October 01, 2021
Before we even start on how to grow back your hair after chemo, let me just tell you congratulations! The past few months have been tumultuous, and even that is probably an understatement. You’ve made it through all the treatments, and now, you’ve beat cancer. You’re stronger than you know!
After the battle subsides, then the work of “going back to normal” begins. If you, like many others, lost your hair during chemo, then this is probably the time when you want to grow back your hair, and we’re here to support you on that journey. Here’s answers to some of your questions and advice to make the entire process of growing hair after chemo a lot smoother.
How long will it take my hair to grow after chemo?
You’ll get some peach fuzz in the first weeks after you stop chemo sessions. Anywhere from Week 4 to Month 6 after your last chemo session, you’ll be past the peach fuzz stage, and your hair will start to grow back.
What types of changes should I expect?
Common changes that occur in post-chemo hair are uneven growth, a different thickness, a distinct color and a different curl pattern/texture. The latter is where the term “chemo curls” comes from.
These changes are often temporary and tend to resolve in a few months.
Speaking of which, why does hair grow back curly after chemo?
To be honest, no one is sure of the exact cause just yet. There are theories that suggest that chemo drugs wreak havoc on the hair cells, so after-chemo hair can grow back in a different manner. As the hair cells eventually go back to normal, your hair growth also reverts back to the way it was before you had your sessions.
How to Care for Chemo Curls?
If your new hair texture is curlier or kinkier now, and you need help finding a new routine and products to help you in growing hair after chemo, check out this post.
How to Grow Hair Faster After Chemo
Now that we have tackled some of your questions, let’s dive into how to grow hair faster after chemo:
Step 1? Damage control. It’s often the case that after-chemo hair grows back quite fragile, so we have to avoid styling it more than we need to. Avoid heat styling such as flat ironing your hair, chemical treatments like perms and dyes, and be very gentle when you brush or detangle your hair. Also, don’t brush it too often.
Dealing with fragile, kinky or curly hair can be quite challenging because it tangles a lot. Investing in a detangling brush, like our Pro-Detangler Brush, would, alongside a good conditioner, allow you to brush out the tangles without causing a lot of breakage or pain and trauma to your scalp. It also makes the entire process a lot faster!
Still on damage control, wear your hair up as much as you can. If you can tuck it away in a neat ponytail, a bun or even a puff, do that. Wearing your hair down may allow it to rub on your neck, which would cause it to tangle even more. Therefore, making it difficult to comb out your hair when you wash it.
It would also help reduce the amount of styling you’d do to your hair. Most updo hairstyles are fairly quick and easy and minimize the chances of us causing breakage while styling.
If you’ve had your vitals checked, and you’re low on any of the essential nutrients and micronutrients that are needed for healthy hair growth, look into taking a hair supplement.
After consulting your doctor, you can choose a supplement for a specific nutrient that you may be low on or just take a multivitamin specifically formulated for hair, skin and nails.
Scalp massages are great! Not only are they relaxing, but they also enhance blood flow to the scalp, bringing much-needed building blocks for hair to the follicles. Frequent massages can actually improve the rate of hair growth. A 2019 study showed that scalp massages can prove beneficial when trying to grow hair after hair loss.
Tip: Clovol is our hair growth oil formulated with natural ingredients to help viable follicles in your scalp produce thicker, fuller hair faster without harmful side effects. To boost your hair massage’s potential, first apply Clovol to your scalp, and then massage your scalp afterwards. You can get Clovol here.
If you’re one the lucky few whose hair has grown back exactly how it used to before, then this will be much easier for you since you are just going back to your old routine pre-chemo.
If your hair has grown back in a completely new texture, often curly or kinky, then you need a new routine. Curlier and kinkier hair types need special attention, but once you get the hang of it, you will start to fall in love with your chemo curls! Check out this post we did on how to the care of curly and kinky hair. You can pick some tips from there.
Even the healthiest head of hair will experience split ends. The ends of your hair are the oldest part, and that’s just part of the normal wear and tear. The problem comes if you don’t get regular trims.
When you’re really trying to get your length back, it’s easy to forego salon visits for a haircut because you’re eagerly trying to preserve as much of your length as possible. Doing this is counterintuitive though. Holding on to split ends actually makes it worse, not better.
The split ends can start to travel up the shaft of your hair, compromising the health and smoothness of more than just the ends of your hair. This will make brushing your hair harder, cause the ends of your hair to look especially frizzy, and make you struggle to keep your ends moisturized. No matter what you try, your ends just always feel dry and tangled. So, stay on top of these and schedule a trim at least twice a year.
Tip: Be clear with your stylist on how much you want taken off, so they don’t wind up cutting off a lot more than you were comfortable to let go of or cutting off hair that was actually healthy.
Even with these tips on how to grow hair faster after chemo, please remember that these things take time. So be patient with your body and most importantly, embrace the journey, you beautiful soul!
Are there any tips we left out? Feel free to share them in the comments. Would love to hear from you!
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