Want to know what you can expect from new dreads?
The early days, weeks, even months of having dreads can be, well, shall we say a little stressful…potentially?. But if you’re appropriately prepared and know what to expect then you can keep the stress levels to a minimum.
The exact specifics are going to vary from person to person, depending on the individual circumstances, but in general, what you can expect is some irritation, a fair amount of messiness... and some quizzical looks.
I recommend relaxing your hair washing routine before starting the dreads to make the transition as easy a possible, but even then it’s going to take a little while and a few washes before your head starts to get used to the dreads. Depending on the starting method used, the scalp might also be a little sore, the dreads may pull a little uncomfortably… and chances are they’re gonna be a LITTLE bit itchy as things adjust. Once you get into a regular washing rhythm, things will calm down, get more comfortable… and eventually you’ll forget what you were stressing about in the first place - it just takes some time.
Something else that takes time… and usually quite a lot of it is the maturation process. Young dreads are gonna be loose, they’re gonna be frizzy, they’re gonna be messy - those tightly locked ropes you’re after - those take months, even years to fully form. Forming dreadlocks is a process that requires time and a whole lot of patience. You can expect your roots to loosen, tips to soften and usually a whole lot of fly-aways when the dreads are young. So long as the dreads keep themselves knotted into their sections then you’ll do fine, you just need to be prepared and be patient… ignore them as best you can.
Something that's not so easy to prepare for is the attention... you're gonna get some looks and some comments... and there's not much you can do about it.
I think so long as you’ve done some research before starting your dreads and checked out some timelines to see how dreads progress then dreadlock progression is usually pretty predictable - but even with all the preparation in the world, it’s still rather different going through it for yourself.