Looking to grow your hair out ahead of your wedding? Smart move! Even if you don't plan to wear your hair down on the big day, our experts agree that length gives brides more versatility when it comes to styling. "From a logistical perspective, the more hair you have, the more you can play with braids, texture, up styles, down styles—it really opens up your options," says celebrity hair stylist Andrew Fitzsimons. "Plus, long, healthy hair is really glamorous—and who doesn't want to look extra glam on the big day?" While hair grows about half an inch per month on average, there are some thing you can do to get it to your desired length faster.
Anytime one of Fitzsimons' clients wants to grow their hair faster, he recommends taking supplements—namely protein, collagen, and biotin—daily. "Lately, I've been loving this new collagen protein supplement that works really well called Body Kitchen Collagen Original Body Boost," he says. "I feel like my hair grows a lot faster when I'm consistent with it."
Use Heat Protection
Whether you're someone who takes a blow dryer and/or hot tool to your hair once a week or once a day, you should always use a heat protectant to cut down on the damage it causes to your strands. "Think of heat protection like sunscreen—you wouldn't subject your skin to the sun unprotected, so why would you put something that can get up to 450 degrees on your hair without any kind of barrier?" says Fitzsimons.
Nourish Your Scalp
You shouldn't wait until you have a "scalp problem" like dandruff to start caring for your scalp health. "As the foundation for beautiful, thick hair, there are more and more products geared towards your scalp, such as Vitabrid C¹² Scalp Shampoo," says Laurie Heaps, a celebrity hairstylist. "The formula effectively strengthens hair while hydrating and soothing the scalp."
Invest in a Quality Shampoo and Conditioner
If you're buying the cheapest and lowest-quality shampoos and conditioners on store shelves, you can't expect salon-quality results. That's why hair stylists recommend upping your caliber of shampoo and conditioner, especially if you're looking to get longer hair in time for your wedding. Heaps also recommends doing a regular deep conditioning treatments. "I like IGK Bad & Bougie Amla Oil Deep Repair Shampoo," she says. "This deeply repairing conditioner helps to nourish, strengthen and protect immediately and over time."
Rinse Hair with Cold Water
A hot shower might feel amazing, but it's not all that great for your skin or hair, leading to dry skin and hair. Rinsing with cold or, at least, lukewarm water will help keep the cuticle healthy and strong, according to Lucy Garcia Planck, a hair stylist at New York City's John Barrett Salon in Bergdorf Goodman. "Also, adding a little bit of apple cider vinegar to your shampoo or conditioner will help keep your hair cuticle healthy and the apple cider vinegar helps your hair stay shiny."
Get Regular Trims
This one might seem counterintuitive, but experts say frequent trims are they key to healthier, longer hair. "Although getting regular trims won't actually make your hair actually grow faster, it will keep tips looking healthy and prevent splits from working their way further up the strands, so in the end you'll need to cut off less length by being diligent about regular trims," adds Fitzsimons.