People wear dreadlocks for various reasons and they range from spiritual to political. It takes a considerable amount of time to grow dreadlocks to a respectable length. However, there are other hairstyles that are similar to dreads that either take less time to style or provide more versatility.
Two-strand twists consist of sections of hair that have been divided into two parts, which are then twisted around each other. The twists can vary in size according to the wearers preference and the length of the hair. It is necessary to apply a cream with a consistency that is sticky enough to hold the strands together, so they do not unravel. Twists can last up to three weeks, depending on their size and how well they are formed.
Dread extensions allow the wearer to have dreads in much less time than it takes to grow them naturally. In as little as two hours, a stylist can attach and twist hair extensions into realistic-looking dreads. The extensions are ideal for those who enjoy changing hairstyles regularly, those who do not have the patience to grow natural dreads and those who may not have the hair texture necessary to grow the type of dreads they desire. Also, people who are in the early stages of growing natural dreads can attach these extensions for length until their hair is as long as they wish.
Dr. Joanne Cornwell created Sisterlocks, extremely thin locks that give the wearer more versatility than dreadlocks. According to Chris-Tia Donaldson in "Thank God I'm Natural – The Ultimate Guide to Caring for and Maintaining Natural Hair," a sisterlock wearer has an average of 325 locks, while a regular locks wearer has an average of 125 locks. Sisterlock stylists create the locks with an instrument similar to a crochet pin. It is possible to create sisterlocks on relaxed hair, but natural hair locks faster.