Is there anything lovelier than a fabulous head of hair that falls down a beautiful back or streams luxuriantly across a pillow? If so, we’re not sure what it is. Luscious long hair has been a beauty ideal as long as most people can remember. Sure, short hair is popular now and again, but there’s nothing quite as spectacular as wonderfully long, healthy hair. If you’d like to grow out your locks to attain their most dramatic length, follow the few simple tips outlined below.
What is hair, exactly?
Hair. Almost everyone has some, but few people really understand what it is. Actually, the hair on our heads is amazingly complex stuff. Not only does hair contribute to our appearance, hair is also a transmitter of sensory information, says WebMD.
Humans have all the follicles they’ll ever have well before birth. Approximately 22 weeks into gestation, a human fetus boasts around one million hair follicles on the head and an additional four million on the rest of their body. Hair on the head appears sparser as we age, due to the fact that the scalp continues to expand, despite the appearance of no new follicles.
Follicles, if you don’t already know, are a living, tunnel-like part of the hair that dwells inside the skin. The follicle comprises a number of different layers, each of which serves its own unique biological purpose. The visible portion of the hair is known as the shaft.
The hair shaft is made of a three-layer protein called keratin. The innermost layer, or medulla, is covered by a middle layer known as the cortex. The cortex is mostly dead protein and comprises the majority of each hair strand. Pigment in the outermost layer, or cuticle, gives hair its color.
The beautiful benefits of long hair
Long hair requires more care and upkeep than easy-to-manage short cuts, but lovers of luscious locks say the results are entirely worth the effort. Not only is long hair pretty to look at, long locks are in a word, sexy.
When you have super-short hair, your styling options are rather limited. Not so with super-long locks. Women (and men) with long hair can wear it wild and free or rein it in with a beautiful braid or clip it away from the face with pretty hair barrettes.
How fast does hair grow?
Typically, human hair grows at a rate of about six inches per year. Whereas animals tend to grow and shed hair during certain seasons of the year, humans grow and shed hair randomly.
Healthy hair tips you’ll want to know about
Beauty experts at Vixen Daily offer a range of helpful hints that can help you grow your hair longer than it’s ever been before. Sleeping on a satin pillowcase may encourage hair growth, because it causes less hair-breaking friction while you sleep. Vixen also recommends using the best hair products you can afford. If you’re loathe to spend a fortune on your hair, go for Loreal drugstore hair care stuff, as it’s almost identical to other pricey products.
Seventeen magazine suggests regular trims to encourage healthy hair growth. While this may seem like a counterproductive idea, trimming split ends actually makes hair look fuller as it grows out. Seventeen hair care experts also say to use cool, not hot, water when washing your hair. Use an old-school hair dryer in lieu of a fast-drying device, and your hair will thank you by continuing the follicle growth cycle as long a possible.
Pat your hair dry with a soft, absorbent towel instead of wrapping it after shampooing, and never, ever try to comb your hair when it’s wet. Doing so will definitely damage your strands and discourage bountiful hair growth.
Certain foods may boost hair growth, too. Salmon, for example, is chock full of natural nutrients such as Omega 3 fatty acids that are beneficial to hair growth. Greek yogurt is another superfood, as far as hair growth is concerned. Packed with the protein your body needs to build healthy hair, yogurt offers a low-calorie way to boost hair growth naturally.
Take care not to break your hair, feed your follicles the stuff they need, and shoulder length or longer hair can be your before you know it.
Joseph Collier is a hairdresser with dreams of one day starting his own hair salon. His articles focus on hair and beauty topics and are getting published on beauty blogs, mommy blogs as well as fashion and lifestyle sites.