Hi, I'm new to the forum after only discovering it yesterday.
I have had dreadlocks for around 3.5 years now. I think they were created with a mix of twist & rip & crocheting. I had 1 maintenance with the lady who created them for me after around 1 month (this involved crocheting) and I have since been maintaining them myself, crocheting approx once per month to get rid of any frizz / flyaways.
I normally wash my dreads every 1 to 2 weeks but I find that with each wash more hair becomes loose and they start to look more and more frizzy. I feel like there possibly seems to be more loose hair than normal at the moment so I started to search for a local loctician a couple of days ago as I thought maybe I need a proper maintenance session to get rid of the loose hairs. I did a few other searches and came across this site where I have now read how bad crocheting is for my hair
So I am now trying to work out what is best for me to do. I assume the 2 options are to carry on as I have been doing, crocheting my hair once a month to keep on top of the loose hairs & frizz, but to understand that this will cause more and more damage over time, OR to stop crocheting and take the long road to recovery. I hate the thought that I am damaging my hair but at the same time I really hate when the loose hairs get so messy!
I have a couple of questions relating to products and would appreciate any advice anyone can give. The only product I have ever used is shampoo. I am in the UK and started out using DreadsUK shampoo but am currently using Faith in Nature tea tree shampoo. I saw that thedreadlockshampoo.com products are highly recommended on here but unfortunately I can't afford this at the moment. Can anyone advise if the Faith in Nature shampoo is a suitable alternative or am I doing more damage using this? The ingredients list is as follows:
Aqua, Ammonium laureth sulfate, Maris sal, Melaleuca alternifolia leaf oil, Citrus limon peel oil, Citrus aurantifolia oil, Citrus aurantium dulcis peel oil, Polysorbate 20, Potassium sorbate, Sodium benzoate, Citric acid, Limonene.
The other thing I saw mentioned on here is that it is acceptable to use aloe vera gel to smooth down the frizz, so this is definitely something I would like to try if I decide to stop the crocheting. So far I am unable to find anywhere in the UK that sells pure 100% aloe vera gel. The one with the fewest ingredients I have found contains the following: Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Organic), Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Sodium Hydroxymethylglycinate. It is described as 99.9% pure. Can anyone advise if this would be acceptable to use or not?
Many thanks in advance for any advice anyone can offer!