• Bree

5 Reasons to Lock Your Hair

15 months (re)loc'd!

Hey, family!

One of the most common questions people with locs get is

"So what made you lock your hair?"

Having embarked on the journey twice, I find that I locked my hair for a number of reasons that were different depending on the journey but the reasons for both journeys were a deep need to feel free, a profound need to reconnect to mySelf, and a desperate need for change.

You too will have your own reasons for finally deciding to lock your hair but some of the most common reasons are discussed in this post.

Still here?

Fab! Here we go!

1.You’ve tried every other style.

If you’re considering getting locs, you may have already tried so many other styles including relaxers, natural styles, protective styling and more. My hair certainly journeyed through being relaxed & long (elbow length) in my early college days to being a short, relaxed pixie cut towards the end of college, to having braids (for...a week lol), to a short, naturally curly, wash-n-go look, to a blonde buzzcut (left, my friends called me Heather Rose), to one of my all-time faves when I was completely bald (right).

In fact, I shared on IG the fact that when so many people thought I’d shaved my hair it simply because I wanted to try the look, what they didn't know was the fact that I shaved my head because I'd been experiencing “temporary alopecia” due to severe stress & depression, subsequently causing chunks of hair to fall out on a regular basis. I had some steroid shots (imagine...in my scalp!!) and when that didn’t work, I turned to reiki healing and my hair eventually grew back (REIKI WORKS!). I actually wore it bald for a few years because I’d really fallen in love with the look and what it did for my confidence (cause let’s face it, you gotta be confident as hell to walk around as a Black woman with no hair in her mid-20s!).

"Looking back, it’s incredible to see how some of the most challenging situations truly give birth to some of the most gratifying & transformative experiences."

By 2016, I'd grown my hair out naturally for about 2 years and towards the fall of that year, I began considering the only other style I hadn’t tried but LOVED and eventually, committed to the idea of locking my hair in October of 2016.

Day 1 vs. Year 5 #FirstSet

2. You like a challenge

For those considering the loc journey, remember that one thing that sets your journey apart from anyone else’s is the unique texture & patterns of your hair. Our hair has different curl patterns, needs and requirements for cleansing, hydrating and moisturizing, so remember that when you’re doing your research and (inevitably) comparing your hair to your favorite loc baes on IG & Pinterest.

When considering embarking on the loc journey, unless you have absolutely no preference about any of the following and you’re embarking on a semi/free-form journey, then you may want to think about these things before you get started as they often pose challenges in the future without thorough consideration:

  • The “fuzzy” phase

  • Usually within the first 6-8 months of the process, your hair is transitioning from naturally loose hair to matted locs and often gets VERY fuzzy.

  • If you prefer a neat look, then this phase will definitely come with its challenges because even within a few days of a retwist, your hair may fuzz up again due to hair memory. Don't worry, though! You can preserve retwists by doing tensionless styles.

  • Hats, wraps & wigs usually solve this problem or you can be a total badass and embrace this inevitable part of the journey.

To me, this is when your commitment is tested the most and your confidence shines the brightest.
Fuzzy & Free (1 yr) vs. Mature (5 yrs) #FirstSet
  • The thickness/size

  • Consider what size locs you want depending on the texture of your hair and your willingness/ability to handle so many/few locs.

  • Loc count

  • General rule of thumb: the fewer the locs, the thicker they are, the smaller the locs, the more you'll like have (note: there are ALWAYS exceptions to this "rule).

  • Installation method

  • You have many options to choose from when considering what installation method you prefer (comb coils, interlocking, instant locs, and two-strand twists are the most common). Check out this blog post HERE to read about the pros/cons of each method.

  • I didn’t have a parting system & interlocked my locs from root to tip my first time around and it really affected the health of my hair.

  • The second time around; however, I used the diamond parting method to be gentle on my edges and for the appearance of more locs (I have 95 in total) and I used the instant loc method for less raveling in the beginning months.

3. A Desire for Low-Maintenance Haircare

Day 3 vs. Month 13 #SecondSet

Per usual, I’m going to be transparent.