Questions and debates about cost and brand-identity and the associated status continue to be a recurring theme with Sisterlocks. Before I got mine, I never knew this would be so. And if I were not such an avid reader of blogs, I would still be blissfully ignorant. Today I read this post and comments on Mel's blog.
I have recopied my own comments here:
Personally, I'm not overly concerned with the brand and status that is associated with Sisterlocks (as in: I want people to know that I cared enough to pay the big bucks for the installation) because the opinions go both ways on that. Some people applaud my choice and understand it. Others think it was a ridiculous waste when I could have used some other tool and done it myself or gone to the lady around the corner with a latch hook.
But I always tell people that I have SLs because I want to educate them about the method. I think they are unique and I am grateful to Dr. Cornwell for coming up with them and I think it is an amazing story!
I loved reading about her trial and error and how she developed the method. I mean, the whole 'backwards braid'/root-to-tip thing in and of itself is quite a concept! And so are the smaller more stylable locks. Whether they admit it or not, a lot of other methods out there HAVE borrowed from her genius. People can ACT like everyone was doing this all along and she didn't come up with anything new.
But she did. She really, really did! And she shared it with others. Ok, she did it for a price, but can we blame her for that? I don't think so. That's how we do things in America.
I get frequent compliments on my dreads or twists and twice as many questions about them, at which point I briefly explain the Sisterlocks difference. I ALWAYS encourage people to go online and do research. I direct people to the official site and my blog and the LHBE, so they can see how SLs are different from other types of locks and make an informed decision for themselves.
For a lot of people it does come down to cost and that is the reason they choose other methods. Others are die-hard DIYers and can't imagine paying someone else to do something they know they CAN do themselves. Some people decide that they want larger traditionals.
Even though I recently learned to retighten myself using the nappylocs tool, I will continue to go to my consultant (who uses nothing but the SL tool) for the foreseeable future. And if we should ever part ways, I intend to search out another consultant so that I will not be stuck with always having to do it myself.
So mine are still trademarked SLs, but yes, I agree that they still would be even if I never used the tool again or saw an approved consultant because that's what I got at installation. I paid for the parts and got the approved sizing and I have the pattern.
I got locked with about 10 inches of hair and have had exclusive SL maintenance done on at least another 4. There's no WAY anyone can tell me these aren't REAL SLs on my head.
Here's my question: why should it matter to anyone else how I maintain my locks?
If they look nice and neat it doesn't take anything away from the brand or the image. If I paid for an SL installation, it isn't a lie. It's not like passing off moissonite or CZ for diamonds.
I CAN understand the concerns about someone who wasn't officially trained and didn't pay for the class (or who never uses the tool and super-secret method and patterns) selling their services under the SL name like Muslimahlocs mentioned. That smacks of dishonesty and false advertising.
But on the self-maintenance front, I don't think it should matter at all!
I also visited Maryee's blog today and enjoyed her insightful post on the cost of Sisterlocks.