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Dreadlocks require a lot of hands-on work to maintain, so they're definitely not a style for a wash-and-go girl. Dreadlocks definitely try to grow together, but whether thin locks get thicker depends on how much time and patience you have to maintain your look. Thin or thick, dreads look hot with a big smile and hair accessories like shells, beads, hair scarves and ribbons.
Thin dreadlocks can indeed get thicker over time, but how much depends on you. Dread hair is matted hair, and it wants to mat up other hairs nearby to form one happy dread. If you make baby dreads, they will slowly get thicker over time as the small dreads try to merge together. You won't feel anything as they merge, but you'll notice dreads becoming thicker where they're growing toward each other. If you leave it alone, parts of the dread will merge.
Getting Fat Dreads
If big old dreads is the look you're after, relying on Mother Nature to do the trick for you is not the best way. You need to wait at least six months for young dreads to mature. At the mature stage, your lock is dreaded, and your roots grow in and dread naturally. Only after locks mature will they really try to merge together. If you want thicker dreads, form them larger when you're putting them in to have rich locks without the waiting. Or tie two dreads together using rubber bands that match your mane color. When you weekly roll locks, roll the two together. Over time, the locks will grow together naturally for fatter dreads.
Keeping Them Skinny
Dread thickness is totally a personal preference. If you like skinny minnies, you'll need to watch out once dreads mature. Rolling each dread between your palms weekly will help separate out hairs that are trying to merge. You might need to pull apart dreads with a bit of force. But if you make sure all dreads are separate at the roots and along the shaft, you'll maintain small locks. Do this once a week to keep your look intact.
What You Need
To shape dreads, thin or thick, you need dreadlock wax. Add a bit of dreadlock wax to your dreads when you palm roll them weekly. For dreads six months or older, you can swap out the wax for a dreadlock tightening gel if you prefer. To separate dreads that are merging, use your fingers and a rat-tail comb.