Happy hair growth!

HAIRGROWTHAs many people know, in October 2012 I cut off and donated around 10 inches of my hair to the Pantene Beautiful Lengths foundation. (That post is here!) I had always played around with the idea of cutting my hair into a pixie, even though whenever I cut my hair short I typically cry. However, when I got this cut I couldn't have been happier with it! I loved it! pixielengthI kept my hair in this little pixie cut for around 6 months before I decided to stop trimming it and let it grow. From the beginning I knew that I wouldn't keep it forever. For me, it was always more about the donation and why I did it. In March 2013, I decided to test my patience again and grow my hair out. Since I had impatiently cut my hair short in the past, I knew a few tips and tricks to help hair growth. Now, I do not consider myself to be very knowledge about beauty products and tips, and I'm certainly NOT a beauty blogger. But I frequently get asked how I got my hair to grow back so fast, so here are the little tricks I've been using for the past year:

  1. Biotin. Biotin. Biotin! I love biotin! It's a vitamin used to help your hair, skin, and nails, and is found typically in prenatal vitamins. You can find small bottles of Biotin in the vitamin section at almost any drug store and it's a pretty cheap product for how many you get in a bottle. It's recommended you only intake 5000 mcg per day, so I usually take either one at night or in the morning. It's a tiny little non-tasting vitamin and never gave me any side affects. It wasn't like my hair magically grew to be Rapunzel length in my sleep, but it definitely helps keep your hair healthy!
  2. Sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner! A few years ago I started using Pureology shampoo and conditioner. It smells amazing and is great for your hair, however it is very pricey. I started using it again when I was trying to grow my hair out again because I knew I wouldn't need to use very much of it. Even though hair care products can get pricey, if you're concerned with the health and strength of your hair, what you use on it daily matters.
  3. Heat protector. I started using this heat protector a few months ago and I have loved it. I need to use this product because I do blow dry, and either straighter or curl my hair every other day. Plus, it helped my hair look less frizzy and it also smells great!
  4. Leave in conditioner. I have used this spray for many many years, and still love it. It gives my hair that extra bit of moisture it needs to stay healthy looking and feeling.

collarbonelengthThis are the main things I did. I have also tried to use coconut oil treatments, but found that because my hair was so short at the time it only made my hair feel greasy. I have also taken fish oil vitamins to help, but I must warn you those are big pills and smell! I would get my hair only trimmed every 10-12 weeks. I didn't dye my hair again until it was around chin length. Eating healthy always helps your entire body feel better. I also try my best to drink a lot of water, although I am clearly addicted to coffee.

coffeesip2I would say the most important thing about this whole process is trying to be healthy when caring for your hair and trying to grow it out, and remaining patient and positive! When growing your hair out from such a dramatic cut with many different little angles, it will look bad at some point. There were many days when I felt like I had a tiny mullet, looked like a boy, or simply did not feel cute. The back was constantly growing faster than the front, and the front was growing unevenly. (You'll never know how weird it is that your hair grows faster in different sections of your head, until now.) It was a rough couple of months of having odd lengths of hair! But, it's okay! Like with any bad hair cut, you have to remember that it is just hair and it will eventually grow back.

After a full year of growing my hair out, I am happy to say my hair touches my collarbone again! People still seem to be amazed at how fast it's all grown back! This is why I wanted to share my hair growth journey and a few tips for anyone wanting to grow their hair out.  I hope this is helpful to someone out there!

Happy hair growth every one! (what a weird thing to say)


P.S. All photos were taken by Katelyn Swanson. Find her here, here, and now here!