Dreadlocks is a hairstyle that many recognize from the '60s and '70s eras but historically, this style was common even in ancient times. Braiding your hair first before allowing them to dread is easier without added chemicals, treatments or extensions. If your hair is chemically enhanced, the hair can be worked with but when you choose to get rid of your dreadlocks you will be forced to cut your hair short because of the damage chemicals do to your dreads. It is not possible to braid dreadlocks that have already dreaded.
Wash and condition your hair.
Use a comb to separate your hair into sections to determine how you would like your braids to lay. With short hair, it is best to direct your braids starting from the forehead to the back of the neck. With long hair, figure out what hairstyle you are going to be comfortable with wearing for however long you decide to keep the dreadlocks.
Determine how thick you want to make your dreads. Obviously the smaller you make your braids, the smaller and tighter your dreads will look.
Start braiding. If you are braiding your hair in straight back cornrows, start from the center of your head and work inward towards one ear. Then, proceed to work on the other side of the middle braid and work towards the other ear. If you decide to create your braids into a certain style, work from the top near the forehead and front of the head and work towards the back to your neck.
Do not over-manipulate your hair. It can take a year before you will see results of a solid consistent dread to your hair. Maintain your locks by twisting your hair or using a latch hook. Avoid watering down your hair daily. Use a spray bottle to mist your hair and use oil to prevent your dreads from over-drying.