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root rubbing myths and realities

root rubbing is used to tighten dread roots


many sites recommend root rubbing to tighten roots. but roots do not need extra help. dreads form towards the roots, but a little undreaded hair at the roots is totally normal, even necessary.

root maintenance facts

loose roots-roots should have between 1 inch (typical) up to 3 inches (rare) of undreaded hair at the roots, this gives movement room. movement is needed to dread. this is normal, and without that space it would be ver4y hard to clean the scalp, and knots forced right up against the scalp will cause uneven pulling, pain, and possibly cause dreads to stick up.

loose hair around scalp-again, this is normal and healthy. the loose hair provides sun screen to prevent sun burn, as it grows it will do one of 2 things. either it will join a dread, or become a new dread. you cannot get rid of it without harm. better to just accept it. new fuzz is always being creatted by seperating dreads.

roots dread on without help- any rubbing of dreads or roots cause friction, friction causes damage, damage can never be repaired, the more you do, the worse it gets and can lead to weakening of the roots, even breakage.

so you still want to rub your roots? heres how

place the palm at the roots with the dread between thumb and forefinger and rub aggressively in circles.

do not ever use dread wax!
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dread gurus
Comment by Baba Fats on April 6, 2012 at 8:17pm

I've used a mixture of Teatree, rosemary and Jojoba.  Clears it up really quick if you stop messing with it.  You could also add a few drops of Lavender.  It's good for it's antibiotic properties

dread gurus
Comment by ☮ soaring eagle ॐ on April 6, 2012 at 8:07pm

scab from rubbing/ stop rubbing  thats easy

 but u might need a likl something to help it heal antibiotic cream or teatree or something and wash often enough with the right stuff u shouldnt need anything but if u do aloe jojoba tc are great rosemary prevent s dry scalp

no hot washes ..warm to cold or cool

Comment by Chelsea Aryn on April 6, 2012 at 8:02pm

i have a scab from it, how do you get rid of that? and what are some good moisturizers or techniques for your scalp? i don't want them to be itchy or flacky :/

dread gurus
Comment by Baba Fats on December 3, 2011 at 12:19am

root rubbing can also cause nasty sores and scabs to form on your scalp.  no one wants an open wound under a lock

Comment by Pixie Campbell on April 18, 2011 at 11:53pm
I want to hear more about "sea salt spray", it sounds yummy for the scalp, too. Do I just mix up some sea salt and water in a spray bottle, SE?  I've been fussing with my roots and I'm going to leave them alone now. It's like hair-twirling, I just mess with them. I love it when they get all knotted up :) I'll look around here for the baking soda mix, I'm wondering if there's acv mixed in-I hear about that a lot. What is that little beeping sound? I love your commitment to healthy dreads, Soaring Eagle. Peace.
Comment by Brannan on March 20, 2011 at 3:51pm

Washing with Bronner's, sometimes mixed with baking soda.


I haven't done any sea salt since they were babies. I'll give that a shot :) Thanks!

dread gurus
Comment by ☮ soaring eagle ॐ on March 20, 2011 at 3:37pm

its normal for em to be that long in the 1st year not the 3rd what are u washing with and all thye rubbing could just hbe delatying maturity

define pretty long  cause usualy its about 6 incheds when they start to dread

have u tried sea salt sprats or soaks adding sea salt to the baking soda mix gets my loose hairs dreading in a day usualy

Comment by Brannan on March 20, 2011 at 2:38pm
The roots tend to take 3+ inches to start locking if I leave them alone. The loose hairs have not dreaded on their own yet (3 yrs old...they are pretty long).

dread gurus
Comment by ☮ soaring eagle ॐ on March 19, 2011 at 7:16pm

define long and loose  they will always dread on theyre own they have to  but if u been rubbing all the time u may have stunted theyre development alot they will need to be left alone u mean the roots connected to the dreads or the loose hairs between dreads those need ti get long enough to dread so leave them alone untill they do

thats all


Comment by Brannan on March 19, 2011 at 6:46pm
So whaddya do if it just doesn't lock on its own? Mine are 3 years old, and what I haven't rubbedor joined in it long and loose.

dread gurus
Comment by ☮ soaring eagle ॐ on September 6, 2010 at 12:17am
theres no point in ever rubbing the roots though
Comment by Serenity North on September 5, 2010 at 11:39pm
I pretty regularly rub my roots but i do it with my fingertips and lightly not agressive at all works fine for my hair the big thing is picking a direction and sticking with it from my personal experience it was changing directions that caused damage and rubbign too hard or for too long
Comment by Island Mamma on March 23, 2010 at 5:21am
Good to know.

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