“Why is my natural hair not growing?”. This is one of the frequently asked questions and I thought it was prudent to finally explore some of the reasons your natural hair may be stagnating at a certain length. I am not a length chaser as much as I am a volume and health chaser. But I believe the two are very much related and some practices that help attain a healthy afro ultimately lead to long hair. So here are some reasons why your natural hair is not growing:1.You are manipulating your hair so much
This is one of the common reasons for stunted growth. Too much manipulation involves twisting your hair today, then braiding it tomorrow, then weaving the next day, then twisting it again. Slow Down Girl! Give that afro a break. Changing hairstyles so many times ultimately has a toll on your strands and may lead to unnecessary breakage. Even though protective styles are great for you, too much of something is definitely poisonous.
2. You do not moisturise.
This has got to be one of the top reasons! Many of us are a bit lazy to put in the work when it comes to taking care of our hair. Moisture has to be your hair’s best friend for it to flourish because dry hair is brittle and breaks. By moisture, I simple mean water. Get yourself a good spritz bottle, fill it with water and ensure you spritz it at least in the morning and right before bedtime. You can always go the extra mile and invest in a good leave in conditioner which will provide an extra boost of moisture for the day then seal in the ‘juices’ with a good oil for the moisture to be locked in for a while. I did a detailed video on how I moisturise my hair so please take some time and watch it here.
3. You use too much heat!
Most naturalistas are totally anti-heat because it weakens their strands. Blow drying constantly or flat-ironing destroys our natural curl pattern and ultimately leads to hair breakage. While it is totally unrealistic to avoid heat completely, it is necessary to use a heat protectant such as grape seed oil whenever you want to use heat to straighten your hair. It is also good to keep the heat at medium to low temperature. But the good news is that there are ways to stretch your natural hair without using heat. These include; the use of curlformers, african threading method, twisting, three strand braids and use of big-sized rollers. So take a break from the heat and try other better ways to save you some length.
4. Split ends
The ends of your hair are the oldest part of your hair and hence need extra love and care. Keeping the ends healthy by moisturizing is very important to avoid split ends. Inevitably, we all have split ends at some point and the best way to remedy this is by trimming. Trim your split ends regularly to get rid of the dry ends but also remember to moisturise to avoid them.
5. You don’t protect your hair at night.
After a long day, the last thing you probably think about is how to protect your hair at night but this is one vital and crucial step that costs most of us our length. When you sleep on that cotton pillowcase at night, tossing and turning often leads to friction which ultimately causes your hair strands to break. A satin lined bonnet or satin pillowcase or satin scarf is the ultimate solution to protect your hair at night. You can get one from Apparel and accessories KE or Sukie Beauty who sells very pretty ankara satin lined bonnets.
6. You wash your hair too often.
While keeping your hair clean is the goal, too much of it could be costing you! When you over wash your hair you strip it off its natural oils and that will definitely lead to brittleness. How often you wash your hair is up to you but be careful not to over-do it. When I rocked a short afro, it was tempting to always wash it whenever I shower. But that has its negative impact and so I would advise that once a week is good enough if not once a fortnight.
7. You don’t have an appropriate hair routine for your hair.
The natural hair industry is currently clogged with so many new hair products in the market promising your instant length and better results. Unfortunately most of us have so many products we do not even know how to use or that are not even suitable for our hair types. The most important thing you can do is to understand your hair so as to know it’s needs. Make sure you know your hair type as well as your hair porosity so that you can invest in the right products for it as well as the right routine. Understand the needs of your hair so that you can use what is needed to keep it healthy.
8. You don’t deep condition.
I have personally lived to experience the importance of deep conditioning my hair. It is my number one key to attaining volume and I am sure the same has an effect on your length. It is the easiest way to ensure that moisture penetrates your hair shaft and improves its texture. It also helps prevent split ends. Get a good deep conditioner and add this into your hair routine at least twice a month. Using a steamer is an added advantage so go ahead a buy one if you can.
9. Your health
Under the health bracket, there are two factors that may be important when analyzing your hair’s growth. First, your diet! What we feed our bodies has an impact. Maintaining a healthy diet is very important for your body as well as your hair. I once wrote a detailed post on the A-Z of a naturalista that partly touches on foods that have an impact on our natural hair so spare a few minutes and read that here.
Secondly, while it is important to check our diet, you may be experiencing some health issues that cause your hair not to grow e.g. Alopecia. It is advisable to seek medical attention whenever you feel something is off with your health that is manifesting through hair loss.
10. It’s probably growing but you are impatient.
Most women want instant results when it comes to length. You are probably doing all the things correct but still wondering why it’s not that long. While genetic factors may play a role in how fast your hair grows, it is important to be patient in your journey because we are all different. Moisturize and adopt a healthy hair routine for yourself consistently and you will see the results. It’s important to take pictures and you will be shocked when you look back and see the progress.
I really hope you found this article helpful. Leave a comment below on what you think or get in touch via my social media accounts where I am very active and quick to respond.
Wishing you a lovely healthy fro! Cheers.