You have to embrace the bad hair days for a while. But don't worry, it does get better.
I vividly remember sitting at my computer Googling phrase after phrase with no luck. "How to grow out a pixie cut fast", "how to grow your hair", and "how did Jennifer Lawrence grow out her pixie so easily?" got me nowhere. I cut my hair after allowing my friend to color it at home—big mistake. I had never colored my hair and had NO idea how much work taking care of colored strands really was. So I continued my usual hair routine, completely disregarding breakage. I decided I would get my hair braided, weaved, and then braided again, until my stylist admitted that my hair was extremely unhealthy.
She told me that I was running out of options and if I was ever going to get my hair back to a healthy state, I needed to at least trim some of the split ends. I thought about the idea of a trim and basically having a mushroom cut (not cute…), and decided to let her go for the big chop. I was emotional; I never liked the idea of cutting my already short hair. But eventually, I fell in love with my pixie and couldn't imagine my life without it. I moved cities and was afraid I wouldn't find another stylist who could cut my hair like my last, so I started the journey of growing out my hair. My only goal? To be able to put my hair in small, bun ballerina bun. (Spoiler alert: Goal = achieved.)
Here are some tips, truths, and strategies I found helpful while growing out my pixie:
Purchase the products your stylist uses
Of course you don't have to use everything your stylist uses on your hair, but I like to believe that your hair is like a good boyfriend. It likes consistency and tender love and care. I asked her how to use each product and how often each should be applied, and the rest is history.
Become a regular at your salon
My bank account wasn't too happy, but I did my best to make sure I visited my hairstylist at least twice a month. I wanted to make sure my hair was doing well and in a healthy state.
Braids are a complicated subject for most women—either you love them on yourself or you don't. I found a style I was in love with and braided my hair so that I didn't keep playing in it. One of the main reasons my hair was getting so damaged was because I couldn't keep my hands out of it. Braids solved that problem.
Playing with different lengths and textures was probably the only reason I didn't run back to my stylist for anotherhaircut.
Embrace the bad hair days
You're forced to get creative when growing out your hair, which means you're guaranteed to have a few bad hair days. And then you'll have days when you look in the mirror and decide yep, it's a hat day.
I took biotin supplements ($11.50, target.com) for a good portion of the time it took to grow my hair longer and noticed a huge difference. My hair was growing a lot faster, but also growing at a quicker pace. The only downside was that the pills were a bit large and hard to swallow. If taking straight biotin scares you, try HUM Nutrition Runway Ready Supplements ($35, humnutrition.com), which strengthens your hair and nails with a mix of vitamins.