Many of us have heard about, and even dreaded (pun intented), accumulating product buildup in our locs. But what exactly is buildup?! It is likely that when you think of buildup you envision a head full of gunk that you can notice from a mile away— surprisingly that is not always the case.
Buildup is a collection of foreign substances that can appear both on the inside and outside of locs.
I love to examine locs under the microscope, so let’s take a closer look at product buildup in locs with a piece of a loc that was started using Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Gel:
As I mentioned in the video, “How Buildup Damages Locs“, many of us believe that when buildup in our locs is not visibly evident on the external shaft of the locs that it is not present at all. However, if you’re using one of the “dangerous four” products in your locs you have this product buildup trapped in your locs. The reason that you maybe experiencing internal buildup in your locs is because product, often times a “hair locking” product, is applied on the outside of the locs and then allowed to dry into the internal shaft of the locs.
How Buildup Damages Locs
The problem with product buildup in locs is that you sometimes you cannot see it easily and you will continue to use the very products that are causing the buildup. Overtime the accumulation of the product buildup inside the loc causes the internal hairs in the locs to suffocate and consequently result in thinning locs or extreme breakage.
The best way to avoid product buildup in your locs is to understand that products should NOT glue your hair together to “make your hair lock faster”, and when you do use products make sure they’re products specifically formulated for locs and regularly (at least every 4 weeks) cleanse your locs.