Update: Dreads and Moisturizing

July 20, 2011 Oyibo Princess
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Mr. Marley says, "Let's get together and moisturize."

Hey all. I think this is going to be a short post. Well it has to be because I am about to work out. This is related to a hair tip I gave previously about moisturizing.  So last night I went to meet a friend I have not seen in 5 years.  She was also meeting up with some other friends from high school.  Out of all of us, the guy who came last  had dreads. We will call him Bob. The other guy that was there and my friend kept talking about how long Bob’s hair had gotten, because he had the dreads since he was a kid.   So I was expecting  hair to be down to his behind.  Keep in mind Bob had not gotten there yet.   When he walked in the Truitt’s Chik-Fil-A, I saw that his hair was as long as mine. What? Should be longer since all hair grows 1/2 inch per month and I had not been growing mine for the same length of time he has. He is 23. He’s been growing his hair for 13-16 years. I have been growing mine for 3 years (but growing it  well for only 6 months).

So I asked him, “Do you  trim your dreads?”

He said, “No. Never.”

Then I said, “Oh. They told me you had been growing your hair for your whole life.  I thought it would be longer.”  [Pause.] OMG. Is that rude, ya’ll? It didn’t sound rude at that time, at least not to me. I really had to know. Sorry.

“Oh yeah.  Sometimes when I sit on the couch they just break off.”

“Do you moisturize?”

“Uh. My stylist does.”

I told him, “With Afro-textured hair you must moisturize every single day.”

He said, “Yeah. I might put some afro sheen on it.”

“Oh no. Yeah. A lot of people think that oil moisturizes. It doesn’t. It only controls the moisture.  You have to moisturize the hair with water (or sometimes aloe vera juice) and then put oil on it.  Depending on the humidity, you might put shea butter or cocoa nut oil if it’s humid or jojoba, glycerin, or castor oil if it’s arid or dry.”

Wizzy says "Don't worry, peeps. I moisturize. hehe. Yeah."

OK. Now you ladies (and guys) know I can be an annoying pest. Ah man.  I didn’t want you to find out like this.  Sorry. The Lord is at work on me. Still working on being tactful. But I just wanted to share this story to demonstrate how hair knowledge and moisturizing is really important for maintaining length.  When I was little, my aunt had long dreads.  I asked her why her hair was so long.  She said because she didn’t comb it. So for the longest time, I was under the impression that the only black people who could have long hair, other than mixed people–please don’t blame me for my misconceptions; this is the world I grew up in now—were people with dreads.  What I did not realize is my aunt moisturized her hair.  (In fact, she now says she used to water it like she would water a plant. She has a relaxer now, because she is trying get a job. I will talk of that later.) Now, from my knowledge of hair and this investigation, I know that dreads can break off unnecessarily if not properly cared for (and so can mixed hair which I know from my own experiences.)  Most hair can get long if cared for well unless the person with the hair has some kind of medical condition. There could have been something else going on with his hair, but from our convo, the moisture thing is def an issue. Don’t get me wrong.  His hair was pretty nice. His mom maintained it well and his stylist maintains it well now. It was just not as long as it could be. Just thought I would update you and reinforce that daily moisturizing is highly important.

All the best on your hair journeys and what not. Please email me if you have any questions at oyiboprincess@gmail.com.  I am going to post the swimming bonus soon, but I am waiting to get permission from my professor to use a pic of his daughter.

As a treat for your patience, here is Timaya, among the estimated 1% of people with dreads in Nigeria right now. I believe it is the Yoruba who believe dreadlocks are evil because they represent shrines. However, nowadays, Nigerian celebrities and other entertainers wear them. Here’s the video: 

Disclaimer: I do not know whether Bob Marley did or whether Lil’ Wayne does moisturize daily. I do not know either of them personally and know nothing about their hair regimens. However, my mom had a colleague whose daughter went to school with Lil’ Wayne’s daughter so…there is a connection there, but I still do not know what he does with his hair.

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Entry Filed under: Hair,Hair Growth,Moisturizing,Random

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