“I want Butterfly Locs!” We hear you!
Butterfly Locs are this season’s diamond! They’re a fresh new take on traditional faux locs and we’re obsessed.
Here’s everything you need to know about this new boho trend. Let’s get into it!
- What are Butterfly Locs?
- What type of hair piece should you use to make butterfly locs?
- How to create Butterfly Locs yourself?
- Braid and Wrap Method
- Butterfly Locs Crochet Method
- Butterfly Locs on longer hair
What are Butterfly Locs? (And what they aren’t).
Butterfly locs are very similar to distressed locs except they have more curly loops. These curly loops look like butterfly wings. This is a protective style that became famous recently. Both distressed locs and butterfly locs are a fresh new Boho style of faux locs – the aim is to copy the look of real locs without as much effort.
Remember Goddess Locs – another gorgeous form of faux locs. Butterfly Locs are like the perfect mix of goddess locs and passion twists. The messy, bohemian style is ethereal, low maintenance, and very natural looking. For those of us that want a style that changes over time, doesn’t require much fuss to make it work, and celebrates curls and coils while still protecting our own hair, this style may be for you.
What Type of Hair to Use and How Much?
Depending on how long your natural hair is and how long you want your locs to be, you may need two types of hair. If you want locs that aren’t longer than your own hair, you’ll need need roughly 6-8 packs of some type of water wave hair in 22-28 inches. This hair is curly and bouncy and that’s what will give you the characteristic loops that give Butterfly Locs their name.
If you decide to go with locs that are longer than your own hair, you’ll need filler hair. Technically, you can use the wavy hair to fill the locs too and can buy more of it for that purpose. But many tutorials use Marley hair to create an individual braid that you’ll then wrap with the wavy hair. Simply braid the marley hair into your hair to the desired length.
- 22″ Passion Twists/ water wave hair (this is like a looser version of passion twists)
- Our Butterfly Locs Pre-Looped Crochet Hair 12″ (Crochet method only)
- Afro Marley Braiding Hair (Optional, 1-2 packs)
You’ll also need
- Gel (necessary, but if you don’t want extra build up, just use water)
- Hair crochet needle
- Rubber bands (optional)
- Nail glue (optional)
Most stylists create 40-50 locs and you want to make sure they aren’t too bulky. Longer styles tend to have thinner locs vs the jumbo locs seen in shorter styles. This helps cut down the weight of the hair and thus the tension on your scalp.
How to Do Butterfly Locs
There are a couple different methods for installing Butterfly Locs, but regardless of the method you use, you may want to start by first soaking the hair you’ve purchased (if it’s synthetic) in an Apple Cider Vinegar rinse. Usually one part vinegar, two parts water suffices. Soak the hair for a couple of hours and rinse thoroughly. This helps avoid itching if you have a sensitive scalp.
Braid and Wrap Method
There are a variety of ways you can achieve Butterfly Locs, depending on how much time you have, your skill level, and your patience. The great thing about this style is you don’t have to be a master hair braider to achieve a beautiful result. Most people can do this style in 3-6 hours, but the longer the length the more time consuming it may be.
Step 1: Braid or twist your hair.
Choose a parting pattern and braid or twist your hair.
Use edge control to keep the parts neat. You can choose to use rubber bands as seen below in The Chic Natural’s video below, but you don’t have to. (If you’re adding to the length of your hair, be sure to braid the Marley hair in at this point or you can braid the water wave hair in as The Chic Natural does in her tutorial.)
Step 2: Prep your Water Wave hair.
This step can be done as you go or you can do it all in the beginning. Simply take two pieces of the water wave hair and separate them. You want the result to be fluffy but still relatively together.
Step 3: Crochet the Water Wave hair into the base of your braid.
Take the crochet needle and place it through the base of your braid, by your scalp. Put the separated water wave hair in the needle’s hook, close it and pull it through less than halfway. You’ll want about ¾ of the water wave hair on one side to start wrapping. If you’re familiar with faux loc techniques, this is very similar to how you’d start the box braid extension that goes under the faux loc.
Step 4: Begin to wrap.
Now grab the shorter piece of the water wave hair and hold it with your braid. Then begin wrapping the braid, and the shorter piece against it, with the longer piece of water wave hair. You’ll want to wrap the root 5-6 times to make sure it is secure against the scalp. (This will help keep your style looking neat for a longer period of time.) But try not to apply too much tension. As you wrap, use the thumb technique to create the loops.
The great thing about Butterfly Locs is that it’s ok to be messy. Be messy while you’re wrapping the hair, they don’t have to be tight or controlled, the beauty is in the loops and fuzziness of the loc. These locs also look better over time, again the messier the better so don’t be afraid to embrace the frizz as they age.
The Thumb Technique
As you wrap the water wave hair, wrap a portion around your thumb loosely as you continue wrapping down two or three times. This will give the loc the signature loops. Some stylists suggest doing 3 normal wraps and then inserting the thumb to “pick up” some of the hair before returning it to the wrapping section.
Step 5: Seal the Ends.
Once you reach your desired length, you’ll need to close off the loc and seal the ends. You can achieve this by creating a small loop with your finger at the end, then wrapping the remaining hair back up the braid until you run out of water wave hair. You can use nail glue as you’re wrapping the remaining inch or two for extra hold. The loop is very important, it will give you a nice end to your loc and keep the loc secure. Do NOT burn the ends.
The Crochet Method
If you’re more comfortable with the crochet method–which takes less time–you can cornrow down your hair, but I suggest leaving the front and back out for individual braids/twists so your style has some versatility. Adanna Madueke does a great job of showing how she incorporates both techniques here. (Here are the pros and cons (mostly pros) on using the crochet method to create box braids and styles like it.)
THIS tutorial is probably the BEST one to watch if you’re into the crochet method. Mary K Bella shows how she uses the crochet method with hair that isn’t pre-Loc’d, which is helpful right now as there aren’t a TON of already loc’d Butterfly Locs hair. She’s also really funny. I recommend watching the whole video.
Butterfly Locs on Longer Hair
If you have long hair but want to rock bob-length locs, it’s actually easier than you think –no haircut necessary! Check out the tutorial below on how to fold your braids before wrapping.
If you’re thinking about getting Butterfly Locs or doing them yourself make sure you watch the videos we’ve included. Have all of your supplies ready and a great show to binge watch. Good luck and let us know how they turned out, tag us on Instagram!
If you want to know how to take care of your locs once they’re in – check out this blog post.
- Maintaining & refreshing Butterfly Locs
- Can you wash them?