Dreadlock FAQ

dreadlock salon philadelphia

Whether you have been locking your hair for years or just beginning the process of deciding if dreadlocks are right for you, we are thrilled that you found us here at Rebel Rebel Hair & Dreadlock Salon in Philadelphia! Each of us has very personal reasons for wanting or having our locks, ranging from spirituality, individualism, a sign of change and growth, natural lifestyles, aesthetic desires, etc. No matter your reason, no matter where you started, no matter your preferences, and no matter your hair type or shade of your skin, we are here to help you along your own personal journey.


Below are the most frequently asked questions we get about dreadlocks and the services we offer. We invite you to take it all in and ask us any question your heart and hair desires. All we ask in return is for zero judgement, be proud of who you are and respect everyone’s journey as their own.  

Are natural dreadlocks right for me?


This is a deeply personal question and one we recommend you take into careful consideration. For those who are just beginning to think about locking their hair we can’t stress enough that you need to research, research and research some more before you make the decision to lock your hair.

The transformation that occurs when someone locks their hair is a significant one, but dreadlocks don’t always deliver that instant gratification like a new haircut and haircolor does.  When you leave our salon after having new natural dreadlocks installed they will look nice and tight, but will look nothing like what they will eventually mature to be. Locks typically take approximately 1-2 years to fully mature and will change significantly throughout that time. They require a ton of patience and a good amount of TLC from you at home especially if you want themm to be on the neater side of things. Natural Dreadlocks are commitment and not what we would consider a temporary hairstyle.


We don't recommend natural dreadlocks to clients who love to change their hair color a lot (especially bright fantasy colors). Repetitive chemical services can be extraordinarily damaging to locks. We can however give you your color fix with synthetic and/or human dreadlock extensions and decor without unnecessary damage to your hair.


We can’t stress enough the importance that you check to see if dreadlocks are an acceptable hairstyle with your employer or school. We know, we know, “IT'S JUST HAIR!”,  but unfortunately some employers and schools have strict rules about certain hairstyles and it can be very upsetting, time consuming, painful and expensive to remove locks once they are installed.  We here at Rebel Rebel Salon are constantly “dreaducating” as many people as possible on the misconceptions and stereotypes that unfortunately come along with dreadlocks. Until we reach every person on Earth, check with your employer or school to confirm their hairstyle policies.


What process do you use to start and maintain dreadlocks?


There are many ways to start and maintain natural dreadlocks. We are confident that our method is the safest and most effective way to get our clients their desired results. We are professionally trained and have years of experience with our 100% all natural, WAX FREE, back comb and crochet method for natural dreadlock installation and maintenance.  Just our hands, a comb, an itty bitty crochet hook and a whole lotta love!  There is no twisting, root flipping, ripping or chemical used and def NO WAX. This method will work on ANY texture hair, no matter how straight, curly, thick, thin, coarse or soft it is. It's pretty darn close to magic! We never judge anyone on any way they choose to start their journey. Our method can be used for any dreadlocks regardless of the method you used to begin your locks. There are few salons in the country that do what we do and our clients can tell you that our methods are the best they’ve found over the years.

How long does my hair have to be to start natural dreadlocks with the backcomb and crochet method? 

We require that every hair that you want locked should be AT LEAST 6 inches long, this includes the hairs at the nape of your neck. If your hair is not quite long enough, let it grow. If you have the patience to wait for your hair to grow it's a pretty good sign that you will have the patience that you'll need the first year of having your locks. The old chiché "good things come to those who wait." rings true with this. 

I thought dreadlocks were a natural hairstyle.
Why should I come to a salon to have them started or worked on?
Can't I do it myself?

You can definitely attempt starting dreadlocks yourself or with a friend's help. In fact, we encourage our clients to work on their own hair in between maintenances after we “dreaducate” them on the healthiest and safest ways to do so.  However, sometimes people often find that working on their own hair is harder than they initially thought or the results they achieved fell short of their expectations. Rebel Rebel Salon holds high standards customizing each client’s experience to them individually when they sit down with us for some lock love. We have clients that hesitated at first to even step foot into a salon, because they wanted their locks to free form but have run into some issues along the way or are just plain tired of doing all the work themselves. We have clients that love their little imperfections in their dreadlocks and only want specific things worked on and others left alone. We have clients that want their locks as neat and tidy as possible. And we have clients that just don’t have as much time to dedicate to their locks as they would like and just need a bit of extra help. No matter your desires and needs, we will work with you to achieve the results that YOU want in the safest and healthiest way possible.


We have an extensive amount of education and knowledge about hair, dreadlocks, the health of the scalp and design. We are equipped with the tools and experience needed when working with all hair types to achieve each client’s personal desired look. We don’t create “cookie cutter” dreadlocks. Our client’s locks are as individualistic as their fingerprints. We have seen countless dreadheads that have started their locks elsewhere that are unhappy for one reason or another. We don’t judge! We incorporate our skills and knowledge to assist you in your journey however you need. For those just starting out, we can guarantee that your locks are going to grow into the most majestic beauties possible from day one. Ultimately it is your choice on how, where, and with whom you start your dreadlocks. Just know that we are here for you if you choose to trust us with your hair.


Click Here to hear another opinion on this matter from LazyDreads.

I am interested in dreadlock extensions to lengthen my new/existing locks.
Do you offer those services? How do they work?

Yes, we are skilled in synthetic hair and human hair dreadlock extensions. Extensions can last 1-3 years depending on the type of hair used and if they are cared for properly. Synthetic extensions can be removed completely from the natural locks when desired. Human hair extensions are a more "permanent" extension as they are crocheted securely into your natural dreadlocks. Both can be trimmed as your hair grows.

  • Length

Human hair: max addditional length achievable is 14 inches (with blunted ends)  & 18 inches (with wispy ends) 
Synthetic hair: max length achievable is 12 inches (with blunted ends) - 16 inches (with wispy ends) 

  • Human Hair Extensions, Color & Lifespan

Human hair extensions can be professionally colored darker or stained with semi-permanent hair color (rainbow colors) but they CANNOT be lightened/bleached ever. If you attempt to lighten them they can disintegrate because the hair has already been chemically processed prior to packaging to ensure it is hygienic. Also, blonde human hair extensions may not have as long of a life span as darker colors due the amount of processing the hair has gone through prior to packaging. Average lifespan of human hair extensions is 2 years. Lifespan is not guaranteed.


  • Synethic Hair Extensions & Color

Synthetic hair extensions CANNOT be colored or lightened at all as they are a plastic fiber. However the synthetic hair comes in a wide variety of colors that can be blended together in infinite ways. The synthetic hair that we use is a high quality synthetic that will never fade and looks incredibly real in the hair. They can also take high heat (up to 300 degrees). So they can be blown dry and heat styled if so desired without any damage to the hair. Please note that because synthetic hair never fades, it is possible for your natural hair to lighten from normal sun exposure and your natural locks may end up being lighter then your synthetic ends over time. For this reason we don't recommend this to anyone who's hair gets natural highlights from the sun as it can create a strange reverse ombre effect over time. Average life span of synthetic extensions is 1-3 years.

The cost of human is aprox $150 per bundle/color

The cost of synthetic hair is aprox $25 per bag/color 

  • Mermaid Tail extensions

This service was inspired by Liz Kidder. She started this trend on her self and we completely fell in love with how naturally majestic her dreadlocks looked! These are single ended human hair dreads that can be attached anywhere on the dread body to create volume, texture, dimension and the illusion of length. The ends can be kept long and wispy creating a soft flowing "mermaid tail"effect or they can be dreaded further down to give volume and the illusion of more dreads. 

-add them closer to the roots for layers and volume.

-add them to the ends for a longer and soft  look to your dreadlocks 

-do a combination of the two to achieve the most movement and volume 


Longevity and upkeep for mermaid tails

If you like how they look and feel growing out you can leave them be. 

If you are in it for the volume you may want to add more to the roots after 6-8 months. 

If they are starting to feel heavy or you just want them removed, some dread repair may be required after removal.

Not everyone will be a candidate for this service. A Consultation form must be completed to see if this is a service that is safe for your dreadlocks. We will not provide a service that will disrupt the integrity of your dreads.


How often should I come in for Dreadlock Maintenance

It really depends on each individual and how messy or neat someone wants their hair to be, how their hair responds to the locking process and what each person is doing at home to care for them (we teach you all that!). We like to say there are no rules to this, but we do encourage everyone to wait at least 2 months in between each maintenance. Average in the beginning of having your dreadlocks is usually between every 3-4 months. And sometimes we see our more mature or DIY clients 5-6 months, sometimes once a year and sometimes just when they need a little bit of extra help or for a special occasion! If you are new to dreadlocks you will eventually get into a routine where you feel comfortable! 


How much do your dreadlock services cost?


There are many factors to consider when determining the length of time and cost for a new client's appointment. We require a consultation for every single new dreadlock client booking a dreadlock maintenance, installation or extension appointment. Consultations are completed online and will give us a chance to get to know you and your hair, discuss your desired look and expectations, answer all questions and give you all possible options and our honest opinions. Once your consultation is complete, we will be able to give you an estimated length of time and the cost of your appointment.


For base pricing please visit our SERVICE MENU

Do I need to purchase specific products for my dreadlocks? Do you have them in the salon?


YESSSS!!! Dreadlocks can be a "wake up with awesome hair" style, but they require a good amount of TLC and not any regular shampoo or styling product will do. All dreadlock products must be residue free in order to make sure they don't build up inside your locks. This will help your locks grow in a healthy and happy way! We carry Dollylocks Professional Organic Dreadlock Products in our salon for your convenience and we know you will love them as much as we do. They were created specifically for dreadlocks and a healthy scalp with the best organic ingredients you can find. We “dreaducate” all of our clients on the best products that will benefit each individual based on their desired look, issues and lifestyle. If you're feeling a little creative, some products can be made at home! Feel free to check out our Dreadlock Care page to learn more about home care tips.  

Will you teach me how to care for my dreadlocks?


We believe in “DREADUCATION” to the fullest! Our professional craft is truly something that has taken us years to master. So while we cannot teach you how to create dreadlocks at home, we will absolutely talk to you throughout your appointment with us and equip you with the how & the why of the best habits and safest methods for home care between salon maintenance appointments. We pinky promise!

Do you have dreadlock beads or any other dreadlock decor available to buy?


Why yes we do! We keep a variety of beads, hemp, sari silk, chording and handmade accent dreadlock extensions in stock for our clients to decorate their locks with. There are questions on our consultation forms that will give you your options or feel free to bring any decor that you may have made or purchased elsewhere if you need help installing it.


If you are interested in having us install any wraps in your locks, please specify this during the consultation process so we can properly account for the extra time and supplies necessary.


How do I make an appointment?


All new dreadlock clients are required to complete the consultation process and leave a non-refundable deposit before any new installation/maintenance appointment can be made. Our consultation forms are found under the same "Dreadlocks" section you found this page. At times our consultation forms may be temporarily disabled for a week or two to allow us to catch up with existing forms waiting for a response and to keep wait times for appointments under 3 months. If our forms are currently disabled please check back on our site to see when they open up again. 

How long can I expect to wait for a dreadlock appointment?


Most dreadlock services require multiple hours to complete. The wait time for open appointments can vary from a week to 2-3 months depending on our current schedules and what type of service(s) you are booking. Some services require an entire day to be open in order to schedule you.  Saturday and evening appointments typically book up first. It is always recommended that your make your appointment requests as early as possible. We can put you on our waiting list for an earlier appointment time if someone cancels, but it rarely happens due to our deposit policy.

Why do I need to leave a deposit for my appointments?


Our stylists and clients love our small salon atmosphere. Our intimate size, plus the length of time that we block off for most of our dreadlock clients, requires us to make deposits mandatory for everyone. It's our way to make sure that our client's show up and our time is well spent. It keeps us in business and that's a good thing for everyone!


Deposits are 50% of your estimated total cost of your service and the total cost of hair if extensions are being added.

your deposit is applied to your total bill of sale after your service is complete.

Deposits are non refundable for any reason!

You can find our complete deposit policy HERE  (and we really suggest you read it all, it's important!) 

We thank you in advance for respecting and understanding our policy


Where can I find more information about dreadlocks?


We’d be pretty surprised if you haven’t already begun searching around on the internet for more information on dreadlocks. Are you a little overwhelmed and confused about all of the “advice” that is out there? First off, we recommend you stay away from dreadlock forums that are filled with more negative banter then positive and non-judgemental advice. They are typically run by individuals that are only basing their opinions on their own experiences and their own hair. There are a few places that we find to have a ton of reputable knowledge, safe products, and interesting tidbits that we feel confident in sharing with you.


Lazy Dreads (Blogger Christian Hopewell)

If you have dread questions, this guy has ALL the right answers. He’s entertaining, genuine and chock full of the best advice that you can find on the web!

Lazy Dreads Site

Lazy Dreads Youtube


Dollylocks Professional Organic Salon (Owner and Stylist Alin Leslie)

Not only are Dollylocks Organic Dreadlock Products our absolute favorite,  we have also been trained by Alin Leslie (the Dollylocks creator and 27 year dreadlock veteran herself). Check out what she is doing for our industry one dreadhead at a time!

DollyLocks Product Site

DollyLocks Salon

DollyLocks Youtube


Books and Magazines

Dreadlocks by Francesco Mastalia

Dreadsetterz Magazine



​ I have  more questions, how do I contact you?


There is no such thing as a dumb question when it comes to dreadlocks! We would love the opportunity to speak with you and answer any questions you may have. Click HERE to visit our contact page.