So, you want to grow long, thick and lush natural hair quickly and with minimal effort? Welcome to the club with one of the longest waiting lists, where all are welcomed and allowed, but very few actually get in. And here is why: There is no instantaneous way to grow your natural hair. Growth takes time and time requires patience, a virtue that many people just do not have. Growing long, healthy hair requires more than one magic bean as many things factor into the quest for longer hair. For starters, your genetics plays the biggest role. In short, some peoples’ hair just grows quicker than others, and absolutely nothing can be done about that. Where my hair grows about 0.5 inches a month, someone else’s hair may grow 1 to 2 inches a month. Luckily, there are several things that can be done to help your hair grow to its full potential so that you can get the hair you have been dreaming of. After being in the natural hair game for almost 4 years I’ve learnt most of the ins and outs and the do’s and don’ts and here is a list of my top tips for hair growth. Chances are you’ve seen some of these tips already, but there is a reason that they are so prominent! They work!
Yes, you’ve guessed it. You need to limit your use of heat styling tools. Blow dryers, flat irons, curling tongs and other similar devices have the ability to cause heat damage. This damage will have your hair feeling and looking limp, brittle, crusty and stringy. After long, consistent use your kinks and curls will begin to straighten out, and not in a flattering way. This being said, heat does not stop your hair from growing, but heat damage can hinder your hair from growing to its full potential. Always apply a deep conditioner/mask beforehand and be sure to use a heat protectant before applying heat!
Moisture, moisture, moisture. Keeping your hair moisturized, hydrated and nourished cannot be emphasized enough! Dry hair leads to breakage and subsequently damage. When it comes to coily, kinky hair types, the hair’s natural oil (sebum) does not coat the full length of the hair, and rather calls it a day before completing the job. Because Mr. Sebum only works half day and never gets to the end of the strand, our hair is left to fend for itself, and if not treated, ends up dry. A reliable and straightforward method to moisturizing your hair is called the LOC (liquid/leave-in, oil, cream) method. Apply your liquid/leave-in, seal it with a natural oil of your choice and then apply your cream. Feel free to switch it up by changing the order of things, play around and have fun until you’ve found out what works best for your hair. Remember that oil is not a moisturizer, rather a sealant, so always apply a water-based moisturizer first. The My Natural Hair leave-in conditioner, strengthening oil and moisturizing butter is perfect for this method, and I love to switch it up with the curling cream when I’m doing a wash and go! Once you find your niche, stick to it!
Protective styling can really take your hair growth journey to another level. When your hair is safely tucked away from the elements, and you are not constantly touching it or grazing it against something, it has room to flourish. Long term protective styling has worked well for many a natural and results can be seen in a period as short as a month. So, give your strands a break and try wearing a protective style for a week or more, if possible. You can keep your hair moisturized with some water/aloe juice in a spritz bottle. Some great protective styles include twists, buns, bantu knots and wigs. Once you’ve decided on a style, prep your hair by doing your usual wash day regimen (it’s always good to start on clean hair), and treat yourself to a deep condition/mask. It’s no secret that the My Natural Hair Hydration Mask smells like its been imported from heaven, and it also intensely nourishes and softens the hair. Once you’ve done the preparation, get going on that protective style and rock it!
Since this is the one that nobody wants to hear, I will keep it short. Trim your ends when necessary. Do not sacrifice healthy hair to have long looking hair, and I say “looking” for a reason. Split and damaged ends are thin, stringy and highly visible. You are not doing yourself any favours by entertaining those kinds of guests, because no matter how much you feed them, they remain at the table looking dull, lifeless and hungry. Trim those ends girl! Personally, I do not adhere to a once every three months schedule. Rather, I do regular hair check-ups and once those guests arrive, I show them the door.
Hair oils have played and continue to play a big role in my hair growth journey. Massaging your scalp with an oil increases blood circulation and can help to promote hair growth. There are many oils on the market, so be sure to choose one, or a few, that do not include harmful chemicals, and are preferably organic. I am a fan of almond oil, black castor oil and my day one strengthening oil, which is a blend of oils, from the My Natural Hair line. Keep in mind that a clean scalp is the best growing environment for hair, so use your oil in moderation and do not leave it on for too long because your hair will become greasy.
These are only five tips, but because I like to keep things basic and simple when it comes to hair, these are my five staples. Implement them in a way that works for you and always feel at liberty to add or take away things if your hair is telling you to do so. Learn to know what your hair loves, feed it, protect it, care for it and watch it grow! Love every stage as it comes, because being unhappy about hair that is not long is no way to live. Celebrate the small milestones, allow for some time between length checks and take loads of selfies to document your progress. Enjoy the journey because the journey is yours!