There are so many products, tips, tricks, and advice out there for those who are considering trying dreads.
In reality, there are only three main things you need when you are ready to start dreads. Some of these items depend on your hair type, length, and other factors, but for the most part, these three things will get you started on your dreading journey.
When you are ready and have made the decision to dread your hair, one of the most important things you need is time. This is not a quick process, and it’s not something you want to rush along if you want it done well and done right.
Blocking out a good chunk of time anywhere from 4 hours to 8 hours will be sufficient. Bring some snacks, some entertainment and find a comfortable place to sit as you begin creating your dreads.
2. A Friend
Depending on the length and type of hair you have, this is more necessary for some than others. Dreading is a lengthy process, as you now know, and having someone there to help you will make the process more pleasurable.
Another benefit to having a friend there for help is another set of eyes to watch your parting. We see a lot of newly dreaded heads make the mistake of parting their hair “too well” which can make your hair fall in a pattern which isn’t always ideal for a messy look. Having someone help you on the back of your head and in other sections, you cannot see as well will help you create a much more natural look.
3. Clarifying Shampoo
Hairstylists will sometimes lead many newly-dreads astray by telling them they need a ton of wax to start your dreads. While this will be helpful in small portions and at the appropriate times, what is absolutely crucial to starting your dreads properly is a clarifying shampoo.
This will be your best friend for the next few months, actually. You should use this clarifying shampoo often and in large amount until your hair is squeaky clean. Yes, it might seem backward because isn’t clean hair, smooth hair? And isn’t smooth hair harder to dread?
Yes and no. Conditioners are what make hair smooth, but a good clarifying shampoo will clean your hair making it dry and easier to dread. This will also keep the scalp clean with no residue or oils that often cause dreads to come undone or cause gross build-up.
Hair is hard to train. Even trying to train your part to go a different way takes time, patience, and consistency to create the new look.
Dreads are the same way. You are training your hair to stick together and stay knotted. It’s going to take a good clarifying shampoo, time, and consistency on your part to make sure your dreads get off to a great start for the first few months and will last as long as you want them to.
With some time, a friend or two, and a good quality wax, you have all you need to start your process of dreading your hair. Now, that’s not to say there are not other items that will be helpful. Combs, towels, and other small supplies will be useful too, but the three most important things can be taken care of easily.
If someone tells you that getting dreads takes too long, they are sadly mistaken. With a little planning and a lot of entertainment, you can be dreading in no time!