There’s so much to love about faux locs
, but sometimes they can be sorta tough to style. And while there are a slew of faux loc styles, there’s one that we consider the most versatile: Enter soft locs. They have the look of traditional locs, but they’re softer and they’re a whole lot easier to style and sport. If soft locs interest you, keep reading because we’re here to give you the scoop on all things soft locs.
What Are Soft Locs?
Soft locs fall under the faux locs category of hairstyles. The difference between soft locs and traditional faux locs is all in the installation and the type of hair extensions used. Soft locs are, well, softer which makes them easier to bend and move than traditional faux locs. This makes styling possibilities endless for this locs style (more on styling soft locs below). Soft locs use a crochet loc hair that is already formed before installation. This hair is then combined with an Afro or kinky hair to ensure the loc has movement and flexibility.
How to Do Soft Locs
Installing soft locs is relatively simple once you understand the technique. Here’s a quick step-by-step guide to installing soft locs.
Step 1. Wash and Condition Your Strands
Of course, if you’re going to install a protective style like soft locs, you want to do so on clean hair. Use the Goddess Strength Fortifying Shampoo with Castor Oil, which is ideal for dry hair and helps to reduce breakage and follow up with the Goddess Strength Fortifying Conditioner With Castor Oil.
Step 2. Choose Your Base Style
There are two options for styling your natural hair before installing your pre-formed soft loc extensions. You can create individual plaits and wrap the crocheted hair from the roots to the ends or you can install the crocheted hair to cornrows. Whichever braided style you choose, apply a quarter-sized amount of Goddess Strength Divine Strength Leave-In Cream before braiding. This will ensure your natural hair is soft and hydrated before installing the protective style.
Step 3. Install the Soft Locs
Once your hair is braided, it’s time to install your crochet loc hair. Since the loc hair is already pre-formed, you only need to install the hair at the roots if you decide to go the cornrow route. Of course, if you’re wrapping the extensions around box braids, you’ll need to install the soft locs at the root of each plait.
Step 4. Add the Hair Extension
If your base style isn’t corn rows, this step applies to you. Once the pre-formed soft locs are installed at the root, it’s time to wrap them together with the individual plaits, using the kinky hair extension. You can choose from the following hair extensions: spring twists, passion twists, kinky wrapping hair, afro kinky hair or water wave twist hair. Simply wrap the extension around the plait and loc combined and voila! You’ve got soft locs.
How to Care for Soft Locs
Once your soft locs are installed, the maintenance is relatively simple. Here are a few tips and tricks to keeping your soft locs looking better for longer.
1. Protect Your Hair While You Snooze
This is a no brainer. If you want a hairstyle to last, you have to protect it while you sleep. Depending on the length of your locs, you can wear a silk or satin bonnet or if they’re waist-length, consider wrapping them from top to bottom with a satin scarf or two. This will keep frizziness at bay and keep your locs looking fresher for longer.
2. Keep Them Away From Water When Possible
No, you don’t want to let your soft locs get wet while you shower or even get wet while taking a dip in the pool. Because these faux locs are soft, exposure to water may make them slip out or get loose at the roots. But you don’t have to worry if a little rain hits them. Just keep them protected from water as much as you can.
3. Keep Your Scalp and Hair Moisturized
While the previous two steps help your pre-formed loc hair stay in its best shape, this step is essential for keeping your natural hair looking fresh underneath. Routinely oil your scalp and new growth with the Goddess Strength 7 Oil Blend Hair and Scalp Oil. Simply add some to your fingertips and gently rub it on your exposed scalp. This will not only keep your hair properly moisturized, but it will help fight itchiness, too.
How to Style Soft Locs
Here’s where the fun happens. Soft locs are a popular choice of faux locs because the styling options are seemingly endless. They’re pretty versatile and can be styled almost just as easily as your natural hair. Here are a few of our favorite styles for soft locs.
You can never go wrong with a top knot. These beautifully textured locs look amazing wrapped into a high bun (and a low one, too). To create a soft-loc top knot, start by securing the locs in a ponytail first. This will allow you to swoop and loop the locs however you please.
Locs are the perfect vehicle for hair accessories, including headbands to loc rings. Keep it simple with an oversized scrunchie or add some bling with bedazzled clips and barrettes.
In a Turban
There’s something about locs and turbans that go together like peanut butter and jelly. If you want a break from styling your soft locs, wrap them up in a fabulous printed turban. It’s sure to get you tons of compliments.
Can You Wash Soft Locs?
Since water can make your soft locs slide out, you want to skip washing this protective style. If you’re concerned about your scalp, you can use a scalp cleanser like dry shampoo or apple cider vinegar, but in most cases your scalp shouldn’t need to be shampooed while wearing this style. Remember, if you’re experiencing itching, be sure to apply oil to your scalp to ensure it’s properly moisturized.
Are Soft Locs Heavy?
Since soft locs do use extensions, they will add some weight to your hair, but they are much lighter in weight than traditional faux locs.
Are Soft Locs Damaging?
Soft locs are a less damaging alternative to traditional faux locs. Since they are lighter weight, they cause less tension to the roots and shouldn’t cause damage if installed correctly. If you’ve never installed faux locs before, it’s best to keep the installation to a professional to avoid any unnecessary damage to your natural hair and unwanted tension on your edges.
How Long Do Soft Locs Last?
Like all protective styles, the better you take care of your hair, the longer it will last. However, in most cases soft locs can last anywhere from four to six weeks.
Next up: Braids vs. Twists: What’s the Difference?
Born To Repair Reviving Hair Oil With Shea Butter
Born To Repair 60-Second Moisture Treatment With Shea Butter
Wash Day Delight Sulfate Free Shampoo With Rose Water
Black Vanilla Moisture & Shine Leave-in Conditioner