Our expert, Dafina Nya Smith, Owner and Creative Director for Sunny’s Hair & Wigs is back to answer un’ruly reader, Carmel M.’s hair question.
Question: Me and my daughter are in a rut! We have two different textures. I have a coarse hair whereas my daughter has fine hair not to mention, is blonde. We’ve both been natural for about two years and at first our hair was growing steadily; however it’s seem like the growth has stalled. I wash her hair, deep condition, put braids in and leave it alone. I wear half wigs or weaves and wash my hair every three weeks and condition. What am I doing wrong? I stick with the same products, but I have to admit I don’t oil our hair regularly. Please help! What can we do to jump-start our hair growth? We’d like at least 8 inches.
Thanks for this question. I can relate to your journey; but before I get into answering your question, I have several questions for you. Hair growth is half science, half mystery. If we take a scientific approach we can use a process of elimination to get to the “root” of the issue.
What are you doing to your hair daily during your protective styling sessions? If you aren’t re-moisturizing your hair and sealing it with oil or a butter or cream you might be contributing to your hair not maintaining enough moisture underneath your protective styles. I would recommend that you mist the hair with a light leave in water-based conditioner every 2-3 days and then seal with your favorite sealing agent. My personal favorites are Jamaican Black Castor Oil in the winter and Coconut Oil in the summer.
Do you use protein conditioners? As your hair starts to grow longer your ends become older. While moisture is important, so is reinforcing the strength of the ends. If you haven’t used protein treatments I would take baby steps into protein and start with a lightweight 2-minute reconstructor focusing on your ends. If your hair responds well to protein, then you can up the intensity of the protein treatments you use but hold back on the frequency.
Let’s say you’re already doing the two things I suggested above and yet you still feel like you have stagnated growth. Consider looking at what you’re doing internally. Simple changes to your lifestyle can help encourage and stimulate hair growth and retention. Here are a few lifestyle tips that can make a difference:
- Working Out: Breaking a sweat and getting in cardio-vascular strength can help improve circulation.
- Drinking Water: Coarse hair is often dry so being dehydrated is not something you can afford when trying to achieve proper internal hydration.
- Taking Supplements: I love, love, love Bamboo tea. I drink it nightly and it contains the highest concentration of silica. There are others, MSM, Biotin, Silica and a good old fashioned multi-vitamin works well too.
I hope this helps. I share your struggle and sometimes I feel like my hair has been the same length for a decade. Your hair can grow in fits and spurts and sometimes if you stop worrying and thinking about it too much and just work your routine, you will look up and see that big jump you are looking for.
Sunny’s Hair & Wigs has provided hair extensions and wigs for feature film productions such as Flight, The Hunger Games, Drop Dead Diva and a whole bevy of television and reality TV projects.