How I removed / combed out my dreads!

9 Mar

Hello Readers:  Keep in mind that I no longer update this site, the new updated blog can be found at www.uneautrenaturelle.com.  Thank you!

Here’s the deal…I combed out my locs and it took a LONG A** time!  I started the take down process on January 6th and completed it on February 24th.  I managed to do this with the help of my husband…and amazingly so, he decided to not divorce me.  Yeah, this may sound crazy, but it takes anywhere from 45 minutes to 1 hour and 15 minutes to comb out ONE loc! No typos…1 hour for ONE LOC!

So how did I do this and still manage to stay married?  Well..can’t really discuss how I managed to stay married (this is a PG rated site) but I can tell you how we combed out my locs:

Let me first start by saying it takes a whole lot of PATIENCE! PATIENCE! PATIENCE! The take down process is really long and tedious. 

  1. Wash hair with a detangling / moisturizing shampoo
  2. Soak locs with a mixture of olive oil and conditioner (preferably a cheap condition, you will use ALOT)
  3. Begin picking out the loc – LITERALLY
  4. Have a spray bottle of water and cheap conditioner available, each time the loc gets difficult or dry, SPRAY, SPRAY, SPRAY!
  5. Day one complete, now repeat steps 1 to 4 tomorrow…

That’s IT!  OK – Not really.  Have you heard the saying “patience is a virtue”? – If you have combed out your locs then you and you alone are virtuous. 

Just as an FYI –

My locs were about 2 feet long, and I had about 120 locs

I used some dental tool, a rat tail comb, and a fine tooth comb to pick/comb out my locs

I shed one plastic shopping bag of hair – that’s not bad when you think about it – I haven’t combed my hair in almost 5 years, guess one bag isn’t that bad!

Tips / Challenges:

  1. Styling your hair while combing out locs can be tough; if you can get away with it, wrap your hair for the entire process
  2. Once you comb a loc out, be sure to condition the hair and braid it, so it doesn’t get caught in your locs
  3. Pace yourself – 1 to 4 locs per day
  4. If you decide to do this, believe in God, Jah, Buddha, something…because you will need strength!

Oh, for those of you who are interested…this was my hair after I combed out my locs.

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29 Responses to “How I removed / combed out my dreads!”

  1. Nerline March 9, 2010 at 4:07 am #

    wow girl…the hair is beautiful

    • une autre naturelle March 9, 2010 at 4:18 am #

      Thanks Nerline! Miss the locs but starting to enjoy this “new hair”

  2. Maria A March 9, 2010 at 5:11 am #

    Speechless! If you didn’t have that quality of patience before…you can certainly call yourself a patient woman now! And for that matter…your hubby too, a patient man. :-) Beautiful!

  3. Chantale March 9, 2010 at 11:21 am #

    Beautiful!!!! Go head VIRTUOUS WOMAN!

  4. Roslyn March 10, 2010 at 1:13 am #

    I am amazed at how healthy your hair is after all of that! I was expecting that there would be some damage (remember the short style pic you showed me?) but you must have taken good care of it while it was locked. No need to go short anymore!

  5. kcurly March 15, 2010 at 8:35 am #

    Wow!! I have heard of people doing this before, it looks like quite a challenge. I love your hair, both in locs and loose!

    • une autre naturelle March 19, 2010 at 11:58 am #

      THANK YOU!

      • Keia March 7, 2013 at 4:46 pm #

        would you take out someone else’s dreads?

      • Daphne June 11, 2013 at 1:45 pm #

        I would – but it would take a while to do!

  6. angelarose March 19, 2010 at 4:54 pm #

    Wow, I am amazed! I attempted to un-loc my hair once, I ended up with very little hair, it was super damaged! If only I had read this beforehand, I would have saved myself a lot of hair, lol!

  7. Porscha March 21, 2010 at 10:39 pm #

    I cannot believe that you’ve combed your locks out! That seems like such a feat! It must have taken ages. Your hair is gorgeous afterwards, though. So now what’s the plan for your hair?

    • une autre naturelle March 23, 2010 at 1:21 pm #

      Porscha – I have no idea what my next steps will be. I just know that I want to document it well. I feel like I do not have much documented on my loc journey :-(

      As for the time it took to comb out / pick out the locs, it took over a month!

  8. chukyboi June 22, 2010 at 5:16 pm #

    i just wanna know how did u save so much hair!!!!!!!!! str8 up cuz im lookin at my dreadz and i dont think ima be able 2 save alot of my hair HOW DID YOU DO IT? SAVE YO HAIR THAT IS

  9. chukyboi June 22, 2010 at 6:35 pm #

    how much hair u think ima have left over my dreadz bout 10 inches like down 2 my shoulder i wish my hair was long as your hair i dont want to loose alot of hair

  10. kayla October 27, 2010 at 1:29 am #

    i will have had my dreads for 4 years this coming up march. i have recently been considering taking down my dreads. i have been searching all over the internet for something like your blog, with a before and after picture and this gives me so much hope! hope that i will have my straight hair back, without loosing too much hair :)

  11. NoMoreDread November 30, 2010 at 1:54 pm #

    I’m going to attempt to take out my loc’s and I have a question regarding the method you used. What kind of olive oil did you use mixed with the conditioner? Was it equal part of ratio and how long did you let it soak? My hair is about your length. I just hope it turns out to be about the same length when I’m finished.

  12. Nai December 12, 2010 at 8:17 pm #

    Amazing!! I have had my locs fot three years now and Im considering taking them down. Is it ok if I send the before and after pics ? Great post!

  13. Empress31 September 20, 2011 at 5:51 pm #

    I am two weeks into the process of combing out my mid-back lenths locs after 14 years and I was starting to get very depressed and discouraged. Reading your post has given me the push to keep going. Everywhere else people spoke about combing theirs out in 2 days and it’s taking me about an hour to comb out one lock! I needed your realistic details to keep me trucking on. Thanks!

    • Dee December 31, 2011 at 8:57 am #

      I would love to see a before and after picture of your hair. Everywhere I’ve looked, people who have taken down their locs have only had them less than five years. I’ve had mine for nine and I just wonder can that hair from the extra 4 years also be saved. Please, please post a picture. Thanks!!

  14. Pokett September 29, 2011 at 11:51 pm #

    Hey girl! Ur hair is beautiful!!! Can u send me an email on the process exactly? I’ve had mines for 9 years and willing to cut them half way.

  15. JJ from the Block! (@calitobostonjen) October 13, 2011 at 11:47 am #

    Hey there sis…don’t know you but all I did was google “comb out dreads” and your blog popped up. Thank you for the truth!
    I’ve had my locs for about 8 years and I believe the time has come to release them! I didn’t want to cut them down and I’m ready for a new au naturelle look! Mine are hitting my butt and I’m sure it will take me just as long to get them out. Truth is, I’m scared!

    So thanks for the inspiration! Your hair is beautiful!

  16. Carole May 1, 2012 at 10:14 am #

    Hey there had my locks for about 8 years and wants to get my hair back.You gave me great hope ,please give me the procedure in doing so .Could you also let me know how damage ur hair was, how long did it take you .Would it be best to get it done by a professionel?

  17. Dana Elaine May 1, 2012 at 10:52 pm #

    How long did you have the locs for before you decided to take them out? A

  18. T.Charles May 23, 2012 at 11:39 am #

    I just took out my last loc today and the whole process took me about 6 days. My locs were 10 inches long and OMGEE it was the slowest process I ever went through with my hair. I used Herbal Essence Conditioner and water to manage my locs while picking them out. The only thing I hate about this process is the amount of hair that unravels when you pick them out. Overall it was well worth it. I did not want to cut my hair and my hair is healthy and shiny! Check out my youtube for video updates http:www.youtube.com/bo55boi407

  19. Sonia May 29, 2013 at 12:43 pm #

    I have my dreads for 16 years and they are quite fine, I really want to take them out with out cutting my hair but I am worried that I won’t have much hair left, do you think that there is any where I can go to have them removed professionally.

    • Daphne June 11, 2013 at 1:43 pm #

      Hi Sonia – sorry for the delayed response. The blog is now at http://www.uneautrenaturelle.com.
      As for the loc question – yes, you can definitely comb them out but it will take alot of time and you have to be extremely careful. As for paying someone to do it, there are lenty of people that will do that for you but the cheapest rate is about $500!

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