If you want longer dreadlocks, how many dreads do you need for a full 

head?  It sounds like a simple enough question.  One that should have a simple answer, but this is where size comes in:  the size of your head and the amount of hair you have on it.  This is not a situation where one size fits most will be enough to cover it.


When babies are born, their heads are measured to make sure they follow the average.  As an adult,

we can follow this reasoning except by now, your genetics have kicked in.  This is why you have sizes from small to XL for hats and other headgear. As I pointed out in a previous post, that number will be affected by:

  • Size of dreads you want;  e.g. if you want congo dreads or wicks (I confess I had to look it up after an inquiry too.  I figured Kodak Black was a singer but his relationship to dreads was totally lost on me then), pencil size or thick.
  • Amount of hair you have: you need to have enough hair or you can end up with fewer dreads on your head. if you wanted wicks for example, this could be a special order or you could improvise.
  • Length of your hair:  I have reservations on super long dreads on short hair.  It gives me the same vibes of women with thin hair that want waist length extensions.  Nothing wrong with it except it might pull all your natural hair out from the weight!  Women tend to grow attached to extensions even when it is obviously not good for them.  Severe breakage is usually the only way they give it up.


Again, to have a number for the amount of extensions to buy, you should:

  1. Part your hair in one inch partings all over the head.  One inch is standard if you want regular dreads which are called “pencil size”. 
  2. Important Note:  Before dreads “lock”,  they are bigger than what they become.  if your hair is fine and/or thin it is sometimes difficult to tell the final size at the beginning.  The extensions will be similar in size until shrinkage begins. Therefore, I prefer you wait until it has locked.


Please call (613) 789-2179 For An Appointment If You Are In The Ottawa, Ontario Area.

How many dreads do you need for a full head?  This will vary for each person.  Many people have 60 -75 but I have done heads that took over 100 and they were pencil size. 

By Paula Barker, Silkie Locks Hair Design