August hairHair Repair!
Follow The 3 P’s For Natural
Hair That’s Long And Strong!


A few weeks ago, the Internet was ablaze with talk of Beyonce’s new pixie haircut. A few days later I found this piece in The Daily Mail, touting the fact the pixie cut is further proof that everything old is new again. According to the DM, everyone, EVERYONE looks good with a pixie.

I read the article with more than passing interest because, as you know, hair is a big, damn deal to me. But opposite of the pixie, I’m interested in growing longer, stronger hair. So far, I’m happy to say, I’ve been doing pretty well on that front.

How did I do ti? Did I spend countless hours combing drug store aisles or tons of money at fancy salons?

Nope. I used the 3 P’s.. the right product, protection and patience.


PicMonkey Collage

 Lean in.. I’m going to tell you a secret. Most of the products I use came right from my…KITCHEN! That’s right, no expensive product for me; I head right for the cupboards. I use olive oil as a deep conditioner and sometimes mix in a bit of avocado and I use apple cider vinegar since clarifying shampoos are too hard (Besides, those of you who’ve followed me through this journey know shampoo is a NO-NO for me). So I just use conditioner the same was I would use shampoo (a process called co-washing). I like Aussie Moist, Tressame and VO5, which is a perfect price point; when I use my drug store cards I can get it for 99 cents most times.

Read more: Guest Posting: Got Crunchy Curls? Three Tips To Avoid Hard Hair



At the beginning of the last school year, my daughter, Casey came to me with one simple wish; she wanted her hair to grow.  She has a lot of hair, but it wasn’t growing really fast, or at least it looked that way. So in September of last year, I told her to start wearing protective styles. Imagine my surprise when she listened to me! Imagine both of our surprise when she gained a good 3-4 inches of growth over that time. So I took a page from her book (actually the book I GAVE her) and started wearing protective styles more often than not. It works for me when I’m shooting Sweet Retreats, especially since time is of the essence and my hair needs to look uniform over several days. Flat twists, regular twists and wet-bunning are all personal favorites.

Read more: Hair Care: My Top 5 First Year Growth Secrets!


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Do I have to say this again? Yes, I think I do. No matter what you do to your hair, it’s kind of unrealistic to expect that it is going to grow much more than 1/2-3/4 of an inch a month. Of course, that’s not what all the companies pushing hair growth products would have you believe. But the fact is, it’s just plain, good hair care and patience that will result in longer, stronger hair. And remember it’s not just about growth but length retention (see protective styles).

Read more: Ask Rene: My Husband Hates My Hair!

Now, a quick look at the last 4 1/2 years of my natural hair journey. Questions? Drop me a line.. I’ll do what I can to answer!



March is my new hair’s birthday month. I BC’d (big chopped) in 2009 after making the decision to go natural.

Read more: Trying To Get Out That Door Fast? 5 Tips To Tame That Mane!



April hair

In April of 2009, I committed to taking one photo a month to document my hair growth. It helped me because there were months I thought my hair did not grow at all. Taking a photo each month provided tangible proof that it was.

Read more: Hair Despair! 8 Tips To Help Your Hair G-R-O-W!


June hair

SUMMER! The sun and chlorine can really do a number on your natural hair. In those months, I make sure to clarify my hair with apple cider vinegar and deep condition when necessary.

Read more: Guest Posting: Got Crunchy Curls? Three Tips To Avoid Hard Hair


July hair

Same summer month regimen: protect, protect, protect. Now, as my hair has gotten longer, I usually just tie it up and keep it off my neck. That protects the ends from breakage (Note: in June of 2012, I cut my hair into a bob style. It has since grown out into the shag cut I have now).

Read more: Want Your Hair To Grow Like This? Here’s The Secret!


August hair

Drinking lots of water, exercising and taking a hair vitamin will also help those follicles do their thing!

Read more: To My Daughter: See, Hair’s The Thing


So those are my top tips.. what about you? What sorts of things do you do to make your hair grow?

More from GEM:

5 MORE Things I Learned And Love About My Natural Hair

Raisin’ In Minnesota: The Hair Glare

5 Things I Learned About My Natural Hair And Me!