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O.K. - after a couple of side bar discussions regarding my last post about stiff dreads. The general consensus is that I should stop using teatree so much, make sure I am not mixing my BS and ACV when washing and the fact that I color my hair is all contributing to the stiffness of my dreads.

O.K. - the first two are easily remedied. Actually, having not used the teatree shampoo for a few days now and watching my BS/ACV wash, my hair does feel a little better. However, the coloring is an issue. I am graying and am not ready to go whole hog into the wild gray yonder. Therefore, I am looking for suggestions from people who color their dreadlocks on keeping them conditioned and preventing buildup during this process. I have searched forums on here, but mostly it appeared that people were coloring for "effect" rather than covering gray. So, I am planning on coloring for a while -period. Sorry, this is the last amount of vanity I have left and I am loathe to give it up. I need to know what the least damaging form of coloring and conditioning would be for my hair. I have never used henna, but I understand from reading on here that once you color dark with it - you are stuck. Are there options for lighter henna colors, maybe light brown to blonde???? What other options do I have. Any suggestions???? Thanks everyone!

Tags: color, conditioning, dreads, henna, stiff

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Just go grey who cares? its natural and it will look sick in your locks!
i like my greys:) what about using the conditioner that comes with the color? i remember you saying that you usually skip it but maybe that would help with the softening of your dreads.
I know, I know... Not brave enough yet and it makes me look OLD!! I said it was the last vain thing I was hanging on too LOL!!!
hey we all have our preferences so whatever makes you feel best you should go for! I don't dye my hair but from my understanding you can't go lighter with henna, knottysleeves has a lot of knowledge about henna so i would talk to her. Do you dye all of your hair when you color or just the roots? Conditioning after is definitely necessary Panterra could tell you why in greater detail than I but I know when using commercial dyes you need that conditioning afterward.
Actually, Panterra was the one that suggested my coloring habits are contributing to my dryness, which I can understand. Sometime in the near future, I may just let it all go. I try just to color the roots up when they start graying, but then I lightly wash it down the rest of my hair just to make sure I don't start getting stripes. I would gladly use the conditioner after the coloring, but was under the impression that it would build up inside my locks eventually and cause damage. Any thoughts on that anyone????
considering how tight your dreads are at the moment i don't think build up would be an issue. the conditioner would have to get into the core which would be harder to do now. just keep the conditioner on the outside of the dreads and you'll probably be fine.


MiDread said:
Actually, Panterra was the one that suggested my coloring habits are contributing to my dryness, which I can understand. Sometime in the near future, I may just let it all go. I try just to color the roots up when they start graying, but then I lightly wash it down the rest of my hair just to make sure I don't start getting stripes. I would gladly use the conditioner after the coloring, but was under the impression that it would build up inside my locks eventually and cause damage. Any thoughts on that anyone????
Yep panterra has loads of knowledge on hair!

lots of people condition their dreads, I would just make sure you do a deep cleanse sometime after dying/conditioning.

MiDread said:

Actually, Panterra was the one that suggested my coloring habits are contributing to my dryness, which I can understand. Sometime in the near future, I may just let it all go. I try just to color the roots up when they start graying, but then I lightly wash it down the rest of my hair just to make sure I don't start getting stripes. I would gladly use the conditioner after the coloring, but was under the impression that it would build up inside my locks eventually and cause damage. Any thoughts on that anyone????
I'll give some hard thought to just letting it go gray. I really hate the coloring process now that my hair is longer and I hate taking the time to do it. Its messy and a pain. Maybe I will have to check out some people with gray locks and see if I can picture myself that way! But, no promises!!
Its a sign of wisdom :)
i've heard you can use cold black tea to darken hair, dont know how effective it is(if any). Ask google.


Jack Roth said:
Its a sign of wisdom :)

so your saying all the grey haired politicians are really wise?lol

At this point..considering the color buildup that you have, your options are a bit limited. You could go grey, use henna...and I think Knotty meant to say that it can only go darker, not lighter. Color in general can not lift color...in other words...if the hair has color on it then a haircolor can only darken it at this point. A haircolor can only lighten natural pigment (like when you apply it to roots). It would take a bleach (not a color with bleach...no such thing) to lift now and your hair isn't up to that. Whatever you decide...even if it is henna, I would be careful about putting it throughout the hair. Maybe coat the entire thing once and then only to the roots from then on if you can. I too color to hide the grey and with a very vibrant red shade I have to refresh it or look odd. So, I have only colored 2 times in 4 mos. It is very hard since I do grow very fast (about 3/4 in. a month!). I still recommend the henna, think it would be your best chance at defeating the buildup. I plan on using it also as I see the future damage I will be in for. As I told you privately, if you were not dreading and cutting regularly you wouldn't be in this dilemma and it really sucks that this is a "unique" hair situation because of the nature of dreading. Wish I had a better solution but I don't. I could try talking to some of my fellow professionals but I fear their hair knowledge does not include dreads. :(
Also, as for teas and such...great for most hair but grey usually does not have the needed absorption and cuticle condition to retain the stain. (Yep, I am just the bearer of all the bad news, huh? Sorry.). Alessandra said:
There are some hair dyes that are ammonia free, less chemicals in general supposedly...so those should work, but the only way to go lighter in hair color means the hair dye has to have some bleaching agent in order to do so. I have dark brown hair and tried henna once, a red shade. It gave an almost imperceptible red tint to my hair when the light was hitting it, but not much else.

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