Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Headlock with Dreadlocks

I didn't think there was anything as cool as Pipo's dreadlocks when he played soccer, but I must say, they are pretty cool when he is wrestling too!

A fellow blogger recently asked me to do a post on hair, so I will do my best here.

I have posted about hair in the past, but never in depth. I have been incredibly fortunate in that the summer camp we work at has several people who I have been able to go to for hair advice. I was SO happy this summer when one of our good friends from Jamaica told Pipo his hair looked great and that that was how he started his dreads when he was a boy.

When Pipo first started growing his hair out, I wasn't sure what to do with it. One of my camp friends sat with me one afternoon and talked me through these 'comb coils'. These are done by taking small chunks of hair, greasing them up good, and twisting them up with the end of a fine toothed comb. While it looked cute, I didn't love the style on Pipo. His face is just too pretty, and I felt it made him look a little girlish.


Eventually I started to do two strand twists on him as his hair got longer. This was a little easier for me... taking two bits of hair and twisting them around eachother, so that the final product looks almost like a bit of fat yarn (or at least mine did!) But again, it looked a little too feminine on him. I saw a photo online of a boy with all but the top of his head shaved. I asked Pipo if he wanted to try it. The big bonus was that it took much less time to do his hair with only the top of it to twist. I loved the look on him, and we went with this. As his hair got longer though, it got pretty time consuming to do a retwist. He would wash his hair, and I would have to pick it all out with a comb, and then redo all the twists. He didn't seem like he was going to want to cut his hair anytime soon, so I suggested going to dreadlocks. I told him it would be for good (until he wanted to cut his hair) but he liked the idea.

http://trendyhairstylewomen.blogspot.com/So now his hair has been "locked" for well over a year. It's getting pretty long, but I must say, it suits him.

When I first started his dreadlocks, I read anything I could find about them. One of the best resources was a post by another blogger, which you can find here. These two adorable boys have had their hair locked since they were very young toddlers. It's a great post with lot's of info.

Starting Pipo's locks was fairly simple. I just kept the two strand twists in, and every week in the beginning I would retwist. His hair wasn't that long yet, so it wasn't too bad. After about a month, it was 2-3 weeks between twisting, and now I can go up to 6 weeks without it looking too bad. The main issue is the new hair growth. The base of the locks get pretty fuzzy.

I take each lock, dab a bit of gel at the base, and twist up the new growth.
Then I glide a bit more gel up the length of the lock and palm roll it as you can see below. It is simply putting the lock between my hands and rolling it back and forth.
I add a clip to each finished lock, right at the base. You can see below how fuzzy the untwisted part of his head is.

When his whole head is done, it needs to dry. Pipo is not a fan of the hairdryer, so I usually do his locks early on a day when we have nothing going, and then he can just hang around the house for a couple hours with his head all clipped!

There are lot's of variations to this routine. I use "Let's Jam" for gel. I have tried many products, but this is the one which worked best for Pipo's hair. As far as parting the hair goes, I was pretty loose about it. Being a boy, I didn't care so much how 'uniform' his locks looked. So the parts are not even at all, and the locks themselves are varying sizes. I like this look for him, it seems more 'boyish' and natural.
http://trendyhairstylewomen.blogspot.com/The biggest benefit by far though, is how much bonding happens with hair time. I have posted about that before, but I will say it again... the physical one on one time we get with retwisting is SO good. Pipo actually will ask me to do his hair before it even really needs to be done. And I am sure it's because he needs that time. Time to just relax, and have mom to himself. And for that... I will keep twisting his hair as long as he wants me to!