new dreads...need advice

topic posted Mon, March 31, 2008 - 9:27 PM by  lanie
Oh my GOSH!
I've wanted dreads five or six years. Finally, with the help of several friends and a trusty google search or two, we dreaded my hair two days ago. I interact with many many different people everyday, so there's no way to avoid seeing people, but I'm really not sure about how they look.

I have 53 little dreads, so they're pretty small. I used DreadHead wax to do it, and my friends did some backcombing and twisting. It took about 2 or 3 hours. I haven't washed my hair since then, and my scalp is really freaking itchy. I usually wash my hair everyday, so it feels weird. They aren't very solid, and I feel weird sleeping with them/ putting them behind my ear, and I haven't put my hair up at all. I know dreads take a lot of patience and work, but I'm not sure if they're worth keeping.

Should I try to brush and condition them out before it's too late. Should I go to a professional? Should I just keep trying to lock them up? Should I snip them away? I need some advice! ! ! ! ! !
Thanks..... = D
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  • Re: new dreads...need advice

    Mon, March 31, 2008 - 10:09 PM
    The first night my dreads were complete (it took 10 hours to get my done, so we spread it over three days) or maybe a little while after I was lying in bed, and thought "Oh shit, what have I done? Do I even like them?". I payed money to have them done, and didn't want to take them out, so I kept them in and waited it out. My dreads looked pretty funny (undread-like) for a while…I didn't wash them for the first two weeks, and now I only wash every week or so. Washing your hair too much isn't good for many different reasons, but if your hair is too greasy it wont dread as well either.
    Getting nice dreads is a process. Why not wait a few months, and see what happens, take good care of your dreads, and if you still don't think they're right, then snip snip. If you've ever had long hair and cut it short before, you'll know any haircut takes getting used to. I think it's the same with dreads.
    My best friend for itchies is dreadhead peppermint spray.
  • Re: new dreads...need advice

    Mon, March 31, 2008 - 10:46 PM
    I have had my dreads for about a year now. When I first got them....I had 4 different people helping. They did not separate my hair out (into a grid), they just made them where they thought they should be. We started really late at night, so the only store open was QFC and all they has was...well...I don't really know what it was, but it wasn't meant for hair. I wasn't sure if I wanted to keep them, and thought about brushing them out. a little time went by and they got tighter, I started to like them more. They aren't perfect, but that's ok. I still have loose hairs that need to be worked back in. But.....I don't think dreadlocks are really suppose to be perfect anyway.
    So....if I were you, I'd keep them and let them lock up. Then later if you change your mind you can brush them out. You don't have to cut off all your hair. Just use a lot of conditioner and get some friends to help. I helped brushed out past shoulder length dreads that were 3 years it can be done.

    ps. I don't know if you like scarfs or not, but gives pretty good scarf tying instructions.
  • Re: new dreads...need advice

    Tue, April 1, 2008 - 9:27 AM
    Dreads are going to be a little bit loose when they start, they get tighter as they go. Really, they're gonna feel a bit floppy and weird for the first few months, then they'll start tightening up slowly. You can still backcomb them a bit if they feel too loose. Also, the wax could be adding to your discomfort. I remember having wax in my hair and it being the most horrible feeling in the world. Especially around my face and behind my ears. (I got a massive infection from wax getting into once of my earrings!)

    Check back through old posts for scalp itching solutions. Spritzing on witch hazel diluted in water with a drop or two of tea tree oil usually works pretty well. Knotty Boy also makes a minty smelling colling spray that's pretty nice.

    In the end, if you personally don't like them, you can comb them out and start over. You shouldn't have to cut them out, but it's going to take some elbow grease to get them out. I'd say give them a week, keep palm rolling them and wash them really well in 5 days or so, get a lot of that icky wax out, and see how they feel then. If you're still not gelling with them, then maybe think about it again, but don't rush to a decision just because they're new. They'll start to look great over time, but the first 6 months to a year is going to be a trial. It's the way of the dreads, sadly.
    • Re: new dreads...need advice

      Tue, April 1, 2008 - 11:54 AM
      Mine will be 2 years old the middle of this month. On the 21st to be exact. I too washed my hair everyday before I dreaded and the first week thought I was going to go out of my fricking mind. I only made it one week before I had to wash. I used the Knotty Boy wax and HATED it. Didn't like the way it smelled or felt so I only used it for maybe 2 months. Knotty Boy does sell a tightener that I used alot in place of the wax.

      After a couple of months I was able to go for right at a month without washing and I really think that is what helped tighten the babies up. Now 2 years late I wash once a week with no ill effects. Would probably do it twice a week but it's a bitch to get them all dry.

      Also used the Knotty Boy peppermint spray for the itchies.
      • Re: new dreads...need advice

        Wed, April 2, 2008 - 8:52 AM
        Mine aren't quite 6 months old yet. Gotta say I love the Knotty Boy tightening gel and peppermint spray.

        That said, my wife & I are gonna try to make a mint spray with even more zing this sumer. We have an organic garden and grow a variety of herbs & mints along with all those veggies. If we find something good, I'll pass along the recipe.

        Anyone tried Knotty Boy's dread tea?

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