Today represents four months into my braidloc journey. My starter locs are medium sized braids compared to the micro braids which are pretty popular for braidlocs. Although braids take the longest to lock up compared to two strand twists, comb coils, or free forming, I am still pleased with this decision for my loc journey. For starters it isn’t completely obvious that I am locing my hair because I am beginning my locs with braids. This somewhat conceals my transitioning period. Instead my hair just looks like super fuzzy braids which seriously need to be redone.
So far the roots of my hair have been the first to lock. I currently have 2-4 inches of hair locked at the roots. I’ve noticed more budding on the underneath layer of my hair compared to the top layer and a few of my locs have rounded out on the ends. Most of my ends are still curly though. I think all of this is pretty normal. When my hair is pulled back my hair looks locked, yet the length of my hair are definitely still fuzzy braids.
I have mainly been separating my locs after washing them so my roots do not tangle. I have noticed that my new growth actually locs towards the loc versus away from the loc. Therefore I haven’t experienced loose hairs all over the place. This allows me to go long lengths of time only separating my locs and not interlocking or retwisting them despite having puffy roots.
I actually did my very first official retwist this week. I only used an oil after washing my hair for this retwist. Although I miss the volume at the roots, I do think retwisting my roots every few months or more wouldn’t be a bad idea. I prefer just separating my hair though since it is extremely low maintenance and it allows your locs to form with more character.
I decided awhile back to interlock nine of the locs around the perimeter of my hair because there was excessive hair growth in those areas. I wanted to ensure that the edges around those locs did not become vulnerable or weak because I do have fine to medium individual hair strands. My last set of locs well before I created Minimalist Beauty were solely interlocked. I honestly prefer just separating my hair though.
Products & Regimen
To be honest I am still working on creating a regimen for my locs. I haven’t been consistent with any routine. I have also been on the search for a zero waste hair shampoo which does not create any buildup in my locs. I’ve been testing different oils on my hair and scalp too while deciding if using oil is even necessary. I prefer not putting anything in my hair but my scalp has felt dry. This is a normal transitioning experience. I never used any products or oils on my previous set of locs, just water and essential oils.
In general there have been some weeks where I washed or rinsed my hair 3+ times a week. Then there have been other times where I washed my hair every 2-4 weeks. Once I am clear on a regimen including products I will definitely share it. Obviously I am not there yet.
Loc Size + How Many Locs Do I Have
Supposedly your locs form in size based on the size of the parts. I installed my own starter locs and my parts do vary in size. The majority of my locs were created with 1 inch square parts. Some are smaller, some slightly larger, and some are rectangular parts.
The perfectionist in me feels I should have spent more time to create flawless parts. The artist in me is excited to have locs with perfectly imperfect character. Because I am already well into the process I’ll have to side with the artist.
Also a reader asked how many locs do I have so I took the time to count them last night. I have 59 locs. At this point none of them have been combined so this is the same amount of locs I started with. I plan to do another update in two months, so if you have other questions just let me know.
If you are curious why I swapped out my big curly hair for dreads, you can catch up with this article.
(Image by Dawn Michelle)