Ariel came in for dreadlocks today! She popped in for a consult last week, and when she took her hair outta her cap I just about fainted. That is a lot of hair. Thankfully, she assured me she wasn’t looking for a bazillion tiny locks, so I was reasonably sure I wouldn’t have to clear my week.

So, as I had my morning caffeinebomb, and Ariel had what looked like a homemade raspberry smoothie (probably not designed to make me feel like a diabeetus-bound sugar junkie) we rehashed the day’s plan. Turns out that while she’s sticking to the plan of not getting really small dreads (phew!) she now wanted really BIG ones. Hey, no problem, I say!

Except there’s a problem.

Ariel’s a small girl. I couldn’t make her sections very big or she’d end up with twenty locks, maybe. Extra large sections can look great to start out, but once they grow out you’ve got a ton of loose hair between very few formed dreads – definitely not the “lions mane” she was looking to rock! So, like the grownups we are (well, like she is) we made a compromise. I made the sections a touch larger than i normally would, and she gave the okay to give up her length.

Normally with the techniques I use, my clients end up losing anywhere from an inch to a few inches, depending on the state of their ends – far less than in the traditional backcomb-and-wax method. Most people are happy to sport a tapered dread to keep their length, and some folks straight up prefer the softer finish. With Ariel’s hair, I backcombed far tighter than was strictly necessary to lock (pushing all her length to the scalp) where I could weave a tight, fat dread with a blunted end for consistency. We’re both totally stoked on how it turned out!

Cross Post from: Scissor Ninja. A specialist in dreadlocks, synthetic dreads, and hair extensions, Kris spends her days rocking out killer hair from behind the chair at the Knotty Boy salon.
  1. I scares me how short your hair ”gets”..
    Mine is about… hip length. I have been waiting for many years to finish school to finally get myself a set of dreads :)
    Three years ago, I was tired of not having the hairstyle I wanted, so I cut it to the chin… ”carre”… I grew incredibly fast!
    So, wish me luck so I can finally finish my last school year this year and get my babies!

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