To Lock again or Not? That is the Question!

My red Locs 1992

I’m going through that phase again where I find myself thinking about what I’m going to do with my hair next?  And I seriously considering locking again.  As some of you already know, I’ve had Locs three times before.  My first set of Locs were started in 1988.  I loved them, but I abused them with way too much coloring.  At the time, I was really into having that ‘just so right’, auburn hair color.  And I was like a fiend.  I wanted my hair to grow out of my head that color!   Not to mention, in addition to coloring the roots, I would also color the Locs themselves, over and over again.  That’s a big no, no!  Or shall we say, it’s a great way get your Locs to be dry and brittle.  So they began snapping off (2-4 inches at the tips) making the length very uneven.  So I cut them off around 1992.  The reaction was tremendous, some people acted as if I had cut off  their  Locs, instead of cutting my own.  They said things to me like, ‘I loved your Locs, how could do that’?    It was pretty funny!

Second set of Locs 1997

I started my second set of Locs around 1995.  I knew better than to ruin them with color this go around.  It is my belief that color (particularly permanent color) is not good for your hair or your body organs.  But that’s another story.  I digress!  I colored those Locs sparingly and they were a beautiful set.   But alas, after four years, I was bored again.   I also began to notice that once my Locs reach passed my shoulders, they just felt heavy and I started having neck aches.  They literally became a pain in the neck.  So at first I cut them short, but I wasn’t really feeling that.  So a few weeks later, I just cut them off.

2nd set cut shorter 1998

For my third set of Locs I decided to go with Sister Locks and I began them in 2003.  The only down side about Sister Locks is having to braid them when you shampoo for the first year or so until they actually lock.  Other than that, I really liked them.  I found them to be versatile and easy to style.

Sister Locks w/ blue tips 2005

When I got bored, I colored the tips, just the tips with the semi-permanent color line known as Manic Panic, in one of my favorite colors, turquoise.   That was fun!  This was before EVERYBODY was wearing fun colors.  So having that color turned heads everywhere I went.  Four years into my Sister Locks  I cut them shorter to a Bobb style and wore it that way for a few months before cutting them all off.  I was really ready for something new.

Chubby Twists 2009

It was 2008 when I cut my Sister Locks off.  I felt I needed a change after five years.   I wanted to try a few choice styles like Khamit Kink’s Chubby Twists.

The A-Nu’Fro 2009

After I had the Chubby Twists (a kinky weave) I decided I really wanted to wear my own hair, and I started wearing a style we coined the A-Nu ‘Fro.  I love that style.  It doesn’t take too long to have it done (2-3 hours) it lasts up to three weeks, and it’s easy to maintain.  The only maintenance required was to lift up the roots in the morning using an Afro pick to even it out, after sleeping on it all night.  You then finger comb it into shape, oil the scalp with Anu Essentials hair oil and go.

New cut & style 2011

My hair started getting pretty long so this spring I decided to it short and wear it without having to get a wet-set, which is what the A-Nu ‘Fro is.  Instead, I  just use products that hydrated, moisten my hair and defined its natural curl.  What did I use you asked?  Well, I’ve been testing products for my soon to be launched product line for Anu Essentials.  But I have also used Jane Carter Solutions, Curls and Hair Rules.  They all worked well and I had varying degrees of results with each of them.  It’s been fun playing with my own texture and seeing how many different ways it can look from day to day , product to product.  With this new look though, I’m wetting my hair nearly everyday to achieve my style and I don’t mind that since it’s warm outside.  But you know I’m not going to be wetting my hair everyday once the summer is over.  So what to do next?

In my garden I grow plants the way I grow hair, with love

Honestly, I’ve been thinking about the Sister Locks again.  My only issue is that I want to have Locs when I want them and I want to be able to wear my hair loose when that mood hits me too.  I’ve been thinking there should be a way to do both, but I haven’t figured that one out yet.   In the meantime, I am trying to get myself ready for the fact that I’m probably going to be locking my hair AGAIN!  Life goes in cycles right???  In any event, I know once I lock my hair I’m going to have many days when I wish it was loose again.  That’s why it’s taken me so long to get back to the Sister Locks.  I thought I’d wear my hair loose for about a year, but it’s going on three years and I haven’t made it back to Sister Locks yet!  But lately I find myself thinking about it more and more.  I see sisters with Locs, Sister Locks at the salon and all  around in New York and I start pining for them again.

We’ll see.  I’ll check back in with you in the fall.  Oh yeah, and let me not forget the matter of wearing a hat with loose Afro hair.  That’s a pain!  In the meantime, what would you do?  Would you continue to wear you hair out or would consider locking for a fourth time?

15 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Erika on July 1, 2011 at 1:28 am

    I would love to hear more about how color isn’t good for natural hair.
    I am on the fence about coloring my hair next month… Like seriously nervous but wanting it at the same time. Wanna switch things up for the big 3-0 and my lil afro is growing out thick and full /// anywho, that was a convo i was going to call your salon about… so do tell, here or in another post…


    • Dear Erika,
      Most conventional hair dyes are very caustic and I believe carcinogenic. That is why as soon as a woman is diagnosed with cancer, on of the first things they tell her is, to stop dying her hair. There have been studies done showing residues of dyes in major organs such as liver and kidneys of the deceased. At Khamit Kinks we offer natural dye services, but natural dyes are unable to lighten your hair, they can only add color much like henna, though our natural dyes are herbal based and not hennas.


  2. Posted by Cynthia on July 1, 2011 at 6:27 am

    I have had lox twice. I am like you at the moment thinking about whether I should lox again. I am persevering with my natural hair at the moment. My hair is fine, soft and tightly curled when washed, like spirals. I only do two-strand twist at the moment, and wear a wig when I go out. I have stopped using shampoo as it is drying, and I no longer use a comb. I use my fingers and lots of conditioner to detangle as gently as I can. My thinking is when lox grows, it is because it is left alone most of the time to do its thing, with very little manipulation. My aim is to have shoulder length natural hair. My lox were six years old both times I grew them and it was past my shoulders, almost to my bust. I am determined to give it a go. I am going to persevere for 3 years. If my hair is still difficult to handle and not growing, then I will lox again.


    • Hi Cynthia,
      I am feeling you all the way around about your natural hair and Loc journey. You know there are a couple of daily shampoos on the market that don’t dry the hair at all. There’s very little to no suds in these daily shampoos. One great one is by Curls and the other is by Hair Rules. I too will be launching a daily shampoo. Just thought I’d let you know.


  3. Posted by Shana Clarke on July 7, 2011 at 2:07 pm


    I love you with loc/sister loc. You rock them like no other. I think
    you should cross back over to the dark side. Sesh is always creating
    new fun styles for me and I just love my locs. Do it Girl!!!!


    • Thank you Shana,
      I’m getting there. But why do you call it the ‘dark side’? I had trimmed my hair, so now I will have to wait a bit longer, but I am looking forward to going back to sisterlocks.


  4. Posted by A.J. Muhammad on July 7, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    Anu, we love you just the way you are and the A-nu Fro looks great and as they say, simplicity says it best! It also looks very low maintenance because you are busy entrepreneur and have a lot of priorities! I say go with the fro!


  5. I’m feeling you on this because I had sister locks and when my daughter was born decided to cut them. I could say to mark my wonderful and new journey as a mother, but I think it was more because of time. I needed a style that was quick, natural, and on the go; hence my short afro and two strand twists. My feeling is that the locs have made you feel in some sense well “locked” and there’s a reason why you’ve created different sets. Maybe explore deeper the reason why you transition back and forth and that in itself will offer an answer. Maybe you don’t like the feeling of being “locked” into a look. – Jackie O


    • Hey Jackie,
      Thank you for your insight on locking and your journey. I think it’s not that deep. Like you said i don’t like being locked into one look, I enjoy change. And I thinking doing something like changing your hair drastically when you have a big life event, like having a baby, it definitely like a rights of passage event. I like your new look.


  6. Posted by jewel on July 7, 2011 at 3:18 pm

    Hey I dont think you should lock again… loose hair has so many options and you know you can always get some “faux locks” if you want the look for a little while


  7. Posted by Miss Dee on July 7, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    I’ve had my locs for only 8 months, but it feels much longer than that. Probably because I’ve wanted to loc my hair for years. I can’t relate to the process of locing multiple times, but I’m loving the pics of your hair in various stages and types of locs.

    Question: My hair is very thick, full and tightly coiled which made the locing process happen very easily. I REALLY want to get my hair styled, but my loctician says I’m not ready for that yet 😦 and I might be ready when I reach 1 year!!! WHAT?!?!
    Are newbies really stuck with retwisting w/o a style?


  8. Posted by Venita on July 7, 2011 at 5:04 pm

    I wish I had your boldness. I can’t imagine having a brand new hairstyle every year. I think I’m a creature of habit. I’ve been wearing kinky twist extensions for years. Now, I am considering a change. I will be taking the extensions out this weekend and going into a salon to see what they can do with my natural hair. There’s lots of gray and it’s very thin, but I hope to walk out with a new style and stay that way without adding extensions again. You look great with every style you’ve worn.


  9. Posted by Louise on July 9, 2011 at 11:19 am

    Hi Anu,
    I have a dilemma of my own regarding locs. I am one of your salon clients and have for the upteenth time considered cutting off my locs. They are heavy, hurt my neck and keep my scalp hot and sweaty during the summer. But the biggest reason for wanting to cut them is my gray hair which is more white than gray. I don’t think I am one of the blessed ones that look great with gray locs so here I am sitting on the fence, wondering what to do. Any thoughts on how I can handle this dilemma if I decide to cut them? I am not sure I want to have short white hair either. Do you think that the natural dye will be of help to me?


    • Hi Louise,
      Deciding whether or not to color your hair is such a personal decision, that I don’t feel it’s one I can make for a client, unless of course I feel their hair is not healthy enough to deal with color. If you hair is healthy and you want to color it, then I say go for it. It’s just a matter of picking the color that will best suit your skin tone. Is it possible for you to come in for a consultation? If so, start by filling out the Consultation Questionnaire on our website.


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