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« My TOP 10 TIPS on Growing Long Healthy Natural Hair | Main | Create Illusion of a Longer Voluminous Ponytail "Natural Hair" »
Wednesday
Mar072012

What To Do When Your Natural Hair Stops Growing and Why

So you're done transitioning and spent the last year and a half growing out strong healthy natural hair. But now it seems like your growth rate has slowed down, or even worst, come to a complete halt! Well, don't fret, there could be a variety of reasons and solutions for your delay in growth...

The first reason could be that you're just due for a trim! Personally, I tend to go about 7 to 8 months  between trims. Some people trim more often, some trim less, but it's about listening to your hair and what it needs. Indications that it's time for me to trim my hair, are split ends, loads of single strand knots, and "dents" in the hair shaft.

Split ends are self-explanatory. When your hair shaft splits and travels in more than one direction, you've got a split end! Also look for strands that look like they get thinner at the end, or feather out.

Single strand knots are inevitable with curly natural hair. When your hair is super coily, it has a mind of its own and twists and turns in all different directions. Sometimes it twists, turns, and locks up with another strand of hair, causing a knot. And sometimes it twists, turns, and locks up on itself, creating a small little ball, or a single strand knot!

When I say "dents" in the hair shaft, I'm referring to a strand of hair that varies in thickness. If you look closely at it, especially towards the ends, it looks like it goes from thick, to thin, and then thickens out again; like someone took a bite out the hair shaft!

If I have an abundance of any of the three issues above, or all three, I know it's definitely time for me to trim!

The second reason could be that you may not be moisturizing your hair enough, specifically the ends of your hair. Like I've stated before, your hair is no different from your body, it needs water to function. So you want to make sure that you're moisturizing your hair day and night and that you're sealing in the moisture with an oil-based, creamy product.

When I refer to moisture, I'm talking about water or anything water-based. In regards to the oil-based creamy product, that will depend on your hair texture and density. If you have really thick, dense, and coarse hair you'll want to stick with a thick and dense sealant. If you have thinner, less dense hair, you can also go with a thick and dense sealant, but you'll probably prefer a lighter, less heavy cream-based sealant, that won't weigh your hair down or cause build up.

The third reason could be that it's just time to change or step things up with your hair care routine. Maybe you should start increasing the amount of deep conditioning treatments you do during the month. Maybe you want to start washing your hair more… or less, if you find that your hair is becoming too dry. Perhaps you want to start adding different oils or aloe vera juice to your routine! Whatever the case, try something new or add something different! Increase or decrease steps in your current routine relating to what your hair needs most. When your hair growth comes to a halt, you usually just need to switch things up to give it a pleasant little shock and push in the right direction.

As some of you may know, I'm all about keeping it simple in my routine. But I also pay attention to the changes in my hair health and listen to what my hair is telling me it needs. So if I notice the ends of my hair getting rough and splitting, or an abundance of single strand knots, I know that my ends are in need of some "TLC," Tender Loving Care, and give it a trim! I'll also make sure to moisturize my hair daily, concentrating on my ends. If I'm moisturizing day and night, and it seems that it's not helping anymore, I know it's time to incorporate more deep conditioning treatments, steams, water bagging, or protective styles for a while until things balance back out.

So I hope these tips help! If you've hit that growth halt, have fun experimenting with new things! Your hair will love it and you'll see the results your looking for. I hope this helps guys!

XoXo Whit

Reader Comments (19)

You are awesome & very informative! Your hair looks stunning!! Thanks so much!!

March 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNatina Harris

Great tips love!

March 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLexx

These tips are great! Just like when you workout, your body becomes used to routine activies, just as our hair. We should "trick" our hair just like we would with our bodies.

March 7, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteraprilhatfield84

This post is right on time (for me)! I'm in my 18th month of being natural, and my growth has slowed tremendously. My hair grew to about 8 inches in the first year, then I got 1-2 inches lopped off (ugh--never again), and my hair is taking FOREVER to grow back. I started to freak out, but now I feel confident that with a few adjustments to my regi, I can get back on track. At first, I saw tons of SSKs, but I rarely get them anymore. Protective styling and moisture for the win.

Thanks for all you do, Whit.

March 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKathy

Would love a tutorial on that first picture. Beautiful!!!

March 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHotmomc

I have done some research of my own I have found that our growth is also based on our genetic make-up. Yes, we can stunt our hair growth by using the wrong products or not using the right products and even by not eating the right foods. Once we switch to what's better for our hair the growth may return but some people will simply never have long hair, no matter how hard they try with different regiments and techniques. I think this knowledge should be known to all women because a lot of us spend extreme amounts of money on products promising to make our hair grow longer and faster. And this is not true once you have reached your max growth. I've seen the growth chart that a few natural pages have posted asking the ladies what is their hair growth goal. Before asking ladies this or giving them these hopes that they'll have waist length or even shoulder blade length hair simply because I'm natural, I believe they should read up on the growth of hair and it works. Each hair strain has a life-span and once that life it over that strain falls out, shedding. Our hair works the same as animals. Take dogs for instance, some hair grow long and others short. That is based on their genetic make-up and once a strain has reached that length the dog sheds it. The same as humans.

March 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTidra04

I agree everyone will not have long hair.......We often get frustrated when we can't figure out whats wrong.

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKB Natural

I also would like to add that some women tend to overuse hair extensions, because of their strong desire to have longer hair, without realizing that prolonged usage of such hair accessory can only trigger the hair to stop growing. Or worse - they can go bald!

March 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRowyna

Hey I was wondering what camera do you use? I mean for the pictures you take for your blog, not your video camera^^

Your hair is gorgeous btw :D

March 12, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKimbel

NEED YOUR HELP ...
MY HAIR IS CHEMISTRY IS MADE MORE PERMANENT CRESPO AFRO AND HE IS WEAK AND WITHOUT SETTING, AND WOULD LIKE TO HAVE AN EQUAL TO YOUR HAIR IS POSSIBLE? I METHOD OF MAKING THE VIDEO WORKS IN YOUR HAIR WITH CHEMISTRY? DO YOU HAVE ANY HINT? THANK YOU I AM FROM BRAZIL

March 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterElizangel\a

Great post. Instinctively, I know this but sometimes we need reminders.

March 18, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterwathair

I am now starting to get a little comfortable with my natural. I hated my hair with a passion and I would keep it in braids for months before I decided to go natural. I did not do the bc but I let my hair grow out with the braids. I had no idea what I was doing until I saw you on YouTube and now I'm able to take proper care of my hair. Thank you do much for inspiring me. :-)

April 14, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterVictoria

Hello =)!
how do you prevent single strand knots?

September 27, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterVeronica

hi napturl85,
i have protein sensitive hair and im having trouble finding a moisturizing shampoo that does not contain any proteins.what do you recommend i do to reverse the damage?what shampoo would you recommend?
thank you:)

December 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commentertatiana

I'm a witness to the AVJ. I actually use the AVJ by lily of the desert. it emulsifies to liquid in your hands but it is fabulous for increasing moisture. What's great is it disappears on the hair shaft (no build up...love it). I recently incorporated it into the Greenhouse Effect method I'm following and my hair is in love and growing well

Thank you!

August 28, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTWA4now

Great tips, thanks!

September 16, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTasha

Thank you sooooo much for these tips,now my hair is healthy again. Please continue posting these tips they are helping me a lot.

October 6, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTori

I really love your videos. I watch them from time to time when I want to try something different to my hair. I have been natural since I was 18 (6 years now) and I have learned alot from you. I don't use too many products in my hair. I noticed my hair has been the same length for over a year and I haven't deviated from my routine much and this really helped me realize that I need to get more in tune with my hair. Thanks for all you do! I appreciate the help.

May 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAshlee R.E.

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