Dreadlock FAQ

How and how often to wash dreadlocks

Hvordan og hvornår skal jeg vaske mine dreads?

How and when should I wash my dreadlocks?

In the first three weeks, your dreadlocks will become very delicate and you will want to wash them either every 3 days or every 4 days. Pick a day and stick to it for the first month. It will help your scalp to adjust. If you wash them every three days, your first wash will be three days after you put them in. If your dreads are itchy before it's time to wash them, definitely wash them earlier.

At worst, you'll have a few more loose hairs to fix. After they have had a chance to settle in a bit, usually at the start of the second month, you can start washing them every day or every other day. You can continue this schedule for the life of your dreads. If possible, always use chemical-free and natural shampoo when washing your dreads. Not only will this help them mature faster, it will also ensure that new growth continues to dread up and that they continue to dry quickly. Soap residue slows down and in some cases prevents hair from dreading up properly. Residue can also build up inside dreads and increase the time it takes for them to dry. This can eventually lead to rot or fungus inside the dreads.

Unhealthy conditions arise from moisture and fungus, giving off an unpleasant odor reminiscent of a sour gym bag on your head. Luckily, it's simple to prevent—just ensure your dreadlocks don't stay wet for extended periods.

Can I use an ordinary soap or shampoo for my dreads?

Of course you can…. but let me recommend you stick to residue free soap / shampoo , and here are some reasons:

Opt for a shampoo that doesn't leave any residue in your hair, commonly known as 'residue-free' shampoo. Numerous standard shampoos contain softening agents that tend to settle on the hair, potentially making it easier to detangle.

Dreads start out as knots. Like knots, they tighten up and become dreads. Clamping occurs when knots are pressed together and friction prevents them from sliding apart. Remains/accumulations from various shampoos act as a lubricant, reducing friction and the hair's ability to hold knots. This causes the knots to slide apart, it loosens the dreads and prevents them from getting as tight as they might otherwise be.

Residue free shampoo gets the hair cleaner and leaves no build-up. No accumulations/residues that lubricate the hair, means that there is more friction and the dreads lock much tighter and faster. This is one of the reasons why a residue free soap is a good idea.

Another reason is to avoid "rotten dreads".
Because the hair inside dreadlocks is so tightly packed together, it tends to trap everything soap and shampoos leave behind. When the residue accumulates, it creates a coat on the hair and stops air circulation from the inside out. This causes them to retain moisture for long periods at a time, which can eventually lead to fungus and rot growing inside the dreadlocks. This fungus dies and rots inside your dreads and doesn't smell very good, like a bag of wet towels that has been in a hot gym locker for 3 months.

 

Washing of dreadlocks

Washing dreadlocks is pretty much the same as you know it from before you got dreads.

Rinse thoroughly with water and apply shampoo to the scalp. Whether it is liquid shampoo or shampoo bar does not make much difference. If you have a shampoo bar, just massage it directly into the scalp and then it starts to lather.

When the shampoo is well distributed on the scalp, rinse the hair and press the foam down through the dreadlocks and spikes.

If you need more shampoo in the lengths, massage more shampoo in.

Rinse very thoroughly with water, it takes longer to rinse out the shampoo when you have dreadlocks, be very thorough so that there are no shampoo residues inside your dreadlocks.

We recommend washing your hair and dreadlocks twice so that you are sure that all dirt has been washed out and that the care substances have time to work.

 

Young Dreadlocks

Your new dreadlocks need to be allowed to "settle" and until then they may well be a little fragile. So stick to washing your hair once a week for the first month. If you have brand new or newly tightened dreadlocks and would prefer not to massage too much around the scalp, we recommend using a foamer shampoo, or putting shampoo on a bath sponge that can dab the shampoo into the scalp. Foam shampoo can be dabbed directly on the scalp, in this way you minimize the risk of dreadlocks loosening and many loose hairs being created.

 

Mature Dreadlocks

With mature dreadlocks, the scalp has usually found peace and is more balanced. Your dreadlocks are in full swing of the maturing process and are not so fragile anymore, they are more compact. Therefore, you do not have to take care of them in the same way, but it is still important that you supply your scalp and dreadlocks with the right nutrition.

 

Most important of all!

It is super important that your dreadlocks are allowed to dry completely after each wash. Otherwise, you risk your dreadlocks becoming sour, a bit like soiled clothes, plus mold can form in them. Mold is a fungus that thrives in damp places, it will destroy and break down your dreadlocks. Therefore, you must wash your dreadlocks at a time when you have the opportunity to air dry them afterwards. The drying process can be time-consuming, we have many products that can make this more affordable. We recommend a bamboo microfiber towel, the good absorbency shortens the drying process and the natural fibers minimize wear and tear, as well as the tendency for loose hair.

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