If your hair’s super short and you’re feeling the urge to grow it, you may be wondering how long it will take to grow shoulder-length hair. We’ve got you covered.
It can take between three and four months for you to grow shoulder-length hair. The rate of hair growth is the same for people with long, medium, and short hair but genetics, lifestyle, and how well you care for your hair will impact its growth rate.
How Long Does It Take Hair To Grow?
The CDC advises that hair will grow an average of 0.5 inches per month. Usually, then, a head of hair will grow six inches per year.
Unfortunately, there’s no ‘one size fits all’ answer to how long it takes hair to grow, as there are a number of different factors at play.
The cycle that affects your hair’s growth is known as the hair growth cycle. This cycle is divided into three separate phases: the anagen, the telogen, and the catagen.
At any point in time, your hair will be in different phases of growth depending which moment of the cycle you’re in.
The Anagen Phase
If your hair is in the anagen phase, it’s adding inches and growing right down in the hair bulb.
The Catagen Phase
If your hair’s in the catagen phase, growth will be paused because your cells have stopped dividing.
The Telogen Phase
If your hair is in the telogen phase, your hair will be shedding. This is totally normal, as new hair is growing in the papilla, so old hair needs to fall out to accommodate this new growth.
Your hair grows at the same speed no matter where it is on your scalp.
Growth at the nape of your head will be the same as at the crown. But the length of your hair strands will vary depending on how long your hair stays in the anagen, or growing phase.
By keeping your hair well-nourished and moisturized, you’ll be maintaining and restoring its elasticity and shine. This will contribute to healthy, happy, growing hair.
Other Factors That Impact Hair Growth
The hormone DHT is a potent testosterone, and can result in a shorter hair growth phase.
There’s some research suggesting ethnicity also impacts hair growth. Hair type 1A – most commonly seen in people of Asian descent – grows the fastest.
Thinner hair also grows slower than thicker hair, and stressful events will also prematurely force hair follicles out of their growth phase.
How Long Does It Take To Grow Shoulder Length Hair?
As discussed above, the time it takes for your hair to grow depends on individual factors such as genetics and hormones. Life events and haircare routines also matter.
However, taking the CDC’s guidance that hair grows an average of 0.5 inches per month, we can establish that if you began your hair growth with only two inches of hair, it would take you around two years to get your hair to shoulder length.
Shoulder length hair averages around twelve inches on the average person.
How To Grow Hair To Shoulder Length
There are significant steps that you can take in order to help your hair grow to shoulder length.
Avoiding hair dye, styling tools that use heat, and over-tight hair styles (such as tight buns or high ponytails) is a good way of minimizing the damage you may be causing hair.
Take Proteins Like Biotin And Collagen
Biotin is also known as vitamin B7 and vitamin H.
Biotin is an essential protein for our body, producing fatty acids and aiding in the metabolism of certain amino acids and fats.
You’ll get biotin from a number of different foods. These include almonds, mushrooms, sardines, rice, barley, and peanut butter.
Generally, you should be getting a healthy amount of biotin from the food you eat. However, the American Academy of Dermatology have suggested that taking biotin supplements can help support natural hair growth.
Collagen is another key protein, working to support hair follicles.
From our twenties onwards, the amount of collagen our body produces naturally decreases. You can therefore take collagen supplements and vitamins such as vitamin C to promote natural production and boost the collagen in your body. This in turn may help with hair growth.
Taking keratin supplements or using products with keratin in them can also help maximize your hair’s strength and suppleness.
Avoid Chemicals In Haircare Products
Yes, the products you use on your hair do matter and will impact your hair growth.
Avoid nasty ingredients that will disrupt your hormonal balance and potentially cause further health complications.
That means saying no to products containing parabens, formaldehyde, phthalates, and added fragrance. Sulfates are also proven to cause protein loss in hair, so avoid these at all costs.
If you experience high levels of DHT in your body – for example if you’re experiencing the menopause – then you may want to look for ingredients that reduce DHT. Pumpkin seed oil is good, as is saw palmetto, caffeine, and biotin.
Maximize Your Hair’s Moisture
It’s time to let your hair get luscious with some deep conditioning treatments.
Use a leave-in conditioner and cover your hair with a shower cap or towel for thirty minutes for a deeply moisturizing treatment.
Alternatively, find a hair oil that you love and be sure to dab that on the ends of your strands.
Coconut oil is a firm favorite, but almond, jojoba, and olive are all good. Not only will your hair smell great, you’ll be helping to prevent split ends and breakage, and locking in moisture.
Have regular hair cuts
Regularly trimming your hair will keep your hair looking its healthiest, removing split ends and any frizz or damage. Heading in for a trim every two to three months is ideal, encouraging hair to grow out healthier.
Massage Your Scalp
Massaging your scalp will remove any build-up or residue that might be blocking your hair follicles, which will allow them to focus on hair growth.
Similarly, regularly brushing hair and massaging your scalp promotes blood flow to the area, which brings the much-needed oxygen that is essential for hair growth.
Apply Topical Ointments
Applying topical ointments can help some instances of hair growth. You can use both topical melatonin and minoxidil, but you want to use them sparingly. If you have any doubts, be sure to consult a physician before use.
It’s nonetheless worth bearing in mind that research consistently demonstrates that skin-deep circumstances determine how long it takes to grow hair. Whether shoulder length or longer.
Your genetics and hormones play a very significant role, as does your nutrition and whether you’re exposed to environmental hazards and pollutants.
Stress, as mentioned above, will also impact hair growth.
Ensuring that your overall body is happy and health will therefore contribute to the length of time it takes for hair to grow.
If your body has to prioritize healing a wound or navigating stress, your hair growth will be de-prioritized.
Ensuring that you’re as well as possible is therefore the best way to support your hair growing.
Disclaimer: This site is not intended to provide professional or medical advice. All of the content on LovedByCurls.com is for informational purposes only. All advice should be followed at your own discretion. Ingredients may change at any time so always check the product label before using. Check our full disclaimer policy here.
Alice is an experienced writer and researcher with a background in the Creative Arts. She is a published poet and is currently completing her Ph.D., having worked in a variety of industries, including as a theatre dramaturg.
Alice is passionate about the environment, so is always on the lookout for the best zero-waste products that are vegan and cruelty-free.