Dreadlocks are an ultimate beautiful hairstyle that makes you look trendy always. While this lovely hairstyle is easier to maintain than other styles, it requires some basic maintenance. Remember that dreadlock care is a must for healthy locks.
But it is true that dreads take a hell of a time to dry. And therefore if you want to wash them once in a week, it’s okay.
It is very necessary to wash dreads regularly for proper dreadlock care. Otherwise sweat accumulated in them leads to bacterial growth which makes the scalp itchy. It makes you scratch head often which in turn leads to scalp irritation and hair breakage.
For washing dreads, a residue-free shampoo is the most ideal. It is also important that the shampoo doesn’t add to the residue you want to get rid of. Residue is a hazardous thing which attracts dirt and blocks pores. If there is a gel or oil applied on your hair, it is recommended that you first soak the hair in soapy water for a significant time.
You can even get shampoos meant especially for dreadlock care. Check your local shops for the most natural shampoos. Remember that the simplest is the best. Even plain Dettol bar soap works best to clean scalp and locks.
Apply the shampoo twice, first to lather on the roots of hair and scalp, second on the rest of the hair. Use ample amount of shampoo and rinse plenty of times, to ensure that all the lather has been washed.
While drying, squeeze hair and wrap a towel over it to take away extra moisture. For proper dreadlock care, it is necessary to apply some sort of moisturizer to the locks and scalp immediately after drying – when the dreads are a bit damp. Again, you will get myriads of oils meant for dreads, which you can try. But take care of not trying too many and too much. Too much of oily lotions on the dreads will attract dirt and lint. Unclean scalp will develop dandruff and that will present you lots of trouble in getting rid of.
Between Two Washes
You know that if you want proper dreadlock care, you cannot wash hair very frequently because dreads take a lot of time to dry when saturated fully with water. So, it is enough to apply a quick refresher, like a mild astringent or a witch hazel. It will remove the trapped dirt and oil and keep your head fragrantly fresh and clean, at the same time moist enough.
For proper dreadlock care, it is recommended not to do twisting of your dreads more than once in 1-3 weeks. And you can do it while the dreads are damp, but they should not be dripping wet. They can be twisted in both the directions. Start twisting at the tip and move towards the scalp. Starting from scalp and moving to the tip may make the root sections thin over time.
For proper dreadlock care, whatever product you use should be used in least quantity possible. (And in case of beeswax, it should be stopped altogether once your dreads are formed.) The newly twisted dreads should be clamped with a clip at the point of end of the locked hair and starting of new growth, to hold the newly twisted sections. Only one lock clamped at a time will unwind, so it is good to clamp in small groups.
Because dreadlocks hold a lot of water, they should be completely dried. Otherwise they will start smelling damp and moldy. It takes as little as an hour to air dry if you stand in bright sunshine with hair loose, or up to even 24 hours if you dry them indoors or with your hair curled or braided tightly. You can use a hood or bonnet to quicken the process. These are comparatively cheap.
To Use Rubberbands or Not?
It is a half truth that rubberbands break hair. They do not, if used properly. The big secret is to use them for short time durations, say less than 24 hours. In fact, any band (not only rubberband) which you use to bind your locks for over 24 hours will start whittling away your hair in that specific section. Banding in the same spot for days (even though you take a break at nights) is harmful for your hair.
Dreadlock care is not a very tedious task as you might have thought, but it certainly needs patience, passion and dedication. And it rewards you with a beautifully flowing mane of dreads.