Healthy hair But No growth!

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Hello curlies!

I am trying to get long hair (to lower back). It's more than 3 years that I can't get an inch of growth. Hair at the back of my head are 3 inches past the level of my bra but at the top of my head doesn't grow past my shoulders
So naturally my hair have 2 layers. But the long layer has a few strands

Hair are not damaged, It's more than 4 years that I gave up any kind of heat.
I was wearing them curly (CG routine) till 2011, and the last 2 years I am doing BKT every 2-3 months. I dye them every 3-4 months

I rarely see any split ends, but when I do I take care of them.
My natural hair is a 2c-3a, medium to high porosity and a mix of medium and extra thick strands.
I am kinda into bodybuilding so my nutrition is defenetely not the problem (lots of proteins, vitamins etc)


I really don't know what to do. I am dreaming of extra long hair just like this
May i suggest protective styles

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hair type: 4a VERY dense

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Go ahead!
That s what I was thinking to do, keepin my hair up on a ponytail or something...
But I love them down
you could indeed try protective styling. And also your hair will breaks more easely when you dye it. And do you do some Deep treatments and/or proteïn treatments already? I don't know about bodybuilding and hear growth, but I know bodybuilding affects the body (for example: hormones, low fat percentage), and therefore maybe the hair growth too (altough I understand you don't stop doing that just because it maybe, might have a little effect on your hair, haha).

But, it is possible that your hair will not grow so long. Everyone's hair cycle doesn't take the same amount of time. If your hair is very healthy but still doesn't grow longer then a certain point, it could be that it's just the natural, 'terminal' length of your hair (instead of breakage)
If that's the case, you could try braids to stretch your hair, you'll see the lenght better but it will be less curly. But, in my opinion your hair is very beautifull and not short at all!
highlighted 3a hair. Fine strands, medium to high density. Probably high porosity. Growing uit bad layering and aiming for waist lenght!

Pre-poo: coconut oil
wash: CJ Daily fix or SheaMoisture Coconut&Hibiscus
RO + LI: different every time
Styler: CJ Pattern Pusha, CJ CIAB

dislikes: glycerin in low dews, scissor happy stylists, magnesium sulfate

(modified) CG since june 25, 2012
Hiarfinity + extra MSM since March 5., 2014

SL - APL - BSBL- BSL - MBL - WL (stretched)
how often do you cut it?
highlighted 3a hair. Fine strands, medium to high density. Probably high porosity. Growing uit bad layering and aiming for waist lenght!

Pre-poo: coconut oil
wash: CJ Daily fix or SheaMoisture Coconut&Hibiscus
RO + LI: different every time
Styler: CJ Pattern Pusha, CJ CIAB

dislikes: glycerin in low dews, scissor happy stylists, magnesium sulfate

(modified) CG since june 25, 2012
Hiarfinity + extra MSM since March 5., 2014

SL - APL - BSBL- BSL - MBL - WL (stretched)
Hey etos! thnx for your answer!

you could indeed try protective styling. And also your hair will breaks more easely when you dye it. And do you do some Deep treatments and/or proteïn treatments already?
Originally Posted by etos
I am BKTing every 2-4 months. I think it's the best treatment I can do

I don't know about bodybuilding and hear growth, but I know bodybuilding affects the body (for example: hormones, low fat percentage), and therefore maybe the hair growth too (altough I understand you don't stop doing that just because it maybe, might have a little effect on your hair, haha).
Originally Posted by etos
haha no I m not into competitions nor drugs etc. My bf is at pretty normal percentages so do my hormones. I just mentioned it to make clear that I have a "hair-friendly" diet so this could not be the problem in any case

But, it is possible that your hair will not grow so long. Everyone's hair cycle doesn't take the same amount of time. If your hair is very healthy but still doesn't grow longer then a certain point, it could be that it's just the natural, 'terminal' length of your hair (instead of breakage)
If that's the case, you could try braids to stretch your hair, you'll see the lenght better but it will be less curly. But, in my opinion your hair is very beautifull and not short at all!
Hmmm..the fact is that I seldom see any split ends so this is how I determine my hair is healthy. But when they grow they don't grow evenly.
I mean, the ends get more thin as they get longer although my hair strands are pretty thick from root to end
This is why I said above that it s like I have 2 natural layers whilst I never cut it that way
how often do you cut it?
Originally Posted by etos
It depends. Just when I start seeing split ends. (once every 3-5 months)
Hey there guys
I decided to start a hair "challenge" because I can't really see "quality" growth.

My hair is pretty healthy, BUT my ends are VERY thin, can't really explain why. It seems like I get breakage, but my hair strands are very thick and coarse to be prone to breakage.
Maybe because of keratin treatments?? But how so... it feels SO damn healthy every time I bkt.
My hair routine doesn't include any heat styling (only blowdrying till 50% wet), I co-wash, use oils, sulfate-free shampoos etc.
I dye once every 3-4 months and I BKT every 2-3 months.
I only trim my very few split ends once every 5-6 months cause I don't really get any.

However my hair is SO uneven. It is close to my belly button, but it's not nearly as thick as it is at my shoulder level.
That's why I use clip ins, to appear thicker.

So, What I decided to do for the next 8 months, is to keep it always in a ponytail braid while sealing the ends avoiding any kind of manipulation.


I ordered a ponytail extension to at least look long-haired during my challenge.
Do u concider polytails as a protective style?

Last edited by Bruchilda; 12-18-2013 at 05:57 AM.
I couldn't help but notice you saying your hair 'feels' healthy when you do a BKT. I have to admit that I don't know much about these treatments except that they straighten hair. I felt the same way about my hair when I used to use no-lye relaxers but it was the silky smooth feeling I associated with health. Not necessarily health. I also in order to have good growth had to cut about an eighth to a quarter inch of hair off the very ends every 6-8 weeks. This may be the solution for you with what you're saying about your ends too.

As for ponytails they can be protective if you don't put too much stress on your hair. I would try adding a pre-poo to your routine to see if that helps your hair too. Another CT member, bringincurliesback?, regularly uses oil on her coarse hair to seal in moisture. This is also a solution is you'd be willing to try it.

Sent from my SCH-I200 using CurlTalk App
3C/4A Fine texture, low porosity, low/medium density? Trying CG since Dec. 2013
Shampoo: Curl's Creamy Curl Cleanser or clarifying shampoo when needed.
Co-wash: Curl's coconut curlada
Deep Condition: Experimenting in the kitchen
oil: flaxseed and coconut for treatments
Styler: Tresemme conditioner, alone or mixed together with aloe vera gel
Sealer: aloe vera juice
I forgot to mention, with my hair personally if I waited until I saw split ends for hair cuts I never saw much growth. Just that tiny dusting and within less than a year I had thicker looking hair ends that got past shoulder length in less than a year. I'm just learning the same is true too for my natural hair. Just a thought to consider.

Sent from my SCH-I200 using CurlTalk App
3C/4A Fine texture, low porosity, low/medium density? Trying CG since Dec. 2013
Shampoo: Curl's Creamy Curl Cleanser or clarifying shampoo when needed.
Co-wash: Curl's coconut curlada
Deep Condition: Experimenting in the kitchen
oil: flaxseed and coconut for treatments
Styler: Tresemme conditioner, alone or mixed together with aloe vera gel
Sealer: aloe vera juice
BKT is the Brazilian Keratin Treatment, right? If that's not the case, ignore what I'm about to say lol, but if it is:

Back when I was getting the YUKO straightening treatment done, after my hair would feel soft & silky & shiny & healthy. It really wasn't though. I think it feels that way because straighter hair is smoother; there are less frizzy parts and the hair itself is smoothed and not 'crinkled'. So the hair feeling healthy could just be an illusion. Straightening treatments are damaging, there's no way around that. I know BKT contains damaging chemicals (including formaldehyde), which is never good. Plus, you seem to use this treatment A LOT - every 2 months is quite regular to be putting chemicals in your hair.

If your ends alone are very thin, this could be a sign of damage from chemicals used in BKT. This article may help you on why your ends are thinning and what to do :
What Causes Thinning Hair Ends and How You Can Prevent Them - Yahoo Voices - voices.yahoo.com

Your hair also may have just reached its terminal length, which sucks if you really want to grow it longer, but if that is the case I don't think there's much that can be done. You said it was down to your belly button though? That's pretty long already!
Allie

3A with some 3B thrown in. Medium porosity.


Pre-poo: Organic Virgin Coconut Oil
Low-poo: SM Coconut & Hibiscus / ElastaQP Créme Conditioning
Conditioner:
Experimenting to find a new staple
D/C: Giovanni 2chic Avocado & Olive Oil Ultra Moist Deep Moisture Mask

Leave-in: My DNA
Styler: Ouidad Climate Control Heat & Humidity


UK curly. CG since October 2013.
Aiming for WL curls (eventually)
Thanks for your answers guys!
Brazilian keratin treatments are NOT straighteners/relaxers. They are supposed to replenish keratin in hair and restore moisture while keeping curls looser. Yes they contain f/hyde but this is to keep the keratin molecules linked to hair strands.

Fact is that even when I was not BKTing I had the same super uneven growth. BKTs do speed up my growth I believe. I have naturally curly/coarse/dry hair. Here is a pic of my hair to see what I m talking about

keep in mind I m 5ft 8" tall

I stopped trimming when I realized that this is how it grows, no matter what. So now I just trim whenever I see split ends.
I havent tried any protective style, to tell the truth all these years.
But I remember 8 years before, I was always keeping my hair in ponytails and I had super thick hair at this length. But then I was 14 years old

BoticcelliBrit Thanks for the article, very usefull

Last edited by Bruchilda; 12-18-2013 at 06:32 PM.
I'm glad the article helped!

Looking at the picture I can see what you mean and, if I'm honest, I'd recommend a good cut. I think you just need to chop it all off and start again.

By 'all' I don't mean literally ALL lol. Just maybe to shoulder-length or where you can see your hair is starting to thin. I don't think there is a way you can really fix thin ends, only ways to try and prevent them from occurring, so a good cut might be in your best interest so you can start fresh.
Allie

3A with some 3B thrown in. Medium porosity.


Pre-poo: Organic Virgin Coconut Oil
Low-poo: SM Coconut & Hibiscus / ElastaQP Créme Conditioning
Conditioner:
Experimenting to find a new staple
D/C: Giovanni 2chic Avocado & Olive Oil Ultra Moist Deep Moisture Mask

Leave-in: My DNA
Styler: Ouidad Climate Control Heat & Humidity


UK curly. CG since October 2013.
Aiming for WL curls (eventually)
NO WAY i m cutting my hair SL hahahhaha
I ll do whatever else, anything but cutting more than 1"! :P


Like I said ends are relatevily healthy. I don't mind if they look crap right now because they blend very well with my clip ins and they look very very natural (when I let hair down). If I cut them I won't be able to wear my exte anymore, they'd look fake and I look just horrible with short hair. No, no ,no I refuse to use again any kind of scissors

I ll wait till they get longer (IF) even with those creepy ends, I don't mind as long as they are healthy and do not affect the rest of the hair.
I just hope protective styling is going to work this time.
I totally understand about not cutting to shoulder length, but I did also notice that you aren't doing any deep conditioning treatments other than BKT. Are you open to changing this portion of your routine? Even just once a month could really baby those older, thin ends- you can choose a store bought conditioner or mix one up yourself, or even try a hot oil treatment. I love how blissful hot oil treatments feel on my scalp and hair.

I had mentioned before but thought it was worth a shot again- have you ruled out pre-poos? That can be an option if you are worried about deep conditioning treatments being too heavy. My first one consisted of leaving coconut oil saturating my hair on overnight, then went through my normal wash routine in the morning. I slept with a plastic cap on and a scarf over that so my pillow didn't get oily. It left my hair soft, shiny, and I hardly needed to detangle at all. I've heard this from others too- and I've also heard others having similar results with as little as a 30 minute treatment. I have low porosity hair so I figured I should take the 8 hour plunge- with you dying your hair I would guess your cuticles would be open enough to go on the shorter end. However, if I were you I wouldn't take my word as gold, seeing as I don't know your hair like you do.

Which makes me wonder, have you or do you sleep on a satin/silk pillowcase or in some way protect your hair while sleeping? (like in a pineapple, under a satin/silk bonnet, or in a single braid) Good luck with everything, it is frustrating trying to find the right routine but hopefully worth it in the end!
3C/4A Fine texture, low porosity, low/medium density? Trying CG since Dec. 2013
Shampoo: Curl's Creamy Curl Cleanser or clarifying shampoo when needed.
Co-wash: Curl's coconut curlada
Deep Condition: Experimenting in the kitchen
oil: flaxseed and coconut for treatments
Styler: Tresemme conditioner, alone or mixed together with aloe vera gel
Sealer: aloe vera juice

Last edited by lori.mattox; 12-19-2013 at 06:40 AM. Reason: wanted to add/fix typo
L.M thank you, I was about to ask you in my previous post but I managed to forget it lol

I totally understand about not cutting to shoulder length, but I did also notice that you aren't doing any deep conditioning treatments other than BKT. Are you open to changing this portion of your routine? Even just once a month could really baby those older, thin ends- you can choose a store bought conditioner or mix one up yourself, or even try a hot oil treatment. I love how blissful hot oil treatments feel on my scalp and hair.
Originally Posted by lori.mattox
YES daaaaaaamn I ve been trying the first whole year I was in CG method.
I tried sleeping in hair masks, hot coconut oil treatments, sleeping in coconut oil etc. I purchased a few organic oils for those treatments but I REALLY didn't see ANY difference, so I gave up. Too much effort for nothing. (High porosity hair btw)

MAybe there is something else I did not try?
How do you deep condition?
After one whole year I dicovered BKTs and I didnt feel the need to do anything else than that..
Dunno

I had mentioned before but thought it was worth a shot again- have you ruled out pre-poos? That can be an option if you are worried about deep conditioning treatments being too heavy. My first one consisted of leaving coconut oil saturating my hair on overnight, then went through my normal wash routine in the morning. I slept with a plastic cap on and a scarf over that so my pillow didn't get oily. It left my hair soft, shiny, and I hardly needed to detangle at all. I've heard this from others too- and I've also heard others having similar results with as little as a 30 minute treatment. I have low porosity hair so I figured I should take the 8 hour plunge- with you dying your hair I would guess your cuticles would be open enough to go on the shorter end. However, if I were you I wouldn't take my word as gold, seeing as I don't know your hair like you do.
Hmmm, just like oil treatments? What I do is keeping my ends sealed with oil and once a week super oiling them for about 2-hours before I get in the shower.... can't really tell if this works, sometimes I just get buildups, sometimes it does feel softer.
I ve found an excellent dry oil and I put it constantly but I wouldnt use it for prepooing because it is expensive

Which makes me wonder, have you or do you sleep on a satin/silk pillowcase or in some way protect your hair while sleeping? (like in a pineapple, under a satin/silk bonnet, or in a single braid) Good luck with everything, it is frustrating trying to find the right routine but hopefully worth it in the end!
Truth is I don't sleep on a satin pillowcase but I do braid my hair before I sleep

Last edited by Bruchilda; 12-19-2013 at 07:43 AM.
I have recently started trying the CG method so I'm still trying to figure out deep conditioning treatments since my previous treatment had silicones. Today, I tried a flaxseed oil, greek yogurt, and some of my conditioner that I style with. It made my hair feel very nice, and I even shampooed it. This usually does not happen (the shampoo or hair feeling nice afterwards), but I had tried a scalp massage and my hair felt icky so I was going to shampoo anyway. I'm learning my hair definitely prefers creamier deep conditioning treatments to oilier ones- and from what you are saying didn't work for you it sounds to me like your hair might too.

A few weeks ago I tried Iagirls protein treatment with half a packet of gelatin, mayo, apple cider vinegar, flaxseed oil, aloe vera juice, and honey. I liked it but the mayo smell was waaay too much for me. I also added conditioner on top of the concoction b/c my hair was feeling rough after I put on the gelatin. I tried this one b/c I have fine textured hair and my old deep conditioner had protein. It was ORS replenishing pac- It was so moisturizing that I never had any problems with too much protein while using it. (Then my hair would be hard later, until I shampooed again, etc. but that's another story, lols) If you're not sticking strictly to CG, it's worth a shot. Another one that I haven't repurchased yet, but liked was the Curls Hair Tea Ecstasy deep conditioner. I really like flaxseed oil on my hair because if I don't overuse it it's not too heavy on my hair. That heaviness is what I didn't like about coconut oil for a styler.

That has to help your hair to have it in a braid at night....I sleep on my satin case but I can't tell if it's making a huge difference. I was also thinking about protective styles, buns are good protective styles also, or anything that has your ends tucked up and away. So a braid or braids that are pinned up off of your neck are good, and sock buns would be good to give the look of volume to your length.
3C/4A Fine texture, low porosity, low/medium density? Trying CG since Dec. 2013
Shampoo: Curl's Creamy Curl Cleanser or clarifying shampoo when needed.
Co-wash: Curl's coconut curlada
Deep Condition: Experimenting in the kitchen
oil: flaxseed and coconut for treatments
Styler: Tresemme conditioner, alone or mixed together with aloe vera gel
Sealer: aloe vera juice
Skimming through the thread I read over and over again that your hair is healthy when all the evidence points to the contrary. Keratin straightening uses very high heat which is damaging, permanent hair dye is also damaging, blow drying is damaging if you use a brush on wet hair, clip in extensioms are damaging if used more than occasionally, your ends are thin and refuse to gain length. Splits are only one sort of visible damage, hair can break off mid shaft without splitting at the ends.

Ponytails are not protective styles, they too can cause damage at the site of the band or traction alopecia. Protective styles mean the delicate ends are tucked away, there is no strain on one part of the hair. An example is a loose bun using Spin Pins or braid that wraps around the head.

Proven beneficial ingredients for damaged hair include coconut oil (overnight soaks on dry hair), hydrolysed protein, ceramides, 18-MEA and panthenol. Understand that hair is dead so cannot be permanently repaired: perseverance is essential over months or years, there is no such thing as a quick fix. Only use super gentle secures for up dos like Spin Pins, satin ribbon, beak clips, hair sticks, scrunchies, terry cotton ponios.

You might consider a hair analysis from Komaza Care or Goosefootprints on Etsy, these use microscopy so can see how much damage you have including the condition of your ends, plus scientifically measure your hair properties and recommend ingredients. I know Komaza Care recommend a specific amount of length to be trimmed if the ends are fried beyond saving: that way you know you are only trimming what is essential.
hippiechic81, Jimipe and aspen like this.
2a-2c, medium texture, porous/ colour treated. Three years CG. Past bra strap length heading for waist.

CO-wash: Inecto coconut/ Elvive Volume Collagen
Treatments: Komaza Care Matani, coconut/ sweet almond/ fractionated coconut oils, Hairveda Sitrinillah
Leave in: Fructis Sleek & Shine (old), Gliss Ultimate Volume, various Elvive
Styler: Umberto Giannini jelly, Au Naturale styling gelee
Flour sack towel, pixie diffuse or air dry.
Experimenting with: benign neglect

Last edited by Firefox7275; 12-20-2013 at 10:56 AM.
Probably ur right... It's just that for years my hair felt so dry and coarse, was so frizzy and unmanagable and finally, the last 3 years after so much care, is so soft, shiny and stuff... that's why I concider it "healthy"

how can clip ins cause damage?
When I say I blow dry, I mean I just use the hair dryer on my roots to get some volume and let the rest air dry

How often could I color dye to prevent damage? Are there any less harsh hair dyes? Or should I completely give up coloring?
Btw I dont bleach, I always keep it blue black

AS for the keratin treatment, yes heat is indeed damaging but the product is supposed to protect the hair during the process and keep the hair "sealed" for the following months that stays on it... Could 4 heat applications a year cause such a damage?
Probably ur right... It's just that for years my hair felt so dry and coarse, was so frizzy and unmanagable and finally, the last 3 years after so much care, is so soft, shiny and stuff... that's why I concider it "healthy"

how can clip ins cause damage?
When I say I blow dry, I mean I just use the hair dryer on my roots to get some volume and let the rest air dry

How often could I color dye to prevent damage? Are there any less harsh hair dyes? Or should I completely give up coloring?
Btw I dont bleach, I always keep it blue black

AS for the keratin treatment, yes heat is indeed damaging but the product is supposed to protect the hair during the process and keep the hair "sealed" for the following months that stays on it... Could 4 heat applications a year cause such a damage?
Originally Posted by Bruchilda
Don't confuse aesthetics with health, weaker hair an be softer hair, many ingredients can coat the surface disguising damage. Also damage can be internal, external or both - you can only see and feel the outside.

Clip ins mechanicalky damage the cuticle where you apply the clips, these can also drag on the hair if you snag it on your chair seat or clothing, also the weight can pull on the hair.

Permanent hair dye contains peroxide (even dark colours) and is usually alkaline: both are damaging. Only ever do roots ideally over coconut oil or after a hydrolysed protein treatment (wheat or soy) never 'refresh the lengths. If the colour fades use a high pigment semi on the lengths, something like Manic Panic.

One single use of a high temperature flat iron can cause irreparable damage through literally melting the structural proteins or 'bubble hair' (water in hair turning to steam and bursting out): that nonsense about keratin straightening being beneficial to hair is marketing nonsense. Most stylists know little about hair science and care even less about hair health.

In general it is possible to do one damaging thing to hair whilst growing to very long, providing you baby the hair the rest of the time (very gentle handling, daily protective up dos, the right product ingredients, stretching washes etc). You may find it useful to join the Long Hair Community or UnTamed Tresses and learn what ultra long hairs do.

Finally sorry if this sounds preachy, you may note from my signature that I have grown out mechanical and chemical damage. I honestly didn't think I was bad since I never heat styled, totally underestimated fiddling with my hair, daily ponytails and how 'refreshing' the colour for five minutes each time adds up.
2a-2c, medium texture, porous/ colour treated. Three years CG. Past bra strap length heading for waist.

CO-wash: Inecto coconut/ Elvive Volume Collagen
Treatments: Komaza Care Matani, coconut/ sweet almond/ fractionated coconut oils, Hairveda Sitrinillah
Leave in: Fructis Sleek & Shine (old), Gliss Ultimate Volume, various Elvive
Styler: Umberto Giannini jelly, Au Naturale styling gelee
Flour sack towel, pixie diffuse or air dry.
Experimenting with: benign neglect
thank you thank you thank you. Your post was very usefull to me
I tried to think honestly all of my habits.

Many times I slept in my clip ins feeling my scalp itsing and hurting where the clips were attached. Every time I color dyed I left the dye on my lengths for about 30 minutes (which is waaay too much)... Sometimes I overdid with keratin treatmets, I remember doing 2 treatments in a month.
But I just thought it was beneficial..
Till recently I was sleeping with my hair down, not braided....

And I dont even want to remember what I was doing to my hair 5 years ago hahahah.

Not really sure if those are enough to hinder so much my growth, but I ll figure that out the following months

From now on I ve decided to keep my hair up and braided at least 6 days a week, no clip ins, no styling, just conditioning and oiling.
My last color treatment was on october. I ll try to do my next coloring on March. I m black haired naturally anyways.

I just can't give up keratin treatments, damn....
My hair feels soooo f***ng amazing. Last treatment I did on 1/11. Hopefully I ll do my next on march as well

I ll try to keep this thread posted with my progress
I ll DEFENETELY bookmark those 2 forums u mentioned

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