I guess the reason you’re reading this article is because you’re looking to find new and exciting ways to grow your natural hair long. OK, maybe not searching for an exciting solution, just an effective one since we have enough excitement in our natural hair journey. Anyway, a great number of women who step into this adventure are already wishing for faster hair growth the moment they chop up their hair or start transitioning. Let’s just all be honest, we can say we wish for healthy hair (and we do), but deep down we’re checking to see if that biotin shampoo, or some other new thing, increased our hair growth.
Although some people claim to have no hair growth the truth is hair is always growing. Yes, there are things that affect hair growth such as stress, hormones or medication nevertheless, it still grows, albeit at a slower rate. There are several growth aids in the market that increase the rate at which our hair grows, and we know some of them such as Biotin or some MSM. From what I observed so far, these aids stimulate hair growth in three different ways, they work on body tissue, blood vessels or through nutrition (supplements).
These are the ones that work on body tissue. You might be somewhat puzzled on this one, but there is an explanation. An inflammation is our body’s protective response against harmful stimuli in our body such as cells, virus or bacteria in an attempt to eliminate them.
Did you know that there are certain foods (or diets) that trigger an inflammatory response in our body while there are others that are anti-inflammatory (salmon, tuna or nuts). Yes, I’m afraid we’ll keep coming back to how proper diet is so important to hair health and growth.
If your diet is mainly composed of things like processed foods, white bread or sugary foods and drinks then you know that your diet is not the healthiest. Many foods in this type of diet are pro-inflammatory because they score high on the glycemic index, meaning they rapidly increase blood sugar levels. Looking at this from a hair perspective, if there is a glycemic load your immune system can perceive this as a threat and an inflammatory reaction follows that can “attack” the hair follicle and slow hair growth.
Well, there are nutrients you can include in a healthy diet that have an anti-inflammatory reaction, just as there are some plants and oils you can use that can induce hair follicles to “work productively” and thus, putting a smile on your face the next time you check your hair length.
Aids You Can Use
Herbs– Ginger, turmeric, willow bark and green tea are anti-inflammatory herbs that you can use making an oil infusion or paste and massaging it on the scalp for a hair growth treatment.
Essential Oils – Peppermint, tea tree, eucalyptus, oregano, lavender are all good to treat scalp inflammatory conditions as they have antiseptic, antibacterial, anti-fungal properties that help with hair loss, hair shedding and stimulate hair growth.
Castor Oil – this oil is loved by many and not so much by others, but it has anti-fungal, antibacterial properties and is proven to help in hair regrowth and hair loss.
These are growth agents that encourage dilation of blood vessels and when this happens more blood rushes through your veins bringing in more oxygen and nutrients to your hair follicles, which encourages hair growth.
Aids You Can Use
Herbs – Peppermint, amla, ginger, burdock, fenugreek, horsetail, rosemary are all herbs you can infuse in olive oil and make a scalp massage. Alternatively, if you find them as an essential oil you can mix a few drops with a carrier oil and proceed with a massage. Ginger can also be made into a pulp and rubbed on the scalp.
Massage, Heat & Exercise – These actions increase blood flow to the scalp, why not combine them with an herb infused oil? You can also do your pre-poo with one of the oils mentioned previously, massage the scalp, put a cap on and exercise. You’ll be “killing two…(no, wait) three birds with one stone”.
Green House Effect – The Green House Effect is a hair method that requires you to apply oil on damp hair and cover it to create a warm environment. This is meant to keep curly hair nourished and moisturised at all times. You may not have thought of it, but the warmth inside the cap surrounding the scalp dilates your blood vessels as well. Many supporters of this method claim to have seen their hair grow above the average.
Inversion Method – This is another hair method that requires you to massage an oil to your scalp and invert your head down between your legs for a few minutes. When you massage and invert your head you are stimulating the blood vessels on your scalp and increasing blood supply. This is a hair growth method that has many followers claiming to have seen 1 inch/2,5 cm of increased length in a week.
Having a balanced and diverse diet, while making the right choices, is the best way to have healthy hair that grows. However, life sometimes can be hectic, you slip in your diet and then you find your hair is not really growing as usual. Other times, you just want to give your body a little help and jump start your hair growth. Whatever the situation, adding supplements to your diet can increase hair length above the average.
Aids You Can Use
Biotin – This is a water soluble B vitamin that improves the health of your hair, skin and nails. It improves growth by renewing the hair follicles that are growing. There has been some debate on whether it actually works for hair growth or not, as some people claim amazing results and others see no results and/or have side effects. You can use it as a stand-alone supplement or through a mixture of vitamins and minerals such as Hairfinity or Viviscal (has horsetail extract).
MSM – Is an organic compound of sulphur, which is a chemical component of the hair. It is used in the medical field to treat arthritis or muscles pains, for healthy connective tissue and to increase blood flow. A surge in hair growth is actually a side effect of MSM, something that many us welcome happily.
Vitamin D – Can be supplied to your body just by being exposed to the sun, however, scientists are exploring the role it plays in our hair cycle as it helps to regulate it. If you find your vitamin D levels are low, it might be a good idea to talk to your doctor and add this supplement.
All-round Supplement – this could be enough to improve the rate of your hair growth and cover all your diet shortcomings.
How do you stimulate your hair growth? Do you see any results?