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I Grew Out My Hair And Here Are The Popular Tips That Actually Worked

I do not recommend cold showers.

In a perfect world, you could grow your hair out just by not cutting it. But IRL, your hair needs some real TLC to grow out nicely. I learned this when I began my dreamy bleach phase. You can probably tell where this is going...

The writer with bleached hair with light blue and pink tints, then with bleached hair and purple roots

As you'd imagine, my hair turned to straw. I refused to walk around with a fried-looking lob and invested in some extensions — so there's no photographic evidence. But I learned how to care for and grow out my hair nicely. Now, it's a lil' more than 27 inches long!

The writer with her natural brown hair that comes down almost to her waist

So, I rounded up 10 popular tips for growing out your hair that I personally tried. Here's what actually worked for me, and what didn't:

1. THE TIP: Don't be sentimental (or lazy), trim your hair regularly.

MY VERDICT: ✂️✂️✂️✂️✂️/5. I know, it's totally a pain, but since the ends just need trimming, I eventually bought my own shears and just trim it myself every few months.

The writer holding hair cutting scissors and a comb, with the caption, "Since my sister's home imma ask her to trim my hair for me"

2. THE TIP: Moisturize like your length depends on it!

MY VERDICT: 🧴🧴🧴🧴🧴/5. Even though my hair's long, it can (annoyingly) break in the middle or ends. So if I don't moisturize it, it looks less like "I grew my hair out!" and more like "I never cut my hair," ya know?

OGX Argan Oil of Morocco and Ancient Greek Remedy Oil sprays with the caption, "My holy grail products to keep hair smooth and moisturized"

3. THE TIP: Ok, we've all heard that sleeping on a ~silk~ pillowcase helps your hair.

MY VERDICT: 🛏️🛏️/5. Frankly, I didn't see a difference in my (straight) hair — especially once the bleach grew out and it was no longer super damaged.

The writer's silk pillowcase with the caption, "Super soft silk pillow case (it's a gift, I didn't embroider my own name)"

4. THE TIP: When it comes to shampoo, less is more.

MY VERDICT: 🚿🚿🚿/5. Unforch, I have pretty oily hair, so I usually wash my hair every day or every other day. Because of that, I've made sure to use gentle and moisturizing shampoos.

5. THE TIP: Rinse your hair with cold water at the end of a shower

MY VERDICT: 🥶/5. Yeah, no. I've done this many times, and — aside from feeling like I'm doing the Polar Bear Plunge — there has been zero effect on my hair.

6. THE TIP: Try a microfiber towel when drying and wrapping your hair.

MY VERDICT: 🧖🏼‍♀️🧖🏼‍♀️🧖🏼‍♀️🧖🏼‍♀️/5. I love 'em! It's hard to gauge whether my hair really breaks less, but my hair is definitely less frizzy after and dries faster — so I can lay off the heat and styling products, which is a win.

The writer with her hair in a microfiber towel

7. THE TIP: Massage your scalp to make your hair grow faster.

MY VERDICT: 💆🏼‍♀️💆🏼‍♀️/5. It's excellent advice for someone with time and energy. Do I set aside four minutes to regularly massage my scalp? Absolutely not. But, I do a sorta massage every time I wash my hair by aggressively scrubbing my scalp, so... I do what I can.

8. THE TIP: Take it easy with the brushing.

MY VERDICT: 💁🏼‍♀️💁🏼‍♀️💁🏼‍♀️/5. When my hair was straw, I was incredibly careful and gentle when I brushed. Now, I will rip a knot out if I have to. IMO, this a general piece of advice and not specific to growing your hair out.

The writer uses a boar bristle brush to brush her hair, with the caption, "I like to use a boar bristle brush when I remember to help distribute oils down my hair"

9. THE TIP: Avoid heat products as much as possible.

MY VERDICT: 🔥🔥🔥🔥/5. I, for sure, have never sworn them off while growing out my hair. And it grew just fine. The key is to find a balance and make sure you aren't frying your hair off.

The writer's waver, hot air brush, wand, and curling iron laying on the floor with the caption, "Some of my fave heat tools that I did not hold back from using"

10. THE TIP: Make sure to switch up your 'do!

MY VERDICT: 🔀🔀🔀🔀🔀/5. Once I learned about the sleek low bun, my hair was done. Then I began to notice a lot of breakage in the middle, which I found to be especially noticeable since the rest of my hair was so long.

The writer wears her hair in a bun, with the caption, "Ask me how many times I've worn this hairstyle in the past few months..."

Anyway, it took a while to grow out my damaged hair enough, chop that off, then work to grow out my natural hair. But I learned a lot thanks to the world wide web and some good ol' trial-and-error.

The writer smiling with her hair down and the caption, "The real struggle is not chopping it all off"

In my experience, some of these tips are great, and some aren't worth the money or effort. So, hopefully you can skip the b.s. and grow out your mane with minimal stress.

You 30 years after reading this, talking about the time when you successfully grew out your hair: