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Dreadlock Size Chart | Dread Sizes by Type

Picking dreadlocks for a new hairstyle is a bold and fantastic choice. Dreadlocks are a hairstyle with a deep cultural heritage. It is a look that is sure to generate a lot of positive reactions.

The main issue is what your dreadlock size should be. Understanding the dreadlock size chart options can help you make an informed decision about this hairstyle upgrade. 

What Is the Best Dreadlock Size for You? 

The best dreadlock size for your new look depends on several factors. There are three traditional size options for dreadlocks: Sisterlocks, Microlocks, and Traditional Locs.

Picking the right locs should be determined by how you want them to lay on your head. How versatile do you want your locs to be? Strand diameter and scalp density are additional factors to consider for picking the right dreadlock size.

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Dreadlock Factors to Consider 

When deciding on a dreadlock size, it is important not to strive for perfection. Much like snowflakes, no two locs will be the same. That’s a good thing because that is what makes this particular hairstyle unique. 

Before you pick your optimum dreadlock size, you’ll want to consider the main factors we’ve listed below.

Time Needed for Dreadlock Maintenance

Compared to other hairstyles, dreadlocks are low-maintenance. That doesn’t mean you can go without consistent care. Your locs will need periodic interlocking. Think of this as retightening the locs after they’ve expanded through natural growth.

Other forms of this type of maintenance include retwisting, palm rolling, or crocheting. Your dreadlock maintenance doesn’t have to mean making appointments at the salon.

You can take care of that maintenance on your own. However, this means giving each loc attention. The more locs you opt for, the more time you’ll need to devote to their care.

Retightening 30 locs will be easy. Doing the same with 300 locs will require a greater time commitment. It might take a few sessions across several days to get the job done. It’s the perfect task to take on when watching TV!  

Dreadlock Investment Budget

If you utilize the services of your stylist for dreadlock maintenance, then you need to be prepared to pay for each session. These can occur every 4 to 8 weeks.

The retightening sessions could cost anywhere between $50 to $200. It could also take several hours of your time. The cost will depend on how much your stylist charges and the number and type of your dreadlocks.  

Dreadlock Appearance 

Your taste is a major factor in picking out your dreadlocks’ size. Here is where research is vital. You’ll want to spend time online looking up the various types of dreadlocks. There is no shortage of styles, colors, shapes, and sizes to consider. 

You could also set up a dreadlock test. There are synthetic locs in all sizes, colors, and shapes that you can have attached as with hair extensions. This is an effective way to experiment with different sizes. 

Dreadlock Sizes by Type

Dreadlocks will be available in the following three main size types.

1. Sisterlocks 

Sisterlocks are the smallest locs in the category. The Sisterlocks can range in diameter from 1/8 of an inch to 3/8 of an inch. Sisterlocks are available in small, medium, and large.

The average thickness of a Sisterlock is equal to a piece of yarn. You can expect to utilize 400 Sisterlocks for an average hairstyle. 

Sisterlocks are considered a proprietary type of locs. That means they should only be braided by someone who has gone through a comprehensive certification program. It is a special skill set for a stylist.            

2. Micolocks 

Microlocks are the next size up from Sisterlocks. They can be approximately the same size as a shoelace or drink straw. You will need 150 plus Microlocks for your hairstyle. Microlocks are a popular choice for anyone who wants to do their own braids.  

3. Traditional Locs 

Traditional locs are the size of a chopstick or pencil. These can also be as thick as a Sharpie. Because of their size, you might only need between 20 to 50 Traditional Locs for your new dreadlock look. 

You should not consider less than 20 traditional locs. The thicker the loc, the more challenging it is to completely dry after washing. That could trigger the formation of mold or mildew. That is not something anyone wants in their hair! 

Overall, your hair density and length is going to be the determining factor for the dreadlock size you select. Growing your hair long before your first dreadlock session can give you more size options. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Woman with dreadlocks in a studio for a piece on the dreadlock size chart

BAZA Prodcution/Shutterstock

Below are the most frequently asked questions about dreadlock sizes.

What number of locs is considered for a full head? 

The average number of locs for a full head is between 30 and 80. That final number will depend on your hair density and how thick you want the locs. You don’t have to lock onto a specific number for your locs. See what looks right and go for that. 

How often do you need to get your locks retwisted? A good dreadlock retwist can last anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks.

Your dreadlocks can last even longer with proper care. You might be able to go several months in between retwist sessions with regular shampooing and oiling. 

Do dreadlocks get thicker or thinner?

It will take time for your dreadlocks to grow and flourish like you want them to. Over the first year, your locks can grow thicker and thinner. It depends on your hair density and the size of the loc that you’ve chosen. Dreadlocks do not grow faster than normal hair.  

How often do you need to oil dreadlocks? 

There isn’t a need to oil your dreadlocks every day. This hair care should be used on a need-to basis. When your locs start to feel dry or brittle, it will be time for oil treatment.

This is a task you can do on your own or at your choice of salon. It is best to get a recommendation from your stylist about the best brand of dreadlock oil for your hair type.  

Will washing dreadlocks help them lock faster? 

A healthy head of dreadlocks requires regular shampooing. This advice might go against what you’ve been told about regular washing of your hair.

With dreadlocks, you want to proactively remove natural oils that can impede the locking process. Again, your stylist can be the best source for a shampoo recommendation. 

So, What Is the Best Dreadlock Size? 

Ultimately, picking the right dreadlock size comes down to a personal choice. That is why researching images of the various sizes and options is so important.

You might have an idea of what you want your dreadlocks to look like, but it can change when you see a different style online. It also helps to talk with a friend who already has this style. They will give you a good idea of what it will be like to keep your dreadlocks looking amazing.

Dreadlocks can also be adorned with stylish beads or shells. They can also be tied up for even more versatile looks to match your mood and occasion. Finally, make sure that you have a good relationship with a stylist you trust.

They will be a good source of information and support for your new dreadlock look. So what are you waiting for — go start your new dreads today! In 18-24 months, you’ll be just as chill as Marley.