How to Get and Maintain Healthy Long Hair?

Growing our hair out, especially past shoulder length is no easy task. Long, luscious mermaid locks may seem impossible between battling breakage and playing the waiting game. Fast hair growth products promise longer locks with instant results, but they don’t always work out the way we hope. If you’re trying to figure out how to make your hair grow faster-it’s best to take multiple steps that care for the overall health of your hair. Here’s how to give your hair growth a boost while preventing breakage and damage that keep long longs from looking shiny and healthy.

How to Eat for Hair Growth

The health of your hair can also be a reflection of your overall health. If you’re wondering how to keep your hair healthy, eating a healthy diet will give you healthy hair from the inside out. Incorporating salmon into your diet helps your hair grow faster with omega-3 fatty acids that keep your scalp healthy. Sweet potatoes are also known to be a hair growth superfood. They’re packed with beta carotene, which turns into vitamin A to promote hair growth. You’ll also want to stock up on yellow bell peppers, avocados, oysters, eggs, almonds and sunflower seeds. If you’re not able to get all the essential vitamins for hair growth through diet, there’s always another way.

While it’s always best to load up on veggies, fish and fruit, sometimes our diets aren’t perfect. Taking vitamins for hair growth is another way to help your hair grow faster. Biotin, folic acid and vitamin D (especially during the winter) are musts for those trying to grow thicker hair. Check out more vitamin suggestions for hair growth here.

How to Wash Your Hair

Maybe you’re not ready to banish shampoo altogether but don’t be afraid to skip a wash or two. The purpose of shampoo is to wash away dirt and products, but it also rinses out essential natural oils (sebum) that nourish your hair and scalp. If you have naturally fine hair that shows oil after a single skipped shampoo, try supplementing washes with dry shampoo. It can also help to build up to a no shampoo routine. Start by shampooing every other day, then work your way up to every two or three days.

While shampoo may strip your hair of natural oils, conditioner can replenish some of the oils stripped away by washing. If you’re wondering how to make hair grow faster never skip this essential step. Conditioner also helps keep your hair follicles sealed to prevent damage during styling. Try a keratin conditioner to help strengthen your hair and prevent breakage. In addition to conditioning your hair, incorporate a weekly oil mask (just apply and leave on for 30 minutes before showering) into your routine. This useful guide will help you pick the perfect oil for your hair type.

At the end of each shower, turn down the heat and rinse your hair in cold water for 30 seconds to a minute. Cold water helps your hair lay more smoothly and sets the outer layer. This simple step can help your hair retain moisture and prevent tangles and heat damage.

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When to Cut Your Hair

If you’re looking for the fastest way to grow hair your first instinct is probably to avoid scissors. However, regular trims will become your best friend. Split ends will work their way up your strands, which causes breakage further up your locks. You can avoid that breakage by trimming your hair regularly. It will also keep your hair looking healthy as it grows out. When you notice your ends feeling coarse, or looking fried, it’s time for a trim.

How to Avoid Damage

Coloring you hair strips your hair of moisture and causes breakage, especially if you’re going lighter than your natural color. If you can just stop dying your hair and embrace your natural color. If you’re hooked on dye, then spend the extra money to go to a professional colorist and avoid boxed dyes. A professional stylist’s training and higher quality dyes will reduce the amount of damage.

Switching out the cotton pillowcase can also help prevent breakage while you’re trying to grow your hair. A silk or satin pillowcase has a softer surface that doesn’t have as much friction as cotton. That means fewer tangles when you wake up in the morning too! If that wasn’t enough to sell you on a silk pillowcase, sleeping on silk can also reduce wrinkles and help prevent breakouts.

Just like cotton pillowcases, ponytails can cause friction that damage your hair. Never use a metal clasp ponytail holder and try to switch up where you tie up your hair.

Another key step for reducing damage and promoting hair growth is to ditch the heat, or at least reduce it. While you may not be able to avoid your blow dryer or curling iron entirely, make sure your styling tools are set to the lowest heat setting and use a heat protectant. Also, embrace your natural hair’s texture or wear your hair in braids, buns and ponytails a few times a week to help wean yourself off the styling tools. Heat quickly damages your hair and will deter growth.

How to Brush Your Hair

It may seem counter intuitive but gently brushing your hair from bottom to top can save your strands from damage. When you’re brushing wet hair, this method is essential, since wet hair is more prone to breakage. Start at the ends of your hair and work your way up to your scalp to prevent tangles from turning into knots. If you brush your hair when it’s dry, you can start at the scalp. For added benefits, grab a boar bristle brush to distribute your scalp’s oils all the way down your hair.

How to Survive the Waiting Game

At the end of the day, the most important step for hair growth is time. Hair will only grow a quarter of an inch to half an inch a month. It can be frustrating to wait when you’re trying to figure out how to make your hair grow faster but try to enjoy each step along the way. Don’t deprive yourself of professional haircuts to keep your hair looking its best at each stage of growth and try out new styles. There are plenty of choices to choose from in each stage of your hair growth process. Try keeping a physical hair journal with pictures of your progress, or use the Hair Journal app to snap shots of your hair at each stage of growth and keep track of products that work for you.