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Synthetic Dreads – Terms and Their Meanings

The Wonderful World Of Misunderstandings

I’ve made a ton of synthetic dreads over the years, and that means I’ve done a lot of communicating as well. One of the most common occurrences among communication between my customers and me is the misuse of terms. It’s lead to many an issue, especially when some of the details get muddled. Many people and even other dreadmakers tend to misunderstand some of the terms used when describing synthetic dreads, and I think it’s important that everyone is on the same page so the set you receive is the set you wanted.

What Does it Mean?

Synthetic Dread Extensions – This is one of the most misused terms I hear here at LaetiLocs. Many people tend to use this phrase when they are describing sets of synthetic dreads. The problem is that the word ‘extensions’ implies that you need something to extend onto! If you ask your dreadmaker for “synthetic dread extensions”, you may end up receiving a set that is meant to be installed into existing dreads, and that’s no good if you don’t already have dreads in your hair.

Loose Ends / Whispy Ends – Loose ends on synthetic dreads are undreaded ends and appear more whispy than if they were dreaded all the way down. I’ve actually had requests for whispy ends or non-whispy ends when the opposite was wanted.

Crochet Dreads – Crochet dreads simply refer to a style of making synthetic dreads. Dreads made with a crochet are typically much more held together than those made from other styles, such as handrolling. I make my dreads with a crochet, which is why many of our customers compliment our quality. It is a much longer process, but the result is always worth it as crochet sets can last a lifetime. To summarize, crochet dreads is a misnomer and only refers to how the dreadmaker makes the dreads.

Smooth Dreads – Smooth dreads are another style of synthetic dreads that I frequently use here. Smooth dreads typically do not have as much frizzled hair as crocheted dreads do, and the styles ultimately boil down to which one you prefer the look of.

Single-Ended Dreads vs. Double-Ended Dreads – This one is a doozy because both of these choices differ but don’t really have much impact on the final look of your synthetic dreads. Single-ended synthetic dreads have a loop on the end that hair is pulled into to install. Double-ended dreads have two ends and a fold in the middle that is folded into hair to install. Single-ended sets typically come with 70 – 90 single-ended pieces while double-ended sets typically come with 30 – 45 double-ended pieces. I always recommended double-ended sets for synthetic dread newcomers as they’re easier to install and uninstall.

Knowing Terms Saves Sets

Knowing the terms and their proper meanings can save you a ton of time and help you make informed choices about your new sets of synthetic dreads. If there’s ever a word that your dreadmaker uses and that you don’t know the meaning of, it never hurts to ask. I love answering questions and helping you design the set you’ve always wanted.