If someone were to ask me what my favorite physical attribute is, I would most definitely say my hair. I guarantee every time you spot me out or read my posts, I’ll have it down. I very rarely tie it up!
Us islanders are known for our crazy long hair. And for that reason I sometimes forget how long my hair actually is! lol
Because it’s so long, I naturally I get a lot of questions about it regarding thickness, texture, and length so I wanted to share these 4 tips that worked well for me.
- No heat!
The only time I use heat is when I’m preparing for a photoshoot. I don’t curl or straighten my hair outside of that. So depending on how often I do shoots, I’d say I style it with heat maybe twice a month. Trust me ladies, cutting down on heat makes a monumental difference. I also don’t blow dry my hair (unless I’m in a hurry), I just air-dry it. If you do absolutely have to use heat, I use a heat-protectant spray before I style (and blowdry) my hair. Heat protectant is to hair what sunscreen is to skin. It’s a way to prevent damage and protect your strands’ natural health. The specific spray I used is linked at the bottom of this post.
Reason it works: Using limited heat doesn’t necessarily make your hair grow faster, but it prevents damage and breakage so that your hair can stay lengthy and you don’t have to trim a bunch off.
- Coconut oil
Coconut oil is huge for me! Surprisingly, I used to be blonde (what was I thinking?) and it totally fried my hair. It went from silky to feeling like straw and I decided that was the last time I was ever going light like that again! Anyways, I’ve had almost all of the hair stylists that worked with my hair say they can’t even tell I’ve ever bleached my hair (biggest compliment ever!)- and coconut oil is the reason.
I try to do coconut oil treatments once a week to keep my hair silky, shiny, and most importantly- moisturized. I found a YouTube video that demonstrates how to do a treatment. You can view it here: Coconut oil treatment.
The only difference between my routine and this video is that I blow dry the shower cap when my hair is wrapped (low setting!). By blow drying it, it allows the pores in my hair to open up to better absorb the coconut oil’s nutrients. (Another way of achieving that routine is to wrap your hair in a warm towel during the treatment- I don’t do this option because I have too much hair and it’s heavy on my head).
Reason it works: Coconut oil is rich in antioxidants, and has antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial properties that improve scalp health to fight infections. Additionally, it is the only oil that restores protein in hair (protein loss is the reason hair is easily broken and dry).
Just to show you how dry and blonde my hair was (and for some giggles), here are some cringe-worthy pics of me when I was blonde (and completely damaged my hair).
- Shower routine
Believe it or not, your shower routine is crucial to you hair’s health. These are some of the things I do specifically in the shower and why:
- Comb my hair before getting in the shower
Why? To prevent shower-induced tangles, give your hair a brush before hopping in. The less tangly, the less hair you’ll yank out when you get outta the shower.
2. Squeeze out as much water as you can before conditioning (with or without a towel)- the dryer the better!
Why? The conditioner is capable of absorbing into the cuticles of hair much more effectively if there isn’t too much water diluting the product.
- After the shower, wait to comb your hair. Do it when it’s dry.
Why? Hair is weakest when it’s wet. If you brush it while it’s still wet, you’re increasing the breakage. By brushing while dry, it decreases the amount of hair you’ll yank out. Also, major major tip- don’t use brushes. For less breakage, use wide tooth combs instead. (I linked the comb I use at the end of this post!)
- Last but not least- your diet.
Each strand of your hair is made up of cells that contain a tough protein called keratin. These need to be constantly nourished with minerals and vitamins to make your hair long and strong. These are some of the foods that help my hair grow:
- Eggs– Protein is the building block of hair and eggs are one of the richest natural sources of protein.
- Spinach- this veggie is rich in iron! Iron deficiency can cause hair loss so it’s important to include iron in dark leafy greens
- Fruits– Vitamin C is required for the production of collagen which makes your hair strong
- Nuts & seeds– Omega-3 fatty acids nourish the hair and support thickening. Since your body cannot produce these healthy fats, you need to derive them from your diet. Almonds and walnuts are really high in Omega-3 fatty acids.
- Whole grains– Whole grains are rich in biotin along with iron, zinc and B vitamins. Biotin is required for cell proliferation and plays an important part in producing amino acids (protein) which are required for your hair to grow.You can also take biotin pills! I’ve linked them below.
- Avocados– Avocados are rich in Vitamin E which improves the blood circulation and helps the follicles work more efficiently to promote hair growth. It also maintains the oil and PH levels balance (which if exceeds can clog the hair follicles and stop hair growth)
These are my top four tips to maintain the length and health of my hair. I would love to hear if any of these work for you! I also love trying out tips I’ve never heard of, so if you have any feel free to pass them along!
Below is a list of items I’ve mentioned. (These items can be found almost anywhere, but I linked most of them to Amazon mainly cuz I love the fast shipping!) :