26 April 2014

Update: Maintenance and the loc that got away

Hello all,

I want to thank all the loyal followers of my blog for there humour, advice and, kind words over the course of this journey and to the recent followers I've gained I extend to you a very warm welcome. Leave comments and ask questions and I'll be glad to share ideas.

Today, I severed a loc. My intentional two headed dragon was starting to bug me so I decided to snip the thinner of the two and the result looks pretty good to me.

Over the last few weeks I've been sporting various basket weave styles now that my hair is long enough to work with but recently I've noticed I don't really like my hair out and down. I'm still self conscious about the length and I've grown tired of the untamed roots. So last week I received a 0.75mm crochet hook and set to work tidying up my other two headed dragons. Nothing too noticeable but I did enough to realign my grid pattern and help the two headed locs along. I was sure to only crochet lightly just to form a spongy cylindrical shape and still left a quarter inch gap so that my roots remained loose and flexible.

after crocheting

For the moment I want to remain open to the thick and full fuzz I have going but I also what my roots to start loc'ing together so I think crochet sessions every six months will work for me and I'll just keep with the up-dos when I want to be fancy.

I'm also rocking the basic stretch headband on days where I just need my hair to lay down with little effort.

I'm about to finishing re-colouring my hair and I might also do a retwist in a bid to smarten up for a meal I'm going to tomorrow.

I prefer to retwist with the large
duckbill clips as they don't put
as much tension on my roots
and they don't compress
my locs as much.


**Photography ownership is held with the blog account holder. DO NOT use without permission.**

16 April 2014

She's Gone Natural Too: Where is she now?

So last weekend my family came to visit me and I was amazed to see how much my mother's hair had grown.

I thought it only right to update you on her progress over the past eighteen months.

Started from the bottom:

Pixie cut wig:

Now we're here:

Since Autumn last year she's been keeping her hair braided under a wig, much to my dissatisfaction. I've always felt my Mom looked more youthful and fresh with a curly fro so the straight pixie cut was out with me but nonetheless it seems to have worked wonders as a protective style and even she was impressed with the growth as I insisted she have here hair out for the weekend.

She explained that her main reason for sporting the wig was essentially for convenience. After 6 months of being natural her hair had grown to a point where it took twice as long to maintain and style than here previous re-laxers and I have to agree. As if committing to cornrows every night and picking it out every morning wasn't enough she also had to endure the hour long process of de-tangling, washing, conditioning, deep conditioning and restyling along side her already busy lifestyle.

The reality of natural, especially at the in between stage beyond a twa, is that you have to make extra time to care for your hair if you want to wear it out. Which is why so many naturals wear wigs, sew-ins or extensions while they wait for their hair to grow.

All that aside her hair is currently in the best condition is has been in for several years. She no longer suffers with wispy, floppy hair as we've discovered here natural texture is a fluffy coil that's wonderfully thick and full.

- Naturalocs

11 April 2014

Locs Tag

Short and sweet, I thought I'd try my hand at the classic 20 question locs tag that frequently floats around on Youtube. Enjoy!

1. Do you remember the specific moment you decided you were going to dread your hair? Where were you and how did you feel?

I was probably at home looking at dreadlocked YouTubers and I felt pretty convinced I wanted to do this. I had very vivid visions of me with thick red locs, long and thrown back in a lazy ponytail and that was that. I was ready.

2. What method, if any, did you use to start your dreadlocks?

Finger twists, rubber bands and three-strand-twists were put in by a hair dresser before they were restarted at home with comb coils. Some of my locs were later restarted with two strand twists.

3. How old are your dreadlocks?

My locs are 2 years.

4. What is the length of your longest dread? And shortest?

 My longest dread is 5 inches and the shortest is just over 3 inches.

5. Do you have any dreads that are especially unique, strange, or awesome?

I have few that are just so fat and plump and I love them. I also have a couple of congos (two locs, one base) growing in.

6. How many dreads do you have currently? Is that the same number you started with?

I have 55 locs which is less than half of what I started with.

7. What shampoo or other products do you use on your dreads?

I've been using Cream of Nature's Kiwi & Citrus Ultra Moisturizing Shampoo and raw virgin coconut oil for over a year now.

8. How often do you wash your dreads?

I wash my hair  once every 4-12 days.

9. Do you do any regular maintenance on your dreads?

Maintenance has become quite irregular over the past 5 months. I want my roots to remain thick so I only maintain them on occasion.

10. What are your favourite beads or other decorations?

I occasionally wear silver cuff beads on my dreads.

11. If your dreads had their own personal motto, what would it be?

Haha. I suppose they'd follow my motto in general, as quoted by Usher: " A lady on the street and a freak in the bed".

12. If you could start a new set of dreads, would you do anything differently?

I'd make sure my hair was over 4 inches long before I started and I'd make sure the partings where staggered (brick-lay pattern) so I didn't experience such prominent partings.

13. Is there anything else unique about your appearance other than dreadlocks? (tattoos, piercings, etc).

I have 8 piercings but no tattoos.

14. How many people do you know personally with dreadlocks?

I don't personally know of anyone who has dreadlocks. Apparently my uncle used to have them but I was too young to recall.

15. Have any employers turned you down for having dreads? Any wanted you BECAUSE of your dreads?

I've never been turned down or offered work because of my dreadlocks but I did maintain a job whilst having them.

16. Whats the WEIRDEST question you've gotten about your dreads? DUMBEST? FUNNIEST? Most common?

"How do you do your hair like that?" was pretty common in my first year but I rarely get asked about them these days. I notice people tend to comment on the colour more than anything.

17. Have you ever had a freak accident or an embarrassing moment involving your dreads? 

Fortunately not. They're pretty hazard free at this length though every now and then I'll get them caught on either mine or someone else's glasses, especially as don't retwist my roots as often.

18. Do you have any dreaded role models? If so, who?

I've never had a dreaded role model, I  take inspiration from hundreds of loc wearers

19. What dreaded YouTubers could you see yourself hanging out with in real life?

oceangrins and meroekhalia.

20. Who are you going to Tag?

Everyone reading this questionnaire and I'd really like to get a link to your answers too.


3 April 2014

Year 2

Current Hair Stats:

Colour: Dark Red

Big Chop: 5th January 2012

Loc Birthdate: 3rd April 2012

Current Length: 5 inches

Starting Method: Comb coils and two strand twists

Number of Locs: 55

Maintenance Method: Palm-rolling

Current Shampoo: Crème of Nature Kiwi & Citrus Ultra Moisturizing Shampoo

An account so far:

Day 1: I started out with braids, twists and, rubber bands put in at a salon.
Day 3: I removed the rubber bands and installed comb coils.
Months 1-3: My locs started to form.
Month 4: I had an issue with build up (Organic Root Stimulator Loc & Twist gel) and had to trim my ends and combine locs.
Months 6-7: I started the palm-roll method.
Months 8-9: I experienced severe unravelling.
Month 10: I had my locs professionally maintained at a salon.
Months 11-12: I combined more locs.
Months 13-14: I used the crochet method.
Month 15: I coloured my locs.
Month 16: I did no maintenance.
Months 17-20: I started palm-rolling again and reinstalled some of my locs with two strand twists.
Months 21-24: Growth!

The most difficult part of my journey was between months 8 and 12 when my hair really struggled. I've since learnt that locs, and especially the thicker locs I was trying to attain, need regular maintenance to assist with their formation in the first year or so. I realise that  low maintenance locs have their drawbacks, at least in the beginning, such as greater shrinkage and much slower maturation. Nonetheless, my locs did reach maturity around month 18.

I had noticed that around month 20 my locs were slimmer than they had been at around months 12-15 and I did wonder if this is normal condensation. I've since learnt that frequent retwisting will make locs thinner over time. Having cut back on maintenance over the last 4 months they have thickened up to a size I'm really happy with.

In terms of how they feel and behave, currently they don't have any stretch beyond the root (which thankfully limits shrinkage), and they feel dense and compact. They also hang instead of stick up and frizz isn't a problem any more.

Although my two strand twists in the front are completely entwined they behave in a very different way to the older locs. They stick up a lot now and require more maintenance. They're also a lot slimmer and more stretchy. Being only 7 months old now, they'll most likely take another year or so to reach full maturity.

(click to enlarge)

roots grown out since
last July
a little progress with the

I cannot wait for the next 12 months of my journey.

Click here to compare with year one.


**Photography ownership is held with the blog account holder. DO NOT use without permission.**