If you follow any social media especially Instagram, you will no doubt have seen posts of luxuriously long, almost unreal dreads on sites like Locnationtm.  Some have me thinking I should take the plunge, but I know I would not make it past the beginning stages.  (I walk clients through their struggles, I am not prepared to tackle mine).  These people have spent time and money to get their dreads to impressive lengths and they have those trying to get there wondering if dreads work on thin hair.

In my years of making and maintaining dreads, I have come across many textures.  Some of the reasons dreads do not work on thin hair are:

  •  Many come with unrealistic expectations as to the number of dreads they can have.  If you have thin hair, the number of dreads you get can be half that.  I am not able to tell how thick the dreads should be until I actually touch the hair.  Many ask why this is, I cannot explain, I just have to handle the hair and I know the amount to use.  One new client had many small dreads that grew to her neck and then fell off.  She refused my advice to join 3 dreads for a while.  One day she gave in and the dreads have grown past her shoulder blades.
  • When making dreads one must understand that you may have thin hair and less dreads, but It looks better.  When you have a million little ones it looks as if you have more scalp than hair.
  • Stop comparing your hair with someone with a thicker texture. This should never be the goal.  Your dreads can look just as good, just not with as many.  When explaining this to new clients, some dismiss it and 2 years down the line, they return so we can join dreads to save their hair.
  • Some have lost their hairline to other services like extensions. Getting dreads will not solve the problem in the short-term and might not solve it at all if the problem existed for years.

Interestingly, a person with very thin hair is actually one of the best candidates for dreads since they benefit from not losing any strands.  The hair gets strengthened over time and grows very long.   Paying close attention to vitamins and minerals in the diet helps to maintain growth. Dreads do work with thin hair so do not let that  stop you from committing!

By Paula Barker, Silkie Locks Hair Design

Buy my e-book:  Dreadlocks:  A Hairstylist’s Manifest (Silkielocks.com, Amazon.com)

Call (613) 789-2179 now to book your appointment if you are in the Ottawa, Canada area.