Can I please have Cher’s hair?
During a recent late-night Instagram deep dive I found myself on a Cher stan account. That night, I dreamed I had the singer’s dark, impossibly long glossy locks. The only problem? When I woke up, my hair reality was much, much shorter.
So I took my dream to the experts and consulted Sarah Roberts, tricologist and author of You and Your Hair: The Ultimate Healthy Hair Masterclass for Afro Textured Hair, and Lisa Caddy, trichologist at Philip Kingsley, on their most important tips on how make my hair grow faster. Before you know it, I’ll be dancing to “I Got You Babe” with waist-length hair of my very own.
It all starts at the scalp
“Our scalp is the birthplace of our hair, says Roberts. “Understanding the basic health that we need to ensure to have a healthy scalp is vital to having healthy hair.” Caddy agrees, adding “Dead skin cells, sebum, sweat, bacteria, odors and pollution all accumulate on the scalp which can cause underlying inflammation and flaking. Addressing flaky scalp conditions such as dandruff, eczema and psoriasis will provide a healthier scalp environment which in turn optimizes hair growth and health.”
A healthy scalp = healthy hair. “Think about the scalp as a flower bed,” Caddy says. “If you neglect it, dump rubbish on it, never clean it out then you’ll never grow the prettiest and most vibrant, healthy flowers!”
Don’t rule out hot tools
We’ve all heard the overheating horror stories, but if we’re being realistic, sometimes you just want to use a straightener or a curling iron. Fear not, that’s where heat protectant products come in to play. These products coat your strands with mirror-like ingredients that protect your hair from the damage that comes along with styling. But Roberts adds, “This [heat] damage is irreversible,” so proceed with caution.
Hair supplements actually work
“Some supplements can be beneficial to give hair a boost, especially if we feel that our diet isn’t 100 percent,” Caddy says, warning that hair loss isn’t always caused by a nutritional issue. “A good supplement targeted for hair will contain vitamins and minerals such as iron, B12, vitamin D, biotin etc, which if you happen to be deficient in, can cause hair shedding.”
Invest in protecting your hair
That goes beyond just a heat protectant! We’re talking about oils, masks, pillow cases, wraps, and more—all of these strand-coddling products will help your hair grow faster and stronger.