My Dreadlock Journey – Your Questions Answered

 

 

Since I embraced my baby locks I have been getting lots of questions and comments so I decided to make do like a beauty blogger (LOL) and write this blog post.

Firstly I’ll answer the questions I’ve got then throw in some random information, tips and tricks and all that good stuff.

Sound good ?

Great. Let’s go

So firstly, a lot of things made me consider them. I have always loved Caribbeans, their music, their culture, their food, and of course their hair. I have admired dreadlocks since I was young girl, probably younger than 10 years old, and I’ve always thought of having them done. However, until I turned 22, my plan was to start locks when I turn 40 because I wanted to transition to natural hair from relaxed hair completely and rock my fro for quite a while. Good plan right? However when I got to 10 months of transitioning, I couldn’t imagine myself caring for my fro all by myself. It was too much for me and getting help with my hair meant ££, so I had to think of something.

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Relaxing my hair wasn’t an option, wearing weaves was definitely not an option (Click here to find out why I decided to go natural). One of my colleagues at work (who has got amazing dreads by the way) advised me to just get my locs started asap. He said “You’d be happy you did it now when you turn 25”. Such a good point. I booked my hair appointment for the following Saturday.

What do You think of free form? I would say I’m semi free form (I know a number of dread heads don’t agree that there is such a thing but still ) in the sense that I do not retwist as often as I honestly should and it will get even less regular as my whole head of hair locks completely. I would say free form is a good way to go if you want thicker locks. Retwisting your locks too often will lead to thinning.  However I am not a fan of starting locks through neglect which is essentially what free form is, cos you’re basically letting your hair go. Free form has no rules, its cheaper in the sense that you really don’t have to use products especially twist and lock gels. I don’t have a lot of opinions on free form, but I’m not a fan.

This perfectly leads to the next question, how often do you retwist?

I’ll be just 4 months into my journey in 4 days and I have only retwisted twice. The Loctician advised me to come for a retwist every 3-4 weeks, but I purposely rebel and pop by every 2 months. Once my whole head is locked, hopefully 8-10 months from now, I will retwist probably every 3-4 months.

Starter locs (Just 2 hours old)                      First retwist after 6 weeks

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Second retwist after 2 months

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Almost 4 months old, yet to be retwisted.

How did you decide the pattern to loc your hair? 

I don’t know… nothing peculiar or specific. I love my mums dreads but I wanted mine to be a bit thicker, so I told the loctician, “just a bit bigger than my mums, please”. LOL.

How often do you wash your hair? 

I was my hair with water every time I get a retwist done. Before you think I’m filthy LOL, this is because my hair isn’t locked yet and I do not want my hair to unravel. I don’t trust myself to wash my hair carefully. There is the stocking cap trick but I fear if not done properly, can cause nasty build up on the tip of the locs.

So every week I dry shampoo my scalp and every 2 weeks I dry shampoo my locs. What’s dry shampoo? It’s shampoo that doesn’t need water to work. I’ve been using dry shampoo since I was transitioning actually. I used it on my braids and crotchet braids. It leaves the scalp clean and tingly fresh (the smell is so lovely!)

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How do I use it? I put in a generous amount on my scalp and massage it in. Then, I leave it on for 5-10 minutes, depending on how much I get distracted by my playlist *covers face*. After that,  I wet a hand towel (not too wet) and really get into rubbing my scalp and going over my locs. Thereafter, I feel a nice tingly sensation.

How long it took? The starting process is literally just under an hour, well… depending how big you want your locs to be. If you meant how long it took for my locs to actually lock – my hair isn’t fully locked yet. It’s beginning to, but ever so slowly. I’m letting it lock on its own. Not really helping it in any drastic way. The Loctitian does use mango and lime twist and lock gel every time I do a retwist. I started my locs using the comb coils method.

Do you apply any gels or creams? To quicken the locking process? Nope. For general maintenance, yes but I only use a few products. I don’t believe in using loads of stuff or experimenting.

Best way of maintenance? I would say just always wear a satin or silk scarf or hair bonnet to go to sleep, or replace your cotton pillow case with a satin or silk pillow case. This keeps your hair healthy as the moisture remains locked in your hair, cotton sucks out the moisture of your hair and trust me, you do not want dry locks. Moisturise your locs often and just embrace the fact that some days you’ll look like Lauryn Hill and some days you’ll look like a rat (LOL) It’s part of the process.

I’ve spoken about washing my locs already but in regards to moisturising, I use these products:

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The first one is basically like a really nourishing sheen spray. I use that once every day. I only use coconut oil on my hair like twice a week. The extra dark Black Jamaican castor oil, I hardly do use it I won’t lie, but I do try to apply it a day or two before I dry shampoo my hair. The No More itch Grow spray unfortunately for some reason causes my hair to unravel. Not at a frightening rate but, noticeable enough for me to avoid it. So, I use this once in two weeks, sometimes less, but I make sure it goes directly on my scalp and not my locs. It really helps stop itching, I cannot overemphasise that.

When it comes to shampoo, I use literally anything  I can lay my hands on (this isn’t such a bad thing because even before I started locs I have always been picky about shampoo and conditioner) but the last time I used a normal shampoo I used Aphogee Deep Moisturising Shampoo . This was one of the products that really helped me during my transitioning process.

As you can tell, my locs are seriously low maintenance, I don’t bother with products that much. One thing I used to use when I was transitioning that I cannot use now is conditioner. I can’t use conditioner, especially not Leave-in conditioner till my locs are locked completely. Conditioner softens the hair, this softening effect makes starter locs unravel a lot more easily.

Do You wash your hair during a bath or leave it covered? I definitely leave it covered LOL. For starter locs you really don’t want to get your hair wet so often (I only get my hair wet once every two months – But I will go on to wash my hair every 1 or 2 weeks when my hair is fully locked).

I can’t lie, I want them to grow as long as possible, but right now I am enjoying the length of my hair. So stress free. Cutting it? I doubt. Locs are too beautiful to be cut.

On to the next one!

 To be very honest, it was such an impulse decision and I really didn’t care to cut my hair as I was happy to let all my relaxed hair go. LOL. But I will say if someone told me when I was 20 that I would cut all that hair, I’d laugh at them for being ridiculous.

Thank you all for your questions! I hope I answered them to your satisfaction. If not, just leave a comment or tweet at me I’m happy to go on about it, if you want.

I will post another write up about the experiences I’ve had with starter locs in a working environment and just everyday life. Then a third post on things you should know before you start locs if you ever decide to do so.

Till the next post!

Lots of Love,

 

Davina xx

 

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