Dreadlocks, a look created when sections of hair are twisted together with the hands starting an inch or so from the scalp, have become a more mainstream style for African-American hair. Dreadlocks are so named because hair "locks" into place and can't be untwisted. The only way to remove dreadlocks is to cut them. Use almond oil or beeswax to twist the hair; wash using a gentle, mild shampoo.
Braids offer a versatile way to wear your hair: in cornrows, French braids, braid extensions, or thick "dooky" braids. Don't pull the hair too tightly when braiding (to prevent hair loss and headaches). Loose braids have to be reworked more frequently, but won't break the hair or cause undue damage. Leaving braids in too long makes them difficult to take out. Wash braided hair once a week with mild shampoo.