locking gel for dreads

6 Best Locking Gel For Dreads 2023 | For Shiny, Healthy Dreadlocks

Dreadlocks are formed when your hair strands lock in with each other or when you braid your hair. For this, you’ll need locking gel for dreads!

It is a very popular hairstyle that serves various purposes. They have been a part of various cultures and movements around the world including Buddhism, Hinduism, Rastafari movement.

Related: Best Shampoo For Dreadlocks

Related: How To Make Faux Locs Less Frizzy

It is also widely seen among the Masai tribes in Africa.  Dreadlocks are also a very fashionable hairstyle and have been seen on various celebrities like Wiz Khalifa, Jason Momoa, Jaden Smith, Lisa Bonet etc.

However, dreadlocks are not low maintenance. They require proper grooming to look neat and hygienic. 

Best Locking Gels For DreadsBest ForChief Ingredients
Jamaican Mango and Lime Locking Hair GelDamaged HairManuka Honey and Moringa Seed Oil
Murrays Gel Loc-LockDry HairAlmond Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, Keratin
ORS Lock and Twist GelOily HairCoconut Oil, Soybean Oil
Bronner Brothers Tropical Roots GelFlyaways, EdgesGlycerin, Panthenol, Guava, Pineapple
African Formulas Super Grow Hair GelThinning Hair, BreakageWild Bee Honey, Coconut Oil, West African Shea Butter, Virgin Olive Oil, Basil, Safflower And Peach Oils,

What is the best locking gel for dreads?

After using all the top locking gels in the market, I’ve realized that the Jamaican Mango and Lime Locking Hair Gel is the best locking gel for dreadlocks today. It is made of natural ingredients, has a strong hold, and offers enough flexibility to help you shape your dreads well.

This is where locking gels for dreads come into play. Locking gels help in encouraging your hair to lock together and form beautiful dreadlocks.

It also gives a natural look to your hair and makes it shiny. There are different locking gels available for different hair types. 

How we selected the best locking gel for dreads?

After looking at several styling gels in the market, we tested the top ones based on the following parameters. Next, we rated them on a scale of 1-5.

  • Hold – The gels have been rated based on how strong of a hold they provide.
  • Moisturization – These gels should be nourishing and moisturize hair and not just lock dreads in.
  • Flaking – The dreads shouldn’t flake or leave residue behind.

We have put together a list of the best locking gels to build beautiful dreadlocks.

Top Locking Gel For Dreads 2022

Jamaican Mango and Lime Locking Hair Gel

Best Strong Hold Locking Gel For Dreads

jamaican mango and lime locking gel

I have found that the locking gel from Jamaican Mango & Lime is one of the best locking gel for dreads. This product is specifically designed to form dreadlocks. 

What I like most about this locking gel is that it contains the goodness of moringa seed oil and manuka honey. Moringa seed oil is rich in zinc and improves the level of keratin on your hair. It also makes my hair soft and shiny instantly after application.

Manuka honey acts as a good conditioner for your hair and improves hair growth, but my favorite part is that despite being so moisturizing it doesn’t leave my hair greasy or flaky.

Another plus point about this product is that it is free of harmful ingredients like petrolatum, mineral oil, sulfates and parabens. So you don’t have to worry about your hair or scalp health.

how to use locking gel for dreads

You also do not have to worry about flakes, debris or product buildup after using this locking gel. 

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I absolutely adore how this gel locks in moisture on your dreads and helps in re-twisting locks.

The product also guarantees a long-lasting hold so your dreads stay neat looking longer.  But the best part about this is that you have a 100% refund offer if you are not satisfied with the product. 

However I did feel that the hold, while long lasting is not strong. So it won’t hold thick or very greasy or kinky hair in place well. You might need another dose of gel for that.


  • Contains Moringa seed oil and manuka honey that nourish your hair
  • Sulfate, paraben, mineral oil and petrolatum free
  • Long-lasting hold that helps dreads stay in place longer
  • Does not leave build-up or flakes
  • Money-back guarantee


  • Might not give a stronghold

My Ratings:

  • Hold – 3.5/5
  • Moisturization – 4.5/5
  • Flaking – 4.5/5

Murrays Gel Loc-Lock

Best Non-Flaky Locking Gel For Dreads

beeswax best locking gel for dreads

I got this gel to try as it is a very popular product and I was very happy that I wasn’t disappointed.

It gave me beautiful natural looking dreadlocks. And I love how it is enriched with the goodness of olive oil and sweet almond oil. 

Olive oil is a great moisturizer for your hair. It penetrates deep into your hair shafts to retain moisture, make your hair shiny and aid in healthy hair growth. Sweet almond oil also has great hydration properties and reduces dryness and flaking of the scalp. 

And my hair looked amazing after trying this lock gel!

This locking gel is said to give a medium hold, so you can expect some level of flexibility if you want to change your hair style in case.

when should i use locking gel for dreadlocks

You should also expect the formula of this hair gel to be a bit watery. I didn’t mind this as my hair can get greasy sometimes. But it’s not everyone’s choice. So if you have very dry hair, I think that you should try out a gel with more oil-based ingredients.

I also love that It has a pleasant smell that is soothing to your senses.


  • Contains sweet almond oil and olive oil that moisturize without leaving hair greasy
  • Pleasant smell that’s not overwhelming
  • Suitable for locks, twists and braids (so it’s very versatile)
  • Prevent flakes so it won’t dry or harden in hair


  • Thin consistency that’s not moisturizing enough

My Ratings:

  • Hold – 4/5
  • Moisturization – 4/5
  • Flaking – 4.5/5

ORS Lock and Twist Gel

Best Non-Greasy Locking Gel For Dreads

best locking gel for starting dreads

The ORS lock and twist gel is a great product for beginners who are looking forward to locking or twisting their hair. 

It has a white jelly-like consistency and a very mild smell. I found that the locking gel absorbs quickly into my hair to give me instant results while creating dreadlocks.

But my favourite part about this gel is that it is non-sticky. So you do not have to worry about your hair appearing greasy after using.

You also do not have to worry about this product leaving and building up or flakes. 

A little goes a long way for this locking gel so you only have to take a minimal amount of product while applying it to your hair.  So I found this gel to be very economical as well.

This gel is also really suitable for people transitioning their hairstyle or those with short, natural hair. This is also an easily available and very affordable product. So I give it bonus points for it’s price!

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  • Suitable for beginners as it’s very easy to apply
  • Absorbs well into hair so it won’t make hair greasy
  • A little goes a long way so it’s economical as well
  • Affordable price range for the quantity provided
  • Includes natural ingredients like olive oil that nourish hair
  • Reduces flakes on hair as it doesn’t harden on strands


  • Might dry out your hair in long run as it contains alcohol and added perfume

My Ratings:

  • Hold – 4.5/5
  • Moisturization – 3.5/5
  • Flaking – 4.5/5

Bronner Brothers Tropical Roots Gel

Best Medium Hold Locking Gel For Dreads

best strong hold locking gel for dreads

The Tropical roots firm locking gel gives you a feeling of being on a tropical island. It is enriched with the goodness of pineapple and guava. 

If you are looking for a locking gel with a firm hold that can tackle your stubborn hair, look no further. This product gives you a strong hold that lasts long. 

It absorbs easily and can be washed off easily, so you also do not have to worry about any build-up or residue that the product might leave. 

This product is made up of natural ingredients that are highly nutritious for your hair. It is free of harmful ingredients like artificial dye or artificial colour. 

This is a great product if you are looking to maintain braids, locks and twists. It also encourages hair growth. 


  • Contains natural ingredients
  • Artificial dye-free
  • Artificial colour free
  • Strong hold
  • Does not leave build-up
  • Accelerates hair growth


  • Might not work on all hair types

My Ratings:

  • Hold – 4/5
  • Moisturization – 4/5
  • Flaking – 4/5

African Formulas Super Grow Hair Gel 

Best Natural Locking Gel For Dreads

best locking gel for freeform dreads

This is also one of the most popular locking gels. The African formulas super grow gel contains a wide array of nutrients like plants, oils, vitamins, minerals, amino acids and herbal extracts. 

The formula contains a unique combination of biotin and placenta extracts. Placenta extracts improve hair growth and density. Biotin is one of the most important proteins for hair growth. 

It helps to tackle hair thinning, breakage and hair loss. I could notice new hair growth after using this locking gel. 

If you are looking for a gel that gives you a strong hold, this could do good for you. This gel has a strong hold that lets you tame your hair.  

But this locking gel has a very strong scent that might be unpleasant to some. So keep that in mind before buying this. 


  • Contains biotin
  • Contains placenta extracts
  • Improves hair growth
  • Tough hold
  • Reduces hair fall


  • Unpleasant smell

My Ratings:

  • Hold – 4/5
  • Moisturization – 4.5/5
  • Flaking – 4/5

Style Factor Lock Booster Twist and Grip High Shine Conditioning Pomade

Best Shine-Boosting Locking Gel For Dreads

best locking gel for freeform dreads

Now my 4c hair is prone to getting really dry and dehydrated. And in this case, any regular locking gel for dreads tends to leave a white residue.

So I was beyond happy to find this Lock Booster pomade by Style Factor. It’s super-moistuzing.

My 4c hair drinks it all up, but if you have slightly oily hair or even a regular type scalp, this much moisture can get overwhelming.

It does tend to leave hair greasy if it’s the type 3 or type 4a texture. So be careful.

Other than that I found this pomade for dreadlocks to be a bit pricey.

But if you’ve got parched, 4c hair like mine and would like a high-shine effect on your dreadlocks, try this product.

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  • Gives a high shine look
  • Prevents frizzy hair
  • Good for dreadlocks, twists, and even edge control
  • No white build-up
  • Very nourishing


  • Very expensive
  • Can leave hair greasy

My Ratings:

  • Hold – 4/5
  • Moisturization – 5/5
  • Flaking – 4/5

How to select the best locking gel for dreads – A Buying Guide

best locking gel for dreads

There are so many locking gel for dreads available in the market. Selecting the right one from so many options can be confusing for you. 

You have to find the one that caters to your needs and gives you the best results. 

When you have dreadlocks, you should be very careful while using hair products because they might stay in your hair and leave a residue. 

This build-up can clog your pores and cause various issues like dry scalp, irritation, inflammation and hair fall. 

We have listed a few aspects you should look into, before buying a locking gel for your dreads to get the best results. 

Natural Ingredients– Natural ingredients are so much better for your hair than chemical ingredients. A lot of ingredients in our hair products are harmful in the long run. 

Look for a natural moisturising ingredient like shea butter, argan oil, Aloe vera etc that can nourish your hair. These ingredients can combat hair fall and promote a healthy scalp. 

Holding power– One important skill of a locking gel is its ability to hold your hair in place. Select a gel with good holding power. You could check the reviews to see what the customers have to say about its holding power. 

This will help in giving you neat dreadlocks. You can also preserve your edges and prevent flyaways using the right locking gel. 

Easy to wash out: A lot of hair products leave residue or product build-up in your head. This is especially true for products for dreadlocks.

If there is product residue on your head, your follicles will become clogged and cause breakouts and irritations on your scalp. 

So it is important to look for a product that is easy to wash off. 

Harmful chemicals– Hair products contain harmful ingredients that help in building lather or increasing the shelf life of the hair product. 

These aren’t beneficial in the long run and can cause damage to your hair. 

These ingredients are sulfates, parabens, mineral oil, petrolatum, phthalates, silicones etc. The ingredients cause long term side effects like hair thinning, dryness, hair fall etc. 

Make sure to check the ingredients list in the packaging and look for harmful ingredients before finalising the product. 

A locking gel might be a good option if you are looking for a product that is lighter than a hair wax. 

You do not have to worry about product buildups with these gels. It is also really helpful if you have frizzy and unmanageable hair. 

Using the right products can make all the difference for dreadlocks and a locking gel would make a great investment for your dreads.

Also Read:

Best hair moisturizer for black hair

Best styling gel for black women’s hair

Is There A Difference Between Dreads And Dreadlocks

Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Hair Gel

The best locking gels for dreads will lock your hair in place and keep the nourished. The Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Hair Gel is suitable for all scalp types and provides a strong hold.

Product SKU: JLL24269TGB24B

Product Brand: Jamaican Mango & Lime

Product Currency: USD

Product Price: $9.98

Price Valid Until: 2023-05-06

Product In-Stock: InStock

Editor's Rating:


  • The gel keeps dreads in place for longer
  • The mango butter formula nourishes hair and prevents dryness


  • Can feel too greasy if you have oily scalp type
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