Dreadlocks are an ancient hairstyle made by hair forming tight knots. This hairstyle has been prevalent across many cultures throughout human history, but today it is most commonly associated with Rastafarian culture. There are countless myths surrounding this hairstyle, as well as many different methods for forming dreadlocks. The method given here is not the easiest method, but it is the most likely to give good results. This method should work no matter what kind of hair you have.

Things You Will Need

-Dreadlock shampoo
-Dreadlock comb
-Dreadlock wax

Step 1

Wash Your Hair.
Any oil, dirt, or residue in your hair will prevent it from locking together properly, so before you begin it is necessary to make sure your hair is very clean. Despite the myths about dreads being dirty, clean hair will lock together much faster. You should stop using conditioner about a week before you start making your dreads; conditioner leaves residues in your hair that make it more slippery and less likely to lock together. Most shampoos also leave residue in your hair, any fragrance left by shampoo is made by residue. The best option is to buy dreadlock specific shampoo. There are many dreadlock specific shampoos on the market, some common brands are Dreadhead, Knotty Boy, and Knatty Dread. You can also wash your hair using a tablespoon of vinegar diluted in a quart of water, but the dread shampoos will work a little better, and won't smell as unpleasant. Once you wash your hair, let it air dry.

Step 2

Section Off Section Off Your Hair.
Next, make your hair into sections between one and two inches square. The size of the sections determines the size of your dreads. Use a rubber band to hold each section together while you are making your dreadlocks.

Step 3

Back Combing Backcomb.
Backcombing is how you form your dreads. Ideally you want to use a fine-toothed metal comb. You need the fine bristles to catch smaller sections of hair, and metal combs will slide in and out of your hair easier, and won't break from the tension. It is very easy to find dreadlock combs online and in beauty shops, but any fine-toothed comb will do. Start back combing by holding a section of hair up and combing it back toward the scalp with small strokes starting at the bottom and working up. After a while you should see a mass of knots forming at the base. Once the whole section is back combed work a little bit of dreadlock wax, or beeswax into the dreadlock, then add a rubber band at the tip and one at the roots. Make the rubber bands just tight enough to hold the dreads in place or they may break hairs. Now repeat this process on your whole head. This may take a few hours, so you may want to have friends help you. Once you are finished you will have dreadlocks, but they won't be fully matured for a few months. As your dreadlocks mature they will tighten and smooth out.

Step 4

Keeping your dreadlocks clean is necessary to prevent them from slipping apart. Natural oils and dirt can lubricate your hair and keep it from staying locked together. When washing your dreadlocks you should only use residue free shampoos. To wash dreadlocks, gently work shampoo into them and then rinse and ring them repeatedly as if you were washing a sponge. As your dreadlocks grow the roots may not continue to form knots. If your roots are not locking together, gently rub your roots in a circular motion. This should help the new hair form dreadlocks.

If you follow these steps you should end up with beautiful, healthy dreadlocks. Though this hairstyle is tough to start, and takes a while to fully mature, once your dreads are locked in they will require very little maintenance.

Tips & Warnings