10 tips and tricks to grow your hair fast and long

With the combination of extreme heat, desalinated water, chlorine content as well as the constant exposure to air conditioning it is most liking to experience hair fall in this region. (Shutterstock)

Disclaimer - There are no shortcuts to growing luscious, long locks.

On average, hair grows about a half an inch per month. Your general health, well-being, diet and genetic factors affect your rate of hair growth.

You can encourage hair growth by maintaining healthy hair through a good diet and proper hair care. Certain herbs can help make your hair grow faster, too.

Here are the top tips if you always envisioned lengthy beautiful hair.

1. Trimming it

Although getting regular trims to snip splits won't make your hair actually grow faster, it will keep tips looking healthy and prevent splits from working their way up strands, requiring you to chop hair off more often.

If you wait so long that splits are causing your hair to break off high up on the strand, your hair will actually be shorter than if you get consistent trims - celebrity hair stylist Mark Townsend to Cosmopolitan.

You should get a hairdresser to chop up to an inch off your hair every 10-12 weeks to prevent split ends.

2. Eat a healthy diet

Eating a diet rich in protein and vital vitamins and minerals is an essential prerequisite to healthy hair growth.

Opt for foods high in vitamins A, B, C, and E, iron, zinc, copper, magnesium, and selenium. Vitamin B-complex, in particular, is extremely important for making your hair grow faster.

So, include a variety of foods like milk, cheese, yogurt, chicken, eggs, whole grains, salmon, spinach, broccoli, bell peppers, cabbage, parsley, grapefruit, avocado, brown bread, oats, and alfalfa in your diet to nourish your hair and scalp. Plus, drink fresh fruit and vegetable juices, such as orange, grapefruit, carrot, beet, and lettuce juice.

Fish, flax seeds, walnuts, beans, winter squash, olive oil, and other foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids are also good for hair growth as about 3% of a hair shaft is made up of omega-3 fatty acids.

3. Never stop oiling

When your hair is shoulder-length, it's time to give it a lot more love and care by using an oil-based hair treatment weekly.

Stylist Mark Townsend says this DIY recipe works like a treat on damp hair - all you need is one cup of unrefined coconut oil mixed with one tablespoon each of almond, macadamia and jojoba oil.

Being rich in vitamin E and essential fatty acids, especially omega-9 fatty acids, castor oil promotes hair growth naturally.

As this oil is quite viscous, mix the castor oil with an equal amount of coconut, olive, or almond oil. Massage your scalp with it and leave it on for 30 to 45 minutes. Then wash your hair with a mild shampoo

4. Massage your scalp

Massaging promotes blood flow to the scalp, which in turn stimulates the hair follicles. In addition, deep condition your hair once a week with a hot oil treatment or deep conditioning hair mask.

Massage the scalp to stimulate the roots to grow.

Apply the oil (preferably warm) or conditioner to your hair. Gently rub your fingers on your scalp in a circular motion for three to five minutes. Rinse the oil or conditioner out of your hair.

5. Use conditioner and shampoo less

The purpose of shampoo is to wash away dirt, but it can also remove essential natural oils leaving your hair dry.

Shampoo takes the dirt, while conditioner replenishes nutrients that you hair needs to be healthy and shiny. If you really need to skip a step, ditch the shampoo every once in a while.

You should always condition your hair when it's wet to replace the lipids and proteins inside the follicle.

6. Flip your hair upside down

This is one of the most popular tricks to promote faster hair growth. Just flip your hair upside down, brush full strokes slowly several times with a wide tooth comb. It is believed to work by improving circulation.

7. Brush your hair with care

Constant brushing can cause physical harm to your hair.

When you detangle wet hair, be sure to start from the bottom and work your way up.

Invest on a good brush. Hair stylist Mark Townsend suggests Sheila Stotts Natural Boar Bristle Brush, as boar bristle brushes are good at distributing your scalp's natural oils down your hair and being extra-gentle on strands too.

8. Lay off the heat tools

Deep down, you know that the burnt hair smell your straightener creates can't be a great sign for what it's actually doing to you tresses.

Use your dryer, curling iron, and flat iron less and when you do use them make sure you apply product to shield your strands from harm. Let your hair dry naturally for healthier locks.

9. Stay stress-free

Stress is one of the most important factors that contribute to hair loss. It is believed that stress can disrupt the normal hair cycle and trigger hairs to enter the telogen or fall-out phase.

Thus, when striving for faster hair growth, minimize the stress in your life.

To manage stress, you can use meditation, breathing exercises, or other relaxation techniques. Plus, be sure to get your beauty sleep as the growth hormone is released during sleep.

10. Use silk pillow covers

These will make you wake up with fewer tangles, so your hair is less likely to break.

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