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Supplements for hair growth

Hair growth tips: how to get thicker and longer hair

23 Nov 2022 • 4 min read

Does your hair appear to have stopped growing? Are you frustrated at the fact that no matter what you try, you can’t seem to get it to grow any longer or thicker than it is now?

Maybe you want to grow it that little bit longer for a special occasion?

Or perhaps you’ve always yearned for thicker and fuller hair and, despite everything you’ve tried so far, your hair’s got ideas of its own and is thinner and shorter than you want it to be?

We hear your hair woes. This article is aimed at helping you overcome them by sharing some best practice advice on what helps hair growth.

Over the next few paragraphs, we’re going to share some of the measures you can take to help make your hair thicker, longer or both!

Why has my hair growth slowed down?

It’s a well-known fact that the rate at which our hair grows tends to slow down the older we get. By the time most people are middle aged, their hair is in what’s referred to as ‘the resting phase’ rather than the growth phase.

As we get older, our hair can also get dryer, which is a by-product of thinning, feel more brittle and coarser, as grey hair contains less protein and melanin, and lack its usual shine.

However, in terms of the resting phase, this isn’t actually down to our hair; it’s reportedly down to what’s happening with our scalp.

Basically, we need to keep our scalp healthy to help promote hair growth.1

How to maintain a healthy scalp (and help hair growth)

When you’re washing your hair, you probably pay less attention to your scalp than you do your hair. However, your scalp needs just as much TLC as your hair does, probably more the older we get.

Fortunately, looking after your scalp isn’t difficult to do, you just need to remember to think about it in the first place.

Here we’ve listed some of the best things you can do to help keep your scalp healthy:2

  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet – such as green leafy veg, beans, nuts, eggs, fish, and chicken, which are all sources of protein that can promote hair growth. Foods that are packed full of antioxidants, such as blueberries, beets and beans, can also support normal blood circulation, which is essential for having a healthy scalp.3
  • Give your scalp a massage – how often have you done this? Have you ever done this? It may sound a bit odd, but it’s really beneficial, as it helps improve blood circulation in your scalp.
  • Use coconut oil when you’re massaging – which can help to maintain your roots and keep them moisturised. This may aid the process of normal hair growth.

5 practical hair growth tips for longer hair

  1. Get it trimmed regularly – getting your hair cut may initially sound as though you’re defeating the object of growing it, but getting the ends chopped off on a regular basis means you’ll be getting rid of the split ends that can cause your hair to break.4
  2. Take supplements – there are certain vitamins and minerals required normal hair maintenance and can give your tresses the extra support they need. These are vitamin B7 (Biotin), copper, selenium and zinc.5
  3. Cut back on washing it – we’re not saying that you have to neglect your hair, but if you can, don’t wash it all of the time. This is because most shampoo products contain ingredients that can strip your hair of its valuable natural oils.6
  4. Always use a conditioner – now this is one product you should never skip – ever. It’s actually one of the worst things you can do, as conditioners are designed to nourish your hair and scalp and may help prevent those unwanted split ends from developing.7
  5. Ease off using your heated hair products – i.e. your trusty straighteners, your curling tongs and your hairdryer, etc. Let your hair dry naturally once in a while and have some days where your hair isn’t poker straight. Ideally aim for five days off and two days on using heated styling tools.8

5 practical hair growth tips for fuller hair 

  1. Use hair thickening products – e.g. volumising shampoos and conditioners that been specifically formulated to make your hair appear fuller. The beauty of these products is that they contain fewer ingredients that are guilty of weighing your hair down.9
  2. Condition your hair, then wash it – now we like this tip! It may never have occurred to you to swap your hair-washing regime around, but if you condition and then shampoo, it means your hair’s less likely to be over smooth and weighed down by the slickness of your conditioner.10
  3. Use dry shampoo – as we know, washing your hair every day isn’t a good move as it can strip our hair and scalp of its natural oils, which is why dry shampoo is such a dream. Spray some on before you go to sleep and, as you move your head around on your pillow, your hair will absorb it, giving your hair some extra natural bounce.11
  4. Use mousse – yes, we know, it may have been all the rage for perfecting those spiral perms in the 80s, but mousse can actually work wonders on giving your hair a bit more oomph. Use an egg-sized amount and work it through damp hair, from roots to the ends, to give fine hair more of a fuller effect.12
  5. Crack an egg (or two) – eggs are high in protein, which is essential for the body and hair.13

How to create an egg treatment for your hair

  • Mix one to two eggs together
  • Apply the mixture to your scalp and damp hair
  • Leave it on for 30 minutes
  • Wash it off with warm water and mild shampoo

3 other hair growth tips to consider

  • Ditch your towel – if you wrap your wet hair in a turban created from your towel, then this can cause it to break. Consider using a microfibre hair towel instead, which involves must less twisting (and breakage) and is softer on super-fragile wet hair.14
  • Nourish your hair once a week – with a hair mask or hair oil to give your hair that extra bit of moisture and TLC. Always apply oil to damp hair.15
  • Use a silk or satin pillowcase – it may sound a bit extravagant, but silk pillowcases are softer on your hair and therefore your hair is less likely to get tangled and break.16

Best of luck with your hair growing/thickening journey. There are lots of different things you can try, most of which are relatively simple to do. You just need to think about how you’re maintaining and looking after your hair on a daily basis that little bit differently.

Hopefully, after this, you have a clearer understanding of what helps hair growth and what helps give your hair some extra body. Whether you’re looking to achieve one of these things or both, we hope the tips in this article help.

Last updated: 18 March 2021

doaa-al-mosawi

Doaa Al Mosawi

Author

International Senior Regulatory Affairs Associate

Joined Holland & Barrett: March 2019

BSc (Hons) in Biomedical Science

After completing her BSc in Biomedical Science, Doaa worked in Research and laboratory for 3 years. Doaa was also a member of a product development team in a manufacturing company specialising in sun care and personal care products, researching and providing regulatory advice regarding international regulations.

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