Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Loc'd (30 days and counting)


I'm beyond happy about being loc'd! 

About the Loc Process
My crown was blessed with locs by my loctician Kim at Nubian Kinks, and the process took a little over 18 hours! At a certain point, I couldn't feel my rear end and I had to keep shifting around in my seat.

We started at 9 a.m. in the morning on Super Bowl Sunday, and honestly, I was surprised that anyone wanted to do hair on that day, but thankfully, Kim is my type of person. (I don't watch or really care about the Super Bowl...)

The installation of the loc extensions was painless (thankfully), and I didn't leave the salon looking like I just had a face lift (lol).  Those of you who get braids done know exactly what I mean!

I washed my hair the night before with my Look and Feel Moroccan Argan Oil shampoo and conditioned with the conditioner from the same line.  I followed with Giovanni Direct Leave-In Conditioner and I don't think I sealed with any oils because I wanted clean oil-free hair.  I put my hair into four braids and went to sleep, and by the next morning my hair was dry enough that I was able to undo the braids and rock a big puff as I went to my appointment in Brooklyn.

The install was as simple as this:
  1. Start on clean hair.
  2. Put the hair into sections.
  3. Take a small section enough for one braid.  If the braid you make isn't long enough for the loc length you desire, add extension hair to the braid to make it longer.
  4. Create a loose and small braid in that section.  This braid shouldn't hurt at all.
  5. Wrap the braided section with loose afro-textured hair.  The hair must retain a matte finish even when wrapped not just when it is curly.
  6. Depending on your preference, wrap with different colors of hair to create an ombre effect, but be sure the colors are complimentary.
  7. Once the hair is completely wrapped, palm roll with gel on your hands to seal the loc.
  8. After wrapping each braid, carefully twist the bottom of each loc around the perimeter to give the install a freshly tightened appearance.
  9. Sit under the dryer for about 15 minutes to set the locs.

Pros and Cons

The benefits of having locs far outweigh the setbacks. With that said, here are my thoughts:

Pros
  • A few weeks after getting my locs installed, I went on a trip to Arizona, and literally the only items I needed to pack for my hair were: shea butter (for my roots), satin scarf (to wear to bed), hair band (to put my hair up/out of my face).
  • I have brushes and hair products that I no longer need to use.  As a result, I'm giving a bunch of products away to my family (and tossing anything that they don't want).
  • I no longer have to set aside an entire day to wash/style my hair! This is incredibly liberating.  While I still take care of my hair daily by using moisturizer (coconut milk + water + aloe mix) and seal with oil, I no longer need to commit an entire day to turning my coils into a "style" and I love that freedom.
  • I feel like I've joined a community of loc'd people.  It's funny to say but people with locs seem to great each other (well we do!) and I love it.
  • To my surprise, even at this length, my locs are not heavy.

Cons (for lent I gave up negative speak because I seem to get pleasure from complaining, so this was a little bit of a challenge to write)
  • I love my locs, but it seems there are still many negative perceptions about people with locs, including the view that locs are dirty because they don't get washed and locs are religious.  Neither of these assumptions are true for me.  Those who are Rastafari usually have locs, but that doesn't mean that everyone who is loc'd is part of the movement.  Locs are part of an emotional experience for me, but not based on religion.  I have locs because I feel I'm meant to have them, and I'm freely meeting my soul in the process.  I'm helping myself grow out of worrying about how I'm perceived through having my locs, and just enjoying my own spirit.
  • I noticed the other day that one loc in the front area may need to be cut in half or made smaller somehow so it doesn't feel so heavy on my sensitive edges.  This is an easy fix and I plan to do so at my next appointment.
  • The installation process was much longer than I expected, but this meant that from midnight to 6am, I had the undivided attention of my loctician, Kim.  I could tell that she was exhausted, but she just kept moving along and I love seeing someone so committed to their work!
  • I am learning the spirit of patience because my locs aren't completely formed yet, and I need to keep up with my appointments with my loctician every few weeks for the first three months (to keep my one year guarantee of the workmanship and to make sure my locs form well). I was hoping to be washing/caring for/styling my locs on my own much earlier, but I'm enjoying patience too!


In all, loc'ing my hair has so far been transformative for me and I feel liberated from spending an entire day caring for my hair. I also love having this piece of art on my head every day.

Something I'm looking forward to doing to my locs very soon is switching up the ombre.  Suggestions welcomed :)  These two are no help...




2 comments:

  1. Thank you soo much for this site and sharing you loc extension experience! I have been back and forth about getting loc extensions for over a year. I always am changing hairstyles but now want to settle with one look. I have found a stylist that does a great job on loc extensions and loc maintenance. I am setting my appointment with her asap!

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    Replies
    1. Do it, Crystal! You will not regret it. I'll be doing an update very soon. 2+ years later, I'm still loc'd and very very happy about my decision. My hair has grown so much and so healthy with locs. I have no regrets :)

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