You loved your fresh spring haircut when you got it. What you didn’t expect, though, was getting engaged quickly thereafter. We know, you still adore your shorter style, but, perhaps, you always envisioned long, flowing hair for your wedding. Don’t fret. While there’s no magic trick to growing inches overnight, there are things you can do to best promote faster hair growth in the months leading up to your wedding. Here’s how to make hair grow faster.
The first step to answering, how do I make my hair grow fast before my wedding? is looking at how fast your hair already grows. While a simple answer would be nice, this depends entirely on your own genetics, sex, age, and nutrition. However, the American Academy of Dermatology says that, on average, hair grows about a half inch per month. For perspective, that’s six inches per year. Maintaining or improving that hair growth, though, is wholly up to you. Below are tried and true methods for having healthier hair that’s more likely to grow.
While shampoo aims to do away with grease, dirt, and product build-up, it can also strip your hair of natural oils, when overused. Stripped hair means dry strands, which in turn means that it’s prone to breakage. Avoiding daily washes (and using sulfate-free products when you do wash) allows these important oils to penetrate your locks and encourage repair.
If the idea of skipping a wash doesn’t sit well with you, try rinsing on your off days. You’ll get the feel of a wash without overusing cleansing products. If oily hair is a problem, brush it from root to tip a few times throughout the day with a natural bristle brush to aid in distributing those natural oils. Whatever you do, don’t abuse dry shampoos, which can also be hard on the scalp.
You can’t expect salon results with drugstore products. Invest in a quality shampoo, conditioner, and mask in the months (or year) leading up to your wedding to yield truly impressive results. If possible, avoid harsh chemicals, such as sulfates, silicone, parabens, and alcohol (yes, alcohol) that can be harsh on your hair.
Consistently conditioning your hair is just as important as shampooing, especially if you heat style or get your hair colored. In these cases, your hair is likely to become thinner at the bottom and more susceptible to split ends. A high-quality conditioner will help replace the lipids lost, seal the outer cuticle, and form a barrier of protection. If your hair is dry, you have dry hair, reach for the conditioner even on the days that you skip shampooing. In any case, use a deep conditioning mask once a week for an added boost. Apply your hair mask of choice to wet hair, let it sit for the recommended amount of time, and then continue with your normal shampoo and conditioner. Going in this order ensures that excess oils get washed away and don’t leave you with greasy looking strands.
We can’t stress this enough, your hair goes through a lot—washing, brushing, and, perhaps, styling and dyeing. It’s paramount that you handle it with care any chance you get. That means being gentle when you wash, careful how you dry, and aware of how you style. Some quick hair care tips:
Time to embrace your natural hair. To put it simply, heat styling your hair can dry it out, zapping its health and making it more likely for the ends to split (or need to be cut). You can protect your strands by avoiding your standard heat tools as much as possible, including curling irons, straighteners, blow dryers, and the like. If parting ways with your styling tools isn’t going to happen, be diligent about applying a heat protectant beforehand—every single time. Yes, that means once before you blow-dry and once before you style.
To take things a step further, avoid scalding hot showers. That’s right, excessive heat from water is also drying. We’re not saying that you need to take ice-cold showers, but just don’t consistently subject your hair to overly steamy ones. Rinse with cold (or at least lukewarm) water at the end to keep cuticles sealed, healthy, and strong.
Hair care doesn’t stop when you step outside. Elements, such as the sun and water, can do a number on your hair, especially during the sunny months. Luckily, there are a few ways that you can protect your locks without avoiding stepping outside or going for a swim. For one, hair sunscreen does exist. It takes form in protective oils, sprays, mists, and primers, and you’d be remiss to go without it. If you don’t currently have one on your counter, no problem, as wearing a hat will do just fine. If you happen to take a dip in the ocean or pool, rinse your hair in the shower immediately after. This is the most effective way of getting the salt and chlorine out.
While your shower or bathroom counter is a great place to start when wanting to grow out your hair, it isn’t the only area of your home worth looking into. A healthy you means healthy hair, giving your diet an important role in the process. First thing’s first: Stay hydrated. Alongside a bevy of other benefits, drinking enough water helps to flush toxins from the body. Not only will this affect the appearance of your hair, but also your skin. If downing enough glasses throughout the day is a challenge, incorporate water-rich fruits and vegetables into your diet.
Speaking of food, getting balanced nutrients directly promotes hair health. Alongside those fruits and vegetables, try to include plenty of healthy fats and proteins into your daily meals. Think salmon, avocado, tofu, lean meats, nuts, and eggs. Also, consider taking a daily vitamin supplement, in case you’re missing out on any vital nutrients. As always, consult your doctor before adding new supplements to your routine.
We know, you’ve heard this one before and you’re weary. While trims don’t technically make your hair grow any faster, they do get rid of split ends that prevent maintaining or gaining length. When left alone, split ends can split further up the stand’s hair shaft and break off. Getting regular trims and having them cut off; however, prevents them from doing so. As a result, you gain more length in the long run, and your ends appear fresh, thicker, and healthier.
Though many advise cutting your hair every six weeks or so, how often you snip your locks really depends on a few factors. Mainly, how fast your hair grows, the condition it’s in, and the condition of your ends. For example, if you have bleached hair and use heat tools often, your ends are likely drier and more prone to splitting. In this case, you’ll want to book your appointments every four to six weeks. However, if it’s in good condition—and you’re following most of the above tips—you can probably get away with going in about once every three months.
That being said, we know you don’t want to lose progress. If your hair grows slower than average, consider spacing out your haircuts eight to 12 weeks, depending on its overall condition. It’s simple math. Say your hair does grow at around a half-inch per month. Trimming just one-eighth of an inch every six weeks puts you well ahead of the game. Likewise, the less it grows, the less often you want to get it cut. If your hair is healthy and grows about one-fourth of an inch every month (half the average), you can push your appointments out to every 12 weeks (double the average amount of time). If you get your hair done in a salon, consult your stylist about the quality of your ends and how often he or she believes you should come in during the months leading up to your wedding. Make sure you know what questions to ask a hairstylist before going in, so that he or she knows what you need help with. Then, make regular appointments to get it “dusted” (trimmed a very small amount) every so many weeks.
If you’re running low on time and have the funds, there are a few ways you can attempt faster hair growth. The following require at least two professional appointments, as you’ll want to test out any hair changed in advance, so keep that in mind when fitting them into your schedule.
The most obvious solution is getting extensions. If length on the day of is all that matters to you, clip-ins can be a great option. Clip-in hair extensions are a temporary method of hair extensions that you (you guessed it) clip in whenever you like. These are ideal if you want to add length and volume to your wedding hairstyle without much commitment or breaking the bank. You can find quality extensions online and at most beauty stores, but note that you want to seek out and purchase real hair, not synthetic. The latter is made from fine plastic fibers and can’t be heat styled.
Once you’ve purchased your locks, you may find that they don’t blend perfectly into your hair, length- or color-wise. For this reason, you’ll want to bring them to a professional who can color and cut them, as needed. From there, bring your extensions to any hair trials you have so that the stylist you go with knows what he or she is working with. Styling it yourself? Perform your own trials to get used to hiding the clips and managing the extra hair.
If extensions won’t work for you, a couple of appointments with a trusted hair colorist might. Strategic use of color, lowlights, and highlights can add dimension and the illusion of fuller and longer hair. Talk with your stylist about your desired look and colors (example photos are great for this) and what tricks he or she believes will help you get there. Your stylist can also help you figure out how to promote a healthy hair growth cycle, depending on your hair type and its current condition. One thing you should avoid, if the length or the appearance of length is your goal, though, is large bleach jobs. When your hair is bleached, the cuticles of your hair strands are opened and given significant damage. Doing too much at once can not only alter the health of your hair, but even cause hair breakage. As we’ve heavily recommended, talk with your stylist to find an option that works best for you and the integrity of your hair.
Looking for even less commitment, without sacrificing beautiful wedding hair? Book a gloss or color glaze. These add a layer of lustrous, translucent color or completely clear shine to your hair, making it appear healthy and full. While this doesn’t directly affect the length, it can be the small boost you need to achieve a hair look you’ll love. All salons that offer hair color treatments should offer these services, so you can reach out to your trusted colorist (or a good one in your area) for an appointment.
Although there’s no end-all-be-all to adding inches to your hair overnight, there are plenty of things you can do to make sure that it’s in its best shape. Doing so will put it in the best position to go through a healthy hair growth cycle. grow, after all. And, when time isn’t on your side, there are still a number of ways that you can attain the wedding hair of your dreams. Be consistent, speak with your stylist, and don’t be discouraged!