Articles, Starting Locs

5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting Locs

girl with locs with wooden bed hedboard and green wall in background. yorkie poo dog sitting her lap

So, you’ve seen a number of pictures and stopped to stare a little too long at someone’s gorgeous locs wondering if they would suit you. You have probably even found a few (too many) loc icons that you love. Now the next question is… what’s next? Where do you begin when you want to end up with locs? Starting locs is similar to a lot of styles in that you usually search with how to start the style. However, with locs there are some specifics you should keep in mind in order to be happy with them.

1. What Type of Locs Do You Want?

You probably have an idea of this from researching if you want locs. From sisterlocks to freeform, you will want to narrow it down. The type of locs you want should also fit into your lifestyle and aesthetic you want to achieve or maintain. Are you willing/interested to spend the time (and money) to start and maintain sisterlocks? You have to think about your hair as well, which I’ll talk about more in the last point, but before then, onto the second question.

2. Who Will Start Your Locs & Maintain Them?

A lot of people carry over their current maintenance hair routine into their locs routine. If you currently go to the salon each week to get your hair done, then you may want to go to a salon to start and maintain your locs. If you are fine with starting your locs yourself or having a friend start them, then make sure you understand how you want your locs sized. This brings me to the next point.

3. How Do You Want Your Locs Sized & Parted?

girl with locs with visible side part. green wall and wooden headboard in the background
I’ve always worn side parts prior to having locs. Thus, making sure I had a side part in my locs was important to me.

When sizing your locs you need to remember that your locs will undergo a process. Bulging, shrinking and even texture changes. For parting your hair you’ll want to think of how you’ll wear and maintain your hair. Do you want perfect grid patterns and to keep your hair consistently retwisted? If you want the ability to part your hair straight down the middle for styles, you’ll have to make sure you loc your hair with that parting pattern in mind. Likewise, if you want a straight part for bangs or a side part, you’ll need to pay attention to that partition as well. 

4. What Method Do You Want to Use?

The method of starting your locs really is not something you need to spend too much time thinking about. At the end of the day, your hair will loc. However, you do need to choose a method. Read this article here to learn about the different methods of starting locs. Something else to think about is that locs started with braids tend to keep a bit of that pattern and back combed locs have a less uniform loc. Sometimes choosing a method comes down to what you’re comfortable with. If you’re comfortable with two strand twists and plan on starting your own locs, then that may be your best bet. If a friend is starting your locs, they may have experience with doing comb coils and start your locs with that method.

5. What is The Current State of Your Hair?

woman with locs shows length
Locs Feature – Lisa

The state of your hair encompasses many things. Do you have mixed textures – perhaps from chemical relaxers or heat straightening? This means your locs will have different textures. Do you have a lot of damaged and split ends? If your hair is currently breaking, your locs are likely to break too. How long is your hair? Buzz cut hair, of course, would be too short to loc. Perhaps you have sensitive areas of scalp, alopecia or dandruff. These aren’t all necessarily deal breakers for starting locs, but you’ll want to do research on these areas before going ahead with locs.

Congratulations for taking the step on educating yourself further about starting locs. With the article here and other links, you should feel much more comfortable and confident about deciding how to start your locs journey. But, even with all the information in the world, nothing trumps trial and error. Your hair may loc and you end up not liking the sizing or parting you were dead set on. However, there is no harm at all in starting again. 

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