Tips for growing out short hair

I'm going to start this post with a little hair history, just so you know where I'm coming from: I used to have long hair when I was little (it was almost down to my waist) but when I was 14 it started falling out for no apparent reason and as my hair is quite thick I decided to cut it to shoulder length to stop it from falling out (it didn't by the way). I absolutely hate having 'short' hair, I think it doesn't suit me at all, so for the past four years I've been trying to grow my hair long again and I learned a lot along the way, which I wanted to share today. I find that most of these 'how to grow your hair' posts are made by people who have and always have had beautiful long hair so they are more about maintaining than actually growing your hair, so here's a few tips I wanted to add.

1. Stop colouring your hair right now
One of the biggest mistakes I made was thinking that I could do fun stuff like bleaching my hair while growing it. Well guess what, your hair will break. If you have long hair already that may be fine because it'll break as much as it will grow, but if you're trying to grow your hair then you're gonna end up just having to cut off as much as your hair has grown because it's too damaged and you won't get anywhere. Which leads me to my next point...

2. You really do need to cut your hair
I always hate going to the hairdresser because I see all that hair falling to the floor and think that my hair will never be long, but the truth is that by not cutting the dead ends off, you're just making things worse because they will go further and further up your hair and you will eventually have to cut them off. I usually go to the hairdresser every three months and between those visits I simply cut off the split ends myself (make sure you use proper hair scissors for this or you might make it worse!)

3. Invest in your hair
I do believe that if you want to grow your hair, you need to invest both time and money. As a rule of thumb I'd say save on shampoo and conditioner and invest in treatments such as hair oils and masks (I love the Wella Luxe Oil and Philip Kingsley elasticiser). Of course there's some great budget options, for example L'Oreal make some really good affordable hair oils and masks, but I think that with treatments you do get what you pay for most of the time. You also need to invest some time to do a hair mask at least once a week, cut your split ends every once in a while, etc. I like to do a hair mask every other wash (I wash my hair about twice a week) and then do an intensive oil mask which I leave on overnight every two to three weeks.

4. Don't use heat
This is along the same lines as colouring your hair. No matter if you use heat protectant or not, heat is never going to be good for the condition of your hair so only use it when you really need to. I used to blow dry my hair and straighten it about once a week, now I only blow dry it when I really need to (i.e. when it's freezing outside) and I only straighten or curl it for special occasions, so most of the time that's once a month at the most! Put away the hot tools, your hair will thank you for it.

5. Be patient
I know this is the last thing you want to hear, but unfortunately growing your hair takes a long time for most people. In the last six years I've only managed to grow mine about 10cm, although in that timeframe I bleached it twice, regularly used hot tools on it and didn't take much care of it. Now that I take good care of my hair it has not only gotten longer but the overall condition of it has become so much better and the new hair that's growing is being treated well from the start!

I know this post wasn't exactly revolutionary but I hope that it still helped you if you're trying to grow your hair. And if you have any secret tips please do share them in the comments!

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