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Women who have always wanted to grow long dreadlocks might wonder what the difference is between growing dreads and the Sisterlocks styling system. One of the biggest differences is the time it takes to grow dreadlocks versus the time it takes to get Sisterlocks. While these two styles look identical over time, they start out in different ways.

Time Frame

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One of the biggest differences between Sisterlocks and traditional dreadlocks (more commonly referred to among loc wearers as simply "locs") is the time it takes to get the hairstyle. It may take up to 18 months to get mature locs, while Sisterlocks can be obtained in a few visits to a Sisterlock consultant. The first visit is a consultation, the next visit is the locking session and a third appointment to have the roots of your hair re-tightened.

While sisterlocks look like actual locs when they're attached to your hair, your hair is not actually loc'ed at this time. Sisterlocks allows you to have the look of locs without going through the various phases of locking your hair, which is a long process. Sisterlocks are applied by Sisterlock technicians trained in this particular style.

Traditional dreadlocks are cultivated over a period of time, requiring twisting of the hair's roots as the hair grows. Loc wearers must be patient as it takes several months before the hair begins to lock on its own.

Relaxed hair won't lock successfully, but Sisterlocks can be applied over relaxed hair, giving women with chemically straightened hair a natural look right away.


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Both Sisterlocks and locs look like ropes of hair that have fused together. When Sisterlocks are treated like actual locs, they will eventually turn into dreadlocks. Sisterlocks and locs can both grow to long lengths.


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Sisterlocks is a good choice for women who don't want to go through the phases of locking their hair, but prefer quicker results. Depending on your job and lifestyle, it can be difficult growing locs the traditional way. Sisterlocks gives you the option to have immediate locs without the time and frustration of growing them.

For women who want to go through the entire process of growing locs, however, Sisterlocks may seem too easy and doesn't always allow a woman to experience the real process of locking her hair.


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Both Sisterlocks and locs are low-maintenance hairstyles. They're beneficial to black hair because daily styling is minimal. Due to the low manipulation, hair is able to grow to extremely long lengths. For women who don't like to spend a lot of time on their hair, this is an ideal style. They can usually wake up in the morning and go, or spend a few minutes pulling their locs or Sisterlocks into ponytails or braids.


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Sisterlocks and dreadlocks are shampooed and conditioned just like any other hairstyle. They're not formed by simply not combing the hair. While afro-textured hair will eventually mat and lock if left to its own devices, it won't form uniform locs this way.