People that I come across these days assume that my hair has always been long and that my genetics are responsible. Rather annoyingly, some people have come straight out and said ‘being mixed race must have really helped you grow your hair to that length’. NO, no , no the truth is I have always had these genes but in twenty odd years I was never able to grow my hair past my collar bone. It has been changes to my hair care practices that have allowed me to grow my hair down to my hips.
I wanted to share my tips with the community and say …YES you can grow your hair down to your behind. My trifecta is very simple moisturize, strengthen and protect. Here it is in a bit more detail.
Deep condition regularly – Whether you buy a commercial moisturizing conditioner or make a yummy DIY banana or avocado treatment, you need to find conditioner that works for you and use it consistently. Weekly use is ideal. This maintains supple hair that is less likely to split and therefore retains length. Curly and kinky hair textures thrive with the inclusion of oils, honey and aloe vera.
As an extension of deep conditioning, a good leave in or moisturizer can have its longevity extended by applying an oil, butter or aloe vera to seal.
Strengthen your mane – Being that our hair is made of protein the link between including protein in a regimen and strengthening the hair is obvious to most. Be sure to look for conditioners that contain hydrolized proteins in the ingredients. Nikki likes Aubrey Organics GPB and ApHoghee's 2 Minute Reconstructor. I have also found henna to be unmatched in its ability to fortify my hair. I use it as either a gloss, tea or straight mud mask and its inclusion in my routine was a definite game changer. The strength imparted is immediately tangible and works like nothing I have used before. Always be sure to follow a protein treatment or henna mud mask with a moisturizing deep conditioner.
Defend your ends - Minimize manipulation and regularly use protective styles to prevent the fraying of your ends. This means perhaps detangling with your fingers instead of a comb and finding a cute style that allows you to keep your ends tucked safely away from the elements. It is also important to stay away from heat. I have literally seen hair break from full BSL to shoulder length within 9 months due to the excessive use of heat. As a result I minimize its use to once a year. Now that I have surpassed my goal length I may use heat twice a year.
For bonus growth I would consider growth aids. These are controversial with many stating confidently that they don’t work … my experience says otherwise. Whilst biotin did not work for me a particular growth oil had undeniable results as did MSM taken orally as well as mixed in oil and applied directly to the scalp. However at times what works for one won’t work for others simply because of differences in our individual biochemistry.
So there you have it, my trifecta for a healthy mane that thrives. It’s really simple-- strengthened and moisturized hair grows (retains length) and protection maintains it preventing regression. I share more details in my video entitled ‘How to grow long healthy hair’, but I would like to know …