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Thread: Hair won’t grow longer than BSL

  1. #1
    Member bibijay's Avatar
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    Question Hair won’t grow longer than BSL

    Finally at the grand old age of 60 I got my hair to BSL, after years stuck at shoulder length, mainly by stopping going to hairdressers!
    I love it long, but the ends started splitting so I went for a trim, and the stylist ignored my request for a microtrim and gave me long layers
    Now I have to get another trim to neaten the hemline - I have very fine grey hair, quite a lot of it (slightly wavy but less waves as it gets longer) and with the ends all different lengths it looks wispy/witchy and straggly, so I thought I’d try again for a blunt/thick hemline cut.
    I have some questions:
    1. Does a blunt trim seem like a good idea to people - to tidy the ends?
    2. it takes AGES to grow and I’m worried maybe I’ll just never be able to achieve my aim of mid back length.
    is it possible that my hair just can’t ever get that long? Is long hair impossible for some people?
    3. How often should I trim the ends and how much?
    4. Any other advice for slow growers?

    Ps I have updated my profile pic to show my grey hair - this is from last year so was a lot shorter then. Hope the new pic is showing now.
    Last edited by bibijay; July 21st, 2021 at 10:03 AM. Reason: New profile picture

  2. #2
    LHC FairyGodMum lapushka's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hair won’t grow longer than BSL

    Your hair is long enough now to trim yourself; we tend to use Feye's self-trimming method here.

    https://feyeselftrim.livejournal.com/
    (print out the instructions and keep them in a drawer next to your haircutting shears). Why do I always say, print it out? It's 1/ easier and 2/ Feye has disappeared from the net before hitting livejournal once before. She thankfully could save her info. But it was a disaster at that point.

    If you just had it trimmed, you can go *years* without a trim, if you just S&D the splits out.
    WCC method (washing) --- Rinse-out oil (MO) --- LOC/LCO method (styling)

  3. #3
    shapenote singer embee's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hair won’t grow longer than BSL

    A blunt cut may be nice if you wear your hair down, but it is harder to work into an updo. Often that BSL stopping point is due to damage that happens in life - chair backs, purse shoulder straps, that kind of thing.

    Trimming has one huge disadvantage: often any growth is sacrificed, so hair stays the same length. If your hair grows slowly, then a trim can undo months of work... as you have discovered with your micro-trim vs. long layers. Too bad that happened.
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  4. #4
    Member enting's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hair won’t grow longer than BSL

    1. If a blunt trim makes you happy, then go for it! If it feels like a chore that you'd rather not do, then rock those fairytailing and tapering ends. There's beauty in the hem not being blunt, too.

    2. I always thought I couldn't grow any longer than around BSL-midback. I'd constantly have splits and would avoid the hairdresser, but even going once a year meant not gaining any length and sometimes losing more than I had gained that year. I really wanted to be able to get to waist and it just wasn't happening. It's now past classic, which I had never dreamed of having. I'm also a pretty slow grower, I have trouble measuring but I don't think I gain 6" a year, between damage, my own trimming, and its own speed of growth.

    Some lengths aren't really achievable for most people, but with gentle, patient care I think that midback is achievable for most people. I don't know if midback while also having a blunt, full hem is possible for your future, that will depend on how your hair tapers. But I do suspect that you can achieve the length itself.

    BSL is also a length that's notorious for getting worn ends because unless it's worn up, that length can rub between your shoulderblades and chairs or other seatbacks. You may want to try the two pronged approach of not getting it cut much but also protecting it more.

    For myself, search and destroy, learning to trim hair myself, and wearing my hair up and protected were gamechangers. I learned more about what tools damage my hair more or less.

    3. How often and how much to trim? That's going to depend on you and your hair. If you only have a few splits, you may prefer to s&d. S&D could potentially suffice entirely to keep ends split free, with no proper trims at all. Some people "dust" which is taking off so little that the cut ends look like dust.

    A general rule is that if you want to gain length, you must trim off less than how much your hair grows.

    If you only grow, say, 4" a year, do not trim off that much cumulatively per year. That said, if you have splits or a taper that you don't want that make it so you need to trim off more than your growth rate per year, you'll have to focus on what is causing it to split and see if that can be changed. For me that was keeping it under a scarf and protected from the elements and friction a lot of the time.

    4. Slow growers have to be better about avoiding damage (and be more patient!). If there's a slow grower and a fast grower with the same length hair each, the ends of the slow grower's hair are going to be a lot older than the fast grower's ends. That means more time to accumulate damage.
    Take progress pictures at longer intervals to see gains. Don't feel discouraged if it seems like the length isn't moving for the first year, even, as long as it's not getting shorter/more ragged during that time. Maintaining is also progress of a sort.

    Good luck!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Hair won’t grow longer than BSL

    I am in a similar place: hair at BSL and just got a trim. My hair was already in layers and I wanted to minimize them because they were starting to look weird. Thankfully my hairdresser listens to me. I said I wanted the back trimmed, and she removed all the "fuzzies" as she called them and left the front alone. I've found that avoiding tight elastics on the ends of my hair and using a conditioner that works for me helps. If I let the conditioner sit for a couple minutes before rinsing, it seems to work better than rinsing right away. Lately, I've been braiding my hair at night and using a scrunchy to secure it, and my ends have stayed pretty soft. I've also been experimenting with coconut oil once a week...

    One thing that really seems to help me is trimming when I start to see split ends. I used to let my hair grow for a couple years at a time, and the ends would be awful and I'd get it cut because it was just so hard to deal with. Now I just schedule a trim whenever I start to see a few "fuzzies." A lot of people say 3 months, but I just go when I need to. If your hair gets damaged quickly, more frequent trims might be necessary, but I think if you can protect the ends (in whatever way works best for you), you can stretch out that time. And definitely don't go back to that hairdresser.

  6. #6
    Member bibijay's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hair won’t grow longer than BSL

    Thank you so much everybody for the really helpful advice. I had the trim and she did a good job. I won’t go back till I need the ends trimmed, not for 6 months or so, and then will ask for a micro trim.
    Meanwhile I’ll try to take better care of my hair.
    I would be happy just to get to mid back.
    Anyway thank you everyone for the encouragement! ��

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Hair won’t grow longer than BSL

    I made it from BSL to hip with having my hair guru take 1/4 inch off about every 2 months. At that time I wore my hair down part of the time, maybe even half of the time, the other half either up or in a french braid.

    Once at hip I started using catnip tea and baby oil to protect my ends. I also began to wear my hair up about 90% of the time. Now it's up about 99% of the time and I hover at knee. I suspect I am at terminal.

    I also realized that using the blow dryer, even on cool and using curlers even occasionally were hard on my hair so I stopped for the most part.

    At some point, to achieve growth, most of us have to change what we are doing so our hair is more protected. Hairs that continually split and break off hinder growth.

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