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Is Black Hair Harder to Grow?

• Oct 13, 2011


Photo Source: Essence Magazine

By Jc of The Natural Haven

The lovely Jaded remarks, ‘I find it so odd that african americans just in general have such a hard time *relaxed or natural* growing our hair.’ Well, the truth is that African hair is very different from Asian or Caucasian hair. Here are some more details:

Slow growth rate?

It has been suggested that African hair grows much slower than Caucasian hair ( Br J Dermatol, pg 294–7, 2001.). African hair was measured at between 3.7 to 4.3 inches per year while Caucasian hair was measured at 5.7 to 6.3 inches per year. This study unfortunately is too small in my view to be representative of the entire African population but it is nonetheless a valid study.

Shape of the hair?

– Asian and Caucasian hair is more round in shape compared to African hair which is more oval/elliptical (see the diagram!). Some scientists suggest that this can make the hair weak but studies in 4 different labs produced contrasting results (J Am Acad Dermatol,pg S106–S114, 2003). Two of them showed no difference while two found African hair to be weaker — so there really isn’t a conclusion as to whether the ellipse shape affects strength.

Breakage

– This one is a bit of a duh moment. The curlier the hair the more likely it is to break. African hair has more kinks and curls. Each of these turns represents a weak point which can be tested by washing, conditioning, towel drying, combing, braiding (everything basically!).

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211 Comments on "Is Black Hair Harder to Grow?"

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Porsche
Guest

I’ve never had problems with growing my hair. I’ve always had long hair except for right now since I bc’d in february but my hair is growing at .5 inches a month. When I hit the one year mark in august, I had a little over 6 inches of hair growth.

Amayou
Guest

To me long hair is past bra strap length and closer to waist length and beyond. They definitely need to run that study again about the average growth rate for the different races, mine is approximately 1/2 inch per month, while my sister’s is amost an inch. Neither of is are biracial, we both have the same parents. There is some native american ans well as caucasion blood in us but it about 3 generations back. Interesting article nonetheless.

adamson
Guest

I honestly think that it’s a lack of effective methods that leads to people not being able to retain length, rather than the hair being intrinsically harder to grow.

And how long is long? When I was a little kid, people used to call my hair long, but it was really at a point between sl and apl (what it would have been then). I think that the black community typically considers shorter lengths to be ‘long’.

adamson
Guest

Oh, what I consider now to be long is hair between bsl/mbl and longer.

Monique, Sofull Sista
Guest

I, personally, have noticed slower growth, I measured my growth at ~0.4″/month. I will note that my mom’s hair grows extremely fast — she cuts it ALL THE TIME (2–3 inches) and will have her length back in a few months.

All of the aforementioned leave me to leave growing my hair extremely long to others for now. I just want cute healthy hair, and that doesn’t mean it has to be long for me! 🙂

June
Guest

I am growing out my hair, but all I need is to be able to get into a loose ponytail. I don’t want the work that comes with very long hair. My hair grew really quickly when I had relaxed hair and I kept cutting it to chin level.

bee.
Guest

Amazing post! Very informative…

One question though: How do you trim all the knots out? I have so many I don’t know what to do! I usually just trim my hair by a quarter of an inch when my hair is in twists after I have washed it.

Thanks in advance!

Elaine D.
Guest

Yup.…I used to think my hair grew slowly…then I realized it was me causing the breakage. One time after I had a weave for almost 3 months due to personal issues…washing my sculp and moisturizing… I took it out one day and my hair had grown a whopping 3 inches (big for me) lol. I was amazed!

Kai
Guest
Well since race(physically at least) is just the appearance left over from when humans were still living outside and adaptating to their environments to survive better(for example light skin = more vitamin D, long, high-bridged noses warm the cold air more than a broad nose, etc. for northern Europeans) couldn’t it be possible that people with short hair were better equipped for survival in hot equatorial envornments? Fast growing/long hair might have gotten in the way and make a person sweat too much then at night time they’d be cold and more likely to get sick. Maybe there’s a gene… Read more »
Sue
Guest

I think evolutionary theory might explain some of this. I have also thought that the kinks and curls in African hair kept the hair off the shoulders hence less heat. The woolly and dense nature of the kinks could also be a canopy from the sun i.e. less of the scalp is exposed.

Chic
Guest

@ Kai and Sui

Yaay to smart ladies. That is my exact line of thinking. The issue is when we assign different traits, skin, hair texture , eye color etc. as one being more beautiful than the other.. rather than embracing differences.

fimifah
Guest

One thing to note is that certain traits are popular not just because they are/ were practical for the given environment, but also because in that particular region those features are/were considered attractive. Something people ought to keep in mind in relation to the subjective nature of beauty.

renee
Guest

you ladies raise great points. In warm climates, you dont need as much hair (on head or body). Another side of the coin is that my hair flourishes (length and thickness) in warmer temperatures. Dont we all already agree that we REALLY have to be careful with our tresses in the winter? We were not made for the cold. It is not our optimal climate.

Nikki
Guest

Often I’ve considered this theory too about the origins of kinky/short hair in relation to Africa. Your theory makes sense until I consider other hot/humid/tropical indigenous people with thick and long hair e.g., Indians (South Asians).

Miss B
Guest

I agree with you Nikki about non-African people who also live in equally hot/arid/humid conditions but have thick, long and (sometimes) straight hair.

anastasia
Guest
Our hair is something special but there are other ethnic populations who have similar textures. The evolutionary based theory mentioned is something I’ve always given credence when it comes to afro-textured hair, but I gotta tell you ladies somethin’ that I’m a little ashamed of: I’m glad I don’t have straight hair (didn’t always feel this way), even though the hair I have needs quite alot of TLC to thrive and retain growth. When I see straight hair, same thing with thin lips, I think of chimps. That’s absolutely horrible, I know, but my hair tells me daily that I… Read more »
LBell
Guest
Glad you said it…and it’s always interesting how some folks IRL get upset when I bring up evolutionary theory, lol… Objectively speaking, hair exists for a reason and it’s not to make you look cute. The coils and kinks of Afro-textured hair were designed to keep heat off the skull while at the same time allowing air to get in. Past a certain length it’s harder for air to get in (because the hair will mat into a cap) so it makes sense that it would be harder for length to stay, so to speak. (Of course, different ethnic groups… Read more »
keke
Guest

My aunty used to tell us kids when we were young that our hair doesn’t hang down but curls up so that it can be closer to god, that’s why he made is that way… how sweet (still natural and always have been)

TaNeika
Guest
I agree with the rate. When I went natural and I heard that hair grows about a half inch a month, I was elated! I thought in 2 years I will have a foot of hair! Ummm… not the case! While I am not upset, it will just take more time. But I have learned by monitoring my hair that my hair grows about 1/3 of an inch a month, which means it will take 3 months to grow 1 inch! Which makes sense because 25 months post my last relaxer I have 8.5 inches of hair today. .333*25 =… Read more »
karlyne
Guest

I agree with your formula 100% because it measures my growth to a tee. 29 months and I am a little of 9″ on point of .33X29=9.5 so I figure 12″ will be about my 38th month or so. Thanks for the calculations .. I am not .50 per month more like .33!! Now I dont feel so bad 🙂

Nicky W.
Guest

Sometimes I feel like my hair will never get pass ear length 🙁

anastasia
Guest

It will Nicky W…It will =)

binks
Guest

Me and you both! I feel like my hair is constantly at ear length…like move already to the chin at least…lol

Aisa
Guest
Aw. Don’t worry. It will grow. I felt that way when I had relaxed hair. It was always ear length and shorter. I couldn’t get no length to save my life but my natural hair is doing much better for me. I was so happy when I got about 3 inches of hair. Lol. I started having breakage and thought OH No. Not again! I nipped it in the bud with learning about moisture. It helped so much with helping me retain and then protective styling took me farther. You will make it and you will be so happy to… Read more »
ANON
Guest
I do think we’re the only ones obsessed with long hair — how to grow it, retain it, keep it, showcase it etc ad nauseum. We grow as fast as any other race but due to well discussed factors (kinks in our hair etc, we can struggle with retention. While many black women have no problem growing and retaining longer lengths, they are a drop in the ocean compared to those of us who do not find it so easy. It’s not such a big deal but it is when you are moored in western society and culture which values… Read more »
Sue
Guest
Yeah, this obsession with length is counter productive sometimes. The western ideal is indeed long flowy hair but even amongst caucasian women, most don’t do much with it. They just let it hang. Our hair texture allows experimenting with different styles and looks. Why don’t we appreciate that? I have looked through many natural hair blogs and videos and I think one can still achieve creative styles with hair that isn’t very long. I can understand frustration if you are at TWA stage and not budging. But if you are at shoulder length and still complaining, it’s not worth it!… Read more »
Kam
Guest

We are definitely not the only ones obsessed with long hair, as I discovered when I stumbled upon a thread from the Long Hair Community, which is a mainly white messageboard.

EG
Guest
We are not the only ones obsessed with long hair. Check out ‘long hair care forum’ or Youtube and you will find plenty of non-black women talking about long hair. I even saw a youtube video from a white woman promotiing a yeast infection cream for long hair. Like you said, because we have trouble with length retention, it looks like we’re wasting our time, hence why some of you think we’re obsessed. The attitude i come across a lot is ‘ugh, give it up already, it’s not going to happen for you’. But thanks to people like ‘kimmayutube, Cipriana,… Read more »
June
Guest

Plus, I can see my hair growing! People I know keep moving the bar for when my hair will stop growing rather than accept they don’t know what they are talking about and natural, black hair can grow.

June
Guest

Nope. Take a gander over here http://www.longhaircommunity.com/

I just think there are some women of all races obsessed with long hair. Not all naturals are obsessed with long hair, not all black women are obsessed with long hair as well. I am natural and black, and not obsessed nor care for long hair beyond being able to throw it into a ponytail on a lazy day. Ha!

Erika
Guest
I think most of it is just genetics. Some black people have fast growing hair, just like some white people have fast growing hair. Not all white people’s hair grows super fast, just like with black people. I actually never realized that my hair grows fast until I stopped relaxing it. I feel that these kinds of studies are inconclusive because there are too many variables in the mix. No one should think just because they are black that their hair has no possiblity of ever being long. Just eat right, drink plenty of water, take care of your hair,… Read more »
Lisa
Guest

This is all very depressing. But thanks

jasmine harvey
Guest

hahaha thats how i feel

wanda
Guest

lol I know right. Like do we really need another “negative”

JP23
Guest

HAHAHAH! Once I realized my natural hair would shrink into a twa no matter what I did, I moved on. This is.…WOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW.

Jo Somebody
Guest
Don’t be depressed! Read the article. First of all, it’s ONE study. Secondly, the hair of the African participants was cut, then measured over 2 days! This data was compared to some data on Caucasian hair that was collected at a previous time but never published (why??). The paper acknowledges that hair may grow differently during different seasons, but as no data was given for when the Caucasian people had their hair cut (or any other data them, except age — there is evidence that the average density of different Caucasian hair is varied by natural colour, maybe growth rate… Read more »
Dawn
Guest
not to mention, but they failed to take into account diet, seasonal fluctuations, exercise- internal factors. i know for a fact that my hair growth has periods of stagnation and then periods of rapid growth and then more periods of simply average growth. it usually goes in a cycle like this- month 1- .4 inches. month 2-.5 inches. month 3- .7 inches. month 4- .5, month 5- back to .4… so for me, growth is more of a continuum rather than something set in stone, and it’s usually influenced by the factors i mentioned above. if i was drinking more… Read more »
Chic
Guest

Hmm not sure about this study. I BC in May 2011 ( last relaxer was Dec 2010). I had about 2.5–3in of hair. Now I have about 5.5in thats average growth (.5/mo) for 10 months growth. Not sure where they are getting the 3in/yr growth numbers from.

I consider long hair anything linger than 12in/ thats about BSL 🙂

Pam
Guest
This is all very helpful. I KNOW my hair grows slower than most people I know white or black. It’s taken me almost two years to reach shoulder length. I also have very fine hair, so many of the gorgeous thick afros, braidouts and twistouts, I just can’t do. While I love my curly texture, as my hair gets longer, I am starting to think that a TWA is overall the best style for me. But like many others, right now I’m obsessed with length. So, I keep experimenting to see what I can do with the length I have… Read more »
deena
Guest
Dont want to hear it. Another side of this slow growth is our diet, lifestyle and not knowing how to care for our hair. Who’s mostly at the gym? who’s at the farmers markets? who’s at the whole foods and trader joes? how many of us are overweight? This is why a lot of us have to rely on iron pills, multivitamins, and even laxatives to see growth. Because we are not eating the foods (or at least not enough) that encourage growth. And we’re not even going to talk about how our stress levels also throw a wrench in… Read more »
jasmine harvey
Guest

so true! i take biotin pills and my nails are growing like crazy! when i eat healthy and drink lots of water my face clears up, so why wouldnt these things also impact my hair growth? i think it makes a big difference.

Earth Angel
Guest

I wouldn’t necessarily say that I didn’t want to hear that our hair grows slower. I really don’t think so, but who knows it might. But you are right in that diet and stress level definitely have an impact on our hair. AND we definitely are just starting to learn about our natural texture—and by we and mean companies etc. too! Natural hair is new to most of us and we just have to find what works. Even if our hair does grow more slowly, we have to focus on the factors we can influence.

Monique, Sofull Sista
Guest

I know people always talk about health affecting hair growth, but I don’t believe it plays a significant role, unless you’re talking about EXTREME situations.

I know I personally have a very healthy, active lifestyle, and I eat very well. Yet, I have slower hair growth. I know plenty of people with long, healthy hair with poor eating habits, and inactive lifestyles. I just don’t see a *significant* correlation there.

NappyRina
Guest
Ok so if it had to do with poor diet, what explains the long lengths of hair on people living in squalor with no access to “farmer’s markets” or “nourishing” foods or “sulfate-free” shampoos who don’t even have gyms to go to in extrememly poor areas of Northern Africa, Asia, Southeast Asia, Latin America just to name a few? The similarity I see with these extrememly poor people who can manage to grow their hair very long and effortlessly at that, is texture! The hair ranges from straight, to loose waves, to curly/coily not usually tightly coiled/kinky. I think there… Read more »
Ellie
Guest
If you go to some of those countries the poverty and ghettos are unlike America. They are not eating off the dollar menu and eating a bunch of junked processed foods because they can’t afford fresh foods . That does make a big difference but in many countries you named they have no choice to eat fresh foods. When they are able to eat it is natural foods veggies rice and fish that usually are free of pesticides and chemicals, its not like they can go to the grocery store. This is how so many people who live in poverty… Read more »
Ellie
Guest

Oh and many Thai sarin/Cambodian which are mostly originated from India have long thick coily hair and darker skin. In fact my mother is often mistaken for black or mixed race all the time. Her hair even wet feels like thick straw. The lighter skinned cambodians are usally descendants of northern Asia ( Korea China Vietnam) and have thick straight strands. With.that I do not believe texture is so much of a deterance of long healthy hair in poverty stricken countries.

NappyRina
Guest
You make a great point but then again, there are many people in African countries living in the same kind of impoverished conditions and still eating what they have access to which would naturally be more fresh & not processed food, etc but their hair is NOT as long as their counterparts in other impoverished parts of the world. The difference is TEXTURE. Alot of the times, if you see images of those with tightly coiled/kinky hair with long lengths, the hair is in some form of protective style (locs, wrapped in mud, braids, etc) which proves my point that… Read more »
June
Guest
You seem to conflating retaining with growing. Earlier you argued about growth and here you are arguing retention. I don’t think most people would disagree with you on the retention angle. My hair is not delicate or fragile (thick, coarse strands), but it requires more protection because it coils. I think most agree with that. As for the inferiority angle, I don’t view the fact that we need to do more to retain as evidence we are inferior. I think these issues are often framed, subconsciously, to imply there is something wrong with whatever side we are on. I just… Read more »
Jo Somebody
Guest
Yes, and the difference in texture means that it’s easier for very poor Africans to keep their cut hair low. Not that because they’re poor/malnourished their hair doesn’t grow. (may be true in the developing child though…) Erm, yes we need to take more effort in protecting our hair, I would be surprised if anyone really disputed that (the more textured the hair, the more protection it needs), I have no idea why you think people see this as a sign of inferiority though. I have never come across that thinking. Needing more precious care makes something special not inferior!… Read more »
June
Guest

I need to hear more about this laxatives for growth. Hehehe

Carla
Guest

As someone who haven’t seen fast food in over 12 years, eat huge servings of organic veggies daily, work out most days of the week, take supplements, drinks lots of water, don’t eat sugar, etc, etc, I can tell you my hair doesn’t grow any faster than less than .5″ a month. Less. I think I have genetics to blame. LOL

June
Guest

I do a bit of both. Eat well and eat badly. I need to be more concerned with what I consume.

brunettefury
Guest

Another side of this slow growth is our diet, lifestyle and not knowing how to care for our hair. Who’s mostly at the gym? who’s at the farmers markets? who’s at the whole foods and trader joes?”

Rich white people who have those markets readily available to them?

Carla
Guest

Excuse me, but I’m not rich nor white and I do all of these things, and have for years. I think its a matter of geography and priorities.

anastasia
Guest

+1

peggy
Guest

Ok are picture up here to make me sick. I am feeling and turning green due to hair envy. lol I love hair. My hair is pretty full and got a nice length. The ground is the limit I want my hair to grow haha!

SHAY
Guest

I don’t know. I’m approaching my BC anniversary. I just measured my hair and it has grown 5 inches in almost 12 months. I think categorizing hair as African and Caucasian is a bit misleading. Where does Ethiopian hair fall in this categorization? Arab hair? What about Portuguese hair. The world is full of mixture and I think there are a lot of “Caucasians” with “African” hair and vice versa.

Nia
Guest

It’s not the hair growth rate that is the issue. It’s the ability to retain that growth.

K
Guest

that’s very true…in terms of the other ethnicities length retnention is not as much of an issue for them compared to us…we have to be so much more delciate and protective of our strands than any other group and sometimes I’ll admit I’m a bit envious as I wish I could walk around without a care in the world as well! lol

Earth Angel
Guest

I don’t think Black hair is necessarily harder to grow. We as a people just have less experience with our own natural texture, so like all people have to learn how to do–well—EVERYTHING, it just takes time to find out what works for each of us—-after that the task is simply doing what works on a regular basis! 🙂

EG
Guest

I agree. There is no mention of the regimen of the people who took part in the study. If I took part in the study around Dec/Jan, I guarrantee you that I would have seen/retained less than .3 inches of growth. Now that I have found what works for me, I think I could meet the .5 inches in a month average. Until I find out more about these women, I’m stickiing with the .5 inches a month for afro-textured hair women.

Nette
Guest

I DO NOT believe slow hair growth is really the problem. I believe us not having enough knowledge on how to PROPERLY care for our hair…AND the rest of our body overall is the main reason many of us cannot grow our hair to long lengths. NOT so much slower growth rate.

Mai
Guest

I second this. Remember the post a couple of weeks ago about how, before slavery, Africans had long hair because we knew how to take care of it. If the average black woman was used for the studies (and this is assuming the average black woman is not familiar with techniques that prevent breakage and grow hair), then these studies make sense. But I personally don’t believe black hair grows slower, many just have really bad breakage that makes it seem that way…or they take that horrid cut your hair every 6 weeks seriously.

Nette
Guest

I was thinking of that exact article also. Africans did have long, strong, afro-textured hair which is more proof that our hair can grow, and that the value of having longer hair is not just a western concept

dalilou
Guest

Most Africans (sub-saharan) back then also wore their hair primarily in a variety of protective styles, though. That was the reality until colonialism. I just wanted to point that out. My mother is from the Congo and before the relaxer and crazy weave phase, women wore their hair intricate cornrows or in plaits tied with string.

June
Guest

My mother wore her hair out and loved it! My grandmother wore her hair down and people still talk about her very long hair. My mother complains relaxers ruined her hair, but she would not stop relaxing!!

lexibugg004
Guest
my hair grows at about 6.5″ a year, grows faster in the warmer months, i transitioned for about 1 1/2 year and have now been natural for 19 months and i now have 22 inches of hair even with trimming 2–4 times a year. even while relaxed my hair grew and retained length with relative easy. i always assumed that other girls and women had short hair because it was either by choice or because of damage,over processing and lack of proper care, not because their genetic code predetermined the ultimate length and growth rate of their hair… i consider… Read more »
June
Guest

I think most people keep their hair at a certain length because they want to. I am often surprised how people in this community assume anyone with short/mid-length hair has difficulty growing out their hair.

M
Guest

My hair grows a half an inch a month and a little more in some sections…I think the slower growth rate thing is an illusion (for most) caused by breakage.

Applesauce
Guest

My hair grows about 4.5 inches a year. After three years, I’ve been able to retain most of that growth through gentle detangling, sealing and protective styling. Before these past three years, my natural hair never retained more than 6–7 inches. I once thought that I just had short-hair genes. I now know that isn’t true. Proper care and the right products have made all the difference.

HandsInHair
Guest
I think the inconclusiveness of these studies just shows the variance amongst different heads of “African” hair (using the term loosely here). Maybe on average it is true. There will always be individual differences. I can attest that MY hair grows slowly. My hair was dyed 2 years ago and from there to today I could see how much my hair grew over 24 months and it’s about 10–11 inches. Studies & questions like this don’t bother me because it helps me put things in perspective. For example, if I know that most black peoples’ hair grows a little slower… Read more »
anastasia
Guest

And in the cases outlined here, the results are inconclusive. Basically, back to your regularly scheduled program, folks!” LOL, Indeed =)

ranuka
Guest
It depends on a lot of things, each person’s rate of growth is different, last year sept 12& 13 on 13th i cut my hair down to 3 inches. My hair is now heading to 14 inches at it’s longest point. It grows over an inch a month. I just had my anniversary last month, and during that year I cut my hair twice and had many trims.One thing I can say though, is that the bottom third of the back of my hair grows slower than the rest of my hair. Ask me how much — i can’t say… Read more »
Hyspin
Guest
Honestly I think it a little of column A (genetics) a little of column B (maintain length through practice and other external factors) and a little of column C (internal health, not just diet). It irritates me that people like to jump on the fact people can’t take care of their hair or blacks can’t grow hair. Diet for the most part I don’t think greatly affects your hair unless it in extreme cases. But when I say internal I also mean drugs (prescription or over the counter, and illegal if you want to include that) and sickness (disease, cancer,… Read more »
Lin
Guest

Huh, I’ve never had hair growing problems.
At my fastest, I grow an inch every three weeks or so, at the slowest, it’s just over half an inch a month.
This seems to run in my family, too, so yeah. /Kanye shrug

June
Guest

I am African and my hair has been growing about 0.5 to 0.75 inche per month.

I am curious if the people JC was around in Kenya had relaxed or natural hair? Also, I know many of my country people, Nigerians, have terrible hair care practices.

Jc
Guest

Hi June,

The longest hair that I saw were girls with natural hair. There was a mix of natural and relaxed hair but in all fairness most girls wore braids most of the time (synthetic).

June
Guest

Anytime, I see studies of black women, they are always focused on what we can’t do and what we are doing wrong. Is there any study anywhere that thinks black can do something??? Any scientist out there, please help me out.

lexibugg004
Guest

i did read a study in a financial magazine stating that black women were out-performing and earning more in the “workplace” than their “Hispanic”, white and Asian counter parts! sweetie i learned quite some time ago that studies and statistic only serve the purpose of attempting to degrade us and tarnish or image in the eyes of not only our society, but the world. so i dont pay them much attention!!

Janele
Guest

Like many, my hair grows at a pretty steady rate (no I have not measured it). However, I do notice that certain areas grow faster than others. Additionally, certain areas are more prone to breakage.

Jas
Guest

It used to, but now it doesn’t matter if my hair grows fast or not. Today I just want it to be healthy and strong, and these knots are something that has been bothering me for a while. Thank you for this article, I can now admit that it’s normal for my type of hair to have that much knots in it and I will not try to unknot them any more. It has never led to anything else than breakage anyway

*ajalahtravel*
Guest

like i always say.….….lose the comb until we find a way to create a comb for our type of hair. combs were and have never being made with our type of hair in mind

Jo Somebody
Guest

Africans have made and used wooden combs for a very long time. Ceremonial combs, wedding combs. There is nothing wrong or damaging about combing ‘our’ hair.

Phylama
Guest
First off, define “African Hair.” Are we strictly talking people of complete African descent born in the continent of Africa with no other ethnicity in their ancestry? Most African Americans have a varied ancestry that may not be completely African. I know I most certainly don’t. My mother is from Belize, which is culturally diverse country. I know I do not have strictly African ancestry, yet my hair is extremely kinky. Same for “Caucasian” hair. What specifically defines Caucasian? European descent? Even so, there are many countries in Europe, and all of those ethnicities can not be grouped in to… Read more »
on the fence
Guest

In general I honestly believe it is harder for “MOST” of us to retain length due to dryness and fragility but I believe our hair grows at close to the same rate.

wanda
Guest

for kinks and curls, each turn represents a weak point. I wonder if this is true for white curly hair too? Probably not

Michelle Hubbard
Guest

This topic regarding hair growth is interesting. But, I do get tired of “us” comparing everthing we have to white people. I wish the title would have been rephrashed to possibly “Does kinky/coily/tightly curled hair have slower growth rate than other hair types?”

sunshyne84
Guest

Agreed.

Lin
Guest

I think “black” is easier to type and more encompassing. {Is that the right word? My English is off today. :U}

Michelle Hubbard
Guest

Black is easier to type. I agree. It’s just the constant comparisons..:)

Abby
Guest
Hello all, I could care less if our hair grows slower or not, it still grows and is beautiful. Check out this book, The Science of Black Hair: A Comprehensive Guide to Textured Hair Care by Audrey Davis-Sivasothy. Readers will learn how to: * Maintain chemically-treated or natural hair in optimal health. * Stop hair breakage with a novel, protein/moisture balancing method. * Regulate product pH balance for shinier, more manageable hair. * Grow their hair longer, stronger and healthier for life! Additional Features * Regimen Builder with extensive product listings * Ingredients glossary * Interviews * Real photos of… Read more »
mangomadness
Guest

I could care less if our hair grows slower or not, it still grows and is beautiful.”

+1

rosie
Guest

Best comment in the whole discussion.

df
Guest

agreed…that’s really all that matters. It’s a bit depressing to hear that your hair grows slower than other races but at the end of the day, is it really important? To me, it’s just discouraging and nothing much else.

K.
Guest

Like others have said, I think it’s more a matter of length retention than lack of growth. My hair grows pretty fast and my hair got almost to bra strap length before I went natural, but the ends were thinning due to relaxing and too much flat ironing. Now I am 15 mos post relaxer w/ neck length hair that is thick from root to tip throughout my whole head.

Barbara
Guest

Well.….duh. Lol, anecdotes aside, it takes a lot of gentle loving care for black hair to grow long for the vast majority and there’s nothing wrong w/ acknowledging it.

SA
Guest
Articles like these seem to pop up every 2–3 months as if to make black women all around the world feel bad about their hair. I didn’t bother reading it all because these so call ‘studies’ aren’t exactly accurate as for as hair growth rates are concerned, you can choose to believe it or not, I surely don’t. Hair growth is determined by genetics no matter if it actually grows slow or fast or in between, unless a person is extremely ill their hair will continue to grow. *Retaining* what you grow when it comes to curly/coily hair boils down… Read more »
Jc
Guest
What is really irking is that some people like yourself fail to read articles. Did you not see the sentence ‘This study unfortunately is too small in my view to be representative of the entire African population but it is nonetheless a valid study.’ I constantly call for more work to be done by scientists in studying African hair. It is really silly for anyone to dismiss a study just because the results do not follow the line of thinking we want. It is a valid study that was well carried out, it would just be nice to have a… Read more »
SA
Guest

You see it as a valid study, I don’t obviously.
I highly doubt these ‘scientists’ studied each individuals daily hair care practices–diet and environment aside, they barely brushed the surface, hair growth and length retention are two separate things. Studies like these will never be valid no matter if 500 people or 500 million people are studied. I don’t take articles like these too seriously but obviously some do.

Jc
Guest

Actually SA the way hair growth is measured is from shaving a small part of the scalp and then taking measurements after a set time point ( for example every 7days). This hair length is very short and unlikely to be impacted by hair care (i.e too short to comb and break).

Many studies have also shown that diet does not really affect hair growth except rate in the case of malnutrion.

However, you are not one to care for evidence but just thought that those who do care may be interested to know.

Barbara
Guest

Why should or would BW feel bad for something we already know or what simply looking around can tell us? Stating the obvious isn’t some conspiracy against BW. =/

Tricia
Guest
I live in Kenya and although it is true that most Africans here have problems growing their hair long (mainly due to ignorance about proper hair-care and some genetic reasons) there are quite a number of African girls and women with very long hair. For example people from the Borana, Rendille, and Kenyan Somali tribes as well as Ethiopians and Oromos. Some have hair all the way down their backs. Interestingly these women often have very low manipulation styles, and they cover their hair in their hijabs or scarves which serves to protect their hair from the sun. They are… Read more »
Jc
Guest
The girls I spoke of were actually Kikuyu girls. I think that the real story lies in your comment ‘genetically their hair tends to have a looser coil’. The truth is the curl size matters. Cushitic women tend to have larger coils while Bantu and Nilotic women tend to have smaller kinkier coils. I would like to say that there are women with very small tight kinks who have longer hair in Kenya. I tend to disregard women with larger curls when it comes to hair growth simply because many of these women will never have had major issues with… Read more »
Homegirl Quel
Guest

I don’t think it’s harder to grow, we just don’t keep our hands out of our hair enough. Always trying to restrict it and get it to do things it’s not meant to do. I just posted a youtube video about my regimen–it’s simple…not for the hair product junkie. I believe if we keep it simple, and stop being afraid of big hair, we’d see amazing length. http://youtu.be/rXZxsj1T5rk

whylie2010
Guest

Hair growth is dependent upon so many factors that it’s a gross generalization to say Black hair grows slowly. Your diet and lifestyle, hormones, environment, what you put on your hair, etc all affect how fast or slow your hair grows. Mine grows very FAST.

Jade
Guest

I get about 6 inches of growth per year.
I’m a vegetarian who eats mostly leafy greens, beans, and tofu. I work out 4X a week.

I just cut my bf’s hair, 3 inches of growth in two months for him. He’s hair grows really fast.
His diet is mostly red meat, potatoes, and pasta. He works out 1–2X per week.

I feel like hair growth is less about food and diet and more about genetics.

LeiLei
Guest

I knew this article would piss everybody off and have chicks claiming six inches. Who the hell cares? Black women are too obsessed with hair length. Live your life and stop obsessing and just might grow

Kate
Guest

Why are you on Black Girl with LONG Hair? This is a hair blog — we’re here to talk about…hair.

LeiLei
Guest

Black girl with long hair… does not imply “black girl OBSESSED with long” so GTFOHWTBS.…

Talking about hair is one thing, but obsessing over it is another…girl bye

Kate
Guest

FUB

leilei
Guest

Lame bish.… don’t come at me with mess. You know how you feel about getting that long hair. No wonder my comment got under your skin. You live for length retention wit ya wack a%^!

Kate
Guest

LOL, whatever!

S.L
Guest
I think with black hair it’s hard to seperate growth rates from issues with retention. So many relaxed women are convinced their hair doesn’t grow yet simultaneously feel compelled to relax every 4 weeks to cover up all their new growth! Another issue may be that straight and wavy hair types recieve a lot more scalp stimulation than kinky hair types. They wash their hair and scalp daily and usually brush it out at least twice a day to detangle and remove shed hairs. Contrast that with afro hair types that handle their hair far less often in order to… Read more »
Zyaran
Guest

I’m finding that my edges on my right side is taking forever to grow back in especially after locs taken down after 5yrs of having them. It’s been 2yrs and their still not up to par, but the rest of my hair is long, it grows nicely except for that side. I brought some J/C nourish & shine and really like that product.

But have you seen this natural singer named Elle Varner featuring J. Cole her hair is gorgeus titled “Only Wanna Give It To You”.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lqm35nwZzi8&ob=av2e

BlackOnyx03
Guest

Her hair is gorgeous!! Thanks for sharing.

Ce Ce
Guest
Forgive me for simplifying this, but just indulge me a little. I don’t know how the hair growth is measured for the people with Afro textured hair, but I noticed that my hair grows outward like a shrub. The traditional length checks don’t work on me, because my hair is growing thicker outward. Whites and Asians have straight hair that grows downward. People with Afro textured hair will sometimes notice their hair growing outward like a mushroom or shrub. I have long stopped measuring myself against the standards of society. Obviously, society will use every opportunity to try and compare… Read more »
Dawn
Guest

i think that in the beginning, when shortest, our hair starts out growing outward, but the longer it gets, gravity starts playing more of a part. my hair now hangs down, not out.

rw
Guest

i’m 15 months since my last perm, and i have over 7 inches of hair, all permed hair has been cut out, guess i’m caucasian NOT!!!!! all these posts with hair under microscopes and in depth studies about breakage.….it just hair!

Jasmine Love
Guest
People ( who are not black) talk about black hair as if they have it, and as if they’re an expert on it. And it’s sad that that some black people believe this myth about our hair. When I first bc, I was left with an inch of hair. Now, I have been natural for almost 2 years and It’s a little over 8 inches long. It could have been longer, but I had been clipping it a lot b/c: I didn’t really know what to do it, jumping on bandwagons, and I’ve been trying to grow and cut off… Read more »
Aisa
Guest
I am perplexed why there is the controversy about African hair growing more slowly. I see people citing that their hair and their family’s hair grows faster but I can’t be the only person that noticed that Black people had shorter hair growing up. I have always seen that our hair was shorter than every other race. Someone with shoulder length hair was considered a girl with long hair. Shoulder length was not the norm and hair longer than that was extraordinary. Now all of the sudden everybody is disputing it like our hair has been hanging down our backs… Read more »
NeNatural
Guest

I couldn’t read the whole thing but I get perplexed with it as well.…THERE’S NOTHING HARD ABOUT BEING BLACK!!!!!! JUST STUPIDS THAT LIKE TO MAKE US THINK ITS HARD

Dani
Guest

I very much agree with your post.

Opal
Guest

I totally agree with your post. Growing up, a black girl with natural hair that went even a little past her shoulders was always a sight to see.

Carla
Guest

@Aisa — May I ask, how often did you relax your hair when you were relaxed?

Thank you for writing that post. Though my 3c/4a hair is “long” (bra strap length) I am a slow grower myself. I was one of the girls who had long hair in grade school but that was because my mother never cut my hair, nor did I have relaxers — never did. You’re right, Natural Chica, Naptural85, HairCrush, etc are anomalies in the Black community when it comes to hair length.

Aisa
Guest
I was probably relaxing every weeks or whenever any hair was nappy looking. Nobody else ever had nappy edges and I didn’t want them either. Near the end I was trying to stretch more but believed in my hair breaking off without being relaxed. When I stopped relaxing I thought my hair would take off but it just fell out horribly. My hair was disgusting and I pretty much went bald. When I finally cut it off to be natural my natural hair was damaged for a while and breaking too. Thank goodness I’ve learned some things. Check out my… Read more »
Aisa
Guest

4 weeks. Lol. I forgot the number.

Carla
Guest

@Asia — Your natural hair is beautiful! I especially love the “natural hairstyles” album. Thanks for sharing.

Aisa
Guest

Thanks so much. I just realized I had that album and have been adding pictures I forgot to add. Lol. You see where I came from though so having any hair for me is a treat. I am so excited to know that I can grow it even longer now that I know what I’m doing.

Jc
Guest

Asia your hair is gorgeous

June
Guest

I feel like those that are unable to grow their hair always generalize their limited growth to everyone in the black community. Your ills are not everyone else’s ills.

Whatever. I hope you reach your goal even though it seems to be taking you forever.

KJ
Guest

CHECK kimmaytube on youtube. She believed her hair wouldnt grow either. She was natural for years with no growth. Now she has waist length hair. Routines matter! I tweeted with haircrush. She said she wore twists all the time after she big chopped. She also recently tweeted abouther ends getting raggedy from wearing it out. I grew 6 inches this year. My first year natural I have never had growth like this. Ive never treated it like this either.

Antoinette
Guest

I feel you 100%

R Kahendi
Guest

Lol. Thank you for posting this, Aisa. You took the words right out of my mind. Length has never been a prime consideration on my mind, just health. I think that hair length, like hair texture has much to do with genetics and nutrition. Good hair care certainly helps, but it probably plays a lesser role than the other two.

I do think it is fine for people to have goals for length and work towards them, but they should be realistic about them. Just because one person has the capacity to grow waist-length hair doesn’t mean that everybody else does.

Shadiboo
Guest

i agree with you 100%. i know alot of perpetually depressed people who have been growing their hair for years and their hair has not reached shoulder length. they try diets, supplements, extra care and nothing works. its life. accept it

angel
Guest

This youtube video is a brief description of my hair journey for the past year. I hope it helps someone.

Ps Im going to work on a part two later when I get the time

Mira
Guest

I grow .4 inches every month.

judyann
Guest

You are very clear on everytihng that you have mention above,For me whether relaxed or natural,my hair have nevered grow more than about three inches.I am so fed up all my life my hair is a big issue.Anyway thank much for the above piece of information.

Aisa
Guest
Aw. So sorry to hear about your problems with growth. I am doing a lot better with my natural hair than I was with my relaxed hair. I could give you some pointers to help get you past 3 inches. If it can grow that long it can grow longer. We just have to figure out what your hair needs. Click on my name and it will take you to my website. Also find me on youtube as 4 Us Naturals. I’d be glad to give you any info that I have that has helped me to finally see some… Read more »
Barbara
Guest

WTH did recognizing we ARE different including hair become a bad thing? SMH

Key from the City
Guest
Thank you Aisa. Well said! The fact that this website is named Black Girl with Long Hair tells you that a BGWLH is not the natural norm (I goggled White Girl with Long Hair and came up with nothing). Western society equates long hair with femininity thus having short hair connotes that one isn’t as feminine. This is especially hard for Black girls and women who are already deemed more “masculine” because of our coarser hair textures, facial features, deeper voices, etc. I think this is why so many sisters rock mile long weaves and lace-fronts. I’ve yet to see… Read more »
Julia
Guest

Not finding WGLH is because our hair shrinkage badly. Imagine a black woman who has 16 inches of hair, but when looking at it, it looks like 4-inch hair. But for the caucasians, their hair grows straight.

Laila
Guest
Since I’ve been natural( 2007) my hair is longer than it ever was relaxed…it is also fuller, although because im natural, ive tend to get lazy and thus have had several haircuts throughout the years. Still, my hair is bra strap length in the back and shoulder length on the sides and chin length in the front…my hair has always grown that way, which is fine because it gives me natural layers…My only trouble area is the very top( crown of my head) in which the hair is thinnner and weaker and has a totally different texture than the rest… Read more »
mlank64
Guest
I think traditional we perceived that black people have shorter hair than other ethnic groups because not until very recently we have been implementing and continue to implement harsh treatment on our hair. There hasn’t been any type of science to our hair until recently. For eg. the first book released called “The Science of Black Hair” came out in the last year or so. Never has a book that I know of explains the science of our hair until now. In the past we have used inappropriate styling tools, wrong products such as mineral and petroleum based oils, and… Read more »
Penelope
Guest

Hello mlank64 I couldn’t have said this better myself. You make so
much practical sense, very well said excellent post.!!!

mlank64
Guest
Aisa, your hair is growing beautifully. It takes 3–4 years to see any real length to our hair. Don’t be discouraged. If you are not seeing the length you think you should be seeing then get a consultation with someone who specializes in natural hair. I would recommend getting the book “The Science of Black Hair” it’s on amz.com All hair grows at different rates, not to mention each strand is in a different cycle. I agree with alot of what you say about some women treat their hair horribly, have terrible diets,use heat excessively, don’t where productive styles and… Read more »
Aisa
Guest
Yeah. I got my hair cut/trimmed in March by a famous stylist and it was back to the same length as in the first picture of June 2010. I will assume that in December my hair will be the same length as in the above picture again (but I think a little longer). I can’t wait till I can touch it and hold it on my back for a length check. I will be to happy to have back length in any capacity. Right now if I got one of those shirts with the measurements my hair wouldn’t be long… Read more »
ways to make your hair grow faster
Guest

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Aisa
Guest

This is obviously spam. It doesn’t even make any sense. They must have used a translator to try to link to your blog.

Thick Nigerian Hair
Guest

Yeah, I read this and was totally confused.

Carolyn
Guest

Shoulder length hair is generally considered long in the black community because that is the longest our hair will grow if we do not care for it. To get it longer than that requires some extra TLC. It doesn’t take decades for us to grow shoulder length hair. You hair should be to your shoulders after about 2 years. If it isn’t there yet then you have not been retaining length. Our hair breaks easily. I think it grows just as fast but we have issues other races don’t.

Areille
Guest
I agree. I have been natural since 08 and I do have over 16 inches of hair. The only issue is that I’ve become lazy throughout these years because I should not have the same length as I did a year ago. I stopped using my bonnet so much, or stopped detangling so often. Just because you become natural doesn’t mean its a cakewalk and I don’t believe our hair grows slower. I think the little things we do hinder the “visible growth” and the hair is just breaking off. I admit it that my hair is not where I… Read more »
Tonya
Guest

I know for a fact my hair grows fast because Im always cutting it. The only time I add heat to my hair is when I get it done 3 times a month. I dont add grease or any of that other stuff. Being self employed and working outdoors in the heat my hair stays wrapped up. Over the summer my hair was just below my ears now its past my shoulders. I notice that when I dont do anything to my hair it grows like crazy.

»-(¯`v´¯)-»Belladonnia
Guest
»-(¯`v´¯)-»Belladonnia

What do you wrap it up with? And how often? What do you wash your hair with? I’m asking cus my mother does the same. She doesn’t add anything to it and it just grows faster than mine.

Penelope
Guest
Asia be patient it is happening to you right now your hair is growing. You also bring out some very valid points. Sometimes hair does not seem to grow for very simple reasons yet they are not so obvious. One of my 4 sisters complained bitterly to me she was losing all her shoulder length hair. I went out on a limb to help her and later we found out she was approaching thyroid disease. Her hair did get really short and fell out a lot. But after about 6 or more months on continuous treatment the pay off was… Read more »
Aisa @ 4 Us Naturals
Guest

Oh yeah. I am doing my 2nd year length check and its a little longer than last Decembers picture so I feel pretty good. I even bought a shoulder length- length check shirt. I got my thyroid checked but I think my hair is right on schedule. If it hadn’t been cut I’d have a great deal of length so I guess it grows pretty close to average. I’m just impatient. I will be back length and beyond all throughtout 2012.

Michele
Guest
I went natural just a little over 2 years ago with a big chop. Since then I’ve experienced some breakage as I learn how to care for my hair in its natural state, and I had to get at least one corrective cut after going to someone for a trim who didn’t know how to cut my hair–he left me with one side shorter than the other, so I had to get the other side cut to even it out. With all of those setbacks, I went from about an inch of hair to shoulder length in less than 2… Read more »
Aisa @ 4 Us Naturals
Guest
That is awesome. I have had similar setbacks and although my length check for 2 years is coming in the next few days or so I know I have reached shoulder as well (maybe excluding the hair at the crown/top. It is a great feeling, mostly because I have never really had hair longer than ear length. I however RARELY EVER saw any Black women with long hair. I was always amazed by it and thought they must be mixed because it was so unusual. Where did you grow up. It might be territorial. I know when I came to… Read more »
Em
Guest
The main reasons why a lot of black women tend to have short hair is due to lack of care and too many chemicals. Years ago most black people did not know that too many chemicals and heat could damage hair. If you deep condition your hair, use little heat and moisturize your hair often, you will be able to retain length. One thing that has been talked about before is hair relaxers — for some people using relaxers may not prevent them from retaining length but for other people (like myself) the chemicals in relaxers can do more harm… Read more »
Candice
Guest
If you’re not having a problem with length retention due to breakage, then your slow hair growth may have to do with what you’re putting INTO your body. Do you eat a lot of processed foods? Do you drink AT LEAST a gallon of water a day? Is your diet mostly carbs and fats, or do you have a primarily vegetable and protein diet with dairy, carbs, and fats supplementing. I think a lot of people assume that because they are not overweight that they’re eating healthily. Remember, hair grows from the inside out. Try maybe adding a daily multivitamin… Read more »
Dawn
Guest

preach!

dee
Guest
i will say that i grew up with braids until i was old enough to get a jheri curl and my hair was always thick but it was long. it ran down my back and i can’t remember doing much to it but the activator was messy. and towards the end of the curl my mother was using a hot comb frequently with no breakage but i was, and still am pretty tenderhead so i transitioned out of the curl into braids and from braids to a relaxer. and that’s when the hair kept getting shorter and shorter. in about… Read more »
Kaye
Guest

I don’t know about black hair, but I know natural hair grows faster than relaxed hair. At least on my head it does. Before doing a second BC, I was amazed at the length I had just shy of a year after my first BC. Now it’s been about a month since my 2nd one and I got braids exactly a week ago and already my roots have grown out a little. Relaxed hair took me forever to grow and I still never met the length I reached with my natural hair.

ade
Guest

That’s definitely not true. I’m relaxed and my hair grows 3/4–1 inch a month. Most of my friends are natural, and they’re lucky if they get 1/2 a month. It’s dependent on how well you take care of your hair. I’m currently MBL, and I have no problem with breakage or length retention because I eat well, and I take care of my hair.

Mae
Guest

This kind of explains my problem. I have long locs that go down to the middle of my back and I get asked more times than I can count (by non-POC) if my hair is real. I wonder if I get asked this because of other people’s assumptions about black women and weave or if they believe it’s difficult to grow black hair? Anyone else get this question a lot??!

Mimi_Love
Guest

I never believed we had trouble growing hair, I just believe we are re-learning how to do our hair, everything we’ve been taught for centuries, we are reconstructing. Some woman’s hair may grow slower than others, and then there are some who don’t fit the norm and can grow hair fast. we just have to learn to take care of it. I’m just thankful I have hair. OUR HAIR CAN GROW LONG and we can style it how ever we want, whatever fits our personality/life style!

akosua
Guest

what I am just wondering is, once we wear locs our hair grows fast and often reaches all the way down the back… so maybe it is not the issue of actually growth but.. yeah.. more of the maintenance and combing!?
my hair was always long (from a black perspective) and with locs my hair is really long.. from any races perspective.. so I know for sure it grows alot!

how to grow hair faster for men
Guest

It’s maybe due to different environmental factors that have caused African hair to develop and become what it is today.

alisha
Guest
yall must be delusional. of course black hair is harder to grow why else would the “myth” exist.. i’m not saying it CAN’T happen, but it takes serious time and effort to put in black hair vs everyone else. you have to pretty much jump through hoops to get long black hair, sometimes even just shoulder length hair. you have to do multiple diets,magical potions, tons of conditioning weekly,things nightly, you can’t wear this kind of fabric, or sleep on this, or tie your hair up with this.don’t interfere this kind of weather condition, or dont put this in your… Read more »
Dawn
Guest
you have a verrrry valid pt. i can honestly say that even in my case, i actually started having to make an effort to grow mine after it hit APL. never had much of a problem getting it there but after that, oh no. there i had to start protective styling, breaking out my satin pillowcases, sleeping in a satin bonnet for the first time, detangling using my fingers…it sure seems to be taking a heckuva LOT of work now. but i guess it’s working. hair was brastrap length til i trimmed. but even so, i hear you, because a… Read more »
more
Guest
oF COURSE ITS HARDER!! These blogs looove to sugar coat it!Its HARD AS HELL to grow our hair! u need to invest Ur mind body and soul into this mess!! Imma keep it real if my hair does not grow im locking it up, I’m not gonna sit wasting my time reading hair blogs by women who NEVER HAD SHORT HAIR to begin with! MOST OF THESE blogs are run by Biracial women or women who always had long hair. How u gon give me adive on how to grow My 4C hair short hair IF U NEVER had SHORT… Read more »
Chachamusicgirl
Guest
Sorry I disagree. I was able to grow my hair long even when it was seriously over processed from relaxers and heat damaged. It took me six months to go from shoulder length to bsb/below shoulder blade or past armpit length but a little bit above bra strap length. To top it off I do everything just like my friends all of whom which are non black or even biracial. I shampoo every two days, pull my one year post relaxer almost completely natural hair into a bun and go. I never tie my hair down at nights or do… Read more »
more
Guest

Just because someone hair is short does not MEAN they are doing something wrong. I shampoo and deep condition ONLY ” WHEN MY HAIR ASKS FOR IT” I trim when needed and do protective. i do research on every product i buy. Recently i doing protective stylying for longer periods of time which seems to be helping. IDK if my hair can get past the TWA but imma keep trying. Like the person above me said other races dont do half as much as we do to grow our hair

LotusBud
Guest

Wow, I can’t relate to all that and I’m black. All I do is wash it and wear it in a bun. I sleep on cotton, wear any kind of fabric I want and my hair is mid back length. I just keep it clean with co-washing mostly during the week and leaving it out of sight, out of mind. I do eat a nutritious diet too on a daily basis. Perhaps that’s a large part of it.

Dawn
Guest
I think black hair is harder to grow. Because it is so prone to lock and tangle and matte up, it can be a struggle getting it to not do that and just grow. Even when i was a kid, the only reason why long hair came easy to me was because my hair was constantly left in plaits and twists. if it weren’t for those, i think it would have been harder for me to obtain length. even a lot of black women with long hair still have to resort to twisting and braiding in order to maintain their… Read more »
DivaDoNot
Guest

I never thought black hair was hard to grow. My hair has always been long (relaxed and natural, BSL and longer) so I just assumed that females with short hair just didn’t take care of it or cut it because they didn’t want to be bothered with it. All the women in my family had long hair and so did all my friends. This is news to me *shrugs*
[img]http://blackgirllonghair.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/385112_10150927366275076_510540075_21500626_1766083207_n.jpg[/img]

Chachamusicgirl
Guest

Lol you made them jealous so they gave you thumbs down. But I just had to give you a thumbs up. Everyone here is all “woe is me”.

Sherrita
Guest
I happen to agree, it took me a while to REALLY fully understand how to handle my natural hair because I spent a good majority of my life relaxed. However after doing some research and LISTENING to my hair, I have no problems with growth. My hair doesn’t grow at the rate that everyone else’s hair my grown but that is something that I as an individual must accept. I also happen to start taking biotin and Calcium with Vitamin D supplements which really help with both strenth. It’s a process of getting to know not only yourself but your… Read more »
LotusBud
Guest

Along with supplements, eat a lot of beauty foods. Eggs daily, brown rice, green veggies, lean meats, fruits, green tea. These are all amazing for general health, especially for hair and skin.

O'Shea
Guest
yes curly-kinky hair is weaker… but if your hair isn’t growing (which it is… it’s just breaking off at the ends so you never really see growth)… that’s not because you’re “Black”. it’s because of YOUR genes, because YOU’RE not taking care of it correctly, or both. (are because your parents aren’t taking care of it correctly… if you’re a kid) you can’t really go by people in the olden days because they didn’t know what they were doing half the time. we as a people were just perpetuating bad habits that kept our hair short. we know better now… Read more »
ryann
Guest

k so some of you are right about black people having slow hair growth but that doesnt mean you give up.…just take care of your body cuz health is an important factor in growing hair.keep it mosturized and you will have long hair in no time. i come from experience… i took the time and effort for my hair and now my hair is past my breasts…p.s my hair grow 1/2 an inch every month.thats pretty fast right?just have patience.:]

Ayah Khalid
Guest
Well I guess all of u r ryt caz first im I sudanese and I quater Egyptian and im 13 years old well im being honest and my hair is actually very short but I still didnt give up and care so my hair isnt curly ir frizzy I oil it 24 7 like it is very hard to take care if hair so my hair is smooth but my prob is that its very short ive been searching for every oil or cream in ghe world to grow my hair faster so please wat is the cream or oil… Read more »
mlank64
Guest

Aisa-Its been a while, hows that hair growth coming along? I did my BC on 8–6-11. I’ve got a good amount of growth on my head. I’ve learned alot in the last year or so. I would say that the front of my hair when I strech it in the front touchs my upper lip. The sides next to my ear touch my collar bone. Overall it is very healthy. Just checking in to see how things are coming. Hope you gained some serious length.

Aisa @4usnaturals
Guest
Hey Mlank64. Well it is a little longer. The next year my hair got cut back to the length of the first picture in June. I have cut it at least 3 times since then with a few breakage issues from time to time. I have come to realize it would be a whole lot longer if I just stop cutting it. I just feel like its damaged if it starts breaking so I cut it whenever it does. I have semi promised myself not to do that. My hair is in twists today but I took a few out… Read more »
Awanda
Guest
Hi, I am from Spain. I thinking is to simple. If You have lucky and have normal or Good hair or maybe some people not have lucky and not have Good hair!! But have others things, like a beauty body…Not matter about it is black, white or china!! I am natural that 3 month now… And long time before i was Natural too. And i not doing Nathing special. Only normal rutina and the long the My hair is grow up Ok…i mean normal things and i am black Waman original from Caribean. Them be natural because the natural is… Read more »
cassius
Guest
I’ve had natural hair all my life (never relaxed it) and yet my hair seems to get shorter and shorter. It has increased in volume tremendously, but I still battle to retain length. My hairdresser suggested I texlax my hair as this has shown to stimulate hair growth on her other clients. I do a deep conditioning avocado mask every two weeks, use 0 heat, and now am using a combination of castor oil, organics hair fertilizer, and Dax. Is this good? Somebody told me ganja was also good for hair length stimulation. *sidenote-my grandmother is SouthEast Asian and my… Read more »
Jodi
Guest
Cassius you have a different hair type than your grandmother and your two sisters. What u should do is find out your exact hair type and build a regimen that works for your kind of hair, and do protective styles like wearing buns, two-strand twists sets, cornrow braid sets, french roll sets, etc… keep the ends protected at all times. If you use heat, minimum only place heat on your hair once per month. Or just avoid heat all together and experiment with how to wear stretched CURLY hair styles not using heat. Moisturize your hair everyday and embrace its… Read more »
Cynthia
Guest
Well, I am a 13-year old girl who is absolutely LOVING my natural hair. It is down to the bottom of my my collarbone. I don’t like protective hairstyles, (My hair is at that awkward shortISH stage) BUTTTT I do them anyway, and I recommend that you do them as well(sometimes). I don’t do them all the time, but my hair still grows at a pretty steady pace. If you want to retain length, here are several important points (In MY opinion): #1 adequate moisture. This is done by deep conditioning (“Mixed Chicks” is my favorite for my mostly 4b/c… Read more »
Kech421
Guest
Am I the only one trippin’ about the fact that we have so many technological advances and have so many incredible discoveries about all kinds of major and minor things in the world but there has YET to be someone to take the time to study African hair and distribute that information world wide? Yeah I’ve found info on our hair through my own research because I’m 6 months into my natural journey- had to figure out how to keep it healthy for length retention- but most info is either personal experience based, not scientific fact based. Which is fine-… Read more »
Optimist Prime
Guest
You’re so right! But, I guess with any kind of research concerning the body, it just takes lots of time to study. Especially since their are SO many varying factors when it comes to African Americans and hair. Like all hair, African American hair growth can depend on many many things such as (1.) type: 4b, 4c, etc. (2.) genetic influences (3.) care (4.) exposure to the elements (5.) hereditary or contracted diseases (4.) health of individual (6.) virginity of hair (7.) condition of hair after use of chemicals or relaxers (.7) history of possible weave or wig usage(8.) condition… Read more »
Kesha
Guest
To be honest the way I see it is, it has been proven that the human body is the most complicated thing to understand. Not only is it complex but you cannot generally say the body acts in a certain for everyone. I am mean everything. No one hair, skin, heart, brain, and etc reacts the same way as another person. You could have the same reaction or two totally different reactions. Plus I find it to be a unique or special thing that hair is different from one person to the next because it helps people appreciate themselves more.… Read more »
Lucky
Guest
I’m just throwing mine out there. Hell yeah, growing our hair is no joke. It takes everything just to get that yearly quota. But no other race of women can claim that super fluffy, extra curly goodness. We have that gravity defying hair that spirals, curls and coils like it’s nobody’s business! It’s not easy but I’m trying my best to see the hair growth issue in a more positive light by focusing on hair health instead of length and seeing it as part of my natural hair journey. I’m doing all I can to have fun with my journey,… Read more »
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Valerie
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imani
Guest
I know for a fact my hair grows at a good rate.I don’t believe our hair grows slower.I belive the fragility of our starnds makes retention of that growth much more difficult. Over 2 years ago I gave myself some highlights, coloring random chunks from root to tip all over my head. But I also shed hair daily like crazy! I’m constantly surprised I’m not bald at the rate I shed hair! Anyway,just this year,I noticed the color wasn’t really faded ‚it was just much rfurther down my hair stands.I finally realized my hair has grown almost 8inches in the… Read more »
Hannah
Guest

Lol whether our hair grows more or less or stronger or weaker. our hair is high like a crow and there is no denying that. According to science; our hair is beautiful. That is science because it is. Do not question the science. I am a scientist now shhhhh let me continue my experiments >:) muahahaha

Aliyah Morrison
Guest

Well the front and sides of my hair grows fast the middle and back grows slow but I am happy with the middle and back of my hair because I past my first hair goal months ago and on my way to my second hair goal .

Originalnaturalsista
Guest

Almost every Caucasian person I know has long hair and doesn’t struggle to maintain length so I agree that black hair is harder to grow. It requires knowing your hair, moisturizing, gently de tangling etc for many of us to grow long hair.

more
Guest

I agree it’s more complex to grow

Yeno
Guest

finger comb natural hair… and work with the kinks and curls, not designed for it to be combed until it is straight. it is the yanking with combs that break the strands and keep it natural

Kyanna Kitt
Guest
Is black hair harder to grow? It depends on who you ask. I was surprised to see that many black women over receive between 3.7–4.3 inches of growth a year. I was wondering if this study even took into account that hair can break off and seem like it hasn’t grown much. What were the women doing to care for their hair during this study? My hair grows much faster than the rates in the study. For me, 8 inches of hair growth is a very very slow growing year. I normally average 12 inches per year. People ask me… Read more »
»-(¯`v´¯)-»Belladonnia
Guest
»-(¯`v´¯)-»Belladonnia

What shampoo and conditioner do you use? And how often do you wash your hair? What oil do you use?

Kyanna Kitt
Guest
Hi Belladonnia, I am so sorry for the late reply. I could have sworn that I replied to this last year. I wash my hair every 3–5 days. I have a bit of an oily scalp. I guess my hair type is like 4a/b. I’m not sure. The shampoo that I am currently using is Nature’s Gate and Dessert Essence Apple Ginger shampoo. I dilute them in a lot of water and pour it onto my hair when it’s soaking wet. I have also been oiling my hair with a mix of olive, coconut, vitamin e, rosemary and castor oil.… Read more »
Juan Martin
Guest

They definitely need a larger group to study. My hair is naturally thinning in some areas because of genetics, but coupled with my healthy habits, my hair grows like crazy. I have to cut it close(about a centimeter) about every other day or else it gets too thick and feels like a wool blanket in this California sun. .

yes
Guest
Black hair isn’t harder to grow. It’s harder or more complex to RETAIN length. People say natural hair is becoming more bigger than relaxed hair, nope. Relaxed and weave is a bigger that natural hair and we more are women with short damage hair under weaves being more common and the media pushing it, people still believe we can’t grow hair long, even Alot of black people think that way. I retained 5 inches in 10 months, which means I grew 1/2inch of hair every month. Which is normal growth. Something I though I didn’t have because of being taught… Read more »
Timo
Guest

Growing our hair long can be challenging but it can be done successfully. After trial and error I developed my protocol for growing my Type 3c hair long. I have hair articles at: http://www.Liebeme.com

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Anonyme
Guest
I have been growing my hair without using weaves and chemical straightening for years before it became a bit of a movement among younger women in particular in recent years with blogs, videos, etc. I am quite a bit older than the young women who are interested in these things and promote it via the internet and social media. I believe that the regimes work for some, but others, who are quite new to natural hair, are living on the feeling of pride about the decision to embrace their natural hair which is all good, natural high expectation and belief… Read more »
Eve
Guest
Do you comb your hair or wash it with sulfate more than once or twice a month? Because I think for us black women with type 4 hair these things actually are particularly bad for our hair. The “default” hair type has been type 1 to 2c everything after that has not been properly given attention in the market until lately. I am a millenial but so long as I remember I don’t recall seeing many hair products for type 3 and especially type 4 hair that was actually good for the hair and not focused on getting it straight.… Read more »
Eve
Guest
I can’t speak for all black people but I know my hair does not grow slow at all. I grow around half an inch a month I know from years of relaxing and constantly having new growth be an issue back then I would relax every 4–6 weeks and I always had a good amount of new growth. I have dense hair too very coarse, the problem is retaining the length, my hair is very dry and brittle, high porosity (though I am not sure if this is due to heat damage or if it is genetic) and 4b/4c very… Read more »

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