Mohawk Dreads Styling Guide + Hairstyle Inspirations

For centuries, people have been expressing themselves through their hairstyles. And in recent years, the mohawk dreads have become one of the most popular hairstyles. Mohawks and dreads have their unique meaning and symbolism. 

Mohawks are often associated with non-conformity and individuality. That is because the style is unique and striking. Dreads are often associated with wisdom and spirituality because they are seen as more “natural” and “earth-friendly.” 

So, if you want to sport a unique and eye-catching hairstyle, Mohawk dreads may be just what you’re looking for. Keep reading to learn more about this bold and edgy hairstyle! 

What Are Mohawk Dreads?

Mohawk Dreads
Photo from IG/@lj_thelocbarber

Mohawk dreads to combine two beloved hairstyles: the mohawk and dreadlocks. The traditional mohawk dates back hundreds of years, and its name originated from the indigenous “Mohawk people” of North America. But the actual hairstyle was inspired by the 1939 movie Drums Along the Mohawk.

The style consists of a strip of hair running down the center of the head and shaved or close-cropped sides for an edgy, punk rock look. But when combined with short or long, intertwined dreadlocks, the mohawk becomes even more striking. 

How To Get Mohawk Dreads 

If you’re interested in trying out this daring style, there are several ways to get it done. You can get started by growing out your hair until it reaches a length where it can be braided into locks (this may take anywhere from 6-12 months). 

Once your hair is long enough, you can either have them professionally styled or attempt styling them yourself (if you are comfortable doing so). 

If you choose to have them professionally styled, make sure they use high-quality products that nourish your scalp and keep your long locs healthy as they grow out! 

Gather Your Supplies 

Before you start styling your hair, ensure you have everything you need. You’ll need the following:

  • Comb or Brush
  • Scissors or clippers – depending on how short you want to go
  • Crochet needle or teasing comb  – for dreads installation
  • Gel or jam – for holding and moisturizing
  • Elastics – for securing tight locs

Start Trimming 

Shaving Sides for Mohawk Dreads

Once you have all of your supplies gathered, it’s time to start trimming your hair. If you’re going for a traditional mohawk look, use scissors or clippers to cut the sides of your hair very close to the scalp.

Start at the temples and move up towards the crown of your head until both sides are even. Make sure to cut slowly and carefully; it’s always better to err on caution when cutting your hair! 

Installing the Dreadlocks

Mohawk Dreads - Installing Dreadlocks

Now that you’ve trimmed down both sides of your head, it’s time to style what’s left in the middle into dreads.

Starting dreadlocks is an art form. It can be as precise or creative as you want it to be. Whether you are starting your dreadlocks or helping someone else, there are a few things to remember before you begin.


The most common way to start a set of dreadlocks is by backcombing. Backcombing involves combing your hair in the opposite direction so that the hair knots up and starts forming a loc shape.

The key here is to make sure that you backcomb each section evenly so that each dreadlock looks uniform. You will also want to ensure you don’t pull too hard when backcombing. Otherwise, your locks may break off or become weak. 


Another great way to start a set of dreadlocks is by twisting. This method involves taking sections of hair and twisting them together until they form tight coils. Once the coils are tightly wound, they will knot up and create a loc shape.

One downside to this method is that it can take time for the locs to form fully, but if done correctly, it can create beautiful and unique-looking dreads. If you’re prone to hair unraveling, you might like to try braids as starter locs instead, too.


Interlocking is similar to backcombing, but with one significant difference: instead of just pulling the sections of hair apart, you use an interlocking tool or crochet hook to pull them apart and weave them into each other.

This creates an even tighter knot which leads to longer-lasting dreads over time. The downside here is that interlocking requires more skill and patience than either backcombing or twisting—but if done correctly, it can produce stunning results! 

Starting dreadlocks is no small feat! It takes time and dedication—not to mention patience! No matter what method you choose—backcombing, twisting, or interlocking—it’s important not to rush the process and ensure each step is done correctly so your locks will last for years!

With these tips, anyone can start their own set of lovely dreadlocks for your mohawk dread style! 

Best Mohawk Hairstyles

Ready to make a statement? Now that you know how to create mohawk dreadlocks, I’ll show you the best styles to suit your taste in this section. 

Whether you’re looking for a classic style or something more modern or eccentric, there are plenty of variations of the mohawk dreads that you can try. Here are some of the different hairstyles you can do. 

Short Mohawk Dreads

Short Mohawk Dreads

Another way to style a mohawk is with a fade. This dreads with fade look starts with shorter hair on the sides and gradually gets longer as it moves up toward the crown of the head.

Ask your barber for a skin fade or bald fade haircut on the sides for this easy style. Then, let your short dreads fall on one side.

Styling Short Mohawk Dreads 

Tie Mohawk Dreads with Beard

If you want your dreads to stand up without using gels or pomade, tying it with a ponytail can do the trick.

Combine this with a bald fade and a full beard to create a striking contrast. I suggest you groom and trim your beard and make it look deliberate rather than unkempt. This will give you a masculine and commanding appearance.

Short Mohawk with Frosted Tips

Short Mohawk Dreads

Another popular option for those with short mohawk dreads is the frosted tips hairstyle. This look combines the edginess of a mohawk with the trendy effect of frosted tips.

This is done by dying the ends of your mohawk dreads in a bright color. It can add a touch of personality to an otherwise subdued overall look. Popular color choices for dreads include blonde or shades of blue, green, and purple.

Dyed Mohawk Dreads

Dyed Mohawk Dreads

But you can also dye your mohawk dreads if you want to make a statement. And when it comes to choosing a bold dyed dreads color, the sky is the limit!

Whether you’re looking to make a statement with a bright, vibrant shade or add some subtle dimension with a trendy ombre look, there are endless possibilities. Why not try a daring blue or green if you’re feeling adventurous?

For something a little more subdued, consider a rich chocolate brown or a sleek platinum blonde.

Short Mohawk Dreads on Women

Mohawk Dreads on Women

The shaved sides hairstyle has a bold, striking, edgy look. It emphasizes face size and is a unique style for women who want to make a statement. This look is not for everyone, but if you are confident and comfortable with your appearance, it is worth trying out.

It is important to note that this style requires some upkeep, so if you are not prepared to commit to regular hair appointments, it might not be the perfect choice for you. However, if you are willing to put in the time and effort, the shaved sides hairstyle can help you stand out.

Long Mohawk Dreads

Classic Long Mohawk Dreads

Long mohawk dreads are a unique and striking hairstyle, but they’re the most difficult to maintain. The key to keeping long dreads looking neat is regular upkeep. That means brushing and re-twisting the hair regularly and using holding products to keep the hair in place. Wrapping the hair at night or during periods of extended activity can also be helpful.

Styling Long Mohawk Dreads

Long Mohawk Dreads

The easiest way to style long mohawk dreads is to tie them up. This will keep the hair in place and prevent it from falling flat.

Avoid using pomade or gel, as this can make your long wicks dreadlocks dry in the long run. Instead, opt for a light oil or wax, which will help to hold your style in place without weighing down your locs.

Mohawk Dreads with Braids

Mohawk Dreads - Punk Style

To achieve this punk mohawk dread, you may need light wax to sculpt it into a mohawk-like shape. Add some colorful braids or bleached hair strands for an extra touch of punk attitude. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different dreads colors!

Braided Dyed Mohawk Dreads

Braided Mohawk Dreads
Photo from IG/@salongbarock

The braided mohawk is a popular Viking hairstyle. It is achieved by braiding your mohawk dreads to keep them clean and neat, emphasizing your shaved side.

There are a lot of styles to choose from when braiding dreads, but the most commonly used is the fishtail braid. The style is often decorated with beads, feathers, or other objects. And if you’re more drawing, add hues of pink on your dreads with beads.

Faux Hawk Dreads

Faux Hawk Dreadlocks

Faux hawk, also called fohawk, is a hairstyle that closely resembles a mohawk, and you can also achieve them if you have dreads.

The main difference between the two styles is that the sides of the head are not shaved completely bald in faux hawk dreads. Instead, the hair on the sides is cut short or braided, resulting in a similar mohawk dreads style.

Spiked Mohawk Dreads with Braided Side

Spiked Mohawk Dreads
Photo from IG/@shoshlocstudio

This spiked and braided locs is my favorite faux hawk dreads style. The sides are neatly braided, and the ends are kept loose upward, creating majestic cockscomb dreads. The ends are also dyed blonde to create contrast and make the mohawk dreads stand out.

Faux Mohawk Dreads with Braided Side

Mohawk Dreads with Braided Side
Photo from IG/@shealocs_studio

Another take on the faux mohawk dreads is this elegant locs style. Best suited for women with longer hair, the sides are braided while the ends are curled and looped on top. And to create a subtle contrast, the hair is dyed dark red.

Rock Your New Mohawk Dreads Style

I hope you’ve found the mohawk dreads that will suit your style and personality by now. The best thing about the mohawk is that it symbolizes non-conformity. Aside from the inspirations included in this guide, there are various options when styling them.

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