Mermaid-esque hair is within reach, you just have to treat your locks right
Words by Natalie Lukaitis and Lucy Abbersteen
Working out how to make your hair grow faster is an uphill battle. For one thing, it only grows six inches every year (if you’re lucky), and everyone’s hair growth cycle has been predetermined genetically. But, with the help of a few tips and tricks, you can get closer to your butt-length, glossy hair dreams.
And when you’re done here, be sure to read our guide on how to get thicker hair, too.
Get a chop
We’re not saying that if you cut your hair it’ll magically grow past your waist overnight, but, by keeping the ends tidy, you’ll prevent split ends from working their way up, so you won’t need to chop it as often. Ideally, take an eighth of an inch off every 10 to 12 weeks.
Go easy on the shampoo
Wash your hair with shampoo every other day. Yes, it removes dirt and product build up, but even the best shampoo can also strip your hair of its natural oils, which are essential in supporting your hair growth. When you do need to shampoo, only sud-up at the roots and then simply allow the shampoo to rinse through the length of your hair. This will stop your ends from becoming dry.
Use conditioner to replace proteins and lipids that gradually decrease from inside your hair shaft. When your hair is wet, it’s swollen, allowing things to be absorbed as well as leach out, so feed it the nutrients it needs. Conditioner also helps to seal the cuticle to prevent more damage from occurring.
Treat your hair weekly
Don’t underestimate the power of the best hair masks. Most are enriched with essential fatty acids that strengthen your hair and promote growth. The best hair oils for your hair type can work magic too, but if you’re worried that it will leave your hair lank, use it during your shower and apply it to damp hair for 10 minutes before washing out with shampoo.
Try hair supplements
There are a lot of vitamins and minerals we need on a daily basis for healthy hair, but not all of us get enough. Hair supplements will give you the daily dosage you need to build up the strength of your hair and promote growth. High doses of certain vitamins can have negative effects though, so always check with your GP before popping the pills.
Step away from the brush
You know how you can occasionally hear a faint clicking sound when you brush your hair? That’s it breaking. If you need to detangle your hair, do it while its wet (and at its most flexible) with a comb, starting from the ends and working your way up to the top.
If you must brush when your hair is dry, use a boar bristle brush, as they’re great at distributing natural oils from your scalp to the rest of your strands. Evo make excellent boar bristle brushes – try saying that three times fast – in both paddle and rodial models (named Conrad and Bruce respectively).
Get a silk pillowcase
Ditch your cotton pillow case and invest a silk or sateen one. It won’t cause the friction that a regular pillow case does, so you wont have to detangle your hair as often (you’ll also find you don’t wake up with pillow creases imprinted on your face). Slip’s pillowcases are made from pure mulberry silk and will prevent tangling and that ‘bed head’ vibe come morning.
Don’t towel dry your hair
We get it. It’s easy to get out of the shower and wrap your hair up in a towel to keep it out of the way while it dries, but it’s also an easy way to get split ends. When you twist your hair up into the towel, it gets caught in the woven fibres, which can lead to breakage.
If you can’t bear the idea of wet hair touching your shoulders, opt for a microfibre hair towel instead. We love Aquis’ towels; they’re soft, gentle and won’t wreak havoc with your hair, and they come in a bigger ‘long hair’ option (because there’s nothing worse than not having enough towel).
Rinse with cold water
You may have thought this one was a myth, but it’s actually true. A shot of cold water lays down the outer layer of your strands to make them smooth, which locks in moisture and keeps heat damage out.