Photo by excitant.uk.co
These days, there is hardly a day that passes by where someone doesn't comment on how fast my hair is growing. Well, it's no accident, that's for sure! On April 4th, 2018, I decided that I was serious about my natural hair growth and started putting together a nontoxic regimen to maximize it - I'm super excited to share my strategy with you! My hair has grown 3.5 inches in 5 months - that's an average of .7 inch a month (and that's in spite of a couple of good trims) So, go grab a snack and have a seat - this is going to be a long one!
I've taken a 4-pronged approach to my hair growth system: 1) Keep receipts 2) Grow! 3) Retain length 4) Elongate what you haveKeep receipts
So, remember when I said that I began my hair growth journey on April 4, 2018? Well, there is a reason that, 5 months later, I'm sure of this start date. Cue @Hair_Journal_App! Hair Journal is a mobile app that allows you to track your natural hair journey. I use it to record the beauty products that I'm loving, my hair care routine and my current hair length. You can also take pics of your hair so that you can travel back in time to see how you were able to achieve that dope wash n go a few months ago! Recording your progress is so important - on those frustrating days, it's great to be able to revisit how far you've come. In addition to Hair Journal, I put my trims, protective style schedule and protein hair treatments on my Google calendar. This way I get reminders and have no excuse to not stay on top of my game!
Photo by kauaiseascapesnursery.com
Easier said than done, right? No worries, I'm about to break it down for you. There are a few things that will help you get your grow on.
Put your scalp first
Too many naturals spend their effort on taking care of their hair at the expense of their scalp - I chat about this in one of my blog posts. Since the roots of your hair are housed in your scalp, it's most important to treat it right! This means keeping your scalp clean, lots of pre-poos and scalp massages.
You are what you eat
So scalp massages are pointless without great nutrients getting into the bloodstream for your roots to absorb! It's crucial that you are getting the vitamins and proteins necessary for promoting healthy hair growth. If you're unable to eat as healthy as you would like, consider supplementing with hair vitamins. I personally take Hairfinity vitamins and they have been a godsend.
Your hair is what it eats
Just as important as it is to feed your body, it's also important to feed your natural hair and scalp! What you put on your hair and scalp enters your bloodstream, so it is, in essence, food. That's why I only use hair products with good, nontoxic ingredients. My current faves are:
Pre-poo: Ecoslay Hot Sauce
Hair wash: Ecoslay Peppermint Schnapps
Deep conditioner: Camille Rose Naturals Moroccan Pear Custard
Deep protein treatment: Aphogee 2 step
Monthly protein treatment: Mielle Organics Babassu Mint Conditioner
Leave-in: Kinky Curly Knot Today
Twisting Cream: Mielle Organics Twisting Souffle
Photo by napavalley.edu
It's pointless to encourage your hair growth if it's breaking off left and right. There are a few things that I do to ensure that the hair that I grow remains on my head.
I trim my hair every 3 months on the dot - I know this because I record it in my Hair Journal. Now, just because I trim my hair every 3 months doesn't mean that you should - you have to find the right interval for you. But once you find it, I strongly suggest making it a hair habit. There are a lot of naturals that suggest "trimming when you need it" -I'm not a huge fan of this mindset for a few reasons: 1) When you are trying to grow out our hair, you tend to avoid trimming - it's just human nature 2) It's difficult to see split ends on natural curly hair. Furthermore, if you trim a little hair off more frequently, you'll end up trimming less in the long run - the longer you wait to trim, the more opportunity split ends have to travel up the hair shaft causing you to trim more hair when you eventually do bite the bullet and pull out the shears.
I know, I know, I know. I used to not be a fan of protective hair styles either - but now I love them! They really do save a ton of time in the morning. Moreover, they help to keep your hands out of your hair and your hair away from clothing and the elements. Plus, when you lay those baby hairs, girrrrrrrrl, you will look super cute! Because I like to reward my hard work, I allow myself 1 week a month to wear my natural hair out. So, I employ the 3-1 method - 3 weeks of protective styling and 1 week of wash-n-going. This routine has been awesome for me, plus, each time I let my hair out it's great to see the length that I've gained since the previous month!
Protect your hair at night
Hopefully, you already know the importance of using a satin scarf and/or sleeping on a satin pillowcase at night. If not, now you do so go pick one up! I love Grace Eleyae's slap caps - they are so cute and protect your hair stylishly!
Elongate what you have
Photo by piwcworcester.org
Shrinkage is a mother, ladies. Fortunately, there are a few ways to combat it. I pull my natural hair into a low ponytail at night (check out Jeweliana Palencia's video). Other naturals recommend banding or putting their hair into a pineapple. Regardless of the method, l strongly suggest finding a stretching technique that works for you. It's an easy way to get an additional inch of hang time!
Whew, you made it to the end! I hope that these tips are helpful to you as you continue your own natural hair growth journey! Please hit me up in the comments section with tidbits that you'd like to share as well.