20 Reasons Why Your Natural Hair Is Not Growing

20 Reasons Why Your Natural Hair Is Not Growing

Want to know my top 20 Reasons Why Your Natural Hair Is Not Growing? This is one of the frequently asked questions and I thought it was prudent to finally explore some of the reasons why your natural hair is not growing and may be stagnating at a certain length.

I am not a length chaser as much as I am a volume and health chaser. But I believe the two are very much related and some practices that help attain a healthy afro ultimately lead to long hair.

As long as I can remember I’ve heard that black hair and relaxed hair can’t grow long. Black and relaxed hair can only get to a certain length.

The crazy thing is my hair has typically been on the longer side. Outside of a few years where I experienced some serious breakage I’ve been able to grow my relaxed hair too and past my shoulders.

So I was told that I was the exception that I had “good hair” because my hair grew longer.

And being young and naive when it came to hair care I accepted that. The boy was I wrong! While genetics does play a role in how our hair grows it’s not the sole way to get long hair.

Why Your Natural Hair Is Not Growing

“Why is my natural hair not growing?”. Well, the truth is, unless there’s some medical issue that prevents your’e follicles from producing new hair, your strands are always growing.

So what’s going on? In many cases, the issue is not that the hair isn’t growing, but that the length you do achieve from growth isn’t being retained. In other words, as your hair is growing, the ends are breaking off at the same rate.

20 Reasons Why Your Natural Hair Is Not Growing Any Longer:

1. You are manipulating your hair so much

This is one of the common reasons for stunted growth. Too much manipulation involves twisting your hair today, then braiding it tomorrow, then weaving the next day, then twisting it again. Slow Down Girl! Give that afro a break.

Changing hairstyles so many times ultimately has a toll on your strands and may lead to unnecessary breakage. Even though protective styles are great for you, too much of something is definitely poisonous.

Reasons Why Your Natural Hair Is Not Growing What you can do ?

Keep your hands out of your hair as much as possible.

Take your time and be gentle when detangling your hair.

Use your fingers more and a comb less.

Use a satin nightcap when you go to sleep which keeps your hair protected and from moving around too much at night.

2. You do not moisturize.

This has got to be one of the top reasons! Many of us are a bit lazy to put in the work when it comes to taking care of our hair. Moisture has to be your hair’s best friend for it to flourish because dry hair is brittle and breaks.

By moisture, I simple mean water. Get yourself a good spritz bottle, fill it with water and ensure you spritz it at least in the morning and right before bedtime.

You can always go the extra mile and invest in a good leave in conditioner which will provide an extra boost of moisture for the day then seal in the ‘juices’ with a good oil for the moisture to be locked in for a while. I did a detailed video on how I moisturise my hair please take some time and watch it here.

3. You use too much heat!

Most naturalistas are totally anti-heat because it weakens their strands. Blow drying constantly or flat-ironing destroys our natural curl pattern and ultimately leads to hair breakage.

While it is totally unrealistic to avoid heat completely, it is necessary to use a heat protectant such as grape seed oil whenever you want to use heat to straighten your hair.

It is also good to keep the heat at medium to low temperature. But the good news is that there are ways to stretch your natural hair without using heat.

These include; the use of curlformersafrican threading methodtwistingthree strand braids and use of big-sized rollers. So take a break from the heat and try other better ways to save you some length.

Reasons Why Your Natural Hair Is Not Growing What you can do ?

Use blow dryers, curling irons, and flat irons less or not all.

4. Split ends

The ends of your hair are the oldest part of your hair and hence need extra love and care. Keeping the ends healthy by moisturizing is very important to avoid split ends.

Inevitably, we all have split ends at some point and the best way to remedy this is by trimming. Trim your split ends regularly to get rid of the dry ends but also remember to moisturise to avoid them.

Reasons Why Your Natural Hair Is Not Growing What you can do?

Regularly trim your hair, about every 3-4 months.

Don’t trim too often.

If you see a split end don’t hang on to it, trim it off.

5. You don’t protect your hair at night.

After a long day, the last thing you probably think about is how to protect your hair at night but this is one vital and crucial step that costs most of us our length.

When you sleep on that cotton pillowcase at night, tossing and turning often leads to friction which ultimately causes your hair strands to break. A satin lined bonnet or satin pillowcase or satin scarf is the ultimate solution to protect your hair at night.

6. You wash your hair too often.

While keeping your hair clean is the goal, too much of it could be costing you! When you over wash your hair you strip it off its natural oils and that will definitely lead to brittleness. How often you wash your hair is up to you but be careful not to over-do it.

When I rocked a short afro, it was tempting to always wash it whenever I shower. But that has its negative impact and so I would advise that once a week is good enough if not once a fortnight.

7. You don’t have an appropriate hair routine for your hair.

The natural hair industry is currently clogged with so many new hair products in the market promising your instant length and better results. Unfortunately most of us have so many products we do not even know how to use or that are not even suitable for our hair types.

The most important thing you can do is to understand your hair so as to know it’s needs. Make sure you know your hair type as well as your hair porosity so that you can invest in the right products for it as well as the right routine. Understand the needs of your hair so that you can use what is needed to keep it healthy.

8. You don’t deep condition.

I have personally lived to experience the importance of deep conditioning my hair. It is my number one key to attaining volume and I am sure the same has an effect on your length.

It is the easiest way to ensure that moisture penetrates your hair shaft and improves its texture. It also helps prevent split ends.

Get a good deep conditioner and add this into your hair routine at least twice a month. Using a steamer is an added advantage so go ahead a buy one if you can.

9. Using the wrong hair products

Just because your favorite blogger or vlogger using a particular product and sees good results doesn’t mean you’ll have the same results. What works on their hair may not work on yours.

If you use the wrong products on your hair you won’t see your hair thrive and achieve a healthy state which helps it retain length.

Reasons Why Your Natural Hair Is Not Growing What you can do ?

Strategically pick your hair products based on your hair type and hair needs/issues.

Keep using products that work for your hair.

Figure out what ingredients your hair does and doesn’t like.

10. It’s probably growing but you are impatient.

Most women want instant results when it comes to length. You are probably doing all the things correct but still wondering why it’s not that long.

While genetic factors may play a role in how fast your hair grows, it is important to be patient in your journey because we are all different.

Moisturize and adopt a healthy hair routine for yourself consistently and you will see the results. It’s important to take pictures and you will be shocked when you look back and see the progress.

11. Shrinkage

Shrinkage!!! Kinky, coily hair can shrinkage up to 75% its length. That means it’s easy to assume that your hair isn’t growing or retaining any length. It maybe shrinkage playing a trick on you.

I know, my hair never falls pass my shoulders when curly, even though it’s mid-back length. You may have to blow your hair out to see the length or if you’re not into using heat here are 4 ways you can stretch your hair without it.

12. Poor Hair Habits

When your hair is damaged, your hair becomes weak and fragile. There are several poor hair care habits that can lead to breakage of the hair such as excessive heat styling, over-manipulation from styling, chemical hair coloring, and bleaching.

These types of practices can add a lot of stress to hair that is already fragile, weaken your hair’s elasticity and can lead to breakage, thinning of the hair and severe hair damage.

13. Shorter Hair Growth Cycle also known as Genetics

We all have a unique hair growth cycle contributed solely to genetics. The hair growth cycle is constantly in rotation, and all of your hair never in the same phase of the cycle simultaneously. There is a phase of the hair growth cycle when the hair will become dormant until the cycle repeats.

This phase can usually last for a few weeks but for some, this resting phase of the hair growth cycle can last much longer for some.

Dr. James C. Marotta, plastic surgeon and hair restoration specialist says that, “The growth phase is largely determined by genetics and typically lasts between two and six years.”

There is absolutely nothing you can do to change or lengthen the hair growth cycle. But this is not to say its impossible to retain the length grown in your growth phase.

14. Poor Diet & Lack of Exercise

They say you are what you eat, and if you’re filling up on a lot of junk, fried and greasy foods, your hair could really suffer.

Your hair also needs proper vitamins, minerals and nutrients in order to thrive and eating foods that are high in nutritional value such as fish, nuts, and green leafy vegetables will help your hair grow healthier and fuller.

It could also be beneficial to add a multivitamin to our diet that promotes hair, skin, and nail growth. Many multivitamins contain supplements and supporting nutrients that promote healthy hair and follicles.

For example, Nature Made Multi For Her contains the recommended daily dosage of biotin in addition to B-Complex Vitamins, Vitamin A, and Zinc which functions are strengthen hair, nourish hair follicle cells in order to prevent hair loss, promote healthy scalp and minimize shedding, respectively.

Reasons Why Your Natural Hair Is Not Growing What you can do ?

Do a hard protein treatment. The one that I use is the Aphogee Two-step Protein Treatment. You can also use leave-in conditioners and deep conditioners that have some protein ingredients.

Drink lots of water so you’re hydrated from the inside out.

Eat foods that have high levels of protein, vitamins, iron, and fatty acids.

15. Underlying Health Issues

The body has a way of telling us when something isn’t right, and a sudden increase in hair breakage or serious hair loss could be cause for medical attention. Hormone deficiency or overproduction can easily result in hair loss.

Dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis of the scalp and even allergies are other issues that could affect the scalp and cause stunted hair growth.

These issues often affect the scalp and sometimes cause scarring, inflammation or sores to the scalp, inhibiting hair growth.

16. Using the Wrong Hair Care Tools

Aside from the obvious damage that can result from excessive blow-drying, flat ironing and pressing the hair, using poor hair tools such as smaller toothed combs, the wrong types of brushes and even fractured bobby pins and hair combs can also result in damage to your natural hair.

Hair accessories that are damaged can snag the hair and cause breakage. The same applies for using combs with smaller teeth that can tangle the hair and cause split ends. Invest in a seamless comb or a Denman Brush for detangling and styling natural hair.

17. You Don’t Drink Enough Water

It’s also important to moisturize from the inside out. I’ve found that those who have issues retaining the length of their natural hair are often not drinking enough water.

This tends to show up as dry, brittle hair that’s more prone to split and break. Drinking lots of water, plus making sure you eat plenty of fruit and veggies, will feed your follicles to promote growth and reduce the chance of breakage.

18. Over-processing

For those of us with relaxers, overprocessed hair can be a huge reason for why hair growth seems so elusive. There are a few ways this can happen.

One way is when chemicals aren’t applied properly to your hair. With relaxers, this happens when hair that was previously relaxed is relaxed again and again. It can also happen when the relaxer is left on for too long.

Another way to over-process hair is when too many chemicals are applied to your hair. Coloring relaxed hair or vice versa can cause a lot of damage. Especially when a professional isn’t involved in the application process.

19. Your Hand Is Always in It

Over-manipulation of your hair – whether it’s with your hands or combs and brushes – can cause unnecessary stress, breaking off your fragile ends.

If you find that you’re always touching your hair, try wearing protective styles. Keeping your hair braided, twisted, or in a bun for a week or two will force you to keep your hands and hair tools out of it. No touchy, no breaky! The less your hair breaks, the more length you retain!

20. Genetics

Hair growth cycles differ from person to person mainly due to genetics. One person’s cycle can have a growth phase of three years, while another has a growth phase of five years before it’s time for the hair to shed.

So it may simply be that your growth stage is shorter than others, which makes it seem like your hair isn’t growing at all. But as long as you use the hair care tips above, your hair should grow fine at its own peak rate.

20. You Need a Trim

Trimming your hair to help with growth may seem like a backwards process, but it’s one of the best things you can do for your hair. Regular trims get rid of nasty split ends and damage that lead to breakage.

There’s no one rule of how often you should trim your hair, but doing so at least once every season – or every three to four months – will refresh your ends and keep them healthy.

The more you keep up with trims, the less you’ll see damage, and the less hair you’ll need to cut. You may even be able to stretch the time between trims as it gets healthier.

Reasons Why Your Natural Hair Is Not Growing What you can do ?

Regularly trim your hair, about every 3-4 months.

Don’t trim too often.

If you see a split end don’t hang on to it, trim it off.

Do you feel like your natural hair is not growing?

Take a look at your current regimen and compare it with these hair care tips. What can you do better to retain length?


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