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Starting Locs 101: Everything You Need to Know to Get Started

Starting your loc journey requires several things, namely, a plan and lots of patience. Your journey begins before you even start twisting your first loc!

You need to understand that not every loc style works for everyone — what works best for you depends on various factors.

We’ll discuss what to know before starting your locs and the best ways to get started once you’ve decided to embrace the loc lifestyle!

Ready to start your loc journey? Learn more about starter locs and stock up on organic loc products here!

Related: Loc Stages Timeline

Consider These Factors Before Starting Your Loc Journey

Loc can look amazing on anyone, but different styles will work better for different people.


  • Your lifestyle: Unfortunately, if you have a corporate job that requires you to maintain a certain appearance, free-form locs might not be the way to go. Or if you work in extreme climates, heavy locs might make your life more difficult. 
  • However, you’ll also want to consider your personality. For example, would it drive you crazy not to be able to wash your hair multiple times each week?

    And no, we aren’t saying any of these are reasons not to get locs — they’re to help you determine which style of locs will work best for you and your lifestyle.

  • Your hair texture: Most loc styles work best if you have kinky, coiled hair; it will lock together much more quickly and uniformly. It will be more challenging to get your hair to matte and lock if you have straight, fine hair.

  • Plus, people with straight hair tend to have more oil production, which can cause issues during the locking process. So if you have straight or fine hair, a braided loc style might work best, as it will keep your hair locked together better than other styles.

    • The costs: Locs require a time and money investment. You’ll either need to regularly visit a loctician to maintain them or learn to retwist locs yourself. Starting locs is the hard part for some people, but most people struggle the most with maintaining them and keeping their hair healthy.

    Many people believe that locs are easy to maintain — you just let your hair do its things, right? Not quite; once you begin your loc journey, prepare to spend a decent amount of time on maintenance.

    a man with dreadlocks using a laptop

    So You’re Ready to Start Your Loc Journey; Now What?

    Now, let’s explore how to get started on your loc journey!

    Choose how you want to start your locs

    There are so many ways to start your locs, and looking into the above considerations is the best way to determine which method will work best for you and your hair. Common methods include:

      1. Two strand twists
      2. Braids or plaits
      3. Comb coils
      4. Backcombing
      5. Sisterlocks
      6. Extensions
      7. Free-form

    Start with your natural texture

    Almost any loc style will require you to have a minimum of ½ inch of new growth. So let it grow a bit, and don’t try to lock your relaxed hair — the result will be frustration, breakage, and wasted effort. So let some new growth happen before starting your loc journey!
    But don’t wait too long. While you need some new growth, you also want to start your locs while your hair is relatively short — over a few inches of hair will make maintaining your starter locs much more challenging! So start early and remember: There aren’t any shortcuts to starting amazing locs.

    Related: How to Care for Your Locs

    What to Know About Locs During Your Journey

    By now, you should have an idea about what kind of locs you want to go for and what you’ll need to do before starting them.

    But what comes next? Now we’ll cover a few things you should understand on your journey to mature locs!

    • Appreciate each part of the journey. Your locs will go through several stages, and they’ll look different during each of them. What your locs look like today will be different than how they look a few weeks from now — enjoy each stage; don’t stress if you’re not the biggest fan of how they look right now.
    • Starter locs need moisture. You might hear not to get your hair wet at all when you first start your locs — don’t listen to that advice. Yes, overwashing will disturb your parting and slow the locking process. However, you need to keep your locs hydrated to keep them healthy and strong. You can use a loc oil to seal that good moisture in your hair.
    • Understand your parting pattern. Your initial parting pattern will determine what your locs will look like as they age and mature. For example, if you have thin hair, a diamond part can help make your locs look fuller as they grow. It also means that uneven parts and sections will lead to non-uniform locs.
    • Be careful with the products you choose. Using low-quality products or products not designed for locs can do more harm than good. Caring for your new locs is a lot different than for natural hair — heavy products cause build-up, so stick to loc-specific ones that will hydrate your hair and scalp without leaving behind residue.
    • Ignore your loc envy. Everyone’s locs will look different, and it’s not uncommon to be envious and wish your locs looked more like someone else’s. It can be challenging to be comfortable with your unique locs. However, all locs are amazing! Celebrate your uniqueness and enjoy each stage they go through — your locs won’t look the same in a few months!

    Want your locs to look their best from day one? It starts with the right loc products.

    a man with dreadlocks reading a book

    Enjoy Your Loc Journey!

    Everyone’s loc journey is unique — instead of comparing yours to others, take your time and enjoy the ride! Everyone has different hair textures, densities, etc., so love the locs you have and take the journey at your own pace.

    Enjoy each step, through the frizzy beginning stages all the way to when your locs mature into the style you’ve always wanted!

    Related: When to Wash Starter Locs

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