Just a few rules and tips you should know about (sorry if I'm repeating myself):
- NEVER wax your dreads when they are wet or damp
- NEVER put your dreads in a hat, sleep on them, tie them... when they're wet.
- shampoo as often as you'd like. (I shampoo once a week, but some other people shampoo ever 3 days - it's all personal preference really)
- when you shampoo focus on your scalp and don't rub with your hands, use your finger tips. Helps keep the frizz factor down and your dreads get rinsed with the soapy water.
- stay away from residues
- don't use conditionner (some people condition mature locks with essential oils and stuff, but I don't suggest it for new locks)
- elastics will eventually rot and stick to your dreads... if you want to tie your roots or tips, use string (embroidery floss works good)
- a small metal crochet hook works wonders for lumps, bumps, and frizzies.
- Don't follow the instructions on your wax. Use as little as possible and only when truely needed.
- Massage your scalp. It feels good and is good for your hair folicles and whatnot. I sometimes use peppermint oil on my fingertips... feels nice.
- if you want to keep the frizzies down a little, try sleeping with silk or satin pillowcases. Or you can sleep with a nilon stocking over your head, a tam, or a silk scarf wrapped around your head.
- Don't be afraid of loops, kinks, and lumps... this means your dreads are getting tighter.
that's all I can think of for now.
Also if you get the itchies - which you most likely will. These things should help:
- Boil a handful of rosemary in a pot with water. Let it get real dark and then strain the rosemary out. Put it in a spray bottle, or just let it cool down a little and pour it over your head. Focus on your scalp. This is good for dandruff and itchies. You can also add a few drops of peppermint essentail oil or lavender essential oil (It's usually 15 drops per 100ml - you can add less if you find it too strong). Just remember to focus on your scalp. Your dreads aren't itchy... your scalp is.
- Fill a spray bottle with hot water and add peppermint essential oil (remember *15 drops per 100ml). This is a quick fix that really feels cool on your scalp. Smells lovely too.
- Apple cider vinaigre rince. Mix 4 parts water to one part vinaigre. This holds many benefits and can also get rid of residues. For more info you can check this out:http://com3.runboard.com/bknottydreadlockforum.ffaq.t64
Aloe vera is also quite awesome for dreadlocks... I would probably wait till they are a bit more mature though.
What you need to realize is that dreads don't always look "prim and proper". In the beginning they are fuzzy, messy, and can sometimes look like a huge mess on your head. They almost never do what you want them to. If your up to it... it's a wonderful experience.
Also Tea Tree Oil is a natural bug and lice repellent. Shampoo with tea tree oil in it is wonderful.
I agree with most of what naked_ninja say; however, a lot of people I see where I live like their dreads to be super tight and neat so they go to natural hair salons every two weeks or so to get loc mainantance. I personally don't have the $$ for it so I do it myself. I don't get how a crochet hook can work to tighten my locs, maybe it's the hair type.
Anyway here are some pix of my hair now- I also colored it myself.