Starting Locs Part 1: Palm Rolling
The Palm or Tool: Techniques For Starting and Maintaining Locs
By: Dr. Kari Williams
Palm rolling and Interlocking are the most common ways to start locs or dreadlocks. We will discuss these two loc methods and how to care for your hair once loc’d in two parts. The first part will describe palm rolling pros and cons.
Palm rolling technique can start with single strand or two strand twists. Coarser hair textures with a tighter curl pattern can hold either very well. But for finer hair textures and looser curl patterns, the double strand twist is the best option.
Step 1 Twist Hair and Allow Time to Loc
After the hair is twist or rolled in two strand twist or single coils the next few weeks low or no manipulation is recommended. That means no shampooing, no styling, and no combing of any kind as you wait for your hair to mat. Just imagine leaving in kinky twists for a little longer than usual. If you do shampoo your hair seek the help of your stylist to fix any twists that have come undone during the shampoo process.
Step 2 Once budding occurs allow stylist to retwist or train roots
Step 3 Repeat Step 2 Every Two Week or so
To maintain consistency in your loc as it solidifies and matures allow your stylist to re-twisting and to keep the locs clean. This translates into an appointment every two (2) weeks for optimal care of the locs.
The Con of the Palm Rolling Loc Method
With palm-rolling, you must be careful. The constant re-twisting and twisting too tight, can weaken the strands and cause locs to break off. Think of a paper clip, if you twist it in the same direction long enough, you can actually break the paperclip. Your hair is the same. So when starting locs using this method, be sure your stylist creates a base for your loc that is strong enough to support the weight of the loc as it gets longer. It is really important to section locs around the hair line large enough to support the loc and prevent breakage that can occur as a result of the constant manipulation of locs. Especially around the hair line which is more susceptible to breakage during maintenance and styling. Although breakage in palm rolling can be an issue there are ways to repair locs by a process called marrying of two locs.
Because Palm rolled locs are more susceptible to breakage, I recommend Interlocking. We will discuss in part two interlocking and the pros and cons. Stay tuned.