Locs are the ultimate carefree hairstyle for Black women. They’re low-maintenance, versatile and earthy. Some people are hesitant to commit to locs, but often this hesitation is based on myths and misconceptions.
The truth is, dreadlocks are among the healthiest hairstyles for Afro-textured hair. Manipulating your hair is what causes damage, and dreadlocks require very little manipulation. A little moisture and regular re-twisting are all that this hairstyle requires.
If you’ve been considering living the loc life, here are three myths that you should forget about right away.
Myth #1: Dreadlocks are unclean and can’t be washed.
This is, perhaps, the most persisting myth about dreadlocks, and yet it’s COMPLETELY untrue. Developing long locs is not as simple as neglecting your hair and letting it do its thing. In fact, loctitians (hairstylists who specialize in locs) say that unclean, greasy hair is actually less likely to turn into locs because the hair is too slippery. The cleaner the hair, the more well-formed the locs will be.
The only difference between dreadlocked hair and unlocked hair is that dreadlocks have not been detangled. It’s important to regularly wash and condition locs, even long after they have fully developed.
Myth #2: You can’t style locs.
Another hesitation that people often have with this hairstyle is that it’s not versatile enough. Dreadlocks are dreadlocks, right? No more switching it up every week, right? WRONG.
Dreadlocks can be styled in a ton of different ways. You can French braid them, rock an updo or do a million other hairstyles that you would do with loose hair. Dreadlocks can even be formed into Bantu knots, twist-outs and braid-outs just like loose kinks and curls!
You can absolutely still get fun haircuts with dreadlocks, too. Asymmetrical bobs, long layers and other trendy hairstyles are all fair game for women with locs.
Myth #3: Locs are always permanent.
This one is the most understandable misconception. Committing to dreadlocks is no small order because they can potentially last for years of your life. The longer that you have your dreadlocks, the better they will look — but they’ll also become harder and harder to remove.
Dreadlocks are not, technically, permanent. You can comb out even the most fully formed locs with a large helping of patience and gentleness. After all, dreadlocks are nothing more than hair that has been allowed to tangle over and over again.
However, combing out dreadlocks is not a small job. It can take several days and lots of manpower. You should definitely still consider locs a huge commitment—just keep in mind that they CAN be combed out if you really, really want to.