We have heard the typical ways to grow our hair ever since we started this journey. Ways such as massaging your scalp every day with castor oil* in an inverted position just so it grows an extra ½ inch a month. Onion juice, garlic, cayenne pepper(no, that’s not a joke), we’ve heard it all!
While some of these techniques may sound extreme, there are other more…unique ways that you can use. They are quick and easy for you to add to your hair regimen. You also don’t have to spend any extra time or money to do them to your routine.
Here are 7 unconventional tips to grow healthy hair:
Stress is never good for your mind, body or hair. Once the body becomes stressed, it starts functioning only to keep us alive.
The hair follicles will no longer be provided with nutrients from our blood. This then leads to the hair follicles will entering a resting phase which will weaken the hair shaft so we will start to lose our hair, the exact opposite of what we want.
You should ensure that your body remains in a stress-free state so it functions as it should always. Use techniques like exercise, yoga or meditation to relax and de-stress and relax.
2. Stop protective styling
We all love a good protective style but sometimes you just have to let your afro be. As great as protective styles are for length retention, we do not need to be doing them for the 12 months of the year.
Let your hair breathe by rocking an afro, twist out, braid out or a wash and go. Your hair and scalp will be able to breathe since it is not being bogged down by synthetic hair, or a wig*.
In addition, your hair will interact with the environment and absorb the moisture from the environment. And it just feels ah-mazing to have the wind blowing on your scalp.
3. Trim regularly but not on a schedule
Only trim if you need to. There is a rule of thumb going around that you should trim your hair once every quarter. Or for relaxed girls, with every single relaxer. I’m here to tell you that’s false.
Do not follow random schedules that don’t make sense for your particular situation as you may be cutting off more than you need to.
Our hair is different and we all treat our hair differently so a person who has been wearing their hair out for the last 3 months is more likely to need a trim than a person whose hair has been in cornrows under a wig* for the last 3 months.
In essence, when you stick to a rigid schedule, you may be trimming off a lot of length, then wondering why your hair isn’t growing when you are cutting it off!
A good rule of thumb is when you’re styling or inspecting your hair, you will be able to see for yourself if you have split ends, weak ends or knotty ends. If this is the case, you will need a trim. Otherwise, the trim can wait.
4. Change your hair color routine
Start light, not heavy. Some of us go through the color bug where we’re itching to change the color of our hair from black to brown, blonde red and sometimes even purple.
Before you decide to go full force into the color change, start light. You can do highlights towards the top and front of your hair to begin with.
The highlights allow you to determine how comfortable you will be with the change. It’s very likely that you will find that highlights alone will satisfy that color bug and more importantly, it prevents all your hair from being processed unnecessarily.
5. Change your diet
However, this can also be achieved to a greater extent by changing your diet. Start adding fruits, vegetables and high-quality protein to your daily diet. These are one of the most important food groups that you should be consuming.
These food groups alone contain more nutrients than your hair vitamin pills will ever have.
6. Change your hairstyle regularly
Some of us like sticking to our tried-and-true hairstyle every week or even protective style week after week. But I would like to suggest that you forget about protective styling and change up your hairstyle often.
If you love your wash and go’s, how about you do a bun next week and then a twist out the following week?
There is a very simple reason for this…changing your hairstyle allows you to be more engaged in your hair care journey. You will be interacting with your tresses regularly to style them in different ways.
In this way you will learn your hair’s likes much faster. You will become more aware of your hair’s density, curl pattern, porosity levels, and levels of hydration which will allow you to form a baseline of what “normal” is for your head of hair.
This learning curve is what leads to success later on down the road if or when length retention becomes a goal.
7. Hide your ends
Your hair ends are the most fragile area of the hair strand as they are oldest part. As your hair continuously grows and lengthens, the hair ends start to rub against our clothes, car seats, and other objects around us.
This friction can cause breakage, knots and tangles and even dryness. This in turn will affect the length retention process and even the overall health of your hair.
So, when you style your hair do your best to protect your ends. You can style your hair into a bun and/or cornrows. These styles allow you to tuck your ends underneath your hair to help retain moisture levels in them and reduce breakage.