There are many things to prepare for when you are ready to get dreads. Your product line will change, your hair care routine will change, and the time you spend doing your hair will change drastically.
There are also a few methods you can try pre-dreads so that dreading will physically be easier for your hair and your head. Keep in mind that these are simply suggestions but have been proven to help make the transition into dreads a little smoother. They have worked for many people in the past but won’t always work for everyone. Your hair type, maintenance routine, and more are factors that can change these outcomes.
Start Your New Routine
As you probably know, your washing routine will likely change dramatically from your regular hair to when you get your dreadlocks. Most people, on average, wash their hair every other day, some more and some less. But with dreads, be aware that your washing routine will be much, much less.
With dreads, you will likely wash your hair every three to four days on average. As mentioned before, depending on hair type and other factors that could be more and could be less. The point here is to start that washing routine before you get dreads so your hair can start preparing for it.
If you have ever taken a week or so off from washing your hair, the results can make you uncomfortable. Greases and oils, dry scalp and more should make you want to ease into this process instead of just diving in. By taking a few more day between washings with regular hair, you start to teach your hair and your scalp how things are going to change before they actually do.
Prepare Your Scalp
Speaking of preparing your scalp, everyone loves scalp stimulation. Maybe running your hands through your hair, brushing your hair and massaging your scalp are all great feelings, but with dreads, your scalp won’t be nearly as much stimulation.
When you get dreads, you won’t be running your hands through your hair, more likely you will be running them over and on top of the dreads. You also won’t be using a brush close to your scalp anymore either. In light of this, you need to get your scalp ready for this change. Maybe one week or so before your dread appointment, challenge yourself to only brush the body and ends of your hair. Don’t let the brush or comb fingers touch your scalp.
Likewise, attempt to run your fingers through your hair less too. By doing this, your scalp will start to hold onto more oils and skin cells that would normally be brushed away or caught on fingers as they touch the scalp. Your skin will react differently when you get dreads so doing your best to “teach” your scalp to function with much less stimulation is more important than you know.
Don’t Do Damage
Finally, the third way you can start to prepare for dreads is by halting any damage you might be willingly causing it before it’s dreaded up.
About a week or so, more if you’re up for the challenge, you get your dreads, try to stop using any heat in your hair. Don’t blow dry it if possible, no curling or flat ironing either. You want your hair to be as clean and as healthy as possible when you put your dreads in and avoiding heat and damage can help your dreads grow and look healthy and clean for a long, long time.
Getting dreads can be fun and exciting and you can really amp up the anticipation by using a few of these pre-dread techniques to prepare your hair, your scalp, and yourself for what is to come. By doing these things, even if just for a short time, it can truly help the dreading process go smoother and your first few months will also be better since you have been preparing. Dreads are like a marathon, you can go into it without training, but it’s certainly not advised. Train your head and hair to get ready for this change so the transition will be so much more comfortable.