How to put hair wraps and beads on dreadlocks

Written by jennifer van leigh
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Locking your hair into dreads is an investment in time and energy that you may not be ready to undo. Dyeing is risky, as hair chemicals can get stuck inside the dreadlocks and damage your hair. To change your look, consider adding beads and wraps to your dreadlocks for colourful results that last as long as you like.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Cotton thread
  • Tape measure
  • Scissors
  • Heavy-gauge mending needle
  • Bead loop
  • Assorted beads
  • Small hair elastics

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  1. 1

    Measure and cut thread to approximately six times the length of the area to be wrapped, plus 1 inch for overlap. Thread 1 inch through the eye of a heavy-gauge needle.

  2. 2

    Slide the needle through your dreadlock where you wish to begin your wrap. Remove the needle, leaving a 1-inch piece of thread on one side of your dreadlock and the remaining thread on the other side.

  3. 3

    Hold the short piece of thread against your dreadlock between your thumb and forefinger. Wrap the long piece of thread around your dreadlock twice to secure the loose end.

  4. 4

    Pulling tightly, wrap the remainder of thread around your dreadlock, lining each rotation just below the last.

  5. 5

    To secure your wrap, knot the two final rotations into each other twice and trim excess.


  1. 1

    Fold your beading loop in half and grasp loose ends between your thumb and forefinger. Slide beads over the loop, leaving enough room at the looped end to accommodate your dreadlock.

  2. 2

    Slide your dreadlock into the looped end of the beading tool and position tool at the desired part of your dreadlock.

  3. 3

    Firmly holding the ends of the beading tool between the thumb and forefinger of one hand, push the beads from the bottom onto the dreadlock as you pull away the tool.

  4. 4

    Secure beads in place with a small hair elastic or snap bead.

Tips and warnings

  • Larger dreadlocks require beads with larger diameters. Some dreads will give under the pressure of a bead.
  • A piece of leather cord or yarn can be made into a beading loop.

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