Locs are one of the most versatile natural hairstyles around these days. It isn’t like in the 80s when you saw only Whoopi Golberg and Tracy Chapman with a head full of thick locs. And we have come a long way from seeing locs only worn by the Marley family.Today, we can look around and see a variety of locs on different people from around the world. Because there are millions in the beloved loc’d nation now, many are inspired by the style options, color choices and beauty of locs and wish to join the family.
The journey to Locdom is most often, a long one. Several people wait years before they decide to join in, and some want to jump in immediately. Once in, a common sentiment is that people wish they’d have started their journey sooner. If you have seen our Locked Hair Guide, you’ll find that there are a lot of ways to come into the fold, but deciding when to join in, is another story. Here are a few things to consider when deciding to Loc your hair:
- Why do you want locs? What has drawn you to them? Is it the styles and colors you’ve seen on Pinterest? Is it in honor of a milestone in your life? You’ll need to know why you want to loc your hair because this will help you to make it through all of the stages of growth.
- What are your goals? Are you locking your hair to grow your hair out for a while, then planning to comb them out so you can have a “head full of hair”? Believe it or not, this does happen. And if you’re doing it for this reason alone, you may find it difficult to even stay on the path to the promised land.
- •”I want my hair like hers”. Hair envy can be so dangerous, because we often see someone else with gorgeous hair, but we don’t know what they have gone through to get there. We have to realize that our bodies are made up of the same basic things (skin, bones, water, etc) but the formula is different thanks to our DNA. This is why the hair typing system can be tricky, because we may have hair that looks like someone else we have seen on youtube, but our chemistry is different and the products they use may do nothing for us at all. Hair envy to a certain extent, can be healthy, but if you’re obsessing over a look, you may find yourself off the path faster than you could imagine.
- Consider the seasons. Are you planning to start your locs in the Summer? You may wish to reconsider if you’re a swimmer or traveler who loves beaches, or if you’re a runner. Loc maintenance is very important, but also, keeping unnecessary moisture out is also important since water causes locs to swell up and become frizzy-which could also wreak havoc on your retwists or pattern.
- Think about your employer. Are you starting a new job or are you being promoted to a new position? Starting locs is an emotional journey, and there will be good days and weird days too. While some people’s employers don’t care about whether their staff’s hair is locked or not, there may be others who do. If you plan on locking your hair on your new job, always review your employee handbook, and be sure that you are caring for your locs properly to not draw unwanted attention from your boss or coworkers.
- Are you pregnant or in menopause? If you’re considering locking your hair while pregnant, there is something to think about: the possibility of post partum hair loss. Often, women experience a loss of density and length of hair after giving birth. Even with careful maintenance, it is possible to lose some hair after childbirth. If you’re a woman in menopause, you may be experiencing two things: greying hair and thinning hair and these factors play a major role in the locking journey. Grey hair is naturally thinner and if you’re losing thickness, you may consider another style, or even Sisterlocks. which is a smaller type of loc that is suitable for thin hair.
- Are you truly ready for the “long haul”? We live in a microwave generation and so many people want everything right now. While loc extensions can be a way to start a locking journey, it is better to consider more traditional methods. Either way, your hair will still go through stages of fuzziness and disarray. If you can’t handle the fuzz and want your hair to be “perfect” at all times, your hair will surely fall short of your expectations. It is the nature of locs to become fuzzy and frizzy, but there are ways to make those issues minor ones as your locs grow.
Now, are you really ready to loc your hair? If you’ve answered the questions above and have considered each common concern, you should be able to determine if you’re ready for the journey.