We bet you’ve met people with some really cool and well-manicured dreadlocks. In the same breath, you must have bumped into someone with locks that looked so unkempt and hideous you wondered why they just didn’t get a clean shave once and for all.
Well, the thin line between cool and ugly lies in the maintenance, information that we feel you should know, and in 5 simple ways.
1. Moisturization & Conditioning
Unless you live in a zone with lots of moisture in the air, chances are high that your locks will, time and again, dry up, leaving them exposed to the risk of breakages. The surest way to avoid this is to always keep them moisturized by applying hair oil that not only penetrates deep into the strands but also keeps the moisture.
Conditioning, on the other hand, exists to restore the moisture that could have disappeared after being washed away by the shampoo. Interestingly, drinking lots of water helps keep not only your body moisturized but also the hair. So, make a habit of drinking lots of water, it is good for your locks.
TO NOTE: Be extra careful when choosing a conditioner that goes into your locks because some are prone to create build-up, especially those that are not 100% natural.
The one thing that sets dreadlocks apart from loose hair is the fact that they have easy build-up and, if not well washed, can develop a stench. Even with that in mind, it is not advisable to wash them too extensively as you risk thinning. The recommended time frame is once every two weeks. If you have a lifestyle where you are exposed to the weather elements and sweat then once a week.
NOTE: Starter locks should not be washed until they have matured enough, and
when the time to wash comes, use a shampoo that has low residue.
The way your clothes smell of mildew if they are kept without drying properly is the same way dreadlocks develop a stench in not dried well. We bet even you wouldn’t want to scuttle around with your own hair stinking, would you? To mitigate against this, it is advisable to ensure your locks are dry before covering or tying them up together. If need be, sit in the open for a while to let them dry naturally or run a blow-dryer after the wash.
4 Avoid Excessive Styling and Pulling on Baby Hair
While there's need to keep the dreadlocks neat and tidy, do not overdo styling and pulling. If you want to know this is true, walk to any loctician and you’ll meet a whole queue of folks with the same problem of losing their hairline. Secondly, styling it too tightly will not only leave your head aching for days but also lead to hair loss. Dreadlocks are meant to be a protective hair style for your hair, so let it breath as often as possible and only re-twist when need be.
5. Use Natural Oils
When it comes to keeping dreadlocks healthy, natural oils perform better than synthetic products. So, use coconut or olive oil for protecting them against dryness, and tea tree oil for fighting any potential fungi.
6. Night Care
No one wants to spend all their time creating amazing dreadlocks only to wake up in the morning and find they look like a mound of spaghetti. The reality is that even locks that look strong are not immune to friction and breakages, which calls for you to wrap them in a protective piece of clothing to save them from damage while you sleep.
TO NOTE: Ensure that you sleep under blankets and on pillow cases that do not shed a lot of material that can get tangled in your hair at night.