I don’t know about you guys, but once my locs hit 2 months, all heck broke loose. My hair became a puffball at the roots, and loose strands everywhere. It was then that I realized I hit the ugly-phase of locs.
And I know that it’s my hair doing what it does naturally, but it just wasn’t the look I was going for and that’s okay. And it’s okay to want a neater look.
I think the ugly phase is only ugly if you allow it to be. And after some trial and error, I’m sharing with you all how I am currently getting through the loc-ing process with grace and beauty!
What is the ugly-phase of locs?
The ugly phase is also nicknamed ‘The teenage phase’ of locs. It is right after your locs start to bud but right before your locs mature. It’s when your hair starts to rebel, or better yet, when your hair slowly pulls away from the universally agreed-upon standard of beauty.
It’s the part where your roots aren’t loc’d, but the middle of your hair is and the ends are still frizzy. Along with loose and short hairs leaving their locs and trying to marry into other locs.
And personally I find this phase to be super uncomfortable. It’s the part of the loc journey where you learn different ways to make yourself to feel beautiful besides hair. It’s where you learn to accept your hair in it’s most natural state. And it’s the phase where most people give up the loc journey and go back to loose natural.
It’s tough! The teenage phase can last anywhere from 1-2 years. Which makes it the optimum time to try new things!
Which leads me to my next point.
Re-twist locs every month during the ugly-phase
If you are very self conscious during the teenage phase I suggest that you re-twist regularly. As long as you aren’t re-twisting it tightly or putting too much pressure on your hair, it’s fine.
You don’t have to be this super hotep person who waits 6 months to re-twist your hair just because you have locs. That’s a stereotype and one that isn’t true at all.
I suggest getting comfortable re-twisting your own hair and doing your own re-twist to save some coins.
Just remember to twist in the same direction each time you re-twist. Preferably to the right. That’s the agreed direction that most locticians twist in so that when you do go back to the salon you don’t mess yourself up. And we twist to the right because that’s the direction that most people’s curls grow in. So your re-twist will last longer so we can side-step the ugly-phase of locs.
Wear a bonnet to sleep and when lounging in the house
I’ve heard someone give the advice that not wearing a bonnet helps to loc hair faster. This is true, but this isn’t really conducive for looking cute and pulled together.
If you want your retwist to last longer, then wear a bonnet. When you go to sleep and when you are just chilling around the house wear a bonnet.
Your hair will look fizzy beyond belief if you don’t wear a bonnet. Or at the very least have a satin pillowcase. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that just because you have locs means that you need to wear a bonnet.
Bonnets are great for keeping hair moisturized and great for maintaining styles. Acting as a barrier between your hair and whatever you are laying on. Also it will help prevent lint and animal fur from getting into your locs.
So wear a bonnet to help maintain your locs and help you to not get so worked up during the ugly-phase of locs.
Don’t overuse water
I talked about this a little bit in my post, “How to moisturize color-treated locs.” But when I first loc’d my hair I was wetting it almost every day. Which was causing my hair to unravel quickly and puff up at the roots. Giving me a look I wasn’t going for.
While water is great for helping your locs to mature faster, and most peope will suggest moisturizing with water several times a week. It’s just wasn’t for me, and I’ve found other ways to moisturize my hair that works better.
And I am also fine with my hair loc’ing up a little slower. I rather enjoy the stages as they come instead of forcing my hair to loc faster by rinsing daily and hating the way it looks.
So I suggest only lightly spiriting your teenage locs with water. Just to help refresh it after taking off the bonnet.
This tip will help you keep your re-twist looking poppin’ for longer periods of time.
Find hairstyles that work for you
Go on youtube and search starter loc hairstyles, and try some out.
As someone trying to get thick locs, I understand not wanting to do too much with your hair. But if you are hating the way it looks then it’s time to make some changes. You don’t have to do super tight styles, but you do have to find what works for you.
Pick a few low manipulation hairstyles and stick with them. I have one that I like to do in particular and I have inserted it below.
I also love to do a little bun at the top of my head with a colorful hair tie and leaving the backdown. It gives me this hipster/boho look that I vibe with.
Get into Headwraps
Headwraps are my go to when my hair isn’t behaving the way I would like. I don’t try to force my hair into a style. I just throw on a head wrap. And it works for me.
I get a ton of compliments and people always ask me how I tie them. This has been my go-to method for getting through the ugly-phase of locs.
So I suggest you purchase a couple of head wraps, and watch a couple tutorials! And get it poppin sis!
There’s no reason to get so frustrated with your hair. It is in the ugly phase of locs it’s going to do what it wants, when it wants. So I let it be.
Accept that your hair is loc’d and you can’t do what it used to do
When you loc your hair, you are casting aside the standard of beauty and heading into the wildreness sis.
Yes, some people will find your hair pretty and yes, you may get compliments. But a good majority of people still find locs to be ugly and unruly. Usually connecting them with Rastafarians and drugs.
And that’s okay. That’s their opinion, but it cannot be yours. You need to get tougher and be aggressive with keeping your determination to have locs.
Follow loc’d people on IG, make a Pinterest board dedicated to locs. It will be hard to keep going if you don’t see what beautiful mature looks like. And it helps to see people struggling with the same insecurities as you. Watch people’s loc journey to not feel so alone during the ugly-phase of locs.
Get on youtube and watch some loc videos. There are plenty of beautiful loc’d queens and kings out there, they just aren’t widely shown by everyday media. So you gotta find the images yourself.
Try your hardest not to compare and learn to accept this new journey as it comes. The ugly phase of locs is just that, a phase. This too shall pass.
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