How to Get Short Dreads

Written by ava perez
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How to Get Short Dreads
Give your new dreads a quick hand-roll once a week to incorporate new growth. (Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Dreadlocks are ropelike hair twists that can be worn by people of all ages and hair textures. Even short hair can be rolled into dreads. Dreadlocks are a permanent hairstyle, but require little maintenance once started. Weekly touch-ups, regular shampooing and occasional waxing keep short dreads looking sharp. When established, dreads can be a styled into updos, ponytails, braids and even curled. As such, dreads are a versatile hairstyle that work for just about any lifestyle.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Shampoo
  • Wide-toothed comb
  • Rattail comb
  • Mini hair elastics
  • Dread wax

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  1. 1

    Wash hair to remove oils and natural build-up. Clean hair dreads better than dirty hair. Do not condition afterwards.

  2. 2

    Wring out excess water. Run the comb carefully through your hair to remove tangles. Start at the bottom and work your way up.

  3. 3

    Start at the front of your hair. Use the tip of the rattail comb to segment a 1/2-inch section of hair. Create a small ponytail with this section of hair by securing an hair elastic around its base.

  4. 4

    Move slightly to the right of your first ponytail and create another one. Continue moving across your head, making ponytails, until all of your hair is complete.

  5. 5

    Hold the first ponytail in one hand and your rattail comb in the other. Insert the comb halfway from the ends and backcomb down to your scalp. Remove the comb, reinsert it at the halfway point and backcomb again. Continue teasing until you have a matted ball of hair.

  6. 6

    Tease each of the small ponytails until your whole head has been teased.

  7. 7

    Scoop out a pea-size amount of wax and soften it by rubbing between your palms.

  8. 8

    Take your first matted ponytail and roll it between your waxed palms. As you roll, the dread will compress and lengthen. Continue rolling until the dread has become a tight tube.

  9. 9

    Wax and roll each of the ponytails.

  10. 10

    Leave the elastics in place for one week. They hold the dreads in place and keep the roots separated. After one week, carefully remove the elastics.

Tips and warnings

  • Purchase dread wax from your local beauty supply store.

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