Saturday, December 4, 2010

The Stages of Locks and How to know if your locked!

So your thinking about getting locks? Well the transition of your hair to locks requires you to prepare your mind on how you will handle those around you as you lock your hair. You really have to know what to expect and if locks are really what you want. Ask yourself why do I want locks? Is it to be chemically free, grow long healthy hair, to throw the brush & comb away, or the ease of low maintenance? Those were some of the questions I asked myself and when i say you have to be mentally ready it's because you will have some people approach you with negativity about locks. These individuals can be your friends, family and even co workers. You will have days where you will love your hair and days where you look in the mirror and wonder what possessed you to ever consider locking your hair! However there are some people who have enjoyed the entire process like myself!

I'm going to talk about four primary stages of locks with each one having it's own set of challenges and celebrations.

Stage I: Baby Locks

After choosing your method to starting your lock for example Sisterlocks since that's the type of lock I have. Your hair will become fuzzier as the days go by and the longer braids ( sisterlocks when started look like tiny braids) used to start your locks will most likely shrink in length. 3C, 4A, and 4B hair will remain in this stage for 4 to 6 months. If your hair is a 3A or 3B in texture it usually takes longer for you to begin seeing budding which means you will move to the next stage.

Stage II: Teenage Locks

Budding occurs when the lock begins to form firm, rounded, matted sections of hair appearing along the length of the lock, usually in the middle or towards the end. Your locks will also become increasingly fuzzy and larger in appearance. This stage can occur as early as three months but can take up to 18 months depending on your hair texture.

Stage III: Adult Locks

This stage usually lasts between one to two years. Locks that reach the adult stage begin to smooth down and compact. Locks appear smaller then they were in stage II and will be more uniformed in size. The locks will have developed from the bud and then out in both directions towards the scalp and end of the lock.

During this stage you will notice what will seem like extraordinary growth! Although your hair has been growing at the same rate the weight of the lock will begin to pull the hair downward making growth more noticeable.

Stage IV: Mature Locks
Locks can become mature as soon as 18 months or as long as 3 years! The locks have formed a complex tightly interwoven matrix of hair throughout the length of the lock and are solid and uniformed in appearance. Mature locks are strong and if maintained well very easy to style.

How to know if your locked:
Three easy ways to know if your locked

1. The buds in your locks are no longer distinguishable from the rest of your lock.

2. Hair that was once fuzzy begins to lay down within the lock

3. Your hair has lost the" patterned" appearance of the method that was used to begin them and have a smooth round shape.

Reference: Nappturosity: How to create fabulous natural hair and locs


  1. Thanks for posting this!

    I have been wondering how and when one is able to see any difference in the beginning stages that may signify possible locking.

  2. Your Welcome Janay! I'm happy this post was helpful :-)