If you’d like to grow healthier hair faster without the use of expensive, toxin filled products, then this is the article for you!
While growing your hair out may at first seem too difficult or expensive, there are several simple and all natural tricks for getting that long, lustrous mane that you’ve always wanted.
1. Go Sulfate-free
Sulfates are compounds derived from sulfuric acid which are found in most commercial shampoos. Companies add these harmful components so their products will create pretty suds when applied and lathered into your hair. Unfortunately, those same sulfates strip away vital natural oils that keep your hair healthy and strong. The result? Dry, brittle strands that appear dull and break easily. Most stylists today will tell you that a good sulfate-free shampoo is the first step to longer, healthier-looking hair. Alternately, there are a number of recipes for making your own all natural hair cleanser.
2. Shampoo Less Frequently
Sure, we like the feeling of a clean scalp. Especially after playing outside, going for a jog, or working up a sweat at the gym, who doesn’t want to bathe and wash the sweat and grime from their hair? Understandable as that may be, try to reduce your hair’s exposure to shampoo. Two to three times a week should be enough for most people. If you must shampoo every day, make sure you are using a gentle shampoo (free of sulfates, of course) and follow-up with a good natural moisturizer such as jojoba or almond oil.
3. Don’t Style Wet Hair
Wet hair is brittle and far more susceptible to damage from brushing or styling, especially if you use heat as with a blow dryer or flat iron. Let your hair air dry whenever possible to avoid unnecessary breakage. If you absolutely must brush your hair right after washing, use a wide-tooth comb or hair pick. Blow dry with a diffuser if you need it and use the lowest heat setting (or no heat!) Also, irons with ceramic plates are easier on your hair than plastic. They may cost more, but in the long run you will see a marked improvement in the health and appearance of your lovely locks.
4. Protect Your Hair
There are many external factors that can lead to unhealthy hair and scalp. When you go outside, wear a scarf or apply a natural UV protectant to keep the sun’s harmful rays from damaging your hair.
Try to avoid swimming pools full of chlorine or other harsh chemicals. Wear a hair cap if you do go swimming to shield your hair from harmful chemicals. Also, avoid rubber hair bands or those with metal clasps which might pull out or break your hair when removed. Similarly, pulling your hair too tight into a braid or tail can be damaging. The best approach is the most simple: Wear it down and show off your healthy mane.
5. Stay Away From Dyes
Even if they claim to be made from natural ingredients and easy on your hair, most hair dyes contain chemicals such as hydrogen peroxide or ammonia which are detrimental to healthy hair. There are many natural solutions to coloring your hair or covering up grey such as tea, henna, and amla.
6. Trim Regularly
It may sound counter-productive, but frequent trimming of split ends will actually help your hair grow longer faster. Split ends cause breakage and, if left unchecked, will travel upward weakening your hair and causing it to frizz. How often to trim depends on your hair type. Dry hair will need to be trimmed about every 4 – 6 weeks. As your hair becomes healthier and more vital, you may be able to go 2 – 3 months between trims. Just remember not to trim off too much hair. About a quarter inch at each trimming should do the trick.
7. Eat More Protein
It’s true that we are what we eat and the same goes for your hair. Hair is built primarily of the protein keratin, so it makes sense to assume that those swaying locks you’ve always dreamed of will require you to ramp up your protein intake to grow longer and stronger. If your hair is thin and breaks easily due to day-to-day wear and tear, try adding more protein rich foods such as fish, almonds, soy, fat free yogurt, or lean poultry to your diet.
8. Add Biotin to Your List
Biotin – a B vitamin found naturally in such foods as salmon, Swiss chard, wheat germ, egg yolks, chicken, and almonds – is known to prevent hair from falling out in addition to a long list of other health benefits. Biotin can also be taken in supplement form for those busy individuals who are unable to commit to a steady eating schedule.
***As always, remember to consult a doctor before you being taking any new vitamins or supplements to avoid overdosing!***
9. Massage Your Scalp Regularly
Not only does it feel good, massaging your scalp also stimulates your hair follicles, increases circulation in your head, improves mental function, and relieves tension. It is best to set aside time when you can focus on the scalp massage and nothing else. However, if you lead a busy life, there is nothing wrong with sneaking in a quick head rub while sitting in traffic or as you’re waiting for a conference call to start. Combine scalp massage with deep breathing to enhance the calming effect and de-stress yourself. Add a natural oil such as argan or chamomile for added health benefits as these oils are great for your skin and hair!
Finally, and most importantly…
10. Don’t Give Up!
Growing long, beautiful hair doesn’t happen over night. After all, the average human grows hair at a rate of a half inch per month. Follow these tips, be diligent, and have patience knowing that you are on your way to longer, stronger, healthier hair.
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