Hey there :) ive had my dreads for a couple of years now, and im worried as some of them are beginning to go a lot thinner at the roots. Ive been gently root rubbing to try and pull more hairs into them…. why is this happening and what should I do?


Sometimes locks can become thin at the roots. This can be for several reasons.

Hormones often dictate the thickness of hair on one’s head. As some people age, hair loss can be common. This is prevalent with biologically sexed males, but it can happen to anyone regardless of sex. Stress, diet and lifestyle also contribute to hormone levels.

Another common reason for thinned lock roots is overmaintenance.

If you suspect this may be the case for you, try to maintain your locks every two weeks at most frequent. Make sure the work isn’t too tight on your head. Some people also take a break from maintenance for a couple months to plump them up.

Tightly styling your hair, pulling on it frequently, or wearing it in a ponytail can also contribute to the problem.

Another source of tension is the length of your locks. As locks get longer, they also get heavier. The extra weight can pull on the scalp and contribute to hair thinning. The only way to reduce this is to wear updos more often or trim your locks to be shorter.

Other than reducing sources of scalp tension and eating right (taking vitamins, too!), there’s not much that can be done to combat natural hair thinning. If you’re afraid of some locks falling out, you can also combine the thin locks together to make thicker roots as a measure of extra security.

I should mention, though, that sometimes root thinning can be more a problem of perception than an actual issue. Some locks can continue to thicken until the two-year mark, and the shrinking/fattening process can make it appear as though your roots have thinned—even though this is not the case.

After the shrinking has slowed, sometimes the ends will be very thick and bulky while your roots grow out a bit thinner because they don’t have room to loop and thicken as dramatically as your original, long, brushable hair did. 

If your hair  and scalp feel completely healthy and you can tell that you are not actually losing hair density—your parts aren’t becoming wider, your hair looks equally thick all over your head, et cetera—this may be a reason. 

– KJ


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