For black women the advantages of dreadlocks are considerable:
Most black women, at least in America, either put dangerous chemicals in their hair to straighten it or they wear wigs or weaves – hair that is not naturally theirs. So dreadlocks are one way to wear one’s own hair in a natural way.
Some companies do not like you coming to work in dreadlocks, but most will accept them if they look nice.
You need a special kind of shampoo to wash dreadlocks. Most shampoos have stuff that will stay in your hair after you wash it. Combing and brushing will get rid of it, but with dreadlocks you never comb or brush, so it will just build up in your hair and cause trouble.
The reason dreadlocks get that gray look is because of the wax that is used to help form and maintain them. You can do it without the wax but it is harder.
dreading methods include:
natural/neglect - just stop combing
twist and rip-twist hair separate pull repeat
backcomb-comb the hair backwards towards the scalp
twist and neglect-great for african hair just twist then let it do its thing
crochet-use a crochet hook to weave hairs together
Natural-The natural methods is technically the best method for everyone's hair and causes 0 damage to the hair. Just let your hair do what it wants to do when you feel lil dreads starting to form begin separating them accordingly.
Advantages: This completely natural people nothing to it just letting it grow for itself.
Disadvantages:Well its natural but the only real problem would be the shape of the dreads and the size they will come out as. If you separate them the way you want then you could end up with great looking ones or messy but beautiful ones. Also this method is not for the people afraid to look a lil messy.
2strand Twist- Two strand twist seem to have become oddly popular in the dread community due to multiple artist getting them done. Its just two even groups of hairs twisted repeatedly into coils. No real damage is done in this method. (Works best on African hair)
Advantages:Its extremely simple to do barely any damage and if you want salon looking dreads i guess this would be for you.
Disadvantages:Until they mature a little sometimes gel will be needed.
Twist and Rip- Its similar to the 2 twist method but very different. With this method you will yet again gather the hair into two equal strands then twist them together then pull them down the middle to the scalp. This creates knots forming the dread. You would keep going down the dread till you get to the tip. Its one of the most recommend ways to create dreads
Advantages: Very simple like the 2twist method and very little damage done. Dreads become very nice through this method. Can be done on any hair texture.
Disadvantages: It does cause a certain amount of damage. But not as much as backcombing.
Backcombing- This method suggested by dread companies because of how you will look before they mature a little aka Sonic the Hedgehog Although this is how my dreads were formed I wouldn't suggest doing it. It causes stress against the hair follicles. With this method you section the hair off into blocks then take a section and comb towards the scalp with a metal comb the hair will begin bunching up at the scalp slowly forming the dread.
Advantages: Extremely simple to do anyone with a metal comb can do it. Can be done with any hair texture.
Disadvantages: Will cause you to look like Sonic for a couple of days or weeks. Damages the hair more than the first methods will. Also can be extremely painful if you have help.
WORST FOR YOUR HAIR-Crocheting-Latch Hook-Sadly this evil method is pushed upon people looking to get dreads done without getting the facts first. Crocheting will make your hair in to "perfect" looking dreads but will utterly damage it Its weaving the hair together.
Advantages: Well if you are one of those extremely impatient people I guess this is right for you it will give you instant looking dreads.
Disadvantages:This is one of the worst ways to form them. You are sticking a metal pin in and out your hair and often breaking the inner hairs. This causes so much weakness in the dreads and breakage at the root. Especially when to "maintain" these dreads you are to continually stick them. This reach for perfection is ridiculous and not natural.Interlocking Is the most pushed thing in salons for beginning and maintaining locks. Its the interloping of hair till the lock together. They twist the lock and pull it through the roots of the hair. This is quite damaging for the hair as the roots are often over tightened and weak to the point of falling off.
Advantages: They look slightly good for a period of time.
Disadvantages They will eventually fall out. This method is pushed on people cause salons make you think dreads have to be perfect and the only way to do this (to them) is constant locking. Also cause they get paid by the hour (around 80 to 100) to do this easy yet slow method. This method puts uneven stress upon the lock and roots. This can make the dread look uneven and eventually fall off the head onto your pillow most likely,Once you have done it too much there is no way to really help you recover.
Felting-The second worst way to begin dreads these create instant dreads but at a extremely high cost.
Advantages: Instant dreads thats it there's nothing else good about this.
Disadvantages: So many where should I start well they literally break your hairs to stick them together. This the rough insane version of crocheting . If you choose to do this your hair will most likely fall out or break off this method just causes that much permanent damage.
Maintenance- With dreads not much is needed to keep them in shape you are suppose to let them do their thing.
Keeping them clean: A residue free shampoo or soap is needed for this. Residues slow down the dreading process and slowly adds gunk into your hair. I personally My Black soap Shampoo You don't have to continuously wash your hair but it has to be clean. Overwashing your hair can cause it to dry out fast washing either twice a week or every two weeks is just fine your hair will not smell bad. To dry them i would first let them air dry a bit then use a blow dryer. When they are still new be careful while washing. As a way to deeply cleanse them a baking soda wash followed by organic (apple cider or vinegar) rinse will be perfect to make sure you get all the residue out your hair. Tightening roots Dont mess with them theres no need they tighten themselves but if you really feel the need to you could root rub. Which means basically rubbing the root of the hair against the scalp in a clockwise motion. I wouldn't do this cause it tends to weaken the roots and over tightening them is not good for the dreads. Just let them do their thing.Tightening the dreads There are many ways to attempt to tighten them sea salt(which dries black hair out) lemon juice rinses(which also dry your hair) to name a couple.Beads might help to tighten loos dread sections. Really the thing that will help you the most is to just let them do it themselves.
WAX- NEVER BUY THIS Dread wax is one of the worst buys you can ever make. Its for one non-water soluble meaning what ever you do its most likely wont come out if you use it. The only real ways to get out is either boiling your dreads, using industrial glue remover, repeated high temperature washings or just getting rid of them. All wax is is glue dread companies sell it cause they just want your money and they really don't care about your dreads. Dont buy anything from them. If you really need a wax substitute use straight up aloe vera oil from the plant. If someone from a salon or whatever tells you that you need wax ignore them cause they are ignorant, wax kills.
UPDATE: washing well we don't have to wash as often as others do so i recommend once a week or once every two weeks