Back in University, I was constantly coloring, blowdrying and flat ironing my hair. This left my hair perpetually at a chin length bob
After frequent visits to the hair forums and blogs, I decided to try to grow my hair out, so I stopped coloring it, cut off the damaged ends and started taking better care of my hair. I started rollersetting instead of blow drying and flat ironing. Stopped using products with petrolatum and mineral oil. Combed and detangled my hair with extreme care. Started co washing, moisturizing and sealing my hair weekly.
|6 months after I started my journey|
Within 6 months of starting my journey, I had gone from chin length to shoulder length
|Progress pic (April 2010)|
|Progress pic (April 2011)|
In need of a trim
|Progress pic (July 2011)|
|Progress pic (July 2011)|
|Progress pic (January 2012)|
|Comparison shot (April 2011 to January 2012)|
Just like when trying to lose weight or achieve any other goal, it is important to monitor and track your progress. I made sure to track my progress. I took pictures of my hair monthly (I also made monthly update videos on youtube: my youtube channel). This helped me identify problems on time and make changes to my regimen to address them.
My regimen at the time:
- Co wash my hair once a week with herbal essence's hello hydration shampoo and conditioner (I don't use these any more)
- Seal with Extra virgin coconut oil (I got mine from Health plus at the palms, Lagos)
- Wear my hair in protective styles most of the time (Weaves, wigs and updos)
- Detangle with extreme care using a wide tooth comb and only after my hair has been well conditioned and moisturized
- Eat lots of protein (eggs and fish). I did take supplements on and off (solgars hair skin and nails) but I found it difficult to keep up. Also, it is recommended that you get nutrients from food rather than from supplements so I just tried to incorporate the nutrients that I needed into my diet.
- Retouch my roots using motions relaxer once every 3 months on average. However, I did have periods where I stretched my relaxer for as long as 8 months. I don't recommend this if you are not protective styling 99% of the time because of the amount of breakage you can sustain by merely combing your hair while stretching.
- Use jamaican black castor oil (jbco) on my scalp to stimulate growth. (Even though I stopped using this after a few weeks because it caused my scalp to itch. However, lots of people have had very good results with jbco).
You can watch the video on my hair regimen here (I am wearing one of my favorite protective styles in this video: a lace wig):
I hope this helps. I will be posting an updated list of products that I use as I am currently in the process of making some changes to my regimen in order to help me address the dryness and frequent tangling that I am currently experiencing. I found the hello hydration shampoo to be too harsh. It was leaving my hair stripped and dried out. I am also changing my conditioner as well to one that has no silicones as those can cause build up and dry out the hair.
Are there any products that you have used and would recommend? Or any products that you heard good reviews about? Let me know in the comments below...