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Best Locking Gel for Dreads: Top 10 Picks to Tame Frizz and Define Locs (2024)

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best locking gel for dreadsFinding the best locking gel for dreads can greatly enhance your loc journey by providing a strong hold and minimizing frizz. Top choices include Jamaican Mango Lime Locking Gel, Lion Locs Dreadlock Moisturizer, and Dark and Lovely SoftSheen Gel, each offering lightweight formulas and moisture retention.

When picking the right gel, consider factors like your hair porosity, density, and hold strength preferences. For ideal use, focus on the retwisting stage, sectioning techniques, and ensuring proper drying time.

With these tips, you can maintain well-defined, residue-free locs.

Intrigued? There’s more to uncover about perfecting your dreads!

Key Takeaways

  • Tame your wild mane with the right locking gel, the secret weapon for well-defined, frizz-free locs.
  • Natural is the name of the game! Look for gels infused with nourishing ingredients like mango, aloe, and coconut oil to keep your locs hydrated and healthy.
  • Patience is key, my friend! Let your gel work its magic by giving it ample drying time. Say goodbye to flyaways and hello to sleek, defined coils.
  • Keep your locs squeaky clean and buildup-free by choosing water-based gels and washing your hair regularly.

Top 10 Best Locking Gels for Dreads

In the realm of taming frizz and defining locs, selecting the appropriate locking gel is of paramount importance.

Our top 10 selections include Jamaican Mango Lime Locking Gel, Lion Locs Dreadlock Moisturizer, Dark and Lovely Softsheen Gel, Ors Lock and Twist Gel, Lion Locs Dreadlocks Moisturizer, Jamaican Mango Lime Hair Gel, Style Factor Twist and Grip, AllDay Locks Braid Gel, Magic Fingers Shine Jam, and Loc Gel Braids Edge Gel.

1. Jamaican Mango Lime Locking Gel

Jamaican Mango and Lime LockingView On Amazon
You’ll get a strong yet flexible hold with Jamaican Mango Lime Locking Gel. Its mango-lime scent is invigorating, transporting you to a tropical paradise. The residue-free formula tames frizz, defining your locs without weighing them down. Packed with natural ingredients, it retains moisture to prevent breakage. For a long-lasting, frizz-free look, this gel is a game-changer.

Best For: Those looking for a strong, flake-free hold for their locs or twists.

  • Residue-free formula that won’t weigh hair down
  • Tames frizz and defines locs
  • Retains moisture to prevent breakage
  • Contains artificial colors (Acid red 33 and Acid yellow 23)
  • May not be suitable for all hair types
  • Can be difficult to find in some stores

2. Lion Locs Dreadlock Moisturizer

Lion Locs Hair Locking DreadsView On Amazon
Lion Locs’ Dreadlock Moisturizer is a game-changer for mastering locs. This all-natural formula packs a punch, delivering a strong, residue-free hold while nourishing your roots.

Lightweight yet mighty, it tames frizz and enhances loc formation, allowing you to sculpt your crown with precision. A little goes a long way, so you can embrace carefree confidence and flaunt your locs in all their glory.

Best For: Those seeking a strong, all-natural hold for locs, braids, and pipe cleaner curls.

  • Firm hold without residue or build-up
  • Moisturizes and retwists locs
  • Pleasant, gender-neutral scent
  • May not hold immediately after a re-twist
  • Some users experienced damage to the jar during delivery
  • A little goes a long way, so it may be easy to use too much

3. Dark and Lovely SoftSheen Gel

SoftSheen-Carson Let's Jam! Shining andView On Amazon
You’ll love Dark and Lovely’s SoftSheen Gel! This lightweight formula conditions while providing a firm, frizz-taming hold for gorgeous dreadlocks. The micro-emulsion technology delivers superior shine without wax or alcohol for healthy, defined locs. Celebrate your unique style with this exceptional gel that prevents breakage and buildup. Apply a pea-sized amount, style as desired, and let your locs shine!

Best For: Those with dreadlocks seeking a lightweight gel for frizz control and shine.

  • Conditions and shines hair
  • Prevents breakage and buildup
  • Micro-emulsion technology delivers superior shine without wax or alcohol
  • Not suitable for all hair types
  • May be too heavy for fine hair
  • Can be difficult to wash out of hair

4. Ors Lock And Twist Gel

ORS Lock and Twist GelView On Amazon
You demand frizz control and loc definition? ORS Lock & Twist Gel has you covered. Its ultra-nourishing formula tames unruly hair like a lion tamer – minus the whip and chair.

With a firm yet gentle grip, it coils your locs into submission, sealing in moisture for lasting manageability. No slippage, no dryness, just sleek, shiny locs that make heads turn.

Embrace your inner lion with this king of gels.

Best For: Individuals seeking frizz control and loc definition.

  • Ultra-nourishing formula tames unruly hair.
  • Coils locs into submission, sealing in moisture.
  • Creates sleek, shiny locs.
  • Not specified in the given context.

5. Lion Locs Dreadlocks Moisturizer

Lion Locs Dreadlocks Moisturizer -View On Amazon
Give your locs a luscious boost with Lion Locs Dreadlocks Moisturizer. Its nutrient-rich formula is packed with natural oils and butters that deeply nourish and hydrate each loc.

You’ll love the lightweight, non-greasy feel that keeps frizz at bay while enhancing definition and manageability. Plus, the delicious tropical scent transports you to an island paradise with every use.

Trust Lion Locs to keep your locs looking their radiant best.

Best For: Those with locs or hair looking to moisturize, reduce breakage, and control frizz

  • 100% organic and paraben and sulfate free
  • Enhanced with aloe vera leaf juice, hydrolyzed wheat protein, argan oil, and jojoba oil
  • Lightweight and healthy

6. Jamaican Mango Lime Hair Gel

Jamaican Mango and Lime ResistantView On Amazon
You’ll love Jamaican Mango Lime Hair Gel’s lightweight, residue-free formula infused with nourishing ingredients that define and mold your locs without stiffness. Its firm yet flexible hold tames frizz while allowing hair movement. Plus, the luscious mango lime scent awakens your senses as you twist away. Embrace freedom and control your locstyle with this gel’s long-lasting performance.

Best For: Those with locs or twists looking for a lightweight, residue-free hold without stiffness.

  • Nourishes hair
  • Firm yet flexible hold
  • Long-lasting
  • Doesn’t solidify dreads
  • Smell is not horrible
  • Works ok

7. Style Factor Twist and Grip

Style Factor Lock Booster TwistView On Amazon
Style Factor Twist and Grip locks in moisture while defining your locs with a light-grip formula. Its natural ingredients like coconut oil nourish strands, preventing breakage during install and retwisting. You’ll appreciate the residue-free hold that lets your new growth blend seamlessly. Easily refresh styles without buildup weighing hair down. Unleash luscious, full-bodied locs that move freely.

Best For: Those looking for a natural hair product that defines and nourishes locs.

  • Nourishes strands with coconut oil, preventing breakage
  • Residue-free hold for seamless blending of new growth
  • Easy to refresh styles without buildup
  • Not specified in the provided information

8. AllDay Locks Braid Gel

AllDay Locks Braid Gel |View On Amazon
For an ultra-strong hold that lasts all day, AllDay Locks Braid Gel is a top pick. This sulfate-free formula packs a punch with its extreme frizz control and high shine.

Though the lavender and tea tree scent is a treat, be cautious if you have sensitivities.

A little goes a long way – use too much and you may experience flaking. But used correctly, this gel will have your locs looking their finest.

Best For: Those seeking an ultra-strong hold with frizz control and high shine.

  • Extreme hold
  • Frizz control
  • High shine
  • May leave a white coating if too much product is used
  • May contain tea tree ingredient which can cause allergic reactions in some individuals
  • Can be flaky if used incorrectly

9. Magic Fingers Shine Jam

Magic Fingers Shine Ĺ„ JamView On Amazon
You’ll want to try Magic Fingers Shine Jam for smooth, defined locs. This non-greasy, non-flaking gel packs a punch with silk protein and Abyssinian oil to condition while providing firm hold. It fights frizz, adds brilliant shine, and protects hair during styling.

The consistency distributes easily for finger waves, twists, and other intricate styles. Take control and master your mane with this versatile jam.

Best For: Those looking for a non-greasy, non-flaking gel to define locs and add shine.

  • Firm hold
  • Adds shine
  • Protects hair during styling
  • May have a strong scent
  • Consistency may be more like hair grease than a gel
  • Customer reviews are mixed

10. Loc Gel Braids Edge Gel

LOC N GEL LOC TwistsView On Amazon
You want a locking gel that keeps your locs defined and frizz-free all day long.

Loc Gel Braids Edge Gel is a sleek choice that offers maximum hold without drying out your hair. Its natural, moisturizing formula grips locs at the roots for a smooth, secure style.

Plus, this aloe-scented gel is alcohol and grease-free, so you don’t have to worry about buildup or flaking.

Tame flyaways and achieve shiny, silky dreadlocks with this versatile gel.

Best For: Those looking for a maximum hold gel that keeps locs defined and frizz-free all day long.

  • Maximum hold without drying out hair
  • Natural, moisturizing formula grips locs at the roots
  • Alcohol and grease-free, so no buildup or flaking
  • No information provided about cons

Benefits of Locking Gels

Benefits of Locking Gels
In terms of finding the best locking gel for dreads, you want a lightweight formula that provides strong hold without weighing your locs down. Moisture retention is key to preventing breakage and dryness, while residue-free formulas enhance loc formation by defining the shape and allowing for a clean look.

Lightweight Formulas

Lightweight loc gels offer the freedom of frizz control without weighing your locs down. With natural ingredients suited to your hair’s porosity, these gels glide on effortlessly, delivering just the right amount of hold. Their featherlight consistency allows moisture retention while you master defined, manageable locs that last.

Strong Hold

Your quest for perfectly coiled locs continues with strong hold gels. These formulas create a firm, frizz-free cast around each loc, keeping them in place all day. But don’t worry, the best locking gels blend nourishing natural ingredients with hold strength designed specifically for your hair’s density and texture. No crispy, crunchy locs here—just sleek definition.

Moisture Retention

You want locs that stay moisturized, not dry and brittle. Locking gels infused with moisturizing oils and natural ingredients provide conditioning benefits that nourish your scalp and hair for ideal loc health and growth. Skip the harsh chemicals – opt for gels with aloe, shea butter, or coconut oil to keep locs hydrated.

Enhance Loc Formation

To enhance loc formation, locking gels work wonders in defining each loc’s shape. They nourish and repair damaged locs, promoting healthy loc growth and maintenance. By controlling frizz, these gels allow emerging locs to form tight, defined coils – a must for achieving that iconic dreadlock look you desire.


Residue-free locking gels not only enhance texture and loc formation, but also promote scalp health. Formulas with natural ingredients like aloe vera help keep your locs clean and buildup-free. You’ll appreciate the lightweight wear and ability to easily wash out the product without stripping moisture from your locs.

Choosing the Right Locking Gel

Choosing the Right Locking Gel
When selecting the perfect locking gel for your dreads, you’ll want to take into account factors like your hair’s porosity, density, and overall health. These characteristics influence how well a gel can penetrate your strands, provide the desired hold strength, and keep your locs nourished without compromising their definition or leaving unwanted residue.

Hair Porosity

Considering your hair’s porosity is essential for defining curls and nourishing hair. Low porosity locks?

  • Opt for lightweight gels
  • Avoid heavy, creamy formulas
  • Look for penetrating ingredients
  • Allow longer drying time

High porosity locs crave moisture, so reach for nourishing gels that prevent dryness during lock maintenance.

Hair Density

You’ll need a gel that matches your hair’s density. Thin, fine hair demands a lighter gel to avoid weighing it down. For thick, coarse manes, reach for a denser formula with stronger hold. Get it right, and your locs will be tamed with frizz-free definition – the key to that "fresh retwist" look we all crave.

Hair Health

Along with density, you’ll want to factor in your locs’ health when choosing a gel. A healthy scalp and hair growth are key for lasting locs, so opt for gels with:

  1. Natural oils and butters
  2. Vitamins and minerals
  3. Gentle cleansers
  4. No harsh chemicals

These haircare ingredients nourish your scalp and strands while styling locs.

Hold Strength

When choosing a locking gel, consider its hold duration and consistency. Lightweight gels suit starter locs, while thick, concentrated formulas offer a firmer hold for established locs. The application method also impacts hold—apply generously for maximum control. Gel color can enhance locs’ appearance, but reapplication frequency depends on the product’s longevity.

Scent Preference

You’ll also want to evaluate scent intensity and fragrance durability. Some prefer unscented gels, while others enjoy a light, natural fragrance that lingers. Luckily, many top locking gels offer both scented and unscented options to suit your preferences. Just determine how strong or subtle you want the aroma to be – it’s all about personalization.

Locking Gel Application Tips

Locking Gel Application Tips
For ideal locking gel application, start by properly sectioning your locs during the retwisting stage, ensuring each section is coated evenly. Pay close attention to drying time and longevity, as these factors influence the duration of your style’s hold and the frequency of gel reapplication, while also considering ease of removal for your next retwisting session.

Retwisting Stage

When retwisting your locs, locking gels are essential for:

  1. Defining the shape and pattern
  2. Providing a firm, long-lasting hold
  3. Preventing frizz and flyaways
  4. Enhancing moisture retention

Apply the gel during the retwisting process for best results. The right locking gel will keep your locs fresh, frizz-free, and locked in place.

Sectioning Technique

You’ll want to section your hair for ideal gel application. Divide it into manageable parts, using a rat-tail comb or sectioning clips:

Section Size Tools
Top Medium Rat-tail comb
Sides Small Clips
Back Large Wide-tooth

Apply the gel evenly, starting at the roots. Use a brush or your fingers to work it through each section.

Drying Time

After sectioning your locs and applying gel evenly, allow proper drying time for:

  • Product absorption
  • Hair texture variation
  • Weather conditions
  • Time management

You’ll achieve the best hold when the gel completely dries. Monitor drying progress, and use drying techniques like air-drying or low heat to lock in the style.


For better longevity, choose a locking gel with high-quality ingredients that provide a strong, long-lasting hold. Look for a consistent texture that guarantees even application. Make sure the price aligns with the gel’s performance and ease of washout, as these factors greatly impact the longevity of your styled locs. This approach ensures lasting, defined dreads without frequent touch-ups.

Ease of Washout

Rinsing out your loc gel effectively guarantees your hair remains buildup-free. Consider the rinse time, application method, and gel texture to make this process smoother. Proper storage conditions and product packaging can impact the ease of washout.

  • Rinse thoroughly with warm water.
  • Apply gel sparingly to avoid residue.
  • Store in cool, dry places.

Preventing Buildup With Locking Gels

Preventing Buildup With Locking Gels

  • Preventing buildup with locking gels begins by choosing water-based gels with natural ingredients, which can greatly reduce residue accumulation .
  • Regular shampooing with a mild, sulfate-free shampoo guarantees that any product buildup is thoroughly removed (Source).
  • Incorporate deep conditioning into your routine to maintain moisture and elasticity, which helps in preventing buildup-related issues like dryness and brittleness.
  • Protective styling, such as braids or twists, can also minimize gel use, thereby reducing the chances of buildup .
  • During application, use sparingly and focus on ensuring even distribution throughout your locs, particularly during the retwisting stage . This approach keeps your locs clean, well-defined, and free from unwanted buildup.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the best product for locking dreads?

Harnessing nature’s embrace, use the "Hold Tight! Braid & Twist Gel." Its natural ingredients, firm hold, and residue-free formula keep your locs strong and moisturized, embodying freedom in every twist and turn .

What does locking gel do for dreadlocks?

Locking gel helps dreadlocks by providing a light, firm hold, enhancing the shape of your locs, retaining moisture to prevent breakage, and ensuring a residue-free finish for a clean, well-maintained appearance .

What gel is good for locs?

Opt for LOC’D & LOADED Loc Gel for your locs, as it harnesses natural ingredients, guarantees a firm hold, and remains residue-free while enhancing moisture retention and preventing breakage (Source).

Does locking gel cause build up?

Locking gel can cause buildup if it contains heavy oils, waxes, or synthetic ingredients. Opt for lightweight, water-based gels with natural ingredients to avoid residue and keep your locs clean and well-formed .

How do I refresh locs between retwists?

To refresh locs between retwists, spritz them with a water-based, residue-free moisturizer, then gently massage your scalp. Lightly palm roll sections to reshape locs, and apply a light oil to seal in moisture .

Can home-made gels work as effectively?

Yes, homemade gels can be effective if you use natural ingredients suited to your hair type. Make sure they provide moisture, a strong hold, prevent residue buildup, and keep locs lightweight for a clean, defined look .

Is it necessary to use a gel daily?

Every day use of loc gel isn’t necessary. Instead, apply it during retwisting stages to maintain style and moisture. This guarantees strong hold without overloading and keeps locs clean and healthy .

How should I store my locking gel?

Store your locking gel in a cool, dark place, away from direct sunlight to maintain its quality. Make sure the lid is tightly closed after each use, and consider refrigeration to extend its freshness and longevity.

What are signs of a good locking gel?

Imagine finding a locking gel with natural ingredients, strong hold, and no residue. It should be lightweight, promote moisture retention, enhance your locs, have a pleasant scent, and be cost-effective yet high in quality.


Discover the key to immaculate locs with the most effective locking gel for dreads!

A well-chosen gel like Jamaican Mango Lime Locking Gel or Lion Locs Dreadlock Moisturizer enhances your loc journey by providing:

  • Lightweight formulas
  • Strong hold
  • Moisture retention .

Focus on:

  • Retwisting
  • Sectioning
  • Proper drying to maintain residue-free, defined locs .

With the right techniques, you can achieve and sustain beautiful, frizz-free dreads effortlessly (Source).

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Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and beard care expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of men make their beards look better and get fatter. His work has been mentioned in countless notable publications on men's care and style and has been cited in Seeker, Wikihow, GQ, TED, and Buzzfeed.