Let's talk about my hair growth over the last 6 months. Up to that point I had resigned to the fact that my hair was thinning and well just didn't grow that much...hello didn't need a hair cut for 3 years. I took very good care of my hair overall but figured it was just part of aging - I know *eyeroll* enough with the aging card.
The first photo below was taken 6 months ago. The 2nd photo was taken last week. Even having had an haircut since the first photo was taken, my hair is longer and fuller...or is it "more full?" Can you tell? Before and after photos, require thought before, AND after. This is my best attempt to show results without that thought in mind 6 months ago. So maybe just trust me.
What have I done differently?
1. No More Silicone.
A huge part of the problem was silicone. The gel that I was loyal to, for over 15years, is full of the stuff. And it created a smooth, dare I say less frizzy, curly texture that for years was the bees knees. But towards the end, right before our breakup, my hair was lacking volume and the curls just felt sad to me, and I couldn't get them to hydrate. Straw Like. I think silicone gives us a quick fix but it doesn't address the real problems of what our hair needs to be healthy from the inside out (see more at the bottom of the post)
...in truth that smooth shiny coating was basically suffocating my hair.
and my scalp. I did not have a healthy scalp! I just assumed my scalp was also unhealthy because of the lack of washing. Not the case.
How to spot: ingredients that end in -cone like Dimethicone. And luckily there are now so many great options for natural hair, a few of my favorite product lines...Bounce Curl, Curl Smith, Deva Curl and Jessicurl. And that's just the short list for now....
Of course person's hair is different, this is what works best for my curls. At times do I miss the smooth polished curl I could count on? Absolutely. But it's also sort of fun, if I can keep the right perspective, letting my curls be who they are.
2. Being Mindful of More Collagen.
The jury is out on whether our bodies can absorb supplemental collagen, but in the meantime I have found improvement both in my hair, and my joints - not as achy and creaky. Call it a placebo affect - I'll take it.
If you are going to take a Collagen supplement - please find one that is well-sourced from high quality ingredients. You definitely get what you pay for. Lately I have been using this one which is carried at both Whole Foods and my local Costco. A scoop in a glass of coconut milk, and just drink it down quick.
You can also help your body boost it's own collagen productions by making sure your diet is high in protein-rich foods - meat, fish, beans, eggs and dairy. Along with Vitamin C, Zinc and Copper.
3. Scalp Health.
In between wash days, because I'm a curly girl and can go dayssss without washing, I do scalp massages. This increases the blood flow to the scalp which promotes hair growth, healing and overall health. My go to oils are Righteous Roots Oil and Lavender Essential Oil, occasionally I will use Cedarwood Oil. I often mix them together, just a small amount and rub it into the roots of my hair, usually before bed. Bonus: both Lavendar and Cedarwood have relaxing effects that aid in falling asleep. Again, research the brand you are purchasing from. I prefer Doterra.
Lavendar and Cedarwood Oil also repel skin mites, which tend to make our hair fall out prematurely. Best just to leave this one to my word, do NOT google this. There's just no reason for microscopic bugs to be that magnified for effect.
This is also a deep conditioning DIY mask that I love to do with essential oils.
And a bonus 4th... Regular Trims. Cutting off the damaged ends and keeping the shape of the curls also helps keep my hair fuller and happier.
I can't even believe THE WEALTH of info on instagram about curls. Those who want to stop straightening their hair and embrace their natural texture can find so much good stuff. The curly community is uplifting and honest, and so informative.
If you're thinking of embracing your texture, of course I am totally here to tell you yes! do it. Some feeds to inspire you...Mandie is a great place to start if you have waves, also Dominique and CurlySue. HonestLiz is hilarious and so helpful with product reviews as is Kelsey - and she tempts me to go short with my locks. Anjana and her blog are a wealth of info on especially on deep conditioning - knowing what your hair needs...protein and/or moisture. Kelly and Toni and Lulu to inspire the journey. Some favorite hashtags... #curlygirljourney #loosecurlies and #kirstyscurls (that's me!)
Here to celebrate the good (hair) days and bad. Would love to hear your thoughts.