Beauty Sleep for Your Locs: How to Sleep with Faux Locs
It's Sleep Awareness Week 2023, so we thought we’d give you the rundown on how to sleep with faux locs.
While they don't typically require a ton of maintenance (we’re busy women), there's definitely a right and a wrong way to wear faux locs to bed, and this can impact their overall longevity, as well as how they look.
- Why proper maintenance is crucial for your faux locs;
- How to separate your faux locs before bed;
- Why you should use leave-in conditioners and oils for adding moisture back into your scalp and hair;
- Reasons you should be using a silk or satin pillowcase when sleeping with faux locs;
- Ways to wrap and style your goddess or mermaid locs at night.
Faux Locs and the Importance of Proper Upkeep
Before we dive into discussing how to sleep with faux locs, we need to briefly talk about why proper upkeep is crucial when wearing them, as well as any other protective style. Faux locs are often described as being a 'low-maintenance' style, and while, yes, this is true, that doesn’t mean they require no maintenance at all!
As with traditional dreadlocks, faux locs that aren't taken care of can unravel or come loose prematurely. And, believe it or not, most of the damage is actually done when we're asleep and not being mindful of how we're treating our hair. So, learning how to take proper care of your locs at night if you haven't already will be a crucial part of your loc journey.
One of the great things about faux locs is that they protect the hair underneath from damage and hair breakage, so it's definitely worth investing the time and effort into taking good care of them. As the professional hairstylist Afi Emily Attipoe puts it, faux locs are '...another option on the list of protective styles. Not everyone wants braids.'
General Tips for Sleeping with Faux Locs
Below, we'll cover some basic guidelines for keeping your faux locs in the best possible shape while you sleep.
Step #1: Separate the Locs
The first step of your faux loc bedtime routine is going to be separating your locs. Faux locs, especially longer locs, are often prone to getting tangled or knotted during the day. Naturally, when we have faux locs, brushing our hair isn't really an option; instead, you can use your fingers to carefully pull apart any tangles in your hair.
To minimize frizz, you'll want to be as gentle as possible.
Step #2: Apply Haircare Products to your Locs and Scalp
Next, you'll want to use a leave-in conditioner on your hair. Not only does this aid the growing process of your natural hair and help prevent issues like split ends and dryness, but it's also key for keeping your faux locs looking healthy and natural.
Applying natural or essential oils at this stage is a great way to encourage moisture retention when wearing faux loc hairstyles, which helps protect your scalp from dryness and dandruff. Additionally, if you can, take the time to really work the oil into your scalp, rather than simply setting and forgetting it.
Not only are they super relaxing, but daily scalp massages are fantastic if you want to increase blood circulation to the area. This promotes healthy new growth in your natural hair, as well as being a soothing way to ground yourself and relax after a long day.
One great, natural oil to use for this is coconut oil, because:
- It smells amazing;
- Is generally natural and minimally refined;
- It typically doesn't cause irritation for people with more sensitive scalps, which scented oils often do.
Step#3: Use Silk or Satin Pillowcases
One of the best things you can do for the health and longevity of your faux locs is purchasing a silk or satin pillowcase, if you haven't already got one. While cotton sheets are more affordable and typically more breathable, they just can't compete with silk in terms of what's better for your faux locs.
There are a few reasons for this;
- Cotton tends to absorb or pick up moisture from your scalp and hair while you sleep, drying it out in the process;
- A rougher fabric like cotton will often pull at the edges and lengths of false dreadlocks, causing them to unravel prematurely (as well as making them frizzy);
- Some kinds of cotton will leave pieces of lint stuck to your false dreads when you wake up, which, while it isn't the end of the world, is hardly a good look.
How to Wear Goddess Locs to Bed
If you've got goddess locs, then you'll want to put them into a loose ponytail or high bun to go to sleep. Combine this with getting some silk or satin on your pillow and giving your goddess locs some special care and love, and they should have plenty of longevity.
How to Wear Mermaid Locs to Bed
There are two ways you'd typically want to style mermaid locs for bed; either in a loose ponytail, or covered with a silk scarf or satin bonnet. If you opt to tie your hair back, you'll want to use cotton hair ties; these will generally tug at the hair far less than hair ties made from other materials.
Otherwise, you can protect your hair by wearing it tied back and covered in a silk or satin scarf or bonnet. Make sure to start wrapping from your hairline, and then slowly work your hair into it until your head is covered. If you have extra-long hair, then go for an XL bonnet.
Not only is this generally a better way to minimize loose hair and frizziness when you wake up in the morning, but it will usually protect your hair better than simply tying it back, thereby preserving the longevity of your mermaid locs.
If you haven't tried sleeping with your hair in a scarf or bonnet before, then this video provides a great tutorial on wrapping your locs at night. Note that the creator refers to satin bonnets and scarves in her video, but the advice she gives applies to wearing silk products on your hair, too.