THE PREP- Let’s rewind to one year ago. My reflection showed me that I was at it again,
but this time for the last time! What stared back at me from the mirror was the familiar sight of two of my beautiful “Lucky Ladies”, as we referred to our staff, one on either side of me. They were together slaying the task of properly detangling and blow drying all thirteen inches of my super-thick high-density natural hair. It was sort of like a rights of passage for the ladies, and when done just right, proved to be a lifesaver and time saver for me. My fluffy mane would then be trimmed precisely to nine inches and infused with a few sample locs in anticipation of my long awaited Sisterlocks™ establishment. There would also be a few more steps taken over the next week to prepare for the big day… Yes, this process is intricate and involves several steps!
SO WHAT ARE SISTERLOCKS™ ANYWAY? - Well, I’m glad you asked! By definition,
Sisterlocks™ are tiny uniform locs that are the result of a precision parting grid, and the use of a specialized tool used to place the natural hair into its locking formation. Each tiny loc is installed by working from the ends of the hair towards the scalp… almost like a backwards braid! The method has been around for over 27 years now, originating in California by Dr. JoAnne Cornwell. About a decade ago, people would easily confuse these tiny locs with the very popular micro braids style, which usually has hair added, and Sisterlocks™ does not. This system uses naturally curly, kinky, coily hair in its most compacted air-dried state. They’ve also become increasingly easier to recognize these days due to rise in popularity.
MY CREDENTIALS- I’ve been a Sisterlocks™ consultant for many years before actually
having them installed. Being the achiever that I am, I deemed it only right to attain my Brand Ambassador Certification- some would say it’s the equivalent of a PHD level, along with being R-Certified to teach self-retightening, and facilitating a mentorship program. With that being said…. No one probably really wanted to sign up for the task of establishing my locs. I was met with several “Uhh Tika, Please” moments as I selected my Glam Squad and declared that I shall end up with exactly 444 locs on my head. Due to my experience level, I can actually eyeball someone’s head and get a close guesstimate of their number of locs. It boils down to the size, density, and the amount of rows in front of the head. It’s no wonder that stylists could live without doing other stylists hair…
THE PRODUCTION- We had a blast after all! Making up for being so EXTRA as a client, I
made sure to cover all bases for my four consultants and one floater that made up my
appointed Glam Squad for the big day. (They later let me know that they were ‘Voluntold’ rather than ‘Volunteers’. Nonetheless I was grateful, and prepared to keep them happy and fed all day! A private salon suite was chosen for fun times and less interruptions. This day came equipped with a gourmet breakfast, leaving no food or beverage item off limits! One of our "Lucky Ladies” prepared an awesome salmon and shrimp seafood lunch equipped with salad and fixings with homemade brownies to boot. Delicious! Each squad member was assigned a quadrant, and the floater jumped in each time someone took a break. This was a monumental day on social media as well. We went live several times for a singing tribute to my retired twist out, as well as for recording a skit of girl drama for entertainment. Through all of this, even a hashtag was born… #Tikasisterlockstmjourney. The day went by smoothly, all thirteen plus
hours which ended with a total of 462 locs… close enough to my request, I guess. These ladies were awesome and dedicated! The day had been long awaited for at least four or five years, with constant playful reminders from my girls that I had been officially ‘punked’ by my Hubby for not getting them sooner. And boy were they right. My famous motto for a while was “I’ll get them when I’m pregnant with our first child.” That time came and went due to myself and my Husband’s attachment to my carrot top’ as he so affectionately named my sometimes yellow-orange signature twist out. Hey, we like what we like… he preferred the Big Hair, as I preferred him Beardless. Sometimes, however, change is in order, so we compromised. Sisterlocks™ has proven for many to be a lifestyle decision, as well as a family decision, and for some- even a financial investment decision.
FAST FORWARD – It is currently a year later and what an eventful year that 2020 has
been! A year full of stalls and surprises, but also a year of blessings. My motto came true as far as a pregnancy goes- I celebrated my one year locaversary while pregnant with our second child! Though the two came a little out of order- I’ll take it. I persevered through the many restrictions imposed on the first year of wearing Sisterlocks™ and can hardly wait to get my color refreshed- after the baby arrives of course. My hair is much fuller and lengthier as I continue my locing process. Most who wear them tend to say that they never have a bad hair day…… I agree!
THE PLUG- For anyone wanting more information on Sisterlocks™/Brotherlocks(™)
establishments, re-tightenings, or mentorships, I highly recommend Lucky You Salon and Suites in Charlotte, NC! LYSAS houses the largest number of Consultants, Trainees, BA’s and Mentors in one location. There is a level that fits every taste and budget. Reach out for your Free Consultation today! www.luckyyoullc.com
*Special shout outs to my business partner Connie of Lucky You Salon and Suites, Ashley of Naturally Rowe, Carlisha of Embracing Rootz Inc, Cynthia of Natural Designs from the Hart, Jasmine @Jazzjpersonaltouch (LYSAS), Charity of Truthbtoldnhs, and @detanglednaturalhair for each contribution that created such a memorable event!
Face by @BeautybyShantika
“SisterlocksTM vs The Beard”
Tika Mercer of Lucky You Salon and Suites www.luckyyoullc.com IG Tika_luckyyoullc 919-601-4201