Tuesday, June 1, 2010

So you want to (dread)lock your hair? Or your child's hair?

This is just a hodge podge of things to consider, I am not speaking with regards to those that wear locks for religious reasons, or specifically to organic hair lockers or free-formers.

Some people start locks and "drop out" not because they don't want them but because they didn't know what to expect or what to do. 

Societal considerations:

Will your employer be O.K with it? Will new employers be O.K with it?
Will your school or sports team be O.K with it?
Do you realize that some people may stereotype you as a weedhead, revolutionary or something they perceive as negative?
Are you aware that some people will try and discourage you and start spewing myths like locs are dirty, unprofessional or unattractive?
Are you aware that you may be ridiculed for choosing a style that is not"conventional"?

There are several ways to start locks so do some research... some common ways of starting are microbraiding, twisting and interlocking.

If you are especially active e.g sweat a lot or swim a lot you probably want to consider starting with microbraids or interlock, early phase twists come out pretty easily.

Sisterlocks are a whole different kind that are very very small and usually have to be done by a professional.


Depending on the method you choose and how long you've had your locks,  if you change your mind you may be able to comb them out.  With interlock you most likely not be able to.

If you change your mind you will have to grow your hair out for a bit without retwisting it and cut your locks off.


"good looking" locks don't happen over night.  There will be stages where your hair sticks up, you can't do much with them, they look fuzzy etc. You can embrace the journey, but you may feel frustrated at some point but they will lock and look lovely!

Keep in mind that everyones locks will look different.

Locking hair takes time it can take months even a year and up to get them really locked up, it doesn't mean that they cannot look nice in the main time.

In the initial phase you may not be able to wash your hair for a while, there are "dry shampoos" that will help to keep your hair clean  Filthy hair doesn't have to be a part of the locking process at anytime.

In the initial phases you may experience itchy scalp.  This is somewhat normal and you have to play around to find a product that doesn't irritate your scalp as much.  You may have to massage your scalp at times to reduce the itching and support scalp stimulation since you will no longer be combing or brushing your hair. 

Parts and sizing:

If you think at one point you may want to style your locks pay attention to the part size and placement, part the hair in a neat pattern that suits you.

Make your parts to basically match the thickness of the locks you want.  Keep in mind that as your locks mature they will thicken up a little bit.

If someone is starting them for you ask them specifically how they are going to part your hair, tell them how big you want your locs so they don't just start doing something you don't want. Make them show you and tell them what you want!

There are a lot of beautiful lock styles out there. 


I'm sorry but locks and lint go hand and hand.

Are you willing to cover your hair at night, sleep on a satin pillow or avoid  wooley linty materials?
Are you willing to try and avoid getting them sandy?
Are you willing to commit to washing them and keeping them clean yet keeping them moisturized?
Are you willing to ensure they are dried properly to try and avoid mold..yes mold


Do you know how to do your choosen method of retightening e.g . twisting, palm rolling or interlocking?
Are you willing to learn?
Are you willing to pay to have it done?
How often you retighten is up to you and how your hair grows, but avoid doing it too often it can lead to thinning locks.


It may take a while to find the right products it comes down to trial and error, some people simply twist with oil and water or lemon juice and others use store bought products.

Are you willing to switch to clear shampoos and other things that will not build up in your locks?

Are you willing to at least try and avoid things like mineral oil and petroleum to try and avoid lint and build up?


Take some time search some blogs, join a few forums and check out  Youtube to see what others have to say.  There is a lot of really great information out there.

Research involves those "just in case" scenerios like

What to do if a dreadlock breaks off, you can sew it back on among other things
How to conceal lint?
How to make your locks larger

1 comment:

  1. Glad I found this Blog! I'll be sure to share it with my friends and clients!