In the cyber world, there are several concoctions and magical serums floating around that promise to swiftly grow your hair to great lengths. I'm not in the position to review any of them...not even Boundless Tresses, which I used intermittently for 2 weeks. I believe that growth happens from the inside out. Obviously, we can't override our genes, but we can MOST CERTAINLY maximize our growing potential!
The truth is, TLC and patience are the only sure things. However, from my personal experiences, I've learned that the following were correlated with faster than average (and/or healthier) hair growth:
- Physical Exercise - Running or any other moderate/high intensity exercise (yay for Cardio) increases the blood flow to your scalp. Increased blood flow means that more nutrients are brought to your hair follicle. I purchased a treadmill last year, and used it regularly for 5 months. I'd put in a Deep Treatment (DT), don a plastic cap, and walk briskly (I don't run, lol) for 30-45 minutes, 3 days a week. Killed two birds with one stone! Between the cardio, and the frequent DTs, my hair flourished!
- Healthy Diet - Hair consists of protein, so it is essential that you consume enough. Incorporate foods from all the groups - especially protein. Nuts, poultry, vegetables, fruits, grains, eggs, etc. All contribute to healthy, growing hair.
- Dietary Supplements - Biotin and MSM are ingredients every hair vitamin should contain. Biotin promotes cell growth, the production of fatty acids, and metabolism of fats. MSM lengthens the hair growth phase (which means that you keep more hair on your head). Using a combination of the two is beneficial for healthy hair. This winning combo, plus a quality multivitamin will definitely aid in the hair growing process.
- Henna - If you do a search for 'henna + hair growth' on the hennaforhair.com forum, you'll see that many women truly believe that henna has resulted in increased hair growth. I'm a believer too! My jump from shoulder length to APL last year was directly preceded by my first henna applications. Some ladies think that the actual process of applying henna stimulates the scalp (which we now know, aids in hair growth)., while others believe that the anti-fungal properties of it actually promote a healthier scalp. One could argue that henna stretches the curl, and gives the illusion of longer hair....whatever the mechanisms are, for me, it produced faster hair growth.
- Scalp Massages - Nightly scalp massages (with castor oil, believed to promote growth as well) increase blood flow to the scalp and hair follicles. 5 minutes should suffice.
Of course, hair growth is nothing without an understanding of retention. Protective styling, moisturizing and sealing, frequent deep treatments, and delicate handling all aid in retaining the length you've worked so hard for!