HERSTORY SPOTLIGHT: CRYSTAL'S SIMPLE HAIRCARE TIPS FOR MOMS + LITTLE ONES
Tell us about your natural hair story.
So, I was the lazy perm person - I’d get a touchup every 6 months, when everyone else I know was going every 6 weeks. I wanted to go natural, especially when I could feel my curls coming in, but I wasn’t sure that I could rock a short cut. I decided to transition and grow my hair out, and waited as long as possible. But, as y’all know, there comes a point when your ends are dead and thin and your roots look really full. After a year, I big chopped!
To be honest, I was freaked out -- my hair had never been that short before. But I got the chance to learn more about how to care for it and to love the process.
What’s your go to style?
I’m still pretty lazy when it comes to haircare, and prefer it if someone else can do it. But, I do like a good twistout, and I’ll do wash-and-gos from time to time. My time is precious with a baby and toddler at home, so more often than not, you’ll see me rocking a bun.
How would you describe your hair?
I have no idea what my hair type is. I tried to look it up by pulling a strand to compare to that chart, but I still don’t know. I just try to see what works.
I’d say it’s really resilient. I can put heat on it and it’ll bounce back. My hair likes more of the butters, but not as many creamy things. I deep condition every few weeks, I put in a leave-in with some good slip. It responds well to coconut oil and castor oil—especially on my edges.
So Crystal, you’ve got 2 little ones at home, RJ who’s an infant and Maddie an energetic toddler. How do you think about haircare for them?
My daughter Maddie is not a ‘sit and get her hair done’ kind of kid. She’s a roll around in the grass on the floor kind of kid. So, when I can get her to sit or catch her being still I’ll start working on her hair in batches. She calls twists ‘shakies’ because she can shake her hair. If she sees me with twists she’ll say, ‘I want some shakies too!’ But she’ll sit just to get half, lol.
For the first year of her life, I didn't do anything to Maddie’s hair. A baby’s hair needs to breathe and figure itself out. It’s virgin hair that needs to grow and be healthy before it gets tainted with human hands.
So to keep her hair and scalp moisturized, I’d just use a little coconut oil, and that’s it.
Now that Maddie is a little older, my focus is to keep her hair clean and moisturized. My mom braids her hair once a week after a bath. We keep the C+K cream all over the house, one in my room, one in her room and one in the living room with a spray bottle next to each, and I’ll just add moisture as she’s jumping around to her next adventure. Maddie sleeps with a bonnet that usually slips off come morning!
My son, RJ doesn’t really need anything yet. He’s still a baby and we don’t know what his texture will be yet, so it’s coconut oil here and there for the time being.
You’ve been using the C+K cream for quite a while now. Any tips and tricks you can share with folks?
I really love the cream for my skin. Especially after a shower -- I notice an immediate difference in my level of moisturization even until morning. Also RJ’s nails grow so fast, so he does end up scratching himself a lot, so sometimes I’ll use the cream in those areas too to help his skin bounce back.
We start with a small amount and then work up. There are a lot of different hair and skin types in our household, so everyone takes a little of what they need. It’s funny because my husband, August, used to have long hair before quarantine, but he just cut it. His hair was very thick and dense and it loved moisture. I felt like we’d use a whole jar of butter on his hair! His hair grows pretty fast though, so I suspect he’ll be needing twistouts again soon.
If we could grant your one natural haircare wish, what would it be?
Honestly, if there was one thing that I could use that could do everything for my hair, I would buy it in a heartbeat. My whole haircare routine is just really really truncated as a mom, and sometimes I have to choose between taking a walk or doing my hair. Even with my daughter, I’ve got to manage her hair too.
I’m all about keeping haircare simple so I can get back to the things I need and love to do both for myself and for my family.