How to Keep Dreads Healthy and Growing?

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Maintaining dreadlocks is very distinct from managing other hairstyles. Dreadlocks don’t require to be combed and don’t need regular trimming, although you might need to go the extra mile to keep it clean.

Because contrary to popular belief, clean dreads lock up and tighten quicker than dirty dreads.

While other natural hairstyles need combing to establish stray hairs back in place, dreadlocks need to have stray hairs tucked back into the dread. Doing so helps the loose strands to dread up and lock with the rest of the hair. As they continue to mature, they become firmer, smoother, and need less maintenance.

Your maintenance method will vary depending on how you made your dreads and its maturity.

How to Grow Healthy Dreads?

Dreadlocks can be arranged for a fun look. However, people are wary of how fast it will grow.

Dreadlocks can grow as fast as regular hair but demand some special care. For one, you will need to have a healthy diet. Doing so guarantees that you’re absorbing the right vitamins and minerals that can boost hair growth. You should also wash your hair routinely to keep it healthy.

Changing Your Diet

Looking for another reason to opt for  a healthy diet? Well, desiring to grow your dreads faster can be one.

A diet packed with Vitamin E and A will encourage hair growth, not to mention all of the other health benefits they will have on your skin and nails.

Foods that are rich in Vitamin E are Almonds, Spinach, Sunflower Seeds, Avocado, and Wheat Germ. Meanwhile, you can easily increase your vitamin A consumption with carrots, broccoli, kale, spinach, and beef liver. Sweet potato provides both vitamin A and E.

Eating these veggies raw can improve the number of vitamins your body gets to enjoy. That’s where a juicer or trying some salad could come in handy.

Bonus Tip: Add a few amounts of Flaxseed oil for those Omega-3 fatty acids that can stimulate your hair follicles.

Get more vitamin A. Vitamin A can help make your hair grow faster. If you’re trying to grow out your dreads quickly, look for some way to include more vitamin A in your diet every day.

  • Liver, fish oils, milk, and eggs are excellent sources of vitamin A.
  • Vitamin A can be achieved in fruits and vegetables such as leafy greens, sweet potatoes, cantaloupe, carrots, squash, apricot, and broccoli.

Up your vitamin E intake. Vitamin E can also assist with hair growth. Try adding extra vitamin E into your food and see if your dreads grow faster.

  • Nuts, seeds, and other vegetable oils are several of the ideal sources of vitamin E. It is also easily obtained by eating leafy green vegetables and fortified cereals.
  • You can also obtain vitamin E by consuming sunflower seeds, almonds, hazelnuts, corn oil, peanut butter, and peanuts.
  • You can also get an abundance of vitamin E in spinach, kiwi, tomato, and mango.

Add flaxseed oil to your diet. A few amounts of flaxseed oil can boost hair growth. Try buying flaxseed oil at a local grocery store and include them to your diet.

  • Sprinkle ground flaxseed over several foods throughout the day. You can also sprinkle some of it on fruits, vegetables, yogurts, and cereals. Try combining it with hummus recipes and butter.
  • Try to look for things like bread, muffins, and other wheat items that are supplemented with flaxseed oil at your local supermarket.

Increase your protein consumption. Protein promotes hair health. If you desire to grow out your dreads faster, look for protein-rich foods and incorporate them into your diet.

  • Fish, whole grains, nuts, and beans are a few excellent sources of protein.

Take a biotin supplement. Biotin and other B vitamins help improve the overall appearance of your hair and skin. Add more biotin to your diet by consuming nuts, eggs, and cauliflower. You can also take some biotin supplement once a day.

Caring for Your Hair

If your dreadlocks are new, your stylist has probably advised you to stay away from washing them for the first month or so. And that’s a piece of great advice.

When new dreadlocks absorb up all that water, your newly done dreads can swell up and go fluffy, ruining all of your hard work. There is also what we call “dread rot,” which happens when you keep your hair damp often.

But it’s not just the new dreads that need this thorough care.

Water can also break and wreak havoc on any kind of hair type, making the fibers weak and dilated, which can lead to breakage.

If you want to maximize the long-term abundance of your dreadlocks, you need to make certain they’re going to last. This means keeping them dry and strong after each wash.

Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Always wash your dreads early in the morning, so they have sufficient time to dry.
  2. Start ringing out your dreads at the end of your shower to reduce any excess water.
  3. Cover your dreadlocks in a fast-absorbing microfibre hair towel to drain the water from inside your dreads.
  4. Leave your hair open for the rest of the day to let it dry naturally.

Microfiber towels can dry your locs twice as fast as a normal towel. It can also help you avoid the damage caused by rubbing and hair dryers.

Wash your hair once a week. Many people believe that dreads should not be washed. Still, it is something you should do at least once a week.

For best results, look for shampoos specially produced to wash dreads. Be sure to rinse your hair thoroughly for 2-5 minutes so the shampoo won’t leave any residue in your dreads. Shampoo that is not accurately washed out can create flaking and drying.

Care for your hair at night. Preserving your scalp at night can help your dreads grow faster.

Cover your dread with a scarf, blanket, or hair cap. Silk caps work really great. Do this each night to keep your dreads secure and support growth.

If shedding is the issue, protecting your hair before bed can also help catch loose hairs.

Get More Blood Running to Your Luscious Locks

Same as any other part of your body, your hair also needs a constant supply of nutrients to grow and flourish. And without healthy blood flow to bring those nutrients to the hair, your dreadlocks could end up starved and less likely to grow.

Luckily, there are loads of natural methods to increase the blood flow to your hair to keep your dreads happy. You could try:

  • Getting more frequent exercise. Yoga is especially good for supplementing more blood to the head, thanks to all of those upside-down poses!
  • Massaging your scalp. Just a few minutes each day can help to provide more blood on your hair.
  • Eating better. Foods that have lots of iron can improve your circulation, while hot spices like cayenne or chili peppers can make your blood vessels dilate. This enables more blood to get to where it’s needed.

Use Natural Oils to Boost Hair Growth

There are lots of drugs and substances in the market that claim to help your hair grow faster. But there are also plenty of natural alternatives that have been used for hundreds of years.

Castor oil (produced from compressed castor seeds) is packed with proteins and beneficial fatty acids. It has antioxidants that improve the keratin in your hair and ricinoleic acids that help in improving blood circulation in the scalp.

Unfortunately, it’s also a bit thick and sticky. So some people would combine castor oil with coconut oil.

However, make sure that you are not allergic to any oil. To do that, just apply a small amount on a small area of your skin first. Wait a day or two to examine if it has adverse effects.

Protect Your Hair

You won’t obtain the privileges of all the growth-boosting tips in the world if you don’t help your dreadlocks to survive once they grow.

You can preserve them from damage and breakage by: 

  • Wrapping them in a scarf or silk when you’re sleeping. This helps to reduce friction and stop them from drying out. Look for a head covering that works for you and your locks while you sleep. Also, a fabric composed of cotton can lessen or eliminate any unnecessary lint, dust, or any other flying particle that loves to nestle in your locks.
  • Scanning for a reliable conditioning treatment to help lock in your hair’s natural oils.
  • Getting yourself a swimming cap with loads of space to hold your locks dry and guarded in the shower or the swimming pool. 

In general, you should keep your locks wrapped in a certain fabric for specific situations, particularly when you know you will be in a dusty environment. This is to avoid any further risks.

Stay Happy and Stress-Free

This is not just for your hair but also for your life.

When you’re dealing with something stressful, your body creates more adrenaline and cortisol. Sure, stress is inevitable, but chronic stress forces your body to produce DHT.

This stress hormone can make your hair follicles contract, slowing down hair production.

Trying Other Means

Talk to a hairdresser. If your hair is not growing as fast as you desire it to be despite your attempts, see a hairdresser. Go over your hair care routine to see if you’re doing anything incorrectly. A certified hairdresser should be able to help you obtain the hair length you desire.

Try a supplement. You can buy supplements online that are intended to help dreads grow faster. However, you should always talk to your doctor before trying any dietary supplement and do it as a last resort.

Get more sleep. Make sure you’re having enough sleep. Poor sleep habits can harm your health, including your rate of hair growth. Also, make sure that you are using a pillow with a silk pillowcase. This is to prevent your hair from tangling and breaking.

Don’t Rush It

Growing any type of hair needs time and proper maintenance, especially with dreadlocks. Hence, you should be patient.

In particular, you should avoid:

  • Using hair-growth drugs that aren’t well-researched or well-tested. Many companies are ensuring faster hair growth, but they won’t always have your health as their top priority.
  • Doing too many re-twists too often, and excessive twisting can thin the hair and produce damage. Only re-twist your hair once a month instead,
  • Loading on vitamins and supplements. Some hair supplements improve your hair to grow faster. But you should always speak to your doctor before you take new supplements.

Make sure that the products you are applying to twist, lock, and clean your hair are all-natural. Otherwise, it can lead to residue buildup.

Several unnatural products may dry out your locks and scalp, leading to more unnecessary breakage and frizz. Sometimes these products smell and work excellent, but can cause irreversible damage later on.

Simple Steps for a Healthy, Thriving, and Moisturized Locs

Locs are an artistic way to rock your natural hair. You can employ fancy updos, inspirational colors and styles, and striking lengths. But contrary to popular belief, maintaining your dreads can be tricky.

To promote the health of your locks while it is growing, you want to lock down a regular regimen that keeps them happy.

Not sure where to begin? Follow these tips to attain your dreadlock goals:

Moisturize your locks correctly

You may see that your locks don’t need as much moisture as your loose hair did. But don’t test your luck. You should still moisturize them routinely.

Dry hair breaks quickly, and the last thing you want is fragile locks! Apply a light leave-in moisturizer or lightweight oil that will satisfy your locks’ thirst.

Use aloe vera

An aloe vera plant is composed of over 80% water, making it one of the most effective methods to hydrate your hair naturally.

Some loc’d individuals only apply all-natural aloe vera locking gel on their locs. That’s because of its amazing characteristics to help the hair lock while nourishing the scalp.

Condition your locks with absolute care

There is some debate in the dreadlock society about whether you should condition your locs or not. After all, conditioners can release or break your locks.

While few loc’d people go ahead with conditioner, we suggest applying apple cider vinegar as an alternative. This rinse can make your locks grow soft and get rid of any product buildup.

NOTE: This process is not fit for young dreadlocks.

Once your locks are mature, we suggest that you deep condition them every 1-2 weeks. This is to keep your locks healthy, strong, and moisturized. NaturAll’s Avocado Ice Cream Treatment Deep Conditioners not only keep your locs moisturized, but the consistent application will also keep your locks strong, healthy, and vibrant.

While your locks are in the beginner phase, deep conditioning drives the risk of detangling your young locks. If you just started your locks recently, consult with your loctician and ask when it’s safe to deep condition your locks.

Don’t over-wash your locks

While locks are more likely to produce bad odors and residue buildup than loose hair, over-washing can absolutely dry out your scalp. This can point to flaking, itchiness, damage, and thinning locks. We recommend that you wash your matured dreadlocks once every 1-2 weeks.

Get rid of silicones, sulfates, and mineral oil

If you are using products, examine the labels first and avoid anything that may be striping moisture, over-drying for hair, treating it away from real moisture, and weighing it down.

Dry locks thoroughly after washing

More often than not, the mildew odor from your dreads is due to incorrect drying. It’s the same as letting your damp laundry in a hamper without air drying it.

Use a blow dryer on a low heat mode or let your locks air dry. Don’t tie your locks up, just stack them together and cover them with anything until they are totally dry.

Use natural oils

Apply natural oils to keep the moisture and health of your locks and scalp.

Oils like coconut and olive will prevent your locks from growing too dry, and the diluted tea tree oil will help clean hair with its antifungal properties.

Jamaican black castor oil (or NaturAll’s Strengthening Jamaican Black Castor Oil Products) will keep the moisture and health of your scalp while it grows longer and fuller.

Don’t overdo it with oils or products

Locs are composed of matted hair. Thus, use less product than you think it needs and avoid styling products that leave a lot of residue. Stick with lightweight products and oils, and apply them sparingly.

When it gets down to it, locks don’t require too many products. It’s simple at the beginning of the loc journey to explore with loads of various products. But all you need is a good shampoo and natural oils or moisturizers.

Locs are fragile and can absorb any elements very quickly. Hence, eliminating residue buildup can be tough. So, don’t save too many products. Avoid thick, dense, and viscous leave-ins. Plus, maintain your locks routinely to keep them clear and clean.

Protect your locks at night with a satin scarf or bonnet

Your locks may be fuller, but they are still prone to breakage and damage from abrasion. Protecting your locks with silk or satin will shield and restrict breakage while you lay your head at night.

Don’t over-twist your locks

Twisting your hair absent-mindedly pulls your hair follicles and can make the loc fall out over time. Only twist your dreads on your scheduled retwisting, and be certain to provide your hair lots of time (we recommend several months) in-between retwisting or interlocking. Don’t retwist or interlock too tight, either.

No heat for styling

Heat can dry all the moisture out of your hair and create damage in the long run. Natural hair is also very delicate by nature so it’s not a good mix! If you do use heat to style or dry your locks, avoid this for a while and examine if it produces a difference.

Have a healthy diet

Our hair is considered an extension of our health. If you have an unhealthy diet, not getting much exercise, or drinking not enough water, then how can your skin and hair be healthy and moisturized?

Each day you should be drinking at least half your body weight in ounces of water. Your body requires that much water to adequately lubricate your organs, muscles, and hair. That’s because our bodies are composed of 70% water!

Do your research

If you want to dye your dreadlocks, get a different style, trim them, or use a different product, you should do your research first. The same thing goes if your locks aren’t mature yet.

Spare some time to read on how to take care of baby locks before you start and make sure to work with a trustworthy loctician. 

Final Thoughts

Your locks have to be moisturized to stay healthy.

It’s also worth mentioning that there are methods to speed up your hair growth. This includes improving your health, limiting stress, and being mindful of what you do with your hair.

Elasticity (also known as hair’s flexibility) is one of the key features of locs that you should pay attention to. When your hair is well-hydrated, it becomes stronger. Otherwise, it becomes prone to dryness, frizziness, and breakage.

Nonetheless, the best thing you can do is be patient and live a stress-free life.

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.

Get the right fix if you are suffering from any of these?