November 12, 2021
If there’s a question I always get asked, it is “How did you grow your natural hair so long.” A lot of people are convinced that it’s just because I have good genes and that they can never have long hair because of that. But I’d like to tell you that although genetics do play a part, there’s a lot more things (that you do have control over) that go into growing your hair faster, thicker and longer.
Regardless of genetics, each of us has an optimum hair growth rate. The average is around 6 inches (15 cm) of growth per year, but not many people will reach or retain that much growth. Without the right practices, you could end up growing way less than what your hair is capable of at its full potential, and you will struggle to retain the little that you do grow.
These steps below aim to achieve two things: stimulate hair growth and retain length. Once you’re able to take care of both of these things, you’ll probably have long hair much sooner than you think.
In order to grow a full, healthy head of hair, you need adequate levels of Vitamin A, C, D and E, B Vitamins, and trace minerals such as Iron in your diet. The best way to ensure you get in all these nutrients is to consume a balanced diet with lots of vegetables and even fruits and nuts.
Foods such as eggs, berries, spinach, beans, etc are great foods to incorporate into your diet to get your nutrient levels up and keep them at a good level.
A balanced diet is the preferred way to get in your minerals, but there may be several reasons why you’re still not able to get adequate levels of those essential nutrients. That’s where your supplements come in.
You can either get a multivitamin, which aims to provide a good amount of all the required nutrients at a go, or you can get your blood work done to find out if you’re only lacking specific nutrients and pick a supplement to boost those specific nutrients.
Disclaimer: This advice shouldn’t replace medical advice. It’s safe and wise to consult with your doctor before you start taking any supplement to help with your hair growth.
Either way, a 2012 scientific study suggested significant hair growth results in women who took hair supplements. In the study, these women, who took these supplements for months, saw a sharp improvement in their hair growth.
You’re probably wondering whether scalp massages even work when you’re trying to grow back hair, but they totally do. In fact, there have been published studies, like this one, that have suggested that scalp massages aren’t just a nice practice, but they actually stimulate regrowth, especially in those who had suffered hair loss.
Scalp massages work by stimulating blood flow to the scalp. This increased blood flow brings nutrients to the hair follicle that encourage your follicle to grow thicker hair.
If you want to step it up a notch, you can add a growth oil to your scalp too. Clovol is formulated to coax hair growth out of any viable hair cells that you have. It also strengthens your roots. All of these lead to faster hair growth and thicker, longer hair.
Once you manage to stimulate hair growth, it’s important to take care of your hair to make sure that you’ll retain this new length that you’ll start to see. Getting into a good hair care routine will be a gamechanger for how your hair looks, feels and behaves.
If you feel that your hair routine is lacking, then you’re in luck! We’ve written a whole blog post on How to Care for Black Hair that covers everything from the absolute basics you need to take into account when washing your hair, to how to maintain your hair’s moisture throughout the week.
Try to implement some of those tips into your routine if you haven’t already, and keep doing whatever feels good for your hair. If you stick to this routine, you’ll see growth in no time!
We probably talk about trims in every single post, but it’s for good reason: not getting trims jeopardizes the health of your whole hair strand, not just your ends. This means that if left untrimmed, split ends can slowly start to ‘climb’ up the length of your hair causing your hair to be much harder to deal with. Aim to get your hair trimmed at least two times a year or when you notice your ends are pretty bad.
For the full lowdown on how and why trims work and more, read this post on how to trim your natural hair at home.
If you can, tuck away your strands into a protective style often. A good protective style should preserve your strands and reduce the amount of styling/manipulation that is done to your hair.
Styles such as cornrows, flat twists, box braids, crochet braids, wigs and weaves (when installed properly) are great options. Plus, it also gives you a much-needed break from taking care of your hair if you have started to find it way too inconvenient.
Water plays an integral part in hair growth. Hydrogen molecules, from water, bond to the structure of your hair causing it to grow thicker and feel stronger. So to help build strong, thick strands, we need to make sure that the strands are hydrated, and you need to take steps to lock in that hydration.
This is really difficult now that we’re in winter, but it’s not impossible. Check out this natural hair winter care routine that will keep you moisturized in the frigid, dry winter.
P.S: If you want to really boost hydration and moisture this winter, check out the BIYO Collection that’s inspired by the hair care secrets of women who live in incredibly dry areas as well.
Soon, everyone will be asking you what you did to grow your hair. When that time comes, please do remember to share this post with them.
Here’s to more curly and kinky ‘Rapunzels’ in our communities! 🥂
Photo Credit: @itsthatezi
The Scientist of Black Hair
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