Some people can start deadlocks using the twisting method. Straight hair cannot hold a twist, so twisting dreadlocks can only work for people with textured, curly hair, such as African Americans. Having a friend or a stylist twist the dreadlocks can be helpful. It is also important to choose an appropriate twisting method and use the right materials and tools for that method of twisting dreadlocks.
A person who attempts twisting dreadlocks on her own may find she has some trouble with the back section. It can be difficult for the person who is twisting her own dreadlocks to see what she is doing with the hair in the back. Having two mirrors can help to see the back of the head. Some people will have a friend they trust to do a good job help them do their dreads in the back.
Many salons, especially those that cater to African Americans, will make twisting dreadlocks for their clients. This can be a good option, since having a professional twist the hair into dreadlocks is easier, and the dreads tend to look neater.
Twisting dreadlocks are started with a rattail comb, parting the hair into sections. The sections can be secured in place with clips or rubber bands. Starting with one section, the person doing the dreadlocks will apply a small amount of dread wax or beeswax along the section of hair. She will then twist the dreadlocks using one of a few methods.
One method of twisting dreadlocks is with a comb. The person who is making the dreadlocks will place a comb at the end of the hair, and twist the hair in a clockwise manner. Another method involves twisting the dreadlocks around a finger, then sliding the finger out, and letting the dreads hang in that twisted manner. If the twists are coming undone, a rubber band or hair pin may be placed at the end of the twist.
After the hair is twisted, people will often roll the twist between the palms of their hands. This causes the hair to knot up, and is the beginning of locks. Depending on how well the twist is holding in place, this rolling may be skipped, and the person may just allow the knots to form naturally.
A third method of twisting dreadlocks is to twist the section of hair clockwise, and continue to twist until the hair curls up against the scalp. A large clip is then placed on the twist to hold it against the scalp. When the whole head is done, hot air is applied using a hair dryer. The hot air melts the wax into the hair holding the twist in place.