A complaint Hannah hears in the salon almost daily is “my hair won’t grow any longer.” Most of the time, that’s not actually the case. Hair grows from the follicle, which is in your scalp. So if your hair seems stuck at a certain length, it’s most likely breaking off at the ends where its naturally driest. Tragic, we know.
In the span of a year, the average person’s hair will grow 6 inches, roughly a half-inch per month. If you have hair to your shoulders or past them, that means the hair on the bottom is at least a year old. Think of your hair like a piece of fabric: over time it wears down and can weaken if not properly cared for. Most people with this complaint have a texture that cannot withstand lots of aggravators and might need a little extra TLC on the reg. Here are some tips for you to keep your hair the healthiest it can be (and speed the growth!)
First and foremost…lay off the heat styling! This is the #1 most common aggressor we see that damages hair and leads to breakage.
If you heat style, keep it to a minimum (like, once a week or less) and ALWAYS use heat protection.
Get regular trims (every 3-4 months). We realize this seems counterproductive if you’re trying to grow your hair, but we promise it is essential! If you think about it, that’s only one haircut per season. Keeping your ends fresh and not giving them the chance to get crispy will prevent split ends. Remember, if not addressed, split ends can split further up the strand, causing all-over damage.
Cut down on your shampooing. The scalp produces oils that are designed to move down to the ends of your hair. Shampoo strips the oils which can lead to dry ends, as well as excessive oil production as the scalp tries to compensate. The less you shampoo, the less you will feel the need to. Most shampoos also contain drying ingredients that can lead to brittleness over time. We recommend using a sulfate-free shampoo, as sulfates can be drying and weigh the hair down, especially after repeated use. Keep in mind that it is totally safe to rinse and condition your hair when you feel like you need a shower. Giving your hair a good scrub with just some H2O will remove sweat, dirt, and some oils. Put a little bit of conditioner on your ends, and you’ll be smelling fresh and feeling soft.
Nourish that hair! Add a moisturizing mask to your routine at least once a week. Most people need extra moisture to help keep their hair soft and their ends from splitting. If your hair is chemically processed, chances are you could also use a repairing mask.
Detangle like a pro! Only use a wide tooth comb or a wet/detangling brush on wet hair or damp hair. Did you know your hair can stretch up to 50% more when it’s wet?!? This isn’t good, it’s damaging! Your hair is also more fragile and prone to breakage when wet, so it’s important to use the proper tools when detangling.
If you are planning on lightening your hair, make sure your stylist uses a bond additive, like olaplex, in your formula. This will prevent breakage and ensure that the hair structure stays intact.
Getting the right amount of vitamins is also essential to hair health. We recommend taking a daily Hair Skin and Nail vitamin which often includes biotin in it to speed up growth.
You are what you eat! Diet is surprisingly important for literally...everything. Including your hair. Eating foods rich in vitamins and minerals can do things like help circulate blood supply to your scalp to stimulate growth, strengthen the hair, and prevent hair loss. Foods high in the good stuff are: salmon, dark leafy greens like spinach and kale, greek yogurt, guava, sweet potatoes, lean proteins, and eggs. And of course make sure you’re always hydrating. It does the body good.
Now you’ve got some tools in your arsenal to get your hair to the length you’ve always wanted. Tag us at #beautydummy to show us your progress!