Several people have asked me how much it cost me to have my hair done like this and whether or not it is/will be cost effective and/or cheaper than relaxers/natural hair.
Since most of the ladies I know with natural hair maintain their hair themselves (ie no outlay for hairdressers) I'd have to say that in my opinion it is probably more expensive than natural hair but cheaper than relaxers... that said - it is definitely not a low maintenance hairstyle (when compared with traditional locs)... but your decision should be determined - not just by cost and time requirements - but on what your desired final outcome is ie what do you want your hair to look like?
Personally, I find traditional locs (when styled etc) to have a more cultural or regal look; wheras SLs and other micro locks tend to look lighter and breezier and 'modern'. I do not have a personal preference between the two - despite choosing SLs for myself. My niece has traditional locks and I love them... my sister has natural hair (13 inches) and I love her twists too - to each his own!
However, back to the cost issue, I came across two articles today while doing my research, and I thought I'd share them with you so you can make up your own minds. Thanks to Brunsli & Sophia for crunching the numbers!
Sophia: SLs cheaper (or at least more cost effective).
Brunsli: SLs expensive (or at least not inexpensive).