While waiting for my amazing Amazon order, I have decided to do one of my 7's for the newbie's and those interested in loc'ing their hair but really have no clue on what to expect. I do get a lot of compliments now that I have paid attention to styling my hair more often, however most of the compliments end with "I can never Loc my hair", "I can never carry the same hair do forever" , the "I can never" excuses are endless.
If you really like to loc your hair or just started, below are few tips on what to expect/ come to terms with. Some of the stuff below I figured out before my loc journey but some others I wish someone told me. So, lets get right into it.
1. The Big Chop.
To get locs right you have to cut off all chemically processed (permed) hair, this is advisable as it is the first step to healthy locs, however it is the most difficult stage as it can be awkward, un-attractive and demanding to manage however in today's world of youtube and instagram you'll be surprised that there's all sorts you can do with a Teeny Weeny Afro (TWA)/ Baby locs.
This mustn't go without saying that you may not have to chop your hair off at all if it is natural.
2. Your hair won't loc immediately- courtesy Damilola Lawal
You know when you want to relax your hair and it is relaxed an hour after; or when you want to braid your hair and it is braided 3- 6 hours after. It is so not the same with locs. Locs don't happen at once. It is a gradual process that takes as much as 6 months - a year to fully form. My consolation to you on this slow process is that every stage of your locs is a style in itself just like the evolution process. Explore it and enjoy it.
Inspiration to loc your hair often comes from persons who already have long locs, unfortunately you don't start to see length until after your locs form fully. The first six months to one year will be about a lot of shrinkage as the hair strands are in the process of uniting for lack of a better word. This is entirely normal and like all things in life this stage too shall pass. Patience is key and "there is God o"
4. Locs are not Maintenance Free
I was very shocked when I ended up under a hooded dryer after my very first loc twist. The notion that once you loc your hair it is maintenance free is FALSE. To have beautiful locs you need to dedicate some time and love to those strands, else they will fall faster then they grow. The truth however is that locs can be cheaper to maintain than the regular weaves, braids and relaxer regimes that most Nigerian girls do. Read Locitude Do's and Don'ts for some maintenance tips.
5. Bad Belle Group.
I wish I could name names, but there's no need, their sins have been forgiven. There will be those who will look at your head in utter disgust and tell you how ugly you are and how you are a spitting image of Taribo West or a first cousin to Taiye Taiwo. Truth is there will be bad hair days, days where your hair will have no direction and the Bad Belle Association will be there to mock you. The only way to overcome is by the next point.
6. It's Your Decision.
My mom's first reaction when I told her I wanted locs was "why would you want a hairdo that mad people wear?". This came with the illusion that locs are dreadful; guess what mine isn't. I knew exactly what I was aiming for even if no one else could see it at the start. Whatever your reason is for deciding to become a loc head, be it for fashion, spirituality, being tired of relaxers or trying to get a comb through your nappy hair it doesn't matter as long as it is your decision, then it is your journey, your cross, your burden and don't forget it's your beautiful crown. By the way my mom is now happy to convince people that my hair is mine and not extensions.
7. Another Big Chop.
This is the part that comes after you must have loc'ed your hair, grown some length , become bored and happy to transition into the free form natural hair, permed hair and what not. The chances are that you'll have to cut your hair again. I've read cases of un-combing locs, but I can imagine how much hair you will loose trying to detangle hair that you've literally tried to tangle. My advice is, before you lock your hair be prepared to cut it all off if you decide to take another hair path.
Once you can make peace with this 7, I think you are ready to start your Loc Journey.
If you got to this point of this article, welldone, thank you and hope you gained a thing or two and or enjoyed it. Till the Amazing Amazon order comes on Thursday, I will be keeping it loc'ed with an Attitude.
Your Loc Head.
- Taribo West and Taiye Taiwo are Nigerian footballers who have worn a variation of locs.
- Patience Jonathan - First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria who recently gave an unnecessary but very dramatic display of emotions to one of Nigeria's crisis.