Dreadlocks are a fantastic and cool hairstyle that doesn’t require a lot of maintenance on your part. However, things change when it comes to hygiene, especially if you like to use heavy styling products such as wax or hairspray. Although they are not recommended, they lead to a serious amount of build-up that you have to learn how to clean. Luckily for you, we have gathered a whole series of tips and recipes on how to remove product build-ups on your dreadlocks!
What Causes Build-up in Dreadlocks?
First things first, let’s talk about the source of your build-up. It would be ideal if you didn’t have any to begin with. In this way, you could keep your locs healthy and happy. It’s also important to know where it comes from because it will help you clean it easier once you know the source.
The number one cause of residue in your dreads are the shampoos and conditioners you use. They have saponified oils that are obtained from animal or vegetable fats. This means they are very difficult to clean with water. They stick to your locs and later attract dirt and lint.
Homemade shampoos, soaps, and conditioners are not preferable, if that’s what you thought. They are still made with fats or lye that react when coming in contact with the metal ions in water. In consequence, they turn into free fatty acids and are almost impossible to remove from your hair.
The second cause of build-up comes from simply not washing. Unfortunately, there are a number of people who believe that having dreads somehow excuses them from the weekly routine of taking a bath.
That should not be the case! Remember that dreadlocks are just a hairstyle! They in no way stop your scalp from continuing to produce sebum, dandruff, or from attracting dirt. Therefore, the build-up you see is exactly that. Oils you produce mixed with the skin you shed plus dirt you attract on a daily basis.
The third cause are the styling products you use that may be almost impossible to remove. Wax is a prime example. It should never be used to style, maintain or start dreadlocks because it causes caked build-up that, in time, will attract lint and dust, will turn white and start to smell.
How to Remove Product Build-ups on Your Dreadlocks
So, now that you know the causes, let’s learn how to remove product build-ups on your dreadlocks.
As we already mentioned that the number one cause of residues is shampoos and conditioners that are very difficult to clean, make sure to stop using them.
Instead, you can use a clarifying shampoo. As opposed to a creamy formula, a clarifying one is especially made to get rid of heavy buildup. It will leave your locs feeling like new.
Natural Solutions on How to Remove Product Build-ups on Your Dreadlocks
If you’re not a fan of store-bought shampoos and wish to clean your dreadlocks in a more natural way, we have some solutions for you as well.
- Dilute some apple cider vinegar in warm water and use it to wash your dreads. In fact, users report that apple cider vinegar is the best idea overall if you have caked residue and can’t get rid of it otherwise. The vinegar is acid in nature and will dissolve the build-up without hurting your hair.
- Mix baking soda with water – this concoction works in the same way as the apple cider vinegar one. The baking soda will help dislodge and dissolve the residues.
- Use lemon juice – either by itself or diluted in water, especially if you have been using wax or other such products that simply won’t budge.
It goes without saying that you need to be extra careful when using either of these options. Do not get them in your eyes. Also, if you have scabs, blisters, sun burns or open wounds of any kind on your scalp or just a sensitive skin for that matter, do not use them. They will burn you.
A Homemade Recipe on How to Remove Product Build-ups on Your Dreadlocks
You will need the following ingredients:
- 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
- ½ to ¾ cup of baking soda
- 1 to 1 ½ cups of witch hazel
- 20 drops of lavender essential oil
- 20 drops of orange essential oil
- a large bowl in which to soak up your dreads (not a metallic one)
- warm water
* You can use whatever essential oils you like or have handy. Lavender and orange are just an example. But make sure they are fragrant and soothing to cover up the smell of vinegar.
How to make this recipe
- Put the baking soda, half the witch hazel, half your drops of lavender oil, and half your drops of orange essential oil into the bowl.
- Fill the bowl with warm water half way through. Mix all the ingredients with the warm water using your hand until they are blended in.
- Soak your locs for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Rinse your dreadlocks.
- Empty the bowl.
- Pour in the apple cider vinegar, the rest of the essential oils, and the rest of the witch hazel. Fill the bowl again with warm water half way through.
- Soak your dreadlocks for 22 to 30 minutes.
- Rinse your locs very well.
- Dry them as well as you can.
After this homemade recipe on how to remove product build-ups on your dreadlocks, your hair should be clean because of the vinegar, the baking soda, and the witch hazel, and it should smell very good thanks to the essential oils that you used.
How about you? Do you need some maintenance on your locs? Or do you need to learn more about how to remove product build-ups on your dreadlocks? If so, give us a call to 02 8001 6456 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.