Hello lovelies! I know usually I post about nails, but I wanted to change things up with a post I’ve been planning in my head for a while: my hair growth journey.
You might remember that I chopped off my hair last year, just before lockdown began. It was a fun change, but the truth is, I almost immediately missed having long hair. So around June/July of last year, I decided that I was going to grow my hair out again. It was a slow process at first, & it wasn’t until around January of this year when I made some other hair changes (which I’ll discuss) that I really saw my hair growth take off!
So I wanted to breakdown what I’ve been doing to take care of my hair, & transform it from a short bob, to what I consider the beginnings of mermaid hair!
Tip #1: No More Bleach!
First decision I made when I decided to grow out my hair was to not bleach it again. I had originally bleached my entire head to dye my hair purple. But I knew if I wanted to grow long hair, I wasn’t going to be able to bleach it again, as it’s very very damaging — no matter how many hair masks & treatments you use on it. That meant in order to keep up with my coloured hair, I would have to stick with similar colours in the purple realm, which I am okay with. So I’ve tossed the bleach away. I also like to use Punky Colours hair dye when re-dying my hair because I find it very moisturizing on my head (& it smells like grapes!)
Tip #2: Switching Up My Hair Products
So back in January or February, I got tired of my natural waves looking like a hot, frizzy, poof ball mess, & decided to try out the curly girl method. I got rid of all my old, not so great products, & switched all my shampoos, conditioners, & leave in products to ones that were “curly girl approved” aka free of Sulfates, parabans, silicones, etc. & not only did I see a difference in how my hair would dry (my waves look much better!), but I noticed my hair really started to grow a lot faster!
I also only wash my hair once a week, maybe twice, & almost never use any heat on my hair. That’s not to say I never use heat — about 3 times a year I like to straighten my hair. But I always use heat protection, & I keep my hair dryer & straightener at a lower temperature.
Currently the products I’m loving are:
- Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen, Grow & Restore Shampoo
- Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen, Grow & Restore Treatment Mask
- Garnier Fructis Nourishing Treat 1 Minute Hair Mask with Coconut
- Suave Essentials conditioner— I love the green apple & tropical coconut scents.
- Marc Anthony Grow Long Anti-Breakage Oil
I also crafted my own leave in spray using using my conditioner of choice, castor oil, the Marc Anthony Grow Long Oil, & distilled water. Usually I’ll spray it on the ends of my hair before I braid my hair to go to sleep.
Tip #3: Avoiding Tight Ponytails & Buns (as much as possible)
I won’t lie, the messy bun is my best friend. But tight buns & ponytails are not the best for your hair, so I’ve been making a conscious choice to choose less damaging hairstyles whenever possible—which means I’ve been wearing a lot of braids, or, if I absolutely need to, low ponytails/buns. I’m also making sure I’m sticking with non-damaging hair ties like scrunchies or these hair ties that are made out of almost pantyhose material which I love! They definitely keep hair from breaking as much when using them, & don’t feel like they pull as much when wearing them in your hair.
Tip #4: Frequent Trims
I know, I know… everyone says if you want to grow your hair long, you need to have frequent trims. & it honestly sounds counter productive. But truthfully, it really does help grow your hair long! Frequent trims keep split ends from getting worse. I give myself a little trim once a month, just enough to cut off any dead ends or damage. That’s probably slightly excessive, but since I’m doing it at home, it works for me.
Tip #5: Eating My Way to Pretty Hair
I like to think I eat a fairly balanced diet, but when I made the decision to really grow my hair out, I started incorporating a few other things more frequently to really get my hair growing healthy. There are a million “eat this to grow your hair long” lists on the internet, but these are what I really concentrate on eating daily to put focus on my hair health.
I want to preface this by saying I’m not a health expert, or saying these most definitely are the answer. These are just things that I’ve found have made a difference for me.
- Healthy Fats — salmon, sardines, oysters & mussels, avocado, eggs, etc. I eat a lot of those foods on a daily basis, especially eggs.
- Biotin — on top of my daily multivitamin, I take a high dose of biotin as well. This is something I’ve done for years, for both the health of my nails, as well as my hair. It’s just something that has always worked for me, & I swear when I’m consistent in taking it, my hair does grow faster.
- Marine Collagen— I’ve heard people tout the amazingness of collagen for years, so when they started carrying Sun Under The Sea Collagen Creamer at work, I decided to start drinking it with my morning coffee, & I definitely feel like it gives a great boost to my growth! So far I’ve gone through 3 bags, & I definitely will continue to add it to my daily diet. I add two scoops to my morning coffee.
I also get a lot of protein in my diet, & tend to focus on whole foods whenever possible, but I also like my treats as well. I’m a sucker for any kind of gummy candy. Sour gummy bears are definitely my guilty pleasure.
So those are what I’ve been doing during my hair growth journey, & will continue to do.
Obviously, hair growth has a lot to do with genetics, but there are definitely things you can do to help minimize extra damage. Since March, my hair has grown almost 5 inches! So I’m definitely excited to see how long my hair will be by the time Christmas comes around — my dreams of Mermaid hair are closer than ever!
Do you have any tips for growing out your hair? What secrets do you have for long beautiful hair? Let me know down in the comments below.