If you’ve done any amount of research on the subject of locs or locking, you probably know that there are at least a good 5-6 ways to go about it… more than that, truth be told.
So after making this discovery, you’re left to wonder…
- “Hmm… which method is best?”
Depending on who you ask, the answer will vary. I’ve seen many people pit one method against another, but I’m not going to do that because it’s unnecessary.
There is no “best method” overall, so what you really need to ask yourself is…
“Which method is best for ME?”
It’s like the lyrics to an old “80’s” sitcom jingle said,
“...what might be right for you, may not be right for some.”
How Do You Determine the Right Method for YOU?
There are a few factors you’ll want to take into consideration when deciding how to start your locs:
– Lifestyle – daily activities that may affect your hair such as frequent working out, swimming, sweating, etc.
– Hair length – is your hair long or short starting out
– Hair texture – is your hair extremely soft and curly, wavy or straight or is it more coarse with tighter curls or coils
– Personal aesthetics – do you want your locs to be well-manicured or do you want them more on the “wild” side
Once you’ve determined those things, you can take a look at the various methods and choose the one that will best fit your needs and personal preference.
6 of the Most Popular Methods of Locking
The following is a list of the most common ways to start locs. There are others, but they’re more than likely nothing more than offshoots of these basic, foundational methods.
1. Comb coils
This method is very popular on hair that is too short to braid or 2-strand twist.
One single-strand twist is made in small to medium sections of the hair using a locking product.
The hair may take longer to lock, due to the fact that the coils unravel a lot during shampooing – which is why scalp cleansing with an astringent is often recommended until the locs settle enough to shampoo without disturbing them too much.
Also, in the beginning stages, the twists tend to unravel and can begin to look very fuzzy and wild. Although this is a part of the process, many people cannot and/or do not want to deal with those stages.
But, I’ve seen many beautiful heads of locks started with this method.
2. Two-strand twists
Most lock-wearers choose this route to start their locks because they hold up better than single strand twist (comb coils).
The hair is sectioned and twisted with two strands of hair as opposed to one. The twists look very nice when first done and when they mature, they produce very beautiful locks.
Another method of starting your locs is to braid the hair into small to medium-sized plaits.
This option is excellent for those whose hair may not hold up too well in coils or twists, or those who desire to be able to shampoo their hair sooner than normally recommended with single or double-strand twists.
Interlocking is basically creating a pattern in the hair by using a type of weaving pattern. There are various ways to lock the hair using “tools” such as a latch hook, crochet needle, or a locking tool that was actually designed for interlocking.
Interlocking generally holds up better than other methods. And while they can still unravel, it’s nowhere near as much as with other methods.
Locs that were started with interlocking can be maintained the same way. In fact, this can be a great way to retighten locs started with any method.
And this is a great option for those who may have relaxed ends or straighter textures of hair, although it can be done on any texture of hair.
With organic locks, you would start off with all natural hair, usually short to medium length. Oftentimes, the locs are started with the “rub method” where you take a damp cloth and rub your hair in a circular motion until it separates into chunks.
However, I’ve seen people start with coils, twists or braids, and then from there allow the locs to grow and form on their own.
But either way, your hair is shampooed regularly and left alone with no twisting or separating of the hair whatsoever. It’s simply allowed to do what it wants to do naturally, with little-to-no help or guidance from the wearer.
While locking, in and of itself, can cause people to be looked upon in a negative or questionable light – this particular method of locking seems to be frowned upon the most.
Free-form locks are somewhat similar to organic with one difference… the locks are separated so that they do not combine together.
There is still no twisting or tightening of the new growth – the hair is pretty much allowed to do what it wants to do, with the exception of “marrying” or joining together.
The roots do eventually lock up on their own, but there is typically an inch or so of “mini-fro” at the base of the locks. Some people prefer this look, while others do not like the puffiness at the roots.
The Ball’s in Your Court
Based on this knowledge, you can make a decision as to which method of locking you’d want to use.
Again, there is no “best method” of starting locs overall, only what’s best for you.
If you’re still unsure, you may wish to schedule a consultation with up to three Lociticians in your area. But ultimately, the decision is yours.Blessings & Warmest Regards,