synthetic set aftercare

Synthetic hair extensions have a longer ‘shelf life’, than human hair, however they still need a bit of TLC before retiring them for a new set.

Check out the information below to look after your set for as long as possible.

care instructions

High heat tolerant synthetics

Wearing timelines

Synthetic braid ins in general, can be worn up to 2-3 months before reinstalling. However – it’s dependent on a few factors, how long is your normal hair length? How oily does your scalp get? what was the method of installation?

Daily maintenance + Sleep

Once installed your synthetics will be good to go for up to 2 months! That doesnt mean you should set and forget them! I recommend doing a daily run through (comb) with your fingers to ensure they are not tangled. Separation is important for both natural and fake dreads! Using a natural spritz formula will also help keep them smelling fresh! ( try not to over do it) When it comes to sleep, wearing a night cap might be a good investment too!

Washing (on the head)

You can wash synthetic dreads whilst installed on your head, the first week may feel a bit tender on your scalp if you’re not used to braid ins. So maybe skip the first week and just use a scalp spray – otherwise washing once a week should do the trick.

I recommend only using dread friendly shampoo that is void of parabens/ SLS and is residue free. And stay clear from conditioning whilst wearing as build up could occur in the connection spot of the dreads and your hair – Otherwise my tip would be to rinse, rinse, rinse.

Synthetic hair can hold water more than natural – so they will feel heavier. Keep that in mind if tension on the scalp is an issue for you or you have weak / fine/ brittle hair.

To keep them from getting frizzy and fluffy, wash less frequently.

Wear an XL shower cap to keep them dry if you want to avoid the water!

Scalp care (during install)

Scalp care is super important for both natural and fake dreads. If your scalp is feeling itchy whilst wearing synthetics, you can use refreshing sprays (DIY, rosemary and peppermint oil ) Sprays can be nice, mixed with a bit of aloe vera water. If you find itching occurs around your hairline, try using a light jojoba oil, avocado oil (keep in mind for naturally oily scalps this may not help) or aloe vera gel to sooth the scalp.

If the itching is due to a reaction to the synthetic fiber (plastic/chemicals) Then it is recommended to soak the dreads prior to install, in apple cider vinegar – to strip the chemical coating and leave to air dry for a day.

Keeping them refreshed

Like I mentioned above, using a dread spray to help keep them fresh is a popular choice – Dolly locks brand do synthetic hair safe formulas – or creating your own one is easy enough to do. Find a natural essential oil (not a fragrance) that’s suitable for your situation (some oils should be avoided when pregnant) and pop a few drops into aloe vera mist spray (available at most health stores) or use Pure dew alkaline water as a base, popped into your own sprayer.

Drying Synthetics

I recommend (whilst installed on the head) – wrap in a micro fiber towel for a good 20 mins and then using a low/cool heat setting to finish the drying process. ( I have a cool setting on my hand dryer) 

Installations Issues

With every Lifeforce Locs set comes a complimentary bag of elastics. However If you prefer you can use a fine cotton thread to tie off the ends.

Sometimes the braid (depending on the technique used) can be rather tight to the scalp – causing tension. Check in with your braider how experienced they are prior and chat with them about the tension you’d prefer. If installing yourself have a play around with this and maybe try different techniques of braiding too.

If the dread slips it could be due to it not being taught enough at the roots – Ideally having around 10-15cm of hair length is good for a solid connection ( but it is possible to braid in shorter hair)

If you have a naturally oily scalp, try a little bit of dread dust at the roots which will help with absorbing the oils, helping create a bit more friction in the braid.

Dreads a little stiff?

Like I mentioned above – You can soak synthetics in Apple cider vinegar prior to install. That will help to remove any chemical coating (which is what colours the dreads)

Alternatively soaking (20 mins) in luke warm bucket of water prior to install – in a high quality – colour safe/ paraben free conditioner can also help.

Removing synthetic braid ins

To remove synthetics, simply use a quick unpick (if using thread) or fine tip scissors to cut the bands. unbraid the hair around the dreadlock, wash hair first before brushing out, use a leave in conditioner to help soften and calm your hair and rinse thoroughly.

Store sets in either a cotton mesh style bag and hang, or lay in a shoe box or similar.

Synthetic Lifespan

Essentially synthetic fibre is a form of plastic. So will last a long time – However over time the dreadlock shape or texture may change after long term use.

If the dreads get stiff refer to the care procedures above, if they get loose or the seal starts to unravel (if it’s steam created/twist method dreads) then I offer a re-twist service for returning customers.


Straightening irons and curlers

I unfortunately wont offer a re-seal service on any of my creations that have had straightening irons used on them in personal use.

Because of the type of fibre used, some hair types will melt when using straightening irons or curling tools, so avoid these on your dreads.

You can experiment with curling the ends by wrapping them tightly around a long heat tolerant item (chopsticks, or a thick knitting needle) or any cylindrical rod and placing them in boiling water. Alternatively try platting the ends and dip them in boiling hot water- leave to air dry before un-platting.

Be a part of the inner circle!

Every so often I send out dread care tips from the vlog, new dreadhead offers and dreadlock product specials to my Inner Circle Tribe. You can become a part of the inner circle too, just click the link below and it will take you to register for free !