heat to your hair much more frequently than you intended. You will have to apply the heat whenever you wash the hair (maybe weekly) but you might also find yourself having to apply the heat as a touch up more frequently when the hair frizzes out (perhaps every other day). This ends up being to much heat application to the hair and is not healthy for it.
When I realized that I was giving my hair too much heat, I would sometimes just keep it in the natural curly state wearing an "afro puff" with the curls further activated by some hair gel. Sometimes I liked this look, sometimes I didn't and I yearned for something different but I still was not going to give in and get a chemical relaxer again.
So when we want to look for alternatives beyond chemical relaxers, flat irons, hot combs, and natural curls (or locks), the next popular options for African American female hair include hair weaves and braided hair extension styles.
Now, once again I had some issues with the remaining options. I felt like weaves were unnatural looking and indicated a Black woman trying to achieve the look of something she is not. Not only would the weaved hair be straight but it was usually unnaturally long and looked fake as it was. Look out for my review of the film Good Hair as I will discuss this in more detail. The hair used for weaves is typically sold by women in India and imported to the United States. So Black women with the long straight hair are really wearing Indian hair. The whole popular phenomenon is very interesting and a little mind boggling to me.
I definitely did not want a weave. The compromise for me was to get a braided hair style that is quintessentially a part for African culture. I thought that if it was an ethnic hairstyle made with extensions that would be okay as long as it was not a straight wig or weave that really looked too much like Indian or White hair and achieved a very unnatural look on an African American woman.
Call me "Afrocentric", but I am very against Black women trying to look too much like something we are not.
So far, I have been pleased with the compromise as I often wear braided hairstyles, specifically microbraids. Please look out for my hub on microbraids.
The videos below depict a tutorial on the application of crochet braids which is new to me. I have never tried them before but when you compare them to the process of applying microbraids, the crochet braids are much faster for practical purposes.
That is not me in the video. These videos are borrowed and embedded into the article from YouTube.
How to do crochet braids
As we can see, applying crochet braids involves braiding your natural hair against the scalp in corn rows first. Then using the recommended crochet needle, you loop the extension hair through your own, anchoring it and then either braiding it or leaving it loose and curly like the woman in the video. I think that the length of hair that she has used is natural looking and not too long. Additionally, the curly hair looks more convincingly natural and flattering than the straight hair would look.
I think that it looks great and she has helped a lot of women to find a new way to style their hair! In addition to this tutorial, there are many other tutorials for crochet braids posted on YouTube by various individuals. Check them out!