Help a Brotha’ Out! How Do I Maintain My Locs?
Here’s a brother with natural hair who wanted to share his journey, (and challenges) with our natural hair community.
Darryll is looking for some Naturalistas who can help him better care for his hair by offering your wisdom based on experience.
Read the article and “help a brotha’ out”! Leave your comments below.
I am a 58 year old grey haired large black man, that has been faced with many hair issues since I started growing my locs. Can I get a little help?
First, I must confess, that I did not choose locs, they sort of chose me or were chosen for me. You see, I got in an accident and separated both my quadriceps at the same time. Consequently, I was in the hospital and the rehab center “stuck” for an extended period of time.
My sister climbed into the bed with me, bless her loving heart, and took the time to twist my hair. She said, I had a “scary afro”, and she couldn’t stand me looking like that any longer. My wife liked it, and that was the start of my life with locs… And then the hair issues began… I was told to tie it up when I went to bed!
Questions: First, what is that “Black Bees Wax” stuff that gets all over everything all about? How do I get that stuff out of my pillowcases? And is that part of the start to this process really necessary?
Second, who teaches a guy like me, how and when I should moisturize my hair, and why does it itch and what does that itch really mean?
At the beginning, it looked crazy most of the time and I couldn’t make it look or act like I wanted it to consistently.
Third, how often should one get their hair re-twisted? Washed? Scalp massaged, cholesterol treated… etc.
How come I shouldn’t use products with the words alcohol or something that I can’t pronounce in the ingredient section of the product? Where do you go to learn these things????
I’ve had short hair, (I spent eight years in the Active Duty Military). I used the blue stuff on a regular basis and if my hair got really dry, I would use the green stuff! (Ultra-sheen). That was it and I was good for the rest of the day.
Is there a hair course available for a “Brotha” to take (on) natural haircare and loc maintenance? Mmmmm… I’m afraid I just have to wait for my sister’s and my schedule to mesh. Which is not too often to get my hair done.
Don’t get me wrong, my sister is awesome and because of her and Mother Nature, I sport locks of three and a half feet or better, and yes I have been told that they are healthy and amazingly beautiful…
But, I’ve gone to three different hair salons and each time I get a lecture on haircare. Each place charged me a different amount; the highest was $175.00, which I cannot maintain given this climate of economics we now live in. Whew… Therefore, what’s a man to do? Where do I go from here? As I move into my senior years, should I just break down and get a shave or can I get a little help from YOU!!!!!!
Author: Darryll “Dax” Maston
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‘Helping A Brotha Out’
I can certainly identify some of your issues as I too had the same. I sported locs for about 2 1/2 years and they got to a length where I cud wear several styles. Fortunately my daughter was my stylist, but there were a few issues that occurred for me. My scalp too itched me into misery because I sweat in my scalp so I found my self scratching more than I would have liked. The Bee’s wax and other products didn’t help because It added to the problem with my dry scalp.
I would massage my scalp with ‘Herbal Oil’ which would help until my scalp dried out again. I was informed towards the the end of my ‘loc’ run that Shea Butter may help but by then I had made up my my to cut them off and I did. Hair care is expensive so I learned how to re-twist my own in-between my daughter washing and twisting for me.
As the ‘brotha’ stated in his article, locs chose me. I have thought a few time to loc again because I now have a better understanding of how to care for them but as I now sport a low natural look and sometimes an extremely low look I still deal with the itching but now all I have to do is stick my head under the fawcet and rinse my hair through and I am fine. I am now attempting the new ‘natural’ look with a bit more length as several of my family members now sport. So my ‘Brotha’ taking care if your locs isn’t really hard to do.
As far as the stains on the pillow cases, the way around that is to use an old scarf, old pillow case, etc and put it over your good case because those stains do not come out. one final advise… When your locs start looking bad its mainly the ones around the edges. You can care for those and pull your hair into a pony tail and they will look good as new. There are plenty if ‘Kitchen-Ticians who would be willing to except a small fee to twist your locs without you paying $175.00 and more at the salon… I know several who would be willing to assist you. So… Learn to ‘twist’ , massage your scalp with ‘herbal’ oil, and try the Shea butter and a cheaper Beautician for in- between.