Now more than ever we are seeing many women with waist length 4C hair. How did they grow their hair so long when yours is ‘stuck’ at shoulder length?
- “Leave your hair alone, and I do not mean you neglect your hair.” Afro Lique
- “Learning how to do my own hair has benefited me the most… it tops any products you can use on your hair, it’s the best method to having healthy hair” Natural Academia
- “Use fenugreek seeds. Soak in water for 24-36 hrs and use in spray bottle to hydrate hair daily. Fenugreek stimulates the hair follicles” Eugenia Kelcy
We’ve studied over 20 girls who have grown 4C hair to waist length and we learnt that these are the top 11 tips on how to Grow 4C hair to waist length:
1. Moisturize and seal
As simple as it sounds, your 4C hair needs moisture to thrive. Dry 4C hair breaks off easily meaning you will lose length if you don’t keep up with your moisturizing routine.
4c hair is prone to dryness thanks to the tight curls and coils. Natural oils from the scalp have a hard time travelling down the hair shaft hence leaving your hair dry and prone to breakage.
Depending on your hair porosity, you can effectively moisturize your hair by layering products either using the LOC method or the LCO method.
Ensure you are using moisturizing products which have water as the first ingredient. For more on how to moisturize 4C hair, read this article.
2. Be gentle with your 4C hair
To grow long 4C hair, you need to be gentle with those curls.
- Use styling tools with care
- Finger detangle
- Practice low manipulation
Naturally High believes in a radically gentle approach to hair care. See what she has to say on growing her 4C hair to waist length:
Before reaching for your comb to detangle, try using your fingers. Yes, it does take a bit longer but it reduces hair breakage and protects your inches.
If you are in a bit of a rush and you to use a comb, use a wide-toothed comb which is better in terms of reducing hair breakage. Take note that you can add a conditioner or moisturizer to make the hair easier to handle.
3. Eat right
Eat a balanced diet with the right vitamins and your hair will thrive.
For healthy hair cells to be created, a balance of nutrients and oxygen is needed.
Therefore, what you eat is quite crucial in your hair growth journey. Keep your meals balanced incorporating calcium, proteins, and vitamins which are key drivers for hair growth.
4. Have an effective wash routine
For 4c hair, wash day is a whole event and should be executed with care.
When it comes to shampooing, get yourself a product that is moisturizing and gentle to your scalp. Avoid shampooing too often as it may dry out your hair and leave you with vulnerable strands.
Pre-poo your hair with natural oils that protect the hair from the harshness of the shampoo. You can seek an alternative to shampoo by using a co-wash which is basically washing your hair with only conditioner.
5. Practice low manipulation protective styling
Protective hairstyles like box braids and cornrows are great shields from hair damage.
However, it is important to give your time to breathe otherwise you’ll be pulling and tugging on your hair a little too much.
This leaves your strands fragile to breakage and a lot of hair shedding can go on. Hence, you’ll lose the inches you are fighting tirelessly to get.
“One thing that I have been doing to retain length is doing protective styling” Natural Academia.
Leave your hair alone, let it do its thing.
6. Deep condition regularly
Deep conditioning is vital in ensuring your hair is healthy.
It unclogs the hair cuticle and reduces build-up in the pores. This creates space for sebum to be easily secreted into the whole scalp thus maintaining the perfect hydration balance.
7. Trim your hair
Won’t trimming my 4C hair reduce the inches? Well, not exactly. If your ends are unhealthy and have split ends, the best thing you can do is to trim off those ends. This will prevent further damage.
Split ends usually expose the internal structure of the hair strands. Without proper control, the issue will extend through the whole length of hair. That way you pave way for healthy hair growth.
8. Use the right products
Yes, the branding, design and popularity of that shampoo is calling your name. I get that it is ‘all natural’ or ‘great for kinks and coils’ but don’t be swayed too easily.
Look at the ingredients list. Sulfates, parabens, sodium chloride, and artificial scents tend to try out hair. So, keep an eye out for such substances.
Also, is your 4C hair low porosity but you are using heavy products that end up causing build up? Or do you find that a protein treatment leads to breakage instead of strengthening your hair?
The answer is in the products you are using.
9. Minimize heat use
Heat-driven appliances like flat irons and blow dryers are the perfect tools for achieving a straighter look, however is use too frequently they can drain the scalp of its natural oils and moisture.
On top of that, it destroys the protein structures which are the very foundation of hair strength.
This can leave hair that easily sheds off. Therefore, keep heat use to a minimum.
10. Do scalp massages
The relaxing and soothing nature of a scalp massage is unmatched. Not only does it make you feel amazing but it bolsters your hair growth by promoting blood circulation.
That way nutrients are supplied to the hair follicle that promotes cell generation and eventually increased hair length.
11. Incorporate special DIY treatments
At the comfort of your home, you can create nourishing hair masks and deep conditioners to give your natural hair a treat.
Rinsing your natural 4C hair with rice water, Fenugreek, rosemary water or onion juice has proved to be very effective for hair growth because it is packed with nutrients.
You can use ingredients like egg, avocado, and honey to concoct your hair mask or conditioner. These are great natural routines for your wash day.
Eugenia Kelcy attributes her hair growth to natural treatments like fenugreek and moringa powder. She uses aloe vera as her moisturizer and makes use of protective hairstyles that stay in for about a month.
Here are her top recommendation on how to grow long healthy natural 4C hair:
Everyone’s approach to hair care is unique but there is a common denominator: healthy, low manipulation hair care practices.
From the article, here is a summary on how to grow 4C hair to waist length:
- Moisturize and seal
- Be gentle with your 4C hair
- Eat right
- Have an effective wash routine
- Practice low manipulation protective styling
- Deep condition regularly
- Trim your hair
- Use the right products
- Minimize heat use
- Do scalp massages
- Incorporate special DIY treatments
You’ll get there all you need is patience and consistency. Regardless of your hair length remember that your hair is stunning and it deserves to be loved.