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It’s finally 2017 and that means it’s time to reevaluate your hair routine. A lot of people don’t even consider that perhaps what they usually do to and for their hair is in need of some updating. We are more than halfway through January (already) and it’s the perfect moment to take the time to make some short and long-term goals for your hair.

One of the things at the top of most women’s list, especially naturals, is to grow long and healthy hair. That notion is one of the cornerstones of going natural because who doesn’t want to have enviable tresses?

With that, too often the things that we think are good for our hair aren’t. Some of the things we do are “tried and true” advice that our mothers, aunts and grandmothers taught us. Other habits are ideals we’ve picked up along the way through trial and error. We can’t change what we’ve done to our hair but we can go forward to do much better.

So if you are looking to grow your hair long and pretty in 2017, here are a few tips on what NOT to do this year.

Do Not Go Without Moisturizing

This is a big one but one that many women, surprisingly, don’t always do. A part of taking care of your hair is making sure that it has adequate moisture at all times. This prevents your hair from being dry and, ultimately, from experiencing breakage. You can oil your hair a few times a week before you go to bed to ensure that it’s getting the moisture it needs to be healthy.

Do Not Ignore Your Hair Type

If you don’t know what kind of hair you have (4C, 4B 3A, etc.) do yourself a favor and put the time in to learn. Knowing will do wonders in how you take care of it. Along with that bit of knowledge, also know the porosity of your hair. This goes along with the moisture part. Understanding and testing your hair’s porosity will help you know how often you should moisturize and what products you should use.

Do Not Go Without Pre-Pooing

Another important part of a hair care regimen is pre-pooing. This is where you apply a conditioning agent to your hair before cleansing. It can be done the night before (which is what many naturals do) or an hour or more before you shampoo. Because the actual act of washing your hair is a bit intense on your locks, pre-pooing with something like coconut oil or a product specially formulated for the process, is just good practice.

Do Not Forgo Trims

This is probably the biggest one of all. I know that a lot of people feel like cutting the hair is counterproductive to growing the hair, but I promise you it’s not. When you have split ends or damaged hair, it can severely limit your hair growth as well as its overall manageability. You don’t have to trim every week or month, but every quarter or three times a year will greatly help with the growing process.

Do Not Forget A Scarf at Night

I know that it is tempting to lie right down at night and go straight to sleep, but if you have natural hair, there are some extra things you need to do before you hit the hay. Namely, tie your hair up. This can be with a scarf or a bonnet, but no matter how you do it, make sure it’s satin or charmeuse silk material.

Make the next twelve months the best your hair has ever seen with these tips.

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