Why Your Hair Wont Grow (It's Not What You Think!)

Video Transcript:

Hi guys, I’m Keonna from Indara Naturals. In today’s video we’re going to talk about 3 hair growth myths that could be keeping you stuck, or have you confused about what steps you need to take if having longer hair is your ultimate goal.

Hair Growth Myths


The first one that we’re going to talk about is genetics. This is probably the reason that I hear most often for why people think that their hair is not growing.

They think it’s because they don’t have good genes or they don’t have the right genes to grow longer hair. And they think that my hair is long because I have good genetics.

There is a genetic component to hair growth, that part is true. But a lot of people are confused about which parts of their hair growth are affected by their genetics, and exactly how your genetics can affect your hair growth.

How Your Hair Grows

The first thing that your genetics are going to determine is how long your hair stays in each of the three hair growth phases.

Your hair grows in a cycle. There’s a growth phase, a shedding phase, and a resting phase. The length of time that your hair stays in the growth phase, the shedding phase, and the resting phase is determined by your genetics.

The growth phase is on average 3-5 years for each strand of hair. And for some people it can be as long as 7 years. For other people the growth phase may last for two years, which is still plenty of time to achieve a suitable hair length. 

Additionally, all of your hairs are not going to be in the same phase at the same time. So most of your hair is going to remain in the growth phase, and then every day a few of your hairs are going to be in the shedding phase, and some of your hairs will be in the resting phase.

This is why we shed about 100 hairs per day, because those are the hairs that are currently in the shedding phase.

When those hairs shed, new hairs grow into the follicle and then your growth phase starts again for 3-5 years on average.

So nobody’s growth phase is a week or two weeks or 6 months. Everyone's growth phase lasts for at least two years.

Maximum Hair Length

The second thing your genetics can affect is your terminal length. The terminal length of your hair is the maximum length that your hair can grow. This could be waist length, hip length, or even knee length and it varies from person to person. The maximum length of hair is your terminal length and it is determined by your genetics.

However, for most people – the vast majority of people, your terminal length is going to start at bra strap length or longer. It would be extremely rare for your terminal length to be chin length or shoulder length.

If your hair is getting to those lengths and you’re getting stuck there, it’s probably not because of your genetics.

It’s probably because of some other hair care practice, and we’ll talk about those a little bit later.

But for most people – the vast majority of people, your terminal length is at least bra strap length or longer.

How Fast Does Your Hair Grow

The third thing that can be affected by your genetics is the rate of hair growth. This is how fast your hair grows each month.

Most people on average grow their hair half an inch every month. Some people can grow up to one inch every month. Some people only grow a quarter of an inch every month. That rate of growth is determined by your genetics.

There are some things that can speed up your hair growth – good nutrition, some essential oils such as the oils that we use in our Soothing Growth Oil and our Extra Strength Growth Oil.

These can stimulate your hair follicles and speed up your hair growth. There are things obviously that can also slow down your hair growth – like poor nutrition, stress, some hormonal changes, medications, etc.

Your rate of hair growth is largely determined by your genetics is largely determined by your genetics, but it can be affected by other things.

My Hair Is Not Growing

The second hair growth myth is that your hair is not growing. This is not true. Your hair is always growing.

You may have a shower than average growth rate, which again is not very common. Your hair may also be getting damaged at the ends and breaking off or needing to be trimmed before you get to the length that you want – before your hair reaches its terminal length, but it is growing. 

You know that your hair is always growing because when you get braids or a sew in you have new growth. If you get a relaxer (which I do not recommend, by the way), you can see that your hair is growing out and that relaxer is going to need to be redone at the roots.

Or if you have hair color then you can see that after a month or so your hair color is growing out and needs to be redone. That shows you that your hair is growing.

Everyone’s hair is always growing unless you have a genetic condition, autoimmune disease, certain types of alopecia, things like that - that are preventing your hair from growing.

But for the most part, your hair is constantly growing. So the problem is not that your hair is not growing. It’s that either your hair is growing very slowly, in which case there are some things that can speed it up – as I  mentioned before some essential oils, having good nutrition, etc. These things are going to help increase your rate of hair growth.

There could also be other factors that are causing your hair to get damaged at the ends and preventing you from seeing the length.  In this case, your hair is growing but you’re not seeing it because it’s breaking off at the ends.

Protective Styling Makes Your Hair Grow Faster

The third myth that we're going to tackle is around protective styling. Most of us have heard that protective styling is going to make your hair grow faster.

It's become "common knowledge" that protective styling will protect your hair on the ends and keep it from breaking and that’s  will in turn to help you to see more length.

What I find is that most people who are wearing protective styles long term are not caring for their hair properly while the style is in. The result is that when you take the protective style out, you end up having to cut a lot of damaged hair.

Long term neglect causes split ends and dryness that lead to breakage. Which means all of your progress is just breaking off and you’re not seeing any true gains in your length, even after being in a long term protective style.

A lot of protective styles do not allow you to have access to your hair. You can't wash it as often as you should, you can't moisturize it, and you can't deep condition because your hair is covered . If it’s in braids, or hidden under a sew in or a wig - it becomes very difficult to take your hair out to wash it, condition it, moisturize it, and then restyle it.

That would take a long time, and wouldn't be practical to do on a weekly basis. Even though long-term protective styles are a very convenient to help your hair look nice every day very little effort, in the long run they usually are not really protecting your hair.

They’re more likely to be causing your hair to be drier and more damaged. I don’t recommend protective styles to my customers as means of increasing length retention, and I’m not a fan of them for my own hair.

As a caveat, protective styles can work if you get them redone frequently. If you got your hair braided and you only kept them in for 4 weeks and then you got them redone every month and you deep conditioned well and you moisturized your hair very well then that could work for you, but most people are not going to do that because of course the whole point of getting the protective style is to keep it in for a long time.

Another option is to do protective styles like braids or twists with just your own hair. This would make it easier to wash, deep condition, and moisturize your hair, but it also won't last as long and it won't look as polished as a long term style like braids or a weave.  

How To Get Faster Hair Growth

So what's the solution  if your hair that just won't grow? If your genetics are not the issue, there's nothing wrong with your hair follicles, the protective styles aren’t helping – what should you be doing?

Deep Condition

Number one – the number one thing that you should be doing is deep conditioning. You need to deep condition. I prefer if you would deep condition your hair every week, but every two weeks is ok. Every month is acceptable.

If you’re not deep conditioning at least once a month then your hair is probably going to be dry, you’re going to have a lot of breakage, and you’re going to have a lot of split ends.

If your hair is at its optimum health, it’s hydrated, it’s moisturized then you wouldn’t need to deep condition as often.

However, most people are not washing their hair often enough or using the proper products or moisturizing often enough to be able to skip deep conditioner. So for most people to maintain your hair’s health and hydration, you need to deep condition. Especially if you struggle with dryness and your hair has been dehydrated for a long time.

You need to be deep conditioning every week, or at least every two weeks. If you can‘t do that then at least once a month. But you need to be deep conditioning regularly.

Most of the time the reason that your hair is not getting to the length that you want is because it is dry. It’s dry, it’s breaking, it’s hard for you to detangle. It won’t hold a style, so you have to keep redoing your style every day you’re putting a lot of gel and mousse and styling products in it to try to get it the look that you want. It’s just dry. The remedy for that is a high quality, deep penetrating hair mask like our Honey Hibiscus Deep Conditioner.

Increase Length Retention

The second thing that you should be doing is making sure that you’re protecting your ends. You should be a small amount of oil on your ends 2-3 times a week between washes.

I use our organic pre-shampoo oil on my ends twice a week. Keep in mind that you don’t need a lot, just a few drops. You just want to lightly coat the ends to keep your hair from tangling on itself, from getting split ends, and from getting knots on the ends of your hair. This will help keep you from having to trim as often and allow you to cut less hair with each trim.

Avoid Over-Manipulation

You also shouldn’t be redoing your hair every day. Styling your hair daily, combing it every day, brushing it every day - is going to lead to split ends and breakage on your ends.

Limit Heat and Chemicals

Also you need to be careful of how much heat you’re using because that can also damage your hair and lead to breakage.

Try to limit your use of heat styling tools and keep the temperature under 400 degrees when you do use heat.

Chemicals – relaxers, keratin treatments, even certain products – certain gels that have a lot of artificial ingredients that can be detrimental to your hair.

Anything that’s going to cause a waxy buildup or very heavy oils that are going to coat your hair and prevent moisture from coming in - all of those things can stunt your hair growth.

These types of products will cause your hair to dry out or cause your hair to shed excessively. They can also cause you to have to trim more often.

Hair color can be very drying to your hair and cause a lot of breakage and shedding.

You want to be very careful of what kind of chemicals you’re putting in your hair.

Wash Your Hair More Often

Make sure you're washing your hair at least every two weeks. I prefer once a week but you can do every two weeks.

Some people can get away with only washing once a month, but most of you should be washing every 1-2 weeks and then deep conditioning.

Use Moisturizing Products

If your shampoo is too harsh that's another thing that can dry your hair out and cause a lot of breakage. That’s why I like to use the clay mask – our Ayurvedic Clay Wash in my hair most of the time.

I do use shampoo  every 8 weeks or so, but for the most part when I’m cleaning my hair it’s with the clay mask because that is very moisturizing, it’s strengthening, it’s hydrating and it stimulates hair growth.

So you want to be using good quality products, you want to be washing your hair often enough. You want to deep condition, protect your ends, and avoid combing or brushing too roughly.

Avoid Long-Term Protective Styles

Don’t leave your protective styles in for too long. Make sure that you are caring for your hair and not neglecting it when wearing a protective style.

These are the types of things that are going to help you grow your hair to the length that you want.

Get Help With Your Hair

If your hair is not growing to your desired length and you’re confused about what you should do – you can email me at contact@indaranaturals.com.

I will personally work on a regimen with you and help you select the products that you need to get your hair growth back on the right track.

But generally it’s not your genetics. It’s usually something else that going on that’s keeping your hair from growing to it's fullest potential.

Please don't hesitate to reach out to me if you have questions. If you’re not already on my email list make sure you sign up for weekly hair care tips and more videos like this one.

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