I made the decision recently to give it another try after several failed attempts over the last 4 years, and I started a new set of dreadlocks.
My desire for dreadlocks started back in 2012 or so. I’m not sure the exact person or thing that made me want to give them a try myself, but I started doing a lot of research. I joined a couple of groups on Facebook, I watched YouTube videos about how to do them myself, and I read a LOT of information online. The first time I tried them, I had my mom help me, and I used wax. Obviously that was a HUGE no-no, as the wax coated everything it touched including my face, clothing, bed sheets, etc. That was very short-lived, and they were combed and washed out after less than a week. I looked up some more natural ways to get it done, and found the twist-n-rip method to be something I could do myself. I tried that, and they lasted about 3 months before I was so itchy, full of flakes, and felt incredibly unattractive and had a friend help me brush them out.
I tried it a couple more times in the same way, and the final time I decided I was never going to try again. It was far too itchy, stinky, and uncomfortable overall. I even made myself a private YouTube video to watch if I ever considered doing it again, explaining why it was a terrible idea.
I must say however, in retrospect, I believe a lot of the bad luck I had with this style was the lifestyle I was living as much as the misinformation and lack of support I had to pull it off. As is said in many cultures, knots contain and keep energy, and I was never in a good enough place in my life, physically nor emotionally, to want to keep those vibes attached to me and worn on my head.
Then, in September, Jarrod and I went to RiotFest in Chicago. There were quite a few people there with dreadlocks and I was in love with them! I told Jarrod how much I admired dreads and wished I could pull it off, and he also said how much he loved them. So we discussed it further and we decided to get some professionally installed for me.
A week later it was done. It took 6 hours and human hair extensions to get them started because of quite a lot of damage I had due to a perm I’d gotten a couple months prior. Its been over a month since they were started now, and they are still comfortable 90% of the time. The only time they aren’t is if it’s wash day (because I wash when they’re itchy). I have the proper shampoos and products that help them lock up the right way, and keep me from itching or stinking. And my stylist is pretty amazing too, with her maintenance keeping them looking tidy, and advice as to how to care for them to keep them healthy. Not to mention my mental and physical states are MUCH improved… I love my life! I do believe with the amount of care and attention my hair is getting and will continue to get, these beautiful locs can last a very long time…. years, in fact! I’m very happy with my decision to give it another try.