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You've decided to ditch the perm and dread your tresses instead, but waiting around for your hair to lock up is not part of the plan. You want those gorgeous locks and you want them fast. A combination of techniques and products will help your hair knot up faster and get those dreads established in no time. Start them off right, and they'll take care of the rest.
A rat-tail comb is all you need to start your dreads off and get them locked fast. Just take a piece of hair that is about the thickness of a pencil and tease those tresses until they're matted up and knotty. Move through your whole head until every piece is backcombed into fuzzy tubes. Roll each tube between your palms to get a tidy dread shape. The knots quickly compress and solidify in the center of the dread, which is just what you want for locked hair.
If your hair is naturally kinky, twists will turn into dreads in no time. Take a little gel, grab a 1-inch section of hair then twist that hair between your thumb and forefinger until it starts to coil around itself. Twist and coil all of your hair, 1-inch piece by piece, until your whole head is done. Your hair will lock up as the gel dries and the twists hang out in their new style.
Whether your have curly hair or pin-straight tresses, the weaving method will make light work of dreading your hair. Just tease the end of a 1-inch piece of hair to get it a little knotty then split the middle of the hair to create a loop. Pull the tip of the hair through the loop to create a stitch. Split it again, this time from the opposite direction, and pull the tip through again. Work your way up to your scalp and repeat for you whole head. You'll get woven, solid dreads that lock immediately.
Head to your nearest beauty supply store and pick up a jar of beeswax or dread wax. This sticky, heavy stuff will make your hair lock up once it touches your hair. Take a 1-inch piece of hair and roll it between your waxed palms. Work your way through your whole head, twisting and waxing. Speed things up even more by combining wax with another method like backcombing or weaving.