Hair Color: Recommendation & Tips for Sisterlocks
When I wore my natural hair (before getting sisterlocks) I give it some color. It was a rich auburn color, and I had it bleach to achieve that very rich deep color I got. After time, the color faded while being sisterlocks. The early stage of my sisterlocks journey was very drying, and the tips of my locks did shed off. I wasn't allowed to put any type of product on my hair while it was transitioning. My hair got extremely dry during those times. Now that I added some new color to my hair, I'm now able to treat my color hair the way it should have been treated, when I first got sisterlocks.
Reason not to color too soon & the effects.
As you may know already, to go from black to blond or deep red, you will need to bleach your hair. The danger of that along is worrisome for me, especially where locks are concern. If you going to get it professional done, or apply the color yourself, you will need to be aware of the danger especially with locks in general.
When you dye your hair, most hair type and locks in general gets extremely dry, and if you getting sisterlocks install in week or even a month, you will be told NOT to use any type of products, other than the Sisterlocks Starter Shampoo. The reason you are told that is quite simple, you don't want any unraveling locks after your sisterlocks has been install. Unraveling locks equal to more time spent on the hair, which for some can be costly.
Most lock takes 1-3 years to mature (this depend on hair type), and if you want to avoid the major unraveling that can occur with sisterlocks, you will not get your hair colored during the settling stage. Keep in mind that you are asked not to put any product on your sisterlocks, so how are you going to treat your recently colored hair? Color hair does need extra care in order for it not to break. It will need deep protein treatment, intense conditioning, and moisture treatment. That is why I don't recommend dying your hair 1 week or even a month ahead of your installation date. If you want my honest opinion, I would wait until after your sisterlocks have been mature, in order to put coloring.
Some sisterlocks wearer will be a lot more successful with coloring, they may not experience any type of shedding, and that is largely due to hair type (will do a post about dry sisterlocks and who is more prone to in the future). My hair type is very tightly coil, easily breaks, and shed. If you get your sisterlocks with colored, please be aware that your hair will break and shed more easily in the early stage, largely due to the open ends and the use of none moisturizing product. So really think hard if you want to color your hair prior to getting sisterlocks.
Recommendation for Color
Here what I recommend when coloring your hair, if you decide to do it. If you do decided to color your own hair, the safest hair color option for african hair that is permanent, is haircolor without ammonia and peroxide bases. If you are thinking of getting sisterlocks in the future, and you want to retain your length, color your hair in 2-3 month in advance. I know you will have a lot of new growth then, but it will still look nice. If you color your hair prior to getting sisterlocks, please treat it extensively, knowing that you won't be able to put any product on your locks once you get your sisterlocks.
If you have sisterlocks, and you thinking of getting them (only if your sisterlocks are FULLY mature), I would recommend going to a professional. Hair damage is something that you don't want to play with. If you don't do your coloring correctly, you can end up with odd coloring, as well as damage hair. The most common reason for damage hair is inexperience, especially when coloring dreadlocks. A perfect example is when the chemical used in the coloring product is not properly rinse out of the locks, the chemical end up still actively working on the locks or natural hair, which causes more damage to the structure of the hair or the locks itself.
Safe Hair Color Alternative (Expensive though)
Note: Even though they are safer, you are still changing the structure of your hair, those I listed above are less harmful to your hair.
Once your hair is colored, you will need to treat it. You will need a good moisturizer, especially if your hair type is tightly coils (4a & 4b), as well as a good protein treatment. Some protein comes from a hair treatments, other can come from a conditioner. Whatever you decide, do your research, and empower yourself with knowledge.