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5 ways to help your hair grow faster

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If I could find the secret ingredient to making your hair grow faster and turn it into some sort of pill, I would be the richest and most loved woman on the planet (next to Oprah). The truth is, healthy and rapid hair growth is much more complicated than that.

There are many variables that contribute to ‘mitosis’ (when your cells split apart and form new cells, or regenerate). These regenerating cells are the building blocks of the protein that make up our hair. To ensure rapid and healthy mitosis, the first ingredient is healthy circulation.

For the systems of your body to run smoothly, you need a steady circulation of blood – it distributes oxygen to all your organs, allowing the ‘breath of life’ to infuse every part of your body, including cells. On the most basic level, the best way to ensure healthy circulation throughout the body is to get plenty of exercise and eat a healthy diet.

Cells divide faster when they are heated and/or stimulated. This is valuable and undervalued information when we are talking about hair growth. You can help stimulate mitosis on your own head by using the magic of heat and friction together.

What are the best ways to do this? Drum roll please…

1. Brushing

It is proven that tension stimulates cell regeneration. In the same way cross-fibrous massage helps to heal torn ligaments, brushing your hair creates stimulation and tension in your hair follicles, where mitosis happens. You will see your hair grow more rapidly if you brush your hair daily.

2. Heat + scalp massage

When you combine the stimulation of massage with the warmth of hot oil, you get a powerful punch of growth support. Here's how to do it:

Step 1: Heat a teaspoon of coconut oil in the microwave or in a double boiler until it's fully melted.

Step 2: Let it cool until it is warm to the touch, then add a couple of drops of Organic Rosemary Essential Oil.

Step 3: Give your scalp a vigorous hot-oil massage with your fingers for 5 minutes. Then, soak a medium-sized towel in hot water, wring it out and wrap it around your head. Keep it there for 10 minutes.

Step 4: Remove the towel, and finish with a thorough brushing to pull the oil down into your ends. Then ShamPHree out the oil, using nice warm water.

Do this once a week - I promise you will see results, and you will feel like the queen of self-love.

3. Circulation-inducing foods

Some foods, including oranges, ginger, dark chocolate, cayenne pepper and sunflower seeds, promote circulation throughout the body when eaten. There are also many powerful herbs that increase circulation when applied topically - namely cayenne pepper, rosemary, ginger, and cinnamon. You can easily make herbal infusions to use on your scalp in your own kitchen. My favourite way to infuse herbs for my hair and scalp is to make hair tea and use it as a rinse.

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Roxie (and her beautiful hair)

Another great way to use herbs to stimulate hair growth is to make infused scalp oil. To do this, get a small dropper bottle and fill it half way with your herbs, and then top it off with your favourite light oil (eg. olive oil). Put the top on the bottle and then let it sit in a warm place for a couple of days. Use it in your hot oil scalp massage.

It is also very important to make sure you are getting plenty of antioxidants in your diet, because this increases general efficiency within the systems of body. Loading up on antioxidants keeps everything running smoother in general. Horsetail is a plant that is literally packed full of silica, which is nature’s most powerful antioxidant. Horsetail tea has been used for thousands of years as an antioxidant and hair growth stimulant.

4. Drink water

This one is a no-brainer; staying hydrated optimises your body’s performance on all levels. Filtered water is better, and alkalised water is the best. I drink my filtered water with a splash of Apple Cider Vinegar to help alkalise my body and increase absorption.

5. Protection and regular trims

If you want long healthy hair, it is important to protect it and treat it nicely. This means protecting your hair while you sleep, adopting a less-is-more hair care routine and getting regular trims. Does your hair grow faster if you trim it? No. It doesn’t. But your ends will split and break at the same rate that your hair grows after it reaches a certain length, if you don’t trim the split ends off regularly. So it is fair to say that your hair grows longer and healthier with regular trims. Get a regular trim every 8 weeks.

Part of protecting your hair is avoiding certain ingredients in your hair care routine. One of these is silicone. Once upon a time, silicone was the golden child of hair product ingredients. When processed into a nano-particle, silicone coats the hair and fills in gaps where the hair shaft is damaged, rendering a perfectly smooth and shiny hair strand. This is a nice short-term fix.

In the long term, silicone seals out moisture, making hair brittle and dry and dull. So look for silicone on the back of all your product bottles, and ditch ‘em if you see it in the ingredient list. Dimethicone too, while we are on the subject. And basically anything that ends in ‘icone’.

This story originally appeared on How-To Hair Girl and has been republished here with permission

These celebrities clearly need no assistance in the long hair department - although in some cases extensions certainly help:

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