When you're trying to grow your hair thicker and longer, the process can seem to take forever. Hair grows about six inches each year on average, according to The American Academy of Dermatology Association, but oftentimes that growth feels minimal — especially when most folks lose 50-100 hairs each day.
While it seems that for some women, enviably long hair just happens, for the rest of us, tweaking certain aspects of our day-to-day haircare regimen must be made. Whether that's using a different hair brush, adjusting how often you use your hair dryer, adding foods to make hair grow quicker or a vitamin to the mix, or sleeping on a silk pillowcase (yes, really), there are fast hair growth secrets and home remedies that even grow hair thicker.
Try Caffeine-Infused Products
We all know that caffeine can give you an energy boost, but one 2014 studyTrusted Source found that it may also have growth-promoting effects on your hair.
According to the study, caffeine may help promote new hair growth at the molecular, cellular, and organ levels in both men and women.
If you’re interested in caffeine-infused products, these recommended products are available online:
Glimmer Goddess’ Organic Caffeine Hair Growth Conditioner has a blend of ingredients, including caffeine, vitamins, premium oils, and organic plant materials.
TruePure Natural Caffeine Shampoo is infused with caffeine and other ingredients like niacin, red clover, and vitamins.
Boost Your Nutrient Profile
Specific vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids are especially important for your overall health and also play a key role in providing your body with the energy needed for hair growth. This includes:
Omega-3 and omega-6
One studyTrusted Source found that taking omega-3 and omega-6 supplements for 6 months may help protect against hair loss.
Data from another studyTrusted Source suggested that lower zinc levels may play a key role in hair loss.
While the research demonstrating the efficacy of biotin is limited, a review of the literatureTrusted Source found 18 reported cases that showed clinical improvement in both hair and nail health after biotin supplementation.
If you’re interested in vitamin supplements, these products are available online.
LesLabs Hair Health contains all the essential nutrients to support hair growth. This dietary supplement contains vitamin A, vitamin E, thiamin, biotin, pantothenic acid, zinc, zinc, pumpkin seed extract, MSM, and bamboo stem extract.
Sugarbear Hair Vitamins are a vegetarian gummy supplement that contains vitamins A, C, D, E, vitamins B-6 and B-12, folate, zinc, biotin, pantothenic acid, and more.
Indulge in a Scalp Massage
A scalp massage can help promote relaxation and relieve stress. But, according to a small 2016 studyTrusted Source, it may also help boost the health of your hair.
The study examined the effectiveness of daily, 4-minute scalp massages. After 24 weeks, the researchers found that the nine men involved in the study had thicker hair than at the start.
While the study didn’t show any noticeable difference in hair growth, it’s thought that a scalp massage may help dilate blood vessels beneath the skin. This, in turn, may lead to thicker, stronger hair that’s less likely to break off or become damaged.
You can get a professional scalp massage or indulge in a do-it-yourself massage at home.
Look Into Platelet-Rich Plasma Treatment (PRP)
Board certified dermatologist Dr. Sapna Palep of Spring Street Dermatology says using PRP therapy with patients who have hair loss has shown promise.
While more controlled studies are needed, one studyTrusted Source found that PRP may serve as an effective treatment option against hair loss.
“PRP is a breakthrough treatment that uses injections of a concentration of a patient’s own platelets to restore and accelerate hair growth,” she said. “Platelets are protein derived from one’s own bloodstream and DNA that can act like a stem cell when placed back into the body,” said Palep.
Scalp injections of PRP can jostle awake dormant hair follicles, resulting in more hair growth.
Treatments are once a month, for 3 months, and every 6 months thereafter for maintenance.
Avoid Restrictive Dieting
According to Dr. Lindsey Bordone, a dermatologist at ColumbiaDoctors and assistant professor of dermatology at Columbia University Medical Center, we can’t control everything that affects our hair growth. But there are things we can avoid that may cause impaired growth and increased shedding.
“Restrictive dieting can decrease resources and nutrients needed for hair growth,” said Bordone.
“And since hair growth is a relatively low priority compared to other bodily functions, hair growth is halted quickly when your body is placed under stress due to restrictive dieting,” she explained.
“Even after resuming a healthy diet, hair shedding usually goes on for a period of months,” said Bordone.
Check Your Protein Intake
“If your diet is severely restrictive, hair won’t grow optimally, and shedding can occur,” said Bordone.
“Eating a well-balanced diet with adequate protein intake is important for optimal hair growth,” she added. “Generally, we recommend 50 grams of protein or more per day.”