Goal: Create an environment for optimal hair growth= improve scalp conditions & overall health

1.     Have good circulation for the scalp and body

2.     Have a proper diet rich in vitamins- feed yourself not your hair

3.     Stop scalp abuse:

  • Stop damaging and tearing your scalp
  • Keepyour scalp moisturized but not clogged
  • Keep your scalp clean

Once the environment is created, the hair will grow on its own so keep this up and move onto phase 2 (retain it) to learn how to keep what will be growing. 

(1) Circulation

Good circulation is necessary for the delivery of nutrients to, and the removal of wastes from, all the cells of the body. An unhealthy diet, anger, stress, lack of exercise, smoking, diabetes, high blood pressure, and hardened arteries may contribute to poor circulation. It is important to eat the right foods and maintain a healthy lifestyle to improve blood circulation. In addition, there are certain foods and techniques which can specifically increase circulation and improve overall cardiovascular health.

How to increase circulation:

  • EXERCISE: walking, jogging, running, interval training, stretching, yoga
  • Practice DEEP BREATHING: Most of us breathe shallowly. If we carry out deep breathing to use the lungs more fully, this will get more oxygen into the blood, remove waste products from the blood 
  • Relax! Stop stressing and being angry, think positive, meditate, listen to relaxing music
  • Manually stimulate the scalp: Do a scalp massage with fingers or a prong-style brush. You can try this with a penetrating oil for a hot oil treatment then let it sit for 30 minutes before shampooing. Try coconut, olive or avocado oil. Also try a scalp massage with water pressure from a detachable shower head.
  • Products that stimulate scalp: several essential oils that are considered to be stimulating or invigorating include lavender, peppermint, tea tree, eucalyptus, basil, nettle, lemon and rosemary leaf oils (learn to apply essential oils-coming soon)
  • Food for better circulation:
  1. Eat plenty of foods that are rich in vitamins A, C and E.
  2. Nuts and seeds: sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, Sesame seeds/ tahini, almonds, walnuts
  3. Foods with lycopene: tomatoes, watermelon, guava, pink grapefruit
  4. Fresh fruits especially oranges, cantaloupe, kiwis, strawberries, papaya, berries and plums
  5. Eat more vegetables such as carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, leek
  6. Add ingredients such as fennel, onions, turmeric, chili, ginger, black and repepper, beetroot, watercress, ginkgo, garlic and cayenne to food 
  7. Decrease your intake of saturated fats (found in foods such as red meat, cheese and cream).  AVOID fast food, cheap highly processed fats and oils, deep fried oils (ie not cold pressed oils).

(2) Hair and nutrition

Take a multivitamin: make sure it has vitamins A, B, C, D and E; silicon, sulfur, selenium, biotin and folic acid. Also increase your omega 3 fatty acids.

(3) Stop abusing your scalp 

  • Avoid damaging and tearing your scalp because you need that to grow hair out of. So stop scratching with fingernails, scraping with rat-tail combs, burning with chemicals and using harsh products.
  • Keep scalp moisturized but not clogged. Sebum naturally moisturizes hair. But due to harsh chemicals such as relaxers and harsh products like the typical shampoo, sebum production goes out of whack. Since sebum should be enough to moisturize the scalp you shouldn’t have to put anything on the scalp. But for those who feel they need to put something on it, here’s what to do:

Choose products wisely:

  • Don’t use anything hair products that will clog, gunk up and build up on the scalp or hair or anything that merely coats the hair.
  • Say not to: petroleum based products, silicones and non-penetrating oils (they just sit on the hair and don’t moisturize such as mineral oil)
  • Say yes to: penetrating oils such as jojoba, avocado, olive, coconut oil and shea butter

At the same time, the scalp needs to be cleaned regularly as oils and things attract dust, dirt and debris.  You don’t want any buildup to occur. So keep scalp clean. Try washing your hair 2x a week. One day with a shampoo and conditioner (big wash day) and mid week with just conditioner (co washing day). A shampoo with no sulfates, and a conditioner without any “-cones”. 

Coming soon: What to pick out great hair products

Source: afrokinkilove
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