It's 5.30pm on a Friday and you've had a long day, but you're still excited to meet up with your girlfriend who you hadn't seen in 3 months. You pick yourself up, do your hair and makeup and get on your way to see her. You get there and you see her. You want to feel as excited but can't help but feel down. All this because the last time you saw her, her hair was up to her chin and now it's down to her butt!
This is obviously a dramatic representation, but there is some truth to it. Who has friends who began their healthy hair journey later than you did (big chop and all) and for some "odd reason" have already passed YOUR current length? Or that friend that doesn't seem to do much to her hair and it still grows like weed? Or even worse, who has followed to a tee a social media star's hair regimen to find their hair at the same length 2 months later?
It's frustrating to say the least. So, excluding the effect of certain medication and health conditions, here we are giving you three simple reasons why your hair "won't grow" past a certain length.
Reason No. 1: Your Scalp
Fun fact. Did you know that the average person's hair grows about 0.5 inches (1.25cm) per month? So regardless of your ethnicity, your hair should always be growing. It's probably growing right now as you read this post!
Nevertheless, a lot of people seem to forget the role a healthy scalp has on the health of their hair. They tend to see hair and scalp as the same when, in fact, they are two completely things with different needs therefore warranting different treatments.
Hair grows from individual follicles surfacing on your scalp. The sebaceous glands on those follicles will produce sebum to condition and protect each hair strand. If your scalp is dirty from pollution, dead skin, bacteria, fungus, hair products and too much sebum, it can cause the follicles to clog. This environment not only encourages inflammation of the scalp (think of constant itching and the vigorous scratching that follows it) but also run the risk of clogging the follicles to the point where hair growth is slowed and eventually completely stopped.
To avoid that, make sure you keep your scalp clean by washing your hair regularly. If dry hair is a concern, opt for organic products that don't contain harsh ingredients.
Reason No. 2: Your Hair Care Regimen
So you've taken care of the scalp, but you're hair still won't grow. Hmmm...Well, if you have a healthy scalp, the problem you're likely facing now is LENGTH RETENTION. Your hair is growing, but it's also breaking so it'll stay at the same length no matter how clean your scalp is.
If you have dyed hair, relaxed hair or heat damage, building and sticking to a hair care regimen will be crucial to retaining that length while your scalp does the wonders of growing some more.
Women with curly or afro hair also face this issue. Your scalp already produces sebum which should be enough to moisturise your strands. However, due to the many curls on your hair, it'll be harder for the sebum to reach the entire strands, leaving the hair more likely to be dry and frizzy. Straighter hair gals have it easier on this one!
To ensure you retain your current length, it is vital that you build your OWN hair regimen. Emphasis on OWN, since everybody's hair is different and what worked for one person may not work for you. In any case, make sure that your regimen is:
- Simple, so it's easy to follow;
- Incorporates hair masks, protein treatments and a great leave-in, at the very least, to moisturise and keep that moisture in;
- Protects your very ends, by hiding them from the friction of clothing and harsh bedding material. They suck the moisture out of it too! and
- Include regular trims.
Did we say trims? Yes, you heard it right. Since the ends of your hair are the oldest part, you need to get rid of those bad boys at least every 8 weeks so that you minimise any knots and split ends. These cause more harm than you can imagine!
Reason No. 3: Your Diet
You've changed your wash and hair care routine. And still nada. Well my friend, we think the last missing puzzle is your diet.
Think about it. Your body is a beautiful thing. It has all these weird things (also known as organs) to allow you to be and remain alive. It is a machine. This machine needs fuel to keep running, a.k.a. a balanced diet. If you're not eating enough or you're eating foods that are lacking in nutritional properties, the body will prioritise the organs that will receive that limited fuel and, unfortunately, your hair is last on that list.
So to ensure your hair benefits from your diet, make sure to eat a balanced diet of proteins, complex carbohydrates and fats. If you're always on the go or have dietary restrictions or simply aren't sure you're getting enough of the good stuff, taking a multivitamin supplement may be a good option for you. However, make sure to check with your medical practitioner before taking supplements, especially if you're on medication.
And that's it. The simple formula for hair growth.
Clean scalp + Moisturised hair + Balanced Diet = Unbeatable Hair Growth!
Couldn't get any easier than that!
*Information on this website is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional. You should not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication or other treatment.*