We are the # 1 Dreadlock Hair Care Service in the San Francisco, Berkeley and Oakland, California.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Take Great Care of Your Dreadlocks

Keeping your locs groomed

- Retwist your locs every few weeks.

- Use your chosen wax or oils or creams on the new growth as needed.

- Palm roll them as needed to keep them unified and neat.

- If your hair requires it, you may need to put rubber bands at the base & tips of your hair while they are locking.

 - Remember that you have to be patient & committed to get the locs you desire. they take work and devotion and it will show up in the end

 

What is a Lock?

A lock is a section of hair that has intertwined or matted together and can not easily be combed or picked apart. Locks are made up of tangled unshed hair. You comb your hair to keep tangles out and to remove the hair that sheds.

The average healthy person will lose between 50 - 150 hairs a day. This is normal. When you stop comb your hair those hairs get caught up and tangled and intertwined to form a lock. So it is really time and the shed hair that forms a lock.


(Info taken form www.squidoo.com)

How to start Locks

How to Start Locks on Any Kind of Hair


Locking Techniques
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There many ways to lock your hair and you have to choose the method that works best for your hair type and length (i.e. tight curls, coily, wavy, straight, short, long, fine, thick, dry, oily). Check out the section on this site with the youtube videos.





Backcombing
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Backcombing (also known as teasing or ratting) is a way of combing hair which is used to create volume as well as to create certain hairstyles. Backcombing means repeatedly combing the hair towards the scalp, causing the hair to tangle and knot up. This method is often used in creating various big hair styles such as beehives and dreadlocks.


Comb Coils
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Comb coils can be started on hair that is coily to kinky. If your hair will form a natural coil you can usually start your locks this way. You are basically using a comb to coax a section of hair to form a curl. This method is great if you have hair that is really short. However, any length of coil hair can be comb coiled.


Single twists
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Starting locks with single twist is a lot like starting locks with comb coils. The only difference is that you use your fingers instead of a comb to form the lock. If your hair will form a natural coil you can usually start your locks this way. You can start any length of hair with this method.


Palm Rolls
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Starting locks with palm rolls is a lot like starting locks with comb coils or finger rolls. The only difference is that you use your palms to form the lock. If your hair will form a natural coil you can usually start your locks this way. Your hair should be at least three inches long to start your locks with this method.


Two strand twists/ Double Strand Twists
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If you are looking for a way to start your locks that can be handled a little more at the beginning you may want to consider starting your locks with two strand or double strand twists. Locks started with double strand twist are a lot more durable than locks started with coils, finger coils/roll, or palm rolls. This method will work on coily, curly and wavy hair types and hair that is at least two inches long.


Braids
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Braids are one of the easiest low maintenance ways of starting your locks. It really is as simple as braiding or getting your hair braided.

Locks started with braids can be a wide range of sizes from the size of your finger to the size of a piece of yarn and every diameter in between. This method works on all hair types but is especially good for those who have hair that will not coil or have various types of hair on your head.


Woven/Interlocked/Tool Started Methods
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Weaving or interlocking the hair is a sure fire way to start locks (and maintain locks) on any hair type. Even the straightest hair can be locked with this method. The hair is woven from tip to root with your fingers or a tool. When you get to the base you are done.

It is kind of like braiding only backwards. And like braids, locks started by weaving or intertwining the hair are a lot more durable than other methods. You can use this method to start locks of any size. If you want exceptionally small "micro locks" this would be the way to go.


Yarn Braid Extension
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If you want locks and: a.) have a perm and don't want to cut it or b.) think you want them but are not completely sure consider starting your locks with yarn extensions. Yarn braids (a.k.a Nu Locs) are simply extension braids that are braided with acrylic yarn instead of synthetic hair. You really only need an inch or two of hair.

For more information on locks and locking visit
www.MyNHCG.com



(info taken from www.squidoo.com)



Website with more info on methods for locking your hair
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Knatty Dread - http://www.knattydread.com/dreadlocks-info/making-dreadlocks.html

Hair Products You May Use to Start Locking Your hair

Tools & Products You May Use to Start Locking Your hair


A. What products you may need to start your locs?
(depends on hair types and length)
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oils, hair beeswax or gel



B. Products You Can Use to Loc Your hair
You can use a variety of products to loc your hair.
Use the products that feel best to you.
You can go to walmart, Target, and Walgreens to get some of the products.
You may have to order your goods online.



Here are a listing of some hair oils & creams that can be used to bind the hair
when you first start to loc your hair:
------------------------------------------
(1) 100% Beeswax- this is the most common and be bought in many places but some people don't like it as much because it can attract alot of dirt. Alternatives to using wax are pomade, clay, balm, cream, styling glue.
(2) Carol's Daughter Loc Butter - can be purchased online or at Sephora's
(3) Sebastian Molding Mud
(4) Nature's Blessings
(5) Organic Root Stimulator Lock & Twist gel
(6) Rasta Locks and Twists Locking Gel
(7) Knatty Dread Natural Dreadlocks Lock Shampoo
(8) Dread Head's Dread Soap
(9) Knotty Boy Dread Wax
(10) Knotty Boy LockSteady Locking Gel
(11) Oyin Handmade's Grand Poo Bar (shampoo bar)
(12) Jamaican Mango & Lime Loc gro
(13) Softee Hair Styling gel
(14) Shea Butter
(15) Taliah Waajid Tight Hold


(C) Shampoos for Dreadlocks & Residue Free Shampoo
- Oyin Handmade's Grand Poo Bar (shampoo bar)
- Knatty Dread Natural Dreadlocks Lock Shampoo
- Dreadhead HQ
- Neutrogena's anti residue shampoo
- Fantasia's 100% pure tea anti-buildup shampoo
- Doc Bronners soaps

12 Great Tips for Maintaining Your DreadLocks

Great Tips for Maintaining Your locs after starting them
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Since we have different kinds of hair types, please choose the maintainence path that feels right for you and works with your hair type. certain hair types may take longer to loc then others. Be patient. Be prepared to do the neccessary work and use the needed time to keep your locs beautiful.



(1) Keeping your locs clean
*Here are a few Cleansing or Shampooing Options
- You can wash them when you feel ready
- you can spray them with sea salt water to cleanse them and get rid of oils
- You can also cleanse your scalp with witch hazel. Use a cotton ball. Don't rinse.
- You can use a non-residue shampoo like i.e. Dreadhead HQ, suave clarifying shampoo, Neutrogena's anti residue shampoo, Fantasia's 100% pure tea anti-buildup shampoo or Doc Bronners.
- You can put a nylon (pantyhose)over you locs and wash them to prevent new locs from coming undone.
- You can wash you hair with a bar of soap, if the locs are fully binded. The soap can be for dreads or be all-natural.


(2) Conditioning Options
- You can use a regular conditioner
- You can put in a leave-in conditioner (cream or spray).
- You can use a 2-in-1 shampoo conditioner.


(3) Drying Your hair Options
You can lightly towel dry
You can air dry
You can blow dry


(4) Moisturizing Your Locs
For people with tighter curls, get in the habit of oiling your scalp and putting on a hair cream on locs to keep hair moisturized.
If you you just want a little moisture, You can add a bit of vitamin E oil to your locs to keep them healthy.


(5) Protecting locs from breakage
Cover your locs with a silk or satin scarf or cap each night to protect your hairline and locs. Also, it keeps them from getting messy.


(6) Keeping Your Locs Tidy & Linens clean
You may wish to keep your locs in a headband during sleep to keep them neat.
You may also chose to place a towel on your pillow or use a ratty pillowcase to prevent the wax & oils from messing up your linens.



(7) When using waxs to start or retouch locs...
- pay attention to your hair and decide when is the perfect time to apply wax wax locs, when wet- damp- dry



(8) Scents and Your locs
- when you are around smelly place or you are cooking foods, put a hat on your hair
- make sure to thoroughly dry your hair to avoid mold build-up
- you can use essential oils on your hair to give a pleasant scent, just mix them with jojoba oil


(9) People who have locs and thin/thinning hair
These are some ideas that may help you in you have thin or thinning hair. Use the ideas that work best for you and your hair type.
- Sleep in a satin or silk scarf to reduce hair breakage
- use hair products that are enriched with vitamins and minerals
- if you don't like sleeping in a scarf, then use a satin or silk pillowcase to sleep on
- use natural hair oils on your scalp that promote hair growth
- give yourself regular head massages
- don't over twist or retuch or style your locs
- refrain from putting your hair into a single ponytail
- if your locs become to heavy, be willing to cut them shorter


(10) Vitamins, Essential Oils, and Foods for Healthy Hair-
Vitamins that are good for your hair: A, B, Biotin, C, E,
- Essential oils that are good for your hair (Always remember that you cannot use these essential oils for hair direct to your hair, but you should mixed with carrier oils first): Carrier oils are olive and jojoba oil,
Essential oils are Lavender, Basil, Chamomile, Lemon, Myrrh, Peppermint, Rosemary, Sage, Tea Tree, Ylang Ylang
- Foods that good for your hair:beans, eggs, berries, oats, brown rice, sunflower seeds, carrots, kale, oranges, nuts,


(11) Kinds of Locs (sizes & lengths)
Loc sizes and lenghts vary. They can be micro thin, pencil thin, thick, or be done in one loc and therefore be the entire size of the head. Some people have short locs and some people have locs that reach down to there ankles. Whatever the size and length of your locs, honor and take care of them.


(12) Avoid stains
Using waxes on your locks  can stain your sheets or fabrics
- use a towel on your pillowcase to reduce stains on linens
 

Friday, November 12, 2010

Residue Free Shampoo & Washing Your Locs

Two articles on Residue & Washing Your Locs




Residue Free Shampoo? What exactly is residue?
----------------------------------------------------------
A general definition of soap residue is anything that's left behind after the soap is rinsed away. We take for granted that some part of soaps and shampoos that we use remain after we rinse. We know that our hands and hair have a fragrance and we associate this with them being clean. We know logically that our clean hands to not smell like fruit, obviously we are smelling a scent and that means that something is on our hands still...even if it isn't the dirt that we intended to wash away. Some residues like scent and conditioners are added to be left behind on purpose. Others are related to how the soap works and are present even when nothing additional is added to the soap. Such is the case with traditional soaps such as castle soaps. These soaps are very poor at rinsing away. This is why they leave rings of residue behind in sinks and bath tubs when they are used. Some people are very sensitive to these residues but most have no problems with them, in fact you might choose your shampoo based on the smell it leaves behind.

When growing dreadlocks we find that avoiding residues is important for two reasons. First, Dreadlocks need to be clean in order to knot easily. Clean means more friction between hair strands so hair tangles more readily and knots can be started. Residues reduce this friction and impede the dreads ability to lock at the roots as it grows. It also makes maintenance more difficult because it is more difficult to knot straight hair. Using a residue free shampoo helps you form knots at the roots when you clockwise rub and this keeps even the most stubborn dreads locking tight as they grow.

The second reason it is important to avoid residues is to keep the dreads drying quickly. Dreads take longer and longer to dry as they mature and tighten. In tight dreads they hair is packed together very tightly and it's difficult for water to evaporate from the inside of the dreads. If you've ever left wet hair in a pony tail and taken it out hours later to still find it wet you know exactly how this works. Clean, healthy dreads take a long time to dry but if they are allowed to air dry properly, (hanging free, not stuck in a hat or tied up in a pony tail that keeps them wet), they will be fine. Problems can occur though when residues are allowed to build up inside large locks. These residues don't evaporate like the water does. As they build inside the dread they slow down the drying more and more. It's like waiting for ranch dressing to dry instead of water. Eventually it reaches a point where it's is staying wet long enough for mildew to begin growing. As the mildew grows and dies repeatedly the dreads begin to smell like musty gym shorts. This is called Dread Rot. Washing your dreads with residue free shampoos and taking care to let them dry properly will ensure you do not have to have cut your locks due to a bad case of dread rot. It's important to note that smaller dreads always dry much quicker than larger dreads. While they will still dry noticeably faster when they are free of residues getting dread rot is more rare. It's also worth mentioning that dread rot takes quite a while to get started. Many people have their dreads 2 years or more before they experience it. It can be heart breaking to loose dreads that are several years old so be aware that the potential exists and take steps to avoid it.



How often to wash dreads? (optional)
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There doesn't seem to be one right answer to this question. Two facts have a lot of bearing though. First, washing dreadlocks helps them mature. This may not have been your experience in the past but the truth is that once dreads have begun to lock and are no longer in danger of falling out washing them and getting them truly clean will help them tighten. Second, washing dreads that are delicate can make them fall apart almost completely. This has led people to fear washing. When you wash for the first time and how often you wash for the first few month has a lot to do with the method you use for starting your dreadlocks. If you start your dreads by twisting alone they are very delicate for a long time. People often wait a month or so before their first washing. Dreads that have been backcombed are much less delicate, especially when they are secured that the root and tip with a rubber band. Please note that rubber bands can damage the hair if they are not used properly. Dreads that have been "latched" or pulled through themselves are less delicate still; however they are not fully dreaded in the true sense of the word. Latched dreads are a combination of knots and dreaded parts. This can be seen on close inspection, although this is harder to see in dark, textured hair.

When twists are washed great care has to be taken not to disturb the twists more than necessary. Washing the dreads with a tight nylon stocking on the head can help keep the twists together. Washing still needs to be done delicately and rinsing away all the shampoo requires great care. Leaving shampoo of any type on the scalp will cause itching later. The nylon stocking cap needs to be tight enough to hold the twists against your scalp to be effective. After you think you have rinsed all of the shampoo out continue to rinse it a bit more. If your locks are a bit more established you can remove the cap at the end of the rinsing and very carefull rinse them a bit more trying to disturb them as little as possible. You might try reducing the water pressure just a bit to avoid blasting the delicate twists apart.

When dreads are started by backcombing or latching they can be washed as soon as 4 days after putting the locks in. The dread should be palm rolled1 often during these first days to help prepare them for their first wash. Palmrolling continues to be important during the first few months as the dreads mature. Washing in regular intervals will keep itching to a minimum. After dreads have matured washing frequency varies a lot from person to person. Those with highly textured hair generally have less oil produced at their scalp and are comfortable washing less frequently. Once a week seems to be common.



(Taken from www.knattydread.com/knatty-dread-products/knatty-dread-natural-dreadlocks-lock-shampoo.html)

Locking Stages

Once you have your starter locks, if you are like most may be impatient to be completely locked. It is understandable but remember that locks are a lesson in patience. No matter what way you start your locks there will be an amount time that you will have to wait before they are completely mature. The amount of time will depend on your hair type and the method that you used to start your locks.

Knowing the locking stages will help you to as you are waiting. You will know what to expect and also when you are making progress. There are three basic locking stages baby locks, teenage locks and mature locks.



Baby Locks
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The baby lock stage starts from the moment you start your initial locks until they first start to bud and mat. That could be anywhere from three to six months all depending on your hair type. If your hair is coily or curly it may be on the shorter side. If you have wavy hair that is soft and fine you may have to wait a little longer for this stage to pass.

During the baby stage you will need to be extra careful with your hair if you have started your locks with coils, or rolls. You need to give them some time to set so you will want to wait at least 3 weeks (but no more than 4) to allow them to settle. During that time you can cleanse your scalp with an astringent and you will want to have your hair retightened by palm rolling or twisting.

If your hair was started by double twisting, braiding, interlocking, or with extensions. You will not have to worry as much about your locks coming undone but you still need to be careful while washing especially if you have a resistant hair type.



Teenage Locks
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The teenage time is characterized that may want to do their own thing. They will be budding, forming little balls of solid matted hair, in the middle and at the tip. Your hair may look very fuzzy and frizzy. And it can be frustrating to know what to do with it at times. Don’t despair all locks go through this stage. It only last for a few months to a year.

Avoid the temptation to gel the strands in to submission, over twist or stress about your hair. It will turn out right in time. Just stay on top of your maintenance – re-twisting, palm rolling, or interlocking – for your lock type. Remember to separate after washing to keep your bases from joining and continue being patient.

If you started your locks with coils you will want to wash your hair every two weeks. If you want your hair to stay looking neat you will have to palm roll or twist your hair each time you wash. If you started your hair with braids twists or interlocking you have a little more freedom to wash your hair more often.



Mature Locks
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Mature Locks are characterized by locks that are completely locked from tip to base. They are stronger and can stand up to most handling. Most locks reach maturity within two years. If your hair is coily or curly it will probably reach maturity sooner.

Once your lock are at this stage you may decide that you want to wait a little longer between maintenance or you can keep the same schedule. You will be able to wash your hair as much as you like and you can use some types of conditioner, which is not really recommended during the other two stages of the locking process.



(Info taken from www.mynhcg.com)

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