I spent much of my childhood wearing what we now call box braids, but back then they were more a taming method rather than a bid to look like I'd been styled by Solange. In other words, I wore them because it was all I knew and so when friends and strangers alike would say "nice dreadlocks" I used to feel mortified. I didn't really want plaits, but I definitely did not want dreads. Dreads were for male rastas right, not sweet 16 year old girls like me.
Sadly dreads have always had a unfairly warped rep. The Guliana Rancic V Zendaya incident wasn't much of a surprise to me but the fall out from it was certainly refreshing, perhaps not for Guliana but for loc rockin ladies worldwide.
The gallery below shows all the women who inspired me to try this look and showed me dreads can be sexy, stylish and professional if you want them to be....
What did I use?
In total I used 5 packs of Marley hair which cost £4.99 per pack. I also used 3 packs of Kanekelon hair to braid my hair before wrapping.
How did I do it?
I took a section of hair about the size of a box braid and braided in some Kanekelon hair. As you can see I chose light coloured Kanekelon so that it would blend better if the locs unravelled a bit. This was a good choice because some of them did indeed unravel but it wasn't too noticeable thanks to the blonde Kanekelon hair underneath. I then took one piece of Marley hair and began wrapping. You can watch how I wrapped in the video. The ends were then wrapped back up themselves (again watch the video to understand what I mean!) and then burnt with a lighter to seal them.
How long did it take?
FOREVER and a day. No lie, this hairstyle took me far far far too long! So long in fact that I dont even know how my hours in total as I ended up dipping in and out rather than doing it all in one day. At a guess I think I spent 20 hours on this. But next time I'll definitely be faster now I know exactly what I'm doing.
How do I sleep with it?
I don't do anything other than tie them up. I find head scarves and tights just come off in the night and to be honest I don't mind if my locs start to look a bit messy anyway.
Was it worth it?!
At first I was really downbeat about the whole experience. I found the process long, I didn't like the look when I was half way through, the locs felt really heavy so I worried it was a damaging style and my finger tips were kinda burnt and numb from burning the ends of the locs. However, I persevered, finished it and then it started to settle on my head. I know that sounds strange but new protective styles do need time to bed in. And I have to say locs look better when they're not perfect. I guess they look more authentic. I got used to the weight of the locs and I redid the front so it wasn't so tight.
Tips for anyone trying this style...
- Allow yourself lots of time.
- Don't do the locs to tight to the scalp. If it feels too tight, it probably is.
- Don't worry about being too neat. This is one style that you can get away with looking imperfect!
- Rock those locs like you mean it. This is a really bold style, especially if you decide to go platinum blonde like I did so it's best worn with a little 'tude. You can see it on all the faces of the women on the inspiration board above. Own it.