New Look|Crochet Braids| Samba Twist!!!

Hi Guys!

Hope all is well. Today’s post is all about my new hair style using the crochet, latch hook method. The hair I used is Samba Twist 50 inch. It’s from Sensationnel’s African Collection. I purchased this hair Sunday night from and it was at my door step Tuesday morning, which just happens to be my day off! Whoop Whoop!

The color is 1B. I purchased 5 packs at $2.54 each. Wig types was having a huge sale that particular day. The hair is a lot more loose than the hair I used in the past. It appears to look a little more frizzy as well. Honestly the price is what attracted me to this hair in the first place. I wanted to do something with my hair that would be very low maintenance without spending too much. You know how it is ladies, sometimes you just want to get up and go!

I started installing the hair around 9pm and was finished around 11. There are nine braids in my natural hair; 2 on each side of my head going horizontally, two braids in the middle, criss crossed and three straight back.

Each pack has about 21 twists. I used just about four packs with the exception of a few twists. All together I have about 80 something twists in my hair. I find the hair to be more light weight then the hair I purchased when I installed the Jumbo Twists. I’ll probably keep them in a few months. I hope to give you an update in the near future!

The College Grad

Twitter: @_thecollegegrad


Stylin’|How I Style My Crochet Braids 

Hey Guys,

It’s been a minute! Hope you all enjoyed this three-day holiday weekend! Can you believe summer is basically over? Sigh. Anyway, I wanted to share how I styled my crochet braids with you!

Yes, these are crochet braids! I love them because they are so close to my natural texture hair. I used only two packs of Kanekelon braiding hair that I had lying around and cut them in half.

 After installing the crochet braids, I two-strand twisted them using the Define My Curls Crème by Motions.  It softens the hair especially after they’ve been installed for a while, they can get a bit rough. It smells lovely by the way.

Now that the twists are finished, I rolled the hair using perm rods from the beauty supply and dipped them into hot water for a few seconds each. The water is what helps to form the curls. Careful not to burn yourself!

I add a little holding spray, tie my hair and sleep with the rods overnight. The next morning, I unfasten the rods and take out the twists. After teasing a bit, here is the final result:

Not too shabby! I usually repeat these steps as often as needed.

What Do You Think?


The College Grad

My Jumbo Twists: Pics, Pros & Cons

Hello My Loves,

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!! I couldn’t wait to share my new ‘do with you! And no I wasn’t trying to rhyme on purpose! Anywho, I am rocking these long, jumbo twists as a protective style. I installed them using the crochet hook method.



This hair already comes pre-twisted so it makes things so much easier. All I had to do was braid my hair in somewhat of an X pattern (see video, here) as the foundation. I used six packs of the Que Jumbo Senegal Twist by Shake N Go in color 1B. They’re about $6 a pack from Typically people tend to use between 6-7 packs, depending on how full you want it to be.


I love this style because not much maintenance is required. It allows you to just get up and go. It is also very stylish but there are are a few downsides:

1. It’s heavy

It doesn’t bother me too much when it’s down but you can really feel the weight with other styles, like a bun. I wonder how Marge Simpson felt.

2. It makes showering a task

It took my mother and I several attempts to get all of this hair tied up so that I could bathe! What I found helpful was tying the scarf around the front portion of my hair and tying a plastic bag around the bottom so that it wouldn’t get wet. The struggle.

3. Sleeping isn’t very comfortable

I toss and turn enough as is. These twists hanging on my back don’t help matters.

4. They get caught on nails and jewelry, causing it to snag and appear frizzy.

No fun. 😑

Even with all of this, I still like my hair and am looking forward to trying other pre-twisted styles and maybe playing around with some color.

What do you guys think? What are some of your go to protective styles? Would you try or have you already tried this style? What did you think?

The College Grad

Twitter: @_thecollegegrad

12 months of Protective Hairstyles

I started wearing Crochet Braids last October. I remember it so well because my girls and I were going to NYC to attend a live taping of the Wendy Williams show. SB: How u doin’? My sister spent hours the night before installing them and making sure they were curled to perfection. I had gotten burned a few times and my neck was sore from sleeping with hair rods but that’s sometimes the price we pay for beauty! Thankfully, I’ve learned a few tricks of the trade through trial and error so I don’t have to suffer as much.

I removed them for a brief moment when I was a bridesmaid in my girlfriend’s wedding. Since then, I’ve been wearing what’s known as “protective hairstyles” for a whole year and I must say I’ve noticed a difference.

I am a self-proclaimed semi natural-ista and proud of it! What that means to ME is; No to perms, Yes to weaves with minimal heat. Overtime, I’ve cause a lot of unintentional damage to my hair. For the longest my go to style was a straight sew-in weave, no more than 12 inches with a middle part. I’d leave out the top portion of my hair to blend with the weave. Constant flat ironing of this section caused my hair to break off badly.

I started changing up my routine by leaving out not a stitch of hair with my weaves and wearing Crochet Braids to allow the damaged areas to grow back. It had gotten so bad that I could barely braid that section. If and when I do leave out a portion to flat iron, I make sure to apply a heat protector first. I also switch up my leave out sections between side and middle parts to give my hair a chance to breathe. Since then, that area has grown and it now passes below my eyes.

Something else to note is that it’s important to keep your hair hydrated when wearing any style, especially those styles where all of your hair is completely sealed up, ex: wigs, braids, crochet braids.

I am by no means an expert on hair, but these are just some tips for what’s worked for me. I still have a long way to go to achieve the hair goals that I want but I’m definitely not where I was 12 months ago!

Check out my 12 months of protective styling in the photos below and tell me what you think! What protective styles are you eager to try this Fall/Winter? Would you take the 12 month challenge?

The College Grad

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More and more recently, women in show biz as well as everyday women have been embracing their natural hair texture. Going for more natural looking styles for me has been very empowering and challenging at the same time.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been stopped on the street by admirers, white and black, men and women who loved the various styles I’ve worn. It’s very encouraging. Then there are times when people aren’t as nice, those who don’t understand why natural hair is a big thing to women of color, simply because it doesn’t fit their standard of beauty. Luckily, those people are few and far in between but it still leaves a sting.

Just recently, Zendaya (of Disney channel fame) was criticized for wearing locs to the Oscars. This couldn’t have occurred at a more appropriate time, with the whole #OscarsSoWhite boycott. She released a statement via her instagram account, shutting the haters all the way down. What I love about her statement is, not only did she shut the haters down, she did so in an intelligent manor! Just because someone wears their hair in a certain style does not make them incompetent or uneducated. You go Zendaya! BTW, she looks absolutely gorgeous ❤



This bullying of natural hair or hair in general needs to stop! Hair is hair! What you choose to do to your hair is your business. Do what works for you and keep it cute, honey!

What are your thoughts on this? Have you been criticized for wearing more natural looking styles? Let’s start the conversation!


The College Grad

*Photos from Good Morning America

D.I.Y. Bun with Marley Braiding Hair

Hair. It is a journey in itself, especially troubling for women of color. Whether your hair is long or short, there will always be some level of maintenance required. My natural hair journey began nearly two years ago, not due to growing popularity though, more like laziness. I was never one to consistently keep up with a perm. I could manage pretty well with a deep conditioner. So I did not do a big chop like many women.

It was not easy at times though and I am sure that anyone who has gone through the transition would agree. There were many times I remember yelling “I hate my hair” out of frustration. Some styles either didn’t fit me or my hair was just too short for them. It just takes patience and the right products. The best advice I can give is to be yourself. Every hairstyle may not suit you. Trends are meant to be followed but take what you like from it and tailor it to fit your unique needs!

Thanks to YouTube, I’ve finally, found a natural hairstyle that is easy for me to manage and is super cute. (See the link below) I’ve gotten many compliments on it too. I consider myself to be semi natural. I do not use perms but at times will use minimal heat and I still love a good sewn in weave, and I am not ashamed! The moral of the story is, find out what’s best for you and work it, honey!

Products used: **Prices May Vary** FYI these are the products that I used. Feel free to add or take away anything you wish…


Local Beauty Supply– Marley braiding hair, ($5) Softee Herbal gro formula, ($1.29) Ampro styling gel, ($1.69) bobby pins, ($1) hair wrap ($1)

CVS – Cantu Shea butter leave in conditioning repair cream ($6-8),

WalMart – Wide tooth comb ($1)

Dollartree – 1 pack of hair scrunchies ($1)

Water, H2O (free, your bathroom sink :))

Step One: I grease my scalp with the herbal grow formula to prevent dryness, spray it down with water, dentangle with wide tooth comb and rub Cantu conditioner throughout.

Step Two: Comb/brush it up in a ponytail to your desired height. The higher the better! Use gel to hold the hair and secure with hair scrunchy. Use silk wrap or scarf to mold the shape.

Step Three: Now it’s time to apply the hair. Hold the hair in your hand and find the middle. There should be an even amount of hair on both sides. This is where you’ll place the rubber band. Once that is complete, tie the rubber band around your hair. The Marley hair should be covering your face.


Section off the hair into three parts. Take the middle piece. Bring it towards the back of your head and secure with a bobby pin. (Or as many as you need) Criss cross the remaining two sections and lay them on top of the first piece. Use bobby pins to secure it. The front should start to take the shape of a bun. Roll and tuck the loose hair and secure with a bobby pin. Adjust to your our liking! The end results should look a little something like this:


Happy Styling,

The College Graduate

Why I _______ my hair.

Why I perm it, straighten it, press it.

Wig it, glue it, sew it.

Why I “Aunt Jemima” scarf it or Angie Davis fro it.

Why I sister lock, finger wave, high bun or box braid it.

Why I Halle Berry, Rihanna, Tyra or Beyonce it.

Why I run from water in the summer to protect it.

Why I spend countless hours in the mirror to perfect it.

Why it’s fried, dyed and laid to the side.

Why I rock these styles with so much pride.

“Why? ” you ask
I reply, “Because I can.”

I’m a black girl, you just wouldn’t understand…

~Dedicated to the natural sista’s and the weave appreciators.
Having long or short hair does not make you more or less beautiful. It simply compliments the beauty God already gave you. ~

Sincerely yours,

The College Grad