June 22, 2010

3.5 Years

This month is my 3.5 year mark and now i'll take a moment to reflect on my loc journey.  

New Set (thicker locs)
I honestly cannot wait until my new set of locs grow out because i'm curious about how they'll look, fewer locs might mean less volume which is not a problem for me, and I really do want a set of healthy, strong and beautiful locs. I've been very good about keeping my goals: no coloring, no grooming and using a home made moisturizer.  

Here are some noticeable changes in my new set of locs:
*My virgin hair strands are much thicker and healthier than my colored hair strands (that's a given)
*My hair and scalp respond positively to the egg/may deep conditioner treatment and AVJ spritz
*Since combining, my root bed is stronger in areas where they were once very weak (yay for strength!)
*I have very few white bulbs appearing after my retightening sessions
*I know that my hair is growing, but it's taking longer to see more length and I guess it's due to my loc size.  When I kept them as skinny locs you could see their growth like crazy.

Old Set (skinny locs)
I really like my old set, but I felt like it was time for me to move on and for the right reasons.  I won't say that i'll remain loc'd forever because I like change and change happens based on my mood or preference.  This set is unhealthy, damaged and weak, but there is still a little life left in a few strands I guess. :-p I think i've experimented as much as I could, but not without damaging my hair.  Then again I probably wouldn't have anything to write about on my blog now would I? :-)   

This is what i've noticed about this set:
*My hair color is more brassy than i'd like it to be and ideally I would like to have my locs all one color, but my hair is stubborn with color and i've struggled to keep it dark if dyed a darker color.
*I have many thick ends and sometimes I debate whether to pick them out and re-braid them or leave them in order to make my re-ti's easier
*These thick ends make my hair look even fuller which is fine, but some of them are just out of control, lol!

I've resisted the temptation to snip my 2HD's on a few occasions because I realized that I would have less volume, I would need more new growth and there would be a stark contrast in loc size between the new set (combined part) and the old set (skinny part).  The fact that they're two different colors doesn't help either.  Just to satisfy my curiosity I snipped several 2 or 3 HD's just to see what they would look like as one loc.  My locs are kind of bumpy, but that's okay.  It's best to wait until my new set reaches several more inches before snipping my 2HD's because I can't see the back of my head right now and i'm afraid of snipping off the entire loc.

I plan to give myself at least one year before snipping my HD's, but I must take baby steps because it's so tempting.  I'd rather have every loc be uniform in count just to make my re-ti's easier, but some of them wouldn't blend in if I did because these happen to be different sizes and it's obvious. Sometimes I look at my hair and wonder, did I do the right thing by combining them, knowing that they'll never be this skinny again?  Then when it's time to tighten my locs and I realize how long it still takes me, even though it's still less time, I remember how much my arms used to hurt and my reasons for doing this in the first place, then I quickly snap out of it. LOL!  

Sometimes I guess I feel like a new nappy who is waiting for her hair to grow into a nice large puff every time I look at my new set and wait for it to grow out.  Every now and then I inspect my loc growth, size, shape etc. and even though their progress is still a surprise, I having a feeling that i'll be happier with this new set.  I no longer have to dread over my tightening sessions since they used to take forever, or the fact that my body parts would ache halfway through one session.  It seems like some locks will still be kind of skinny and others a little thicker, but I won't know for sure until they grow out some more.  Either way i'm glad that my hair is healthy that's all.

My locs are close to arm pit length and they already have a little weight to them.  I hope they don't become heavier than they already are because this wouldn't be good.  I want to see how long I can grow my locs, but my cut off point will probably be mid back to waist length.  Ideally I would like to grow my new set long enough so that I can snip my 2HD's finally, but only time will time and my mood may change after I reach my one year mark in March 2011.


Naturally UniQue Sisterlocks said...

Dewdrop your hair looks so healthy and beautiful! I can't wait to my 3.5 yr mark lol. I look forward to watching your journey. You are absolutely my lock idol :-)

E. RaMona (Alaiyo) said...

So you know I am you "hair fan" right. Your locs always look great and healthy. I do have a couple of questions for you. You know that I am entering into the realm of DIY. I am familiar with latching because I used to latch my hair when I started locs a few years back.

1. I have several locs which have unraveled quit a bit, but are still holding at the ends. If I latch, will I be able to fix this, even with like a-gazillion rotations?

2. Any suggestions on a shampoo/conditions or products in general. My hair tends to feel dry at times.

3. Lastly, how often would you suggest that I wash my hair? Up until now, I've only had it washed at the salon about every 6 weeks, because that's what the loctician said was best.

I hope this isn't too much for you. Any advice/guidance you can give is super appreciated. Thanks!

V said...

From pictures I see nothing wrong with your locks they look beautiful to me, but hey you spend more time with your locks than anybody else, so you know whats best for them, lol.

dewdrop said...

Thanks N.U.S.!

@V: You're right because it's hard to see what I see in these photos, but when I do a strand test I can see some changes. My new growth is springy/snaps, but my colored locs are kind of brittle.

@Alaiyo: Hehe, thanks!
1) You should be able to because that's what I did with a few of my locs.
2)I use Selsun blu for my scalp condition and lately i've been using an egg/may deep conditioner treatment which works pretty well to strengthen my hair. My scalp doesn't react to it at all. I'm also experimenting with AVJ. I can't recommend anything else because i'm allergic to just about everything, so it's matter of knowing what works best with your hair. Some people use jojoba oil to seal in moisture after washing their locks.
3)Wash your hair when it needs to be washed. If every 6 weeks worked best then I wouldn't be going through weekly washes. My consultant told me the same thing and I ignored her because my scalp said no since I have a serious scalp condition. I'm glad I listened to my body. If I go longer than a week then I start to have hard to remove buildup.

Ms-gg said...

Your locs are so pretty Dew!

iRockLocs said...

Your locs are beautiful!

E. RaMona (Alaiyo) said...

Thank you, thank you!

QueenLi said...

hey K-Dewdrop, you look great. Your locks look very healthy. Thanks for stopping by my blog. :)


Naturally Sophia said...

Your locks are perfect to me:)

iRockLocs said...

Your locs are gorgeous!

raven said...

hey ...love your hair! you mentioned the litle white bulbs. how do i make those go away lol?


dewdrop said...

Thanks ladies!

@Raven: Two factors contribute to the visibility of these little white bulbs: 1) Hair that sheds or 2) you could be over tightening your locs. You can cover them up by using a black sharpie marker and coloring over them or dying your hair which usually does it in one take.