There's a bit of wisdom I learned here in GUDU a few years ago: "Never accept advice or work on your locks from someone unless their locks look like they know what they're doing." (Or something like that... I've seen it many times here before, often more articulate than that...)
There's a lady here at the ren faire who has amazing locks. They're long (waist length), thin (finger's width), and naturally curly. Her sections stay neat, and her locks are smooth and uniform. Everyone oohs and aahs about her locks.
Here's the thing: When I talked to her about it, she said she'd start my locks for only $10 an hour, and it should take under 3 hours. I was incredulous because of the low price and short time estimate, and asked for details. She wanted to use rubber bands and wax. She also curtly informed me that my desire for thin sections in hair as long as mine was unwise, that I wouldn't want to keep up with them, and that I would surely give up and just comb them back out. She said that she didn't want to "waste her time" on me if I was just going to do that. When I said I would rather she not use wax, or any product at all, she countered that I'd have horrible fuzzy flyaways. When I giggled, saying that I'd had locks before and was prepared for both the fuzzy and the maintenance of long skinny babies, she huffed and said I should get back to her. She blew me off twice after that.
I learned later that she hates and despises her own locks and wants desperately to be rid of them. Her ire and negativity for her own hair has translated into her hair care business, and I decided I'd rather not have her work that kind of negativity into my hair... wax or no wax, I wanted my locks to be started when all parties involved had a clear and a pleasant headspace.
I'm really glad she blew me off, and even more glad I discovered how she felt about her own locks. A few days after talking to her, I talked to two of my friends. As it turned out, my friends are both respected members of the Dreadlock Truth forums, and we had exactly the same ideas about how to start my locks. I had my first dreadlock party, and we watched a Norwegian dark comedy movie (my friend Mira is from Norway). It took forever (we worked over 2 days? 3?)... but my sweetheart and I both have heads full of wax-free locks, crafted with love and blessings. We also have a special bonded friendship now, and we can't wait to visit Mira in Norway someday. ;)
The moral of my story is, You Can't Judge a Book By Its Dreadlocks... well, that and Stand Your Ground. Her locks are beautiful, but I'm really glad she never touched my hair. If you don't want wax, don't let anyone convince you otherwise.
My "Dreaddie Family Photo." The three beauties on the left each had a hand in starting mine and my boyfriend's dreadlocks. Their names are Kevin (aka Scholar), Mira, and Gabe.