The Do’s and Don’ts of Washing Dreadlocks

man-826106_960_720The Do’s and Don’ts of Washing Dreadlocks

Washing is a critical step in maintaining healthy dreadlocks. However, there’s a right way and a wrong way to wash dreadlocks.

Don’t Wash Dreadlocks Every Day

Contrary to what many people believe, you shouldn’t wash dreadlocks each and every day. Doing so will further deplete them of moisture, which may cause them to dry out and even break (never a good thing!). Dreadlocks require moisture to sustain their strength and firmness. Without moisture, they will become susceptible to frizz, split-ends, breakage, and other forms of damage.

Do Wash Dreadlocks at Least Once a Week

So, how often should you wash dreadlocks? It really depends on your hair type, as people with naturally oily hair can go for longer periods without washing their dreadlocks. With that said, a good rule of thumb is to wash your dreadlocks about once per week. This is a happy medium so to speak that will keep your dreadlocks clean without stripping away their moisture. If you are a physically active person who sweats a lot, however,  you may need to wash your dreadlocks as frequent as once every two-to-three days. Keep an eye on your hair and wash your dreadlocks when they become too oily.

Don’t Use Kitchen Ingredients

Kitchen ingredients like mayonnaise and honey should be left in the kitchen. For whatever the reason, some people wrongfully believe that ingredients such as these are beneficial to their dreadlocks. While it’s true that certain products in the kitchen may offer essential vitamins, they contain a slew of other ingredients that are not good for dreadlocks. For this reason, it’s recommended that you avoid mayonnaise, honey and other kitchen ingredients, sticking with actual shampoo and conditioner instead.

Do Use Residue-Free Shampoo

When choosing a shampoo, make sure it’s labeled “residue-free.” As the name suggests, shampoo touting this label will not leave behind any residue — residue that would otherwise stick to your dreadlocks. A premium brand of residue-free shampoo will leave your dreadlocks clean and without any visible texture lingering on the surface.

Don’t Use Scalding-Hot Water

Another tip to follow when washing your dreadlocks is to use lukewarm water. Why is this important? Well, excessively hot, scalding water may damage your dreadlocks, altering the shape of your hair follicles and causing them to frizz. Washing them with lukewarm water, on the other hand, will prevent this from happening.

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