My 1 Year Locaversary: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

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By: Nakiya "K Gold." Walters

What's going on Diamonds and my Diamond Status Gents!?! When I was a little girl, I used to have dreams about the kind of woman I would be. One time, I got a vision that was pretty clear. I was cleaning my awesome apartment, and watering all my plants and herbs. I had a bunch of intriguing tattoos. I was mentally, physically, and spiritually at my peak. And last of all, I had long flowing dreadlocks that seemed to fit me perfectly! For years I waited and experimented with different styles and colors. I tried to take the time to learn the basics of caring for my hair. Last year on June 12th, I finally felt ready and took the leap! I enlisted a friend to start my comb coils for me and they have been growing into mature locs ever since. Here's a look into the first year of my loc journey:

Months 1-6

The first six months felt like the longest of my life! During this time it seemed like I STAYED in the mirror waiting to see my hair change. But it did! The good: It felt so good to not have to style my hair everyday. I was used to spending at least 20-30 minutes on my hair every morning. As my locs grew, they got length and volume. My small comb coils slower got thicker and fuller, and I always loved the outcome. It was crazy to see my locs transform!

The bad: My hair shrinkage was real! During the loc'ing process, the hairs in each loc have to tangle with each other. They start off soft and spongy, but eventually become firm. Well during the first three months my hair shrunk down to almost half its length! I was shook. Finally during months four and five I started to get some length back. And then there was that nasty loc habit. When starting locs for some reasons a lot of people will tell you not to wash your locs for months! They actually say not to wash them until they are firm enough to not unravel. However, I think that's a nasty ass practice.

Your scalp can get itchy I watched a few videos online and in month one settled on the idea of washing my hair with a stocking cap on.

The ugly: My hair was so short that I couldn't do much with it. I started to feel like I wasn't as feminine, so I was trying to go glam every day LOL. But after the first month, I began getting comfortable with my new look and style. Another ugly thang? When the hair starts budding it gets really frizzy. There were curly loose hairs on the ends and on the shaft of my locs. That definitely made getting a "polished" look for work challenging. Ya girl was struggling! But luckily a few of my co-workers had locs too! They didn't make me feel bad because they already knew what to expect from a budding dread head.

Months 7-12

The first six months of my journey dragged along, but the second half flew by! The good: I finally got a lil taste of hang time yall! Well not realllly, but my locs did finally pass my ears and eyebrows LOL. This ignited something in me and my confidence reached new levels. By the second half of my journey I got the hang of retwisting at home. My hair could finally withstand washes with minimal unraveling. All of my locs had sealed off, so the frizz was bearable. Plus, my hair became long enough to style it with some twists or buns!

The bad: Wearing accessories can be a humbling experience with locs. Hats that once fit perfectly now wont even stretch over your head! And if it does, it simply doesn't feel the same LOL seriously. Then there's wearing earrings and necklaces. My locs always get snagged on clasps and chains, so I have to choose my jewelry wisely.

The ugly: Some days if I forgot to moisturize my hair or use a bonnet at night, my locs would get SUPER stiff. I'm talkin bout me walking around here looking like Coolio and Alfalfa's mash up! At some point, I also noticed that my hair would sometimes grow outside of its loc. That means not just loose curls all willy nilly, but also hair that joins or grows into a completely separate loc. Luckily,
I've been able to split all my locs by hand, because when you can't you have to cut the loc in half! She aint got time for that, so I pop my locs every time I wash.

So these were the best and worst parts of my loc journey. Share with me some of your loc journey, or even your natural hair journey below.  Comment and don't forget to share!

Have Joy, Love and be EMPOWERED!


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