Mayday! Curly Intervention Needed!

Well, here it goes. This is a wee bit long. :P

I've had "long" hair all my life. Currently, it's at my bra clasp when straight, middle of my shoulderblades when wet, and hovering just above my shoulders when dry. Shrinkage is a part of curly life...this I understand. What I don't understand is why I look at pictures of me in the 8th grade, pictures of me as a Senior in high school, pictures of me now (just turned 25)...and my hair is more or less the same length. No drastic cuts, no health or stress issues, and I give my hair plenty of TLC and use all the right products. I get my hair blowdried straight maybe 2-3 times a year and don't use chemicals. Yet, it's stunted. I get my eyebrows threaded and, within 2 weeks, I need to get them done again. My nails have no problem growing. I'm like Teen Wolf everywhere else but the top of my head. It's frustratinmg to see friends who have chopped their hair off in
the past 5 years, and for it to now be longer than mine.

So here's my plan: I want to cut it. Short. Shorter than it's ever been. I want to SEE my hair grow. See if it CAN grow past its current length. If it can't/won't grow any further, I'll just resign myself to the fact that I'll be stuck at this length forever. Sound like a crazy idea?

If I were to do this, does anyone have any salon recommendations for such an undertaking? I'm 15 minutes away from Manhattan, so I have access to the Devachans and the Ouidads and the Miss Jessies. I don't think I can trust a non-curly salon for this kind of job. Any specific stylists I should think about seeing? Also, how far in advance should I book my appointment/consultation?

Thanks so much, my curly compadres!


3b/c fine corkscrews and spirals. Naked hair above.


Wash: Elucence Moisture Balancing Shampoo
Condish: Shescentit Avocado/Honey Rinse
Moisture DT: Silk Dreams Vanilla Silk, Crece Pelo
Protein DT: Shescentit Okra Hair Repair Reconstructor
Leave-Ins: Shescentit Coco Creme, Darcy's Botanicals Sweet Cocoa Bean, Aubrey Organics Primrose Spray
Stylers: Aubrey Organics B-5, Shea Moisture Curly Souffle


Subject to change!
Cutting your hair will do nothing but change your style and will not improve your chances to grow your hair longer. It is a fact that not everyone can grow their hair to "limitless" length. Maximum length of hair is pre-determined by our genes, that means that once each individual hair reaches that length it goes dormant and eventually falls to be replaced by a new hair.

However, sometimes due to insufficient nutrition our hair can't reach all of its growth potential so I would advice that instead of cutting your hair you try to improve your nutrition by taking extra protein and including growth promoting supplements and also massaging your scalp twice daily so that improved circulation can deliver those nutrients to your follicles. It may very well be that you may have been a little short on some key nutrients for years and that prevented your hair from growing more, I've heard enough stories of people whose hair started growing faster after they embarked on a program so I think it's worth a try. If you've never taken supplements and that would be your next question, since the topic of hair growth comes up practically every week, I want to suggest that you please do some searches or look on the old pages so you can find past recommendations rather than starting another thread.
2A/3A, medium length, layered, colored dark/medium ash blonde - "CGer" since April '02.

"Converting the 'curlskeptics' one curly head at a time..." HWHC
I agree with HalfWavy -- cutting your hair short seems like overreacting!

Look at it this way. Say your hair grows half an inch per month -- that's considered average. Bra-strap-length hair is probably about 20 inches long at least. That would mean your longest hairs are almost 4 years old. For you, that may be how long your hairs last before naturally falling out. Your hair is still growing, but you don't see an increase in length.

Keeping your hair healthy as HalfWavy suggested would be a better approach, I think.
I wouldn't go as far as to drastically cut your hair!

Why not try a product that can help with hair growth. There is this new one that I recently got introduced to that has been getting a lot of raves off of another hair board. Here's the link:

"Boundless Tresses Growth Serum"
http://growthspecifics.com/index/html
"Curls Tester"
Products in my current regime: Nioxin Scalp Therapy Shampoo, ORS Replenishing Pak, Curls Whipped Cream, Curls Souffle, Curls Spiral Curls Cream, Curls Milkshake, Curls Quenched, BB(Bonner Brothers) Growth Lotion
However, sometimes due to insufficient nutrition our hair can't reach all of its growth potential so I would advice that instead of cutting your hair you try to improve your nutrition by taking extra protein and including growth promoting supplements and also massaging your scalp twice daily so that improved circulation can deliver those nutrients to your follicles. It may very well be that you may have been a little short on some key nutrients for years and that prevented your hair from growing more, I've heard enough stories of people whose hair started growing faster after they embarked on a program so I think it's worth a try.
Originally Posted by HalfWavyHalfCurly
Definitely sound (and practical) advice. I've taken a multi-vitamin and GNC Ultra Nourishair sporadically, but found it hard to commit to a schedule. During the past 3 weeks or so, I've miraculously been taking the vitamins daily. I also purchased a Rosemary hair/scalp oil via "From Nature With Love" and JASON Thin-To-Thick scalp elixer...but again, I only remember to massage my scalp every once in awhile. I'm going to try my darndest to see what happens when I stick to a DAILY scalp ritual and continue taking my vitamins.

Perhaps I should pull out a strand and measure it every other month to see if I've made any progress.

SYB - I'm definitely going to look into that serum.


3b/c fine corkscrews and spirals. Naked hair above.


Wash: Elucence Moisture Balancing Shampoo
Condish: Shescentit Avocado/Honey Rinse
Moisture DT: Silk Dreams Vanilla Silk, Crece Pelo
Protein DT: Shescentit Okra Hair Repair Reconstructor
Leave-Ins: Shescentit Coco Creme, Darcy's Botanicals Sweet Cocoa Bean, Aubrey Organics Primrose Spray
Stylers: Aubrey Organics B-5, Shea Moisture Curly Souffle


Subject to change!
A supplement that is very effective for improving hair growth is silica. A specific brand I've tried myself (and other people here) is Kal's Super Silica Plus with MSM.

They say it takes 3 weeks to form a new habit but sometimes we can do it in less. If you make yourself post it notes and stick them where you will see them to remind you to take your supplements and massage your hair even just once a day, before you know it you'll get used to it.

This is only a suggestion but an alternative to pulling strands to measure new growth could be to put on a mild hair coloring (such as Colorsilk) in a slightly lighter or warmer shade than your own, that way the new growth would become immediately visible. By making only a small change you would not really cause damage to your hair (especially if you do regular DTs) and you could promptly return it to your natural color at any time with one brief re-application of a color similar to your own, once hair has been colored it only takes 5-10 mins. for permanent color to develop in the already treated hair.
2A/3A, medium length, layered, colored dark/medium ash blonde - "CGer" since April '02.

"Converting the 'curlskeptics' one curly head at a time..." HWHC
This is only a suggestion but an alternative to pulling strands to measure new growth could be to put on a mild hair coloring (such as Colorsilk) in a slightly lighter or warmer shade than your own, that way the new growth would become immediately visible.
Originally Posted by HalfWavyHalfCurly
Mindread, much?

I've ALSO had the idea to tint my hair to see if roots come in. That way, I can see that my hair IS actually growing, but that it's just not retaining length. I've noticed that I do have individual strands with knots/ bulbs on the end, and I recall hearing that this can indicate damage or split ends. Splits will continue up the hair shaft if they're not trimmed, so that could be my problem. In any event, I find it hard to believe that barely shoulder length curly hair is all my hair is capable of!


I'm definitely going to look into the Kal's supplement. I looked into it last year, but opted for the GNC Nourishair instead, for some reason.


3b/c fine corkscrews and spirals. Naked hair above.


Wash: Elucence Moisture Balancing Shampoo
Condish: Shescentit Avocado/Honey Rinse
Moisture DT: Silk Dreams Vanilla Silk, Crece Pelo
Protein DT: Shescentit Okra Hair Repair Reconstructor
Leave-Ins: Shescentit Coco Creme, Darcy's Botanicals Sweet Cocoa Bean, Aubrey Organics Primrose Spray
Stylers: Aubrey Organics B-5, Shea Moisture Curly Souffle


Subject to change!
I suggest that you give those ends a lot of TLC. The night before every wash you should gently rub them with a good vegetable oil and every now and then you should use a protein DT all over your hair, if your ends break off you could be "losing" length to breakage, but I imagine you would've seen bits of hair lying on your sink and such. Anyway, this is a good time for you to rally together all the good resources of gentle hair care to give your hair the best chance to reveal its true potential for you. Take a "stroll" over to the Recipe section and experiment with the nourishing recipes made with natural ingredients, they're inexpensive and very helpful.

I don't know if you've already been to the "Growing Out" section but that's another place to get support and ideas in your quest for longer hair. I really wish you success in this endeavor.
2A/3A, medium length, layered, colored dark/medium ash blonde - "CGer" since April '02.

"Converting the 'curlskeptics' one curly head at a time..." HWHC
I agree with what the others posted Another note, I don't think anyone said this, but if your hair grows a half inch per month and you get a half inch trim each month, or an inch trim every 2 months (some people do this), it won't grow. (That's with no "drastic" cuts.) Hair typically grows about that much. If you got a trim every 6 months or year instead and trim off 2 inches, it would grow longer slowly but surely. About 6 inches a year is average.

~ Always naturally lazy and curly! ~

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That is a really good point lazykerri brought up. A lot of "experts" love to recommend trims that are much too frequent but in reality such frequent trims are only necessary to maintain the SHAPE of any particular haircut a person wants to keep, or when a person already has damaged hair. If a person intends to let their hair grow trims can very well spaced out much and good care given to the older ends to keep them in good shape.
2A/3A, medium length, layered, colored dark/medium ash blonde - "CGer" since April '02.

"Converting the 'curlskeptics' one curly head at a time..." HWHC
I'm in the same boat but I after reading all the replies... I'm sure this is what is going on with mine... I too looked at old pics of me. In college I had waist length hair! I don't recall getting frequent trims. Maybe only once a year.
Then YEARS later, I got it cut short and kept up with trims every 8 weeks. I also told people, my hair won't grow past the length that it's at - above shoulder length. BUT, I was getting a typical trim. Where they wet hair down and pull it straight and take off a half inch. DUH! There goes any growith. I had my hair lightened last summer and my hair does grow because the root grew back very dark. I got about a half inch growth a month. But no length because of the trims.
I found a pic of me from about 3 years ago where my hair was getting length. I was going to a stylist who cut like the devachan trims -- she just sculpted the curls. I was getting disappointed in her cutting because I felt the sides and top were getting too heavy and I couldn't talk her into giving me shorter layers so.... I go to a typical salon and they really butchered my hair!
I had VERY short layers (like I asked) but my hair is fine and thin and I looked like I had very little hair. I cried for days over that one!
I haven't been happy with my hair for the past year and I finally found another stylist who trained with Lorraine at Devachan and she explained to me what she has planned for me. I went in for a trim and she sculpted the curls a bit but didn't do the typical trim.
She told me that I need to be patient and wait it out. I need to allow these shorter layers grow out. Once everything has grown out, then she can re-shape everything to the shape that I want. I'm in the horrible stage right now. I HATE my hair! I've got an appointment on Thurs. afternoon with her because the back of my hair comes to a point - much longer in the back than the sides and I feel like I have a mullet
I want to ask her if she can possibly just cut the back shorter to match up a little bit more.
I'm taking her a picture of me when I was getting my hair cut by the last devachan stylist. Because that's how I want my hair to look eventually. BUT, with a few more layers.
Did I just get off subject?? LOL.
I know my hair can grow length because I have the pics from only a few years back. I think it's very important to find a CURLY stylist tho.
Because they know that curlies need sculpting rather than the typical cut/trim that straighties get.
I called Aveda and asked if they had a curly stylist and I get this everytime I call anywhere because they want the business - so they lie. They said, "oh yes, that would be so and so. She knows curly hair." Yeah, right

I learned my lesson on that one. I've fallen for that before and they wet my hair down, stretch it out and cut like straight hair!! UGH.
Darby
PW:curlyhaired

Natural hair color - dark brunette
Fine, thinish hair/3a, 3b

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