Same as a good outfit, the way our hair looks often tends to affect our mood – how many people have you heard grumpily complaining that they’re having a ‘bad hair day’? On the other hand, don’t you feel more confident if your hair is styled and looking shiny and voluminous?
Everyone is born with a set number of hair follicles which we will have for the rest of our lives. In our whole body, we have somewhere around 5 million, whereas on just our head we have about 100,000. On average, our hair tends to grow about half an inch per month, meaning around six inches a year. Even if these numbers are more or less the same for everyone, there are things we can do if we want to achieve fuller, longer hair faster.
Long hair has always been seen as a symbol of female beauty and youth, so it’s understandable that many women tend to pay a lot of attention to it. While for a few lucky ones, healthy, long hair seems to come naturally, others could benefit from some changes either in their lifestyle, or hair care routines.
Scroll down for a list of tips on how you can get your hair to grow faster and healthier.
1. Maintain a well-balanced diet
A well-balanced diet is crucial when it comes to our overall well-being and happiness, so of course, that also includes the health of our hair. Eating the right kinds of food can result in healthier and shinier hair, which in turn, leads to faster hair growth. Seeing as our hair follicles mostly consist of protein, protein-laden foods such as eggs, dairy or lean meat are essential to keep it strong. Other than that, fish, berries, spinach, nuts, potatoes, beans, oysters are also great when it comes to having stronger, shinier and healthier hair since they contain the necessary components to help nourish them.
2. Keep the scalp healthy
If we want to get to the root of the matter, the next thing to consider if you want your hair to grow faster is your scalp. If your scalp is too dry, or too oily, it can clog the hair follicles and even slow down the hair growth process. Here are some of the things you can do to maintain a healthy scalp:
Use hair masks
From honey, to eggs, to bananas or essential oils there are endless DIY masks you can find on the Internet that are good to both your hair and your wallet. You don’t have to spend a ton of money in store-bought masks – masks made from all-natural ingredients that you can find right in your home are a great way to nourish and condition your hair. For example, if your scalp is dry or prone to dandruff, a great remedy could be using a coconut oil based mask.
However, if your scalp if overly itchy, oily or dry, then maybe home-made masks won’t be strong enough to treat it. In that case, you could try using professional masks and treatments.
Massage your scalp
Massaging your scalp increases the blood flow to the hair follicles which then leads to a higher nutrient intake- this means your hair will grow faster. So, when you’re washing your hair use your hands to knead and apply pressure to your scalp. Or, for even better results, you can try massaging nourishing oils into your scalp, which will not only help the scalp itself but the hair root and hair shaft too.
3. Don’t shampoo your hair every day
You may think that the way to healthier, shinier hair is to wash it as regularly as you can but that may not be true. While you should wash it regularly, that doesn’t necessarily entail washing it frequently.
Shampooing removes the dirt and excess oil from your hair – if you shampoo too rarely the oil will build up and clog up your hair follicles, if you shampoo too often you can remove too much of the hair’s natural oils which will cause your hair to dry up and become frizzy and damage-prone.
While there are no set rules as to how often you should wash your hair, if you have hair that’s normal in weight and oiliness, then you could extend the time between shampooing to a few days. You should only wash your hair daily if you have extremely fine hair, or if you exercise every day (meaning you sweat a lot).
4. Prevent hair damage
As we saw so far, healthier hair grows quicker. There are several things we do every day that can cause our hair to be damaged that we don’t even think about. So, in order for our hair to grow faster and fuller, we must minimize the damage we cause it. Here are some tips on how you can do that:
Brushing your hair, other than keeping it smooth and tangle free, also helps with even distribution of your hair’s natural oils from the root to the tips. But you should be careful when brushing your tangled hair, especially when it’s wet. Pulling too roughly or too fast can cause it to break.
A good hairbrush is also important and there are plenty of detangling brushes you can purchase that don’t pull on the hair as much.
Avoid using towels
We’ve all done it, rubbed our hair between the towel to remove the excess water after a shower then proceeded to wrap it in a towel – which we probably shouldn’t have. Towels can be too rough on the hair, especially wet hair, causing it to break and become frizzy. Wrapping the towel around the hair also pulls on the strands and may result in hair loss. Instead, try using something softer, like an old shirt, and gently patting the hair dry.
Do not use heat
Styling our hair using heat can be really fast and effortless, resulting in beautiful curls or smooth, sleek strands. But doing it constantly can result in serious damage to the hair – it can become brittle, dry and loses its shine. So, if you want your hair to grow faster, try to minimize it as much as you can. Doing it once in a while for a special occasion is fine, but even then you should you heat protecting products.
Do not dye it
Yes, colored hair or highlights add definition and can look really beautiful, but the chemicals in hair dyes can be really detrimental to our hair’s health. Hair dyes contain elements like ammonia, hydrogen peroxide, and paraphenylenediamine which not only makes the fair fragile and dry but can remove the protective layer of the hair and leave it prone to even more damage in the future.
5. Trim it regularly
Yes, I know this may sound counterproductive if the goal is hair growth but trimming really does help. It gets rid of the split ends and the already damaged hair, which leaves it looking healthier, shinier and fuller.
6. Try using supplements
Getting the nutrients our hair needs from food is important but sometimes we can use a little extra help. The benefits of taking oral supplements when it comes to hair growth have been proven in previous research, resulting in shinier and more voluminous hair. Supplements like biotin and multivitamin tablets will give your hair the vitamins and minerals which you might not be getting from your diet.