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August 05, 2022
As the natural hair community continues to thrive and change, a lot of people have started to embark on their loc journey. Whether you're a newbie or a seasoned veteran, it's important to know how to take care and maintain your locs.
WHAT ARE LOCS?
Before we get into how to maintain your locs, it's important to know what they are and where they came from.
Historians have dated the origins of locs to Egypt, since they have the first archeological evidence of locs. However, it is also believed that locs originated in India as early as 2500 B.C.
They are also referred to as dreadlocks or dreads, however, the preferred term that seems to be circulating is "locs". This is due to the connection that the word "dread" has with slavery. Slave masters often referred to their slaves hair as "dreadful" when mocking the style, so most people try to avoid using it because of the connotation.
Locs are a natural hair style that involves sections of hair being matted and twisted together. Depending on the type, stage and age of your locs, your routine may be different, but the baseline is the same.
This stage normally lasts for three to six months. When you decide to start your loc journey, you can choose from a handful of techniques/styles such as:
This stage lasts six to twelve months and most people become frustrated with the amount of frizz as the locs become matted and continue to grow. It's important to shampoo, re-twist, and maintain the moisture of your hair.
This stage lasts twelve to eighteen months. You will experience less unraveling when you manipulate it and you may notice that your hair doesn't grow in the direction that you anticipated.
This stage lasts fifteen to eighteen months. This is usually when you'll notice that your locs have more hang time than before and you start getting an idea on how to maintain them.
Rooted Locs Stage:
This stage lasts fifteen to twenty-one months. You reach this stage once you've had your locs for quite some time and you're familiar with how to maintain them.
HOW TO CARE FOR YOUR LOCS
Now that you know the history, type, and stages of locs, we can get to the part about how to maintain and take care of them.
WASHING YOUR LOCS
Just like any other type of hair style (natural, straight, protective, etc.) you have to make sure your scalp is free of any excess build up. However, it's important for those with locs to avoid any shampoos or conditioners that will leave residue behind, since it's more difficult to get out.
It's best to use sulphate-free shampoos that are thinner in consistency. We would recommend our Scalp Refresh Cleansing Water, which was formulated specifically for those with locs or braids.
DRYING YOUR LOCS
This is an important step after shampooing your locs because you don't want to cause mold or mildew to build up inside of them. Try to wring out as much water as possible by putting your hair in sections and using a micro-fiber towel.
You can also use a blow dryer (low-medium heat) if your hair is still damp.
MOISTURIZING YOUR LOCS
To avoid breakage or brittleness, it's important to keep your locs moisturized. You can do this by using a mist or oil. We would recommend our Tailored Loc Spray (which also helps tighten it) or our Twisted Pattern Hydration Mist. As for oils, our Magic Miracle Sundrop Potion is perfect for your scalp and your locs. It's lightweight and it contains oils with natural SPF, so it will protect your hair and scalp from sunburn or damage.
KEEP YOUR HAIR PROTECTED
To retain moisture and to keep your hair from getting frizzy or experiencing breakage, it's important to wear a satin bonnet or scarf at night.
STYLE IN MODERATION
As your locs grow longer, this means your hair might feel heavier. More weight means more of a risk of hair/edge thinning, bald patches, and traction alopecia. So it's important to keep any styles that require manipulating your hair to a minimum, even if they're cute.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD YOUR RE-TWIST
It actually depends on the stage of your locs, your hair type, and your re-twist method. Some may require you to re-twist more often whereas others might require less, so that's something that you have to determine as you get deeper into your loc journey.
LET'S WRAP IT UP
So now if you decide to start your loc journey, you're prepared on what they are, what to expect and how to maintain them. Let us know if this article was helpful and make sure to check out our Culture Collection for all your loc and braid care needs.
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