Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Reader Question: Growing Long Hair

Mary Rose - How do you grow your hair out so long so quickly? You had shoulder length hair a while ago and now it's so long. Do you use extensions or is it all your hair? What treatments do you use? Thanks.
~XRory
Hi XRory, thanks for writing in!

Let me start by saying that I am not a hair person. My hair is probably the part of my appearance that I take the least joy in upkeeping. From the time I was a kid I loathed brushing my hair and even now when I have extended depressive episodes it ends up knotted at the back of my head. But, of course, this takes its toll on your hair, so in 2013 my hair was pretty badly damaged and straw-like. So, I hacked it off. 

My hair in 2013
This is what I looked like then and I've been making an effort to make sure it doesn't fall back into horrible disrepair. But, that being said, (and I feel like a bad fashion blogger for admitting this) I didn't do anything special to grow my hair out besides not cutting it anymore.

No hair treatments or masks, no going shampoo-free, no stopping dyeing your hair, no not-wearing-it-up. No only using natural bristle brushes. No not combing it when it's wet. None of that. 

Hair growth rate is largely genetic and has a lot to do with the hair texture that you're born with and I come from a line of women with really long hair. I don't wear extensions, to answer your other question. 

If you don't naturally have extremely long hair, though there are some things you can do! 
My hair in 2015

Albinwonderland, that fantastic beauty vlogger, has a wonderful video on how she grew her hair out without damaging it. She's bigger on beauty treatments (including coconut oil, which I've never used) and she has a lot of advice for longer haired people who don't want long hair at the expense of hair health. If you're wondering how she keeps her hair lovely and pink, she has another video like that here

Readers, how do you maintain your hair? Do you prefer longer or shorter styles?

Be sure to send me your reader questions by e-mailing me at theeverydaygoth @ yahoo.com

13 comments:

  1. I'm growing out the middle part of my hair (bangs included I *think*, right now anyway) but I keep the sides shaved because I have thick heavy hair and I live in the tropics. :) So I have the best of the long hair world, I can put my hair up in all kinds of styles, but I also have the free easy breeziness of having short (SHORT) hair too :)

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    1. I get the urge to do something similar every summer! I don't live in the tropics per say, but Maryland can get so humid.

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  2. I'm so jeal9ous of your long hair genes! My hair naturally doesn't grow past my bust and it grows super slowly. It takes me at least two years to grow out hair dye down to my shoulders.

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    1. It's a curse when you have to keep up with hair dye, I think, so maybe you have the better end of the stick for dyeing in general!

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  3. I have long hair genes, I'm afraid, but my hair is baby-fine and sort of fussy about how it's treated. I've never colored it, but it sun-bleaches easily and dries out pretty much if I look at it funny. (My mother has the same hair but naturally almost-black, the lucky duck. I got mousy brown, of course.)

    This won't work for everyone, of course, because we all have different hair, but what has worked for me. I don't think I'm cleaning as much hair out of my brush and the sink since I started treating mine more gently:
    1) Don't over-wash it. Yes, we'd all love to have super clean hair every day, but a) washing dries hair out, and b) the rubbing involved in hair-washing pulls hair out. I wash mine twice a week.
    2) Go easy on the products and treatments.
    3) Trim. Counterintuitive, I guess, but hair looks better, and can appear longer and thicker, when the ends aren't dried out, frayed, and ragged.
    4) Don't over-brush. The old "100 strokes" bit is nonsense--all it does is pull out hair that didn't need to be pulled out. I use a comb and fingers to detangle (don't pull on knots; hold onto the hair above the knot and gently un-knot it with your hands) and then only brush enough to put it into place. I sort of suspect that the 100 strokes mostly distributed natural hair oils in the days before shampoo, when people were washing hair with harsh soaps. So, yes, it probably did make hair shinier. But we're not using lye soap on our hair any more and we don't need to do this to ourselves.
    5) Don't over-style. There is such a thing as traction alopecia, which is where hair falls out because of pulling force. Change up hairstyles so it's not always in tight braids or buns.

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    1. "Dries out pretty much if I look at it funny" Awww, that's a shame, although that did make me laugh. Great tips!

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  4. I have very thin hair, well one side of my head has, because of my age. But I have realised that it is easier to hide thin hair when it's long, thats my opinion anyway. I never cut it and I comb it instead of brushing it. I only cut one straw at a time when I find splitted ends. I dont use heat and not many hair products.

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    1. I've heard not using heat is much better for your hair in general, good on you!

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  5. I don't think you can grow hair any faster than your body allows. You can protect it from damage and breakage, but that's as far as it goes.

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    1. I've heard some things about eating proteins and such to encourage hair growth but I'm inclined to agree with you, the speed is set by genes but taking care of longer hair is difficult so people have developed all kinds of ways to maintain long hair and prevent breakage to keep it long.

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  6. I used to have long hair and I miss it! But I always had it up in a pony tail so I cut it... but as soon as I cut it I cry and whine that I want my long hair back :)



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