Last spring when the world shut down - including hair salons - I went with the flow and decided that I simply grow out my hair. I chopped off my long locks shortly after getting married (seriously, does every woman do this?) in 2018 but didn’t think I’d grow it out again so soon. But ya gotta be flexible in times like these, right?
My hair length in Feb 2020
Of course, I went onto YouTube to learn how other ladies grow out and take care of their long hair. This is my favorite channel. I learned, though, there is no magical product that accelerates hair growth. Time is the only solution. BUT! We can help our hair become as healthy as possible to give it a chance to grow out. And here, my friends, is where I discovered that hair products do make a difference. Here’s a bunch of tips and products that helped nourish my hair. As you can see, my dedicated care aided my hair growth - about 6 inches in a year!
My hair length in Apr 2021
Tips and Tricks For Hair Growth
Do not use heat/bleach on hair
This one’s pretty obvious, but heat and bleach are the ultimate hair growth killers. They make your hair brittle and easy to break. I avoided styling my hair with heat as much as possible, and this included using a hair dryer. I use a hair turban to dry my hair instead.
Do not wash your hair every day
Washing your hair more than necessary strips it of its natural, protective oils. So there is really no need to wash hair every day. My summer routine is washing it every other day (since I’m sweating more often!) and maybe once or twice a week in the winter. As for shampoo, people say that sulfate-free shampoos are the way to go. They do not contain harmful chemicals for your hair. I honestly haven’t noticed a difference, but I continue to use Shea Moisture sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner. When my hair is looking a little greasy in between washes, I spray dry shampoo on the roots.
Use gentle elastics and protective hair styles
Rubber hair elastics can increase the possibility of hair breakage. I’ve switched over to using scrunchies where possible. It’s more gentle and forms a looser grip around the hair. And instead of putting my hair up in ponytails, I put it in braids.
Braids are a great protective hair style
Don’t cut your hair
This might seem obvious, but don’t cut/trim your hair if you’re trying to grow it out. If you must get rid of split ends, go in to the salon and ask for “dusting” or just get rid of them by cutting them off yourself! I didn’t even have to go in and get my hair cut this last year because the ends were so healthy. I share my secrets in the tips below!
Holy Grail Products for Hair Growth
Argan oil is my must-have hair care product. I finally learned how to properly use it last year. Turns out, you only need to rub the oil onto the tips of your hair! This is where hair is the oldest/driest and needs the most nourishment. That made so much sense. Before I thought I had to rub it all over my head so I hated it because it made my roots look all greasy and gross. Now I rub argan oil onto the tips of my hair every night before bed. After a few months, I couldn’t believe how soft and healthy my ends were. In fact, I had no split ends!
Castor and coconut oil
While I use argan oil on the daily, once a month I will deep treat my hair with castor and coconut oil. They’re both supposed to be good for hair growth. Since castor oil is very thick, adding coconut oil to it helps thin it out and makes application easier. Before bed, I saturate my hair and scalp with a mix of castor and coconut oil, cover it with a satin cap, and leave it in for the night. The next morning after washing it off, my hair always feels baby-soft!
If I do end up using heat on my hair (just occasionally!), I treat it to a deep conditioner the next time I wash it. I use this to restore as much moisture as possible. In the shower, slather your hair with the deep conditioner, leave it on for 5 minutes, then rinse it out. My hair feels SUPER soft (and smells great!) after using this product.
Sometimes if I want to go the extra mile, I will even apply leave-in conditioner to my hair after showering. Most of the time, I do this if I applied heat to my hair or if it had been overly-exposed to external elements (wind, sun, pool water, etc). I will do this treatment as well as #3 above. I apply the leave-in conditioner to damp hair and let it air-dry.
Wooden comb or boar bristle brush
These kinds of materials help evenly distribute hair oils from the roots to the rest of the strands. Now, I exclusively use my wooden comb!
Other things to try
In my extensive YouTube research, I saw that other ladies added these other practices to their hair growth routine. Personally, I am too lazy (or unwilling!) to incorporate these steps into mine. But I’ll share them here since I already did the research and in case you want to try!
Take cold showers
Apparently, it’s good to wash hair with cold water. Cold temperatures keep the hair cuticle sealed. But I enjoy my hot showers, thank you very much!
Sleep in a satin cap or use satin pillow covers
Satin is good for your hair because it reduces (?) hair rubbing, which reduces breakage. I want to sleep in comfort, so I don’t do either of these practices except for when I apply my castor oil hair mask.
Clarifying hair rinses
My favorite hair YouTuber rinses her hair with these homemade rinses to further clean and condition her hair. I am too lazy to add this additional step to my shower routine. So I just try to find products that already have the ingredients (like apple cider vinegar) in them so I can cut out this step!
What suggestions do you have for growing out your hair?
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