Tips for Healthy Locs

Of the multitude of things that I am knowledgeable in natural hair care is closer to the top of the list. I am a self taught natural hair stylist and loctician. In addition to this I, myself have locs that I have cultivated for a period of six years and counting. Along the years I have given advice and treated the heads of many. In the Caribbean locs are a popular style choice and most often a testament to either a natural or Rastafarian lifestyle. The more traditional loc wearer allows the hair to grow freely with little to no maintenance. The new age loc wearers such as myself cultivate our locs by keeping our parts tidy and hair styled. The following is a list of healthy tips I have provided for your benefit…

  1. Washing Hair: I wash my hair every 4-6 weeks however, I do not recommend this for everyone. You should  wash your hair according to your activities. If you go to the gym a lot or are prone to sweating, I suggest washing at least once a week. Also be sure to wash with shampoos that include peppermint, eucalyptus, or tea tree oil that stimulate growth and prevent breakage.
  2. Lint or Residue: Depending on the products that you use and how you protect your hair while sleeping, lint and residue in your locs are common nuisances. Beeswax and locs are a definite no-no, use beeswax and you will most certainly end up with unwanted residue. Instead use products with Olive Oil or Shea Butter. Also try using clarifying shampoos (Neutrogena Anti-Residue Shampoo or Suave Clarifying Shampoo are reasonably priced options.) There are locing methods such as interlocking and backcombing that will create locs faster than any amount of beeswax that you can put in your hair. However, if you have buildup here are some rinses that will combat the build up.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) Soak

Spray your hair with a mixture of ACV + water (equal parts of both) distribute mixture throughout the scalp and loc concentrating the mixture on areas with a lot of residue. Let the hair sit for about 15-20 mins under a shower cap or warm towel. You may go under the hair dryer if you wish. Rinse the hair thoroughly and then wash with clarifying shampoo to remove the loosened residue. On the last rinse use cool water for shine. This process  should be done every 2-4 weeks depending on the hair conditioner. Vinegar helps to neutralize the alkali left by shampoos. You will notice an instant shine and softness to your locs.

  • Baking Soda Rinse

To every cup of water add 1 tablespoon of baking soda. Stir until it disappears and pour the mixture throughout the hair. I usually catch the water in a bucket or other large container and repeat the process for about 2-3 minutes.

You may also add 1 tablespoon of baking soda to every 2 tablespoons of shampoo in the palm of your hand. The baking soda will up the ante of the shampoo to remove dirt and residue.

  • The Combo — ACV+BS

For the best possible loc cleanse, a combination of vinegar and baking soda is needed. Start by wetting the locs and then apply dry baking soda onto the hair. Rub the baking soda around and into your dreadlocks. To activate the baking  soda, spray your vinegar mixture and spray it throughout your head. The baking soda will start to bubble up, lifting residue which causes a deep cleansing. If no bubbling occurs, add more baking soda and spray the vinegar again. Rinse out the vinegar and baking soda mixture with water and then use a clarifying shampoo.

  • Vodka Hair Clarifier

Vodka helps to detoxify the hair by removing buildup and minerals in the water. It also helps to deep cleanse the scalp, by stimulating hair growth. Be sure to condition You’ll notice an increase in shine and a vast improvement in flat, lifeless hair.

 3. Hair Moisturizers

Olive oil: is the best moisturizer for dry or brittle locs. After cleansing the hair with a clarifying shampoo grab a bottle of olive oil (yes straight from the kitchen cupboard). You may either pour the oil throughout your hair and scalp or use a spray bottle for easy distribution. After applying the oil warm the oil by going under a  hair dryer with a shower scalp. After 15-20 minutes shampoo the hair once again and style as usual. Treat hair once every 4 weeks. You’ll notice an immediate shine!

Other well-known moisturizers are shea butter, argan oil, and essential oils such as lavender, sage, rosemary etc. Moisturizing is a necessity for older locs and especially locs with coloring.

I provide natural haircare services on the island of St. Croix through my home business D’Locs


About CaribVue

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Posted on June 26, 2011, in Beaute & Health and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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