If you've had a bad hair experience...there is hope!

Hello friends, 

I'm sure if you are like me and have been growing your hair long for a while, you have had your share of bad experiences and hair mistakes!  My worst hair experience happened several years ago...

I went swimming in the ocean with my family and some friends.  I wanted to go snorkeling, and couldn't decide what to do with my hair.  The time before that, when I went swimming in the ocean, I left my hair in an English braid.  But then when I got home and tried to comb it out, it was such a mess!

So this time, I thought I would try something different.  I left my hair down and coated it in conditioner.  Big mistake...

After a few hours of swimming and snorkeling and having a wonderful time...I realized that my hair was one humongous knot at the nape of my neck.  It was awful! And on top of that, there were little bits of coral and sand knotted up in my hair.  

When we finally got back home, I took a shower and tried to start combing my hair out.  I used up several bottles of conditioner, leave-in conditioner and de-tangler spray...my mom and I were both combing, but THE KNOT was still exactly the same...we could NOT get it combed out at all!

I was starting to get extremely worried and almost desperate.  My dad came to help us comb, and we tried other de-tanglers...everything from olive oil to WD-40!

We combed and combed from 4 o'clock in the afternoon until 4 o'clock the next morning.  To keep me distracted we watched the entire 4-disc A&E version of Pride and Prejudice with Colin Firth, although I admit that most of the time I was crying while everyone else was combing.  Finally my mom got out the scissors and started to cut away the knots and coral.  She tried to hide the hair she cut behind the pillows on the couch so I wouldn't see how big the chunks of hair were, but my eyes were closed tight!

The next day, I had perfectly combed out hair but there was a huge "V" in the middle of what used to be perfect thickness.  And what bothered me even more than the hair that was cut off was all the hair that got pulled out by the roots when we were combing!

The "V" shape was an awful reminder, so my mom trimmed the bottom of my hair until it was a little below waist length.  My braid was so thin on the bottom, it made me cry again just looking at it.

From then on, for about the next two years, I would never wear my hair down or even in a French braid.  I was super gentle with my hair at all times, and usually just kept it in a low cinnamon bun or braided bun.

Then I learned how to do a four-piece French braid.  One day while we were on vacation in Cairns, Australia, I was in the rec room at the hotel where we stayed and heard a couple talking behind me.  The man said, "Look at how thick her braid is!"  He doesn't know this, but those were the kindest words anyone has ever said about me in my life!  I was thrilled to think that somebody could look at (what I thought was) my pitiful braid and call it thick!

Now that several years have passed, my hair is just about the same thickness all the way down to ankle.  My heart-felt prayers have been answered!  (Yes, I prayed about my hair for a long time!)  I am so happy to be (I hope) completely recovered from that tragic hair accident.  I don't like to think about it, even now.  But who knows?  Maybe if I had never had my accident, my hair would not be what it is today.  I might have been tempted to cut it short or just leave it at tailbone length, instead of baby-ing it along and doing everything possible to help it be thick and super-long once more.

Hopefully nothing like this will every happen to you!  But if it does or if something equally bad has already happened, just look at my pictures and be encouraged to know that your hair will eventually grow back, no matter what you've done to it!

And don't forget to eat your spoonful of peanut butter each day!  Peanut butter is a miracle hair-grower!

Love, Andrea


20 comments:

  1. Thank you so much for making this post! I've had more than one hair disaster that required me to cut my hair, once from midback to pixie, once from then-TBL to APL, and once from then-waist to APL. My hair is now at waist, but it breaks my heart to think of what it could be if I hadn't cut it all those times. Now I'm completely re-inspired to keep growing my hair no matter what. Your hair is beautiful, and to look at it, you can't even tell that you once had such a bad experience with it.
    Thank you again :)
    ~Lily

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    1. Hey Lily! Thank you so much for commenting on my post. I know exactly what you mean about wondering "what might have been" if I hadn't ______. I used to do the same thing all the time...now like I say I just try not to think about it, and also realize that enough time has passed by now that my hair has surely made a full recovery. I'm glad that my hair horror story can be a help and an encouragement to you~ happy growing!
      <3 Andrea

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  2. Hi Andrea!

    Thank you for sharing your story! I was born with a head full of dark curly hair (Hairdresses uses to tell my Mom I have enough hair for three people!). When I was five years old, my hair grew down to my backside - it was all one length and curly. One day my Dad decided to take my four year old brother (both my younger sister and brother had tight curly hair) to Johnny the Barber for a haircut and I came along. Once there, I made it known I wanted a hair cut too and without consulting my Mom, Dad allowed Johnny to cut my hair. He cut my hair to my shoulders and added bangs - all my baby curly hair was cut off and my hair was straight! When I arrived home, my Mom was so upset she hopped in her car and drove around the neighborhood. My Nana was also upset. She spent the next several years trying to get my hair to curl up again.

    When I was on summer break from college right before my sophomore year, I decided I wanted lighter hair. I poured three bottles of "Sun In" on my head. My hair turned a nice reddish brown. When I returned to school, I wished my hair was curly like my younger sisters. So during a weekend home, I got a perm. Getting a perm on top of three bottles of "Sun In" was a BIG mistake! It nearly ruined my hair and turned it a strange reddish brown color that didn't look natural. Also my hair was already wavy so why did I feel I needed to get a perm? I spent the next couple of years growing it all out. Never again have I gotten a perm. By the way, after I got a perm my hair was way bigger than my head LOL so my college friends nicknamed me "Chaka Kahn". :)

    As it turns out, all I needed was the right haircut. When I turned forty and was still single, I decided I wanted a change. I didn't want the bangs anymore (my hair grows way too fast and I had to get them cut every two weeks!) and grew it out. I found a hairdresser, we talked, and she cut my hair in a nice style that gives me the length I like (I prefer my hair long - it has to be below my shoulders, but not very long - my hair is way too thick - it is very difficult to style, shampoo, ect.)but it is angled on the sides - long angles. I was so surprised when after getting this cut when I arrived home, shampooed it, and my hair was suddenly very wavy. I LOVED it! It's true that I do have to encourage the waves by scrunching after I wash it, but this cut makes it easy to manage so I'm very happy!!

    The biggest problem I've had with my hair is my scalp - I have sebborheic dermatitis - oily scalp, but dry coarse hair. If I don't wash it every day, the scalp gets very irritated and breaks out. Right now I am trying to take vitamins, probiotics, and coconut oil to help with this problem!

    Andrea, how often do you need to cut your bangs? Do you cut them yourself? Just wondering! You have such beautiful hair - if my scalp wasn't so tempermental and my hair wasn't so thick, then yes I would definitely grow it longer!

    PS. You look like such a happy person - how do you stay so happy? I'd love to hear your testimony sometime! Also, what should someone do if they have been praying for a long time for a special intention, but so far the prayers have been unanswered? Keep praying? I'd love to hear your answer!

    Andrea, thank you! Feel free to email me anytime at:
    prayrosary4life@gmail.com

    Do you ever do hot oil treatments? Special treatments? When I was single, I used to do a lot of hot oil treatments!

    Love your new friend,
    Maria

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  3. Hey Maria,
    Thank you so much for your post. I'm so glad that you have at last found the right hairstyle and routine for you~ I think that's wonderful! I hope that the treatments you're trying work well, too. Thanks for your email, I'm going to send you a message there and we can talk more. Thank you again so much!
    Love, Andrea

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  4. Your story is so heart touching for a long hair person :)
    I once went to the hairdresser to get 5 cm of my hip length hair cut and she cut so much away
    that my hair was extremely layered and just barely APL . When I realized what she was doing I immediately started to cry in the salon and she said she was so sorry but she thought now I could do so much more with my hair instead of leaving it boring and long at hip.
    I was devastetd for a long time and started to take care of my hair so it would be long soon, I always felt unpretty for a long time though :(
    happily that was the last time any hairdresser came near my hair and now I am just barely short of classic length and want to continue to mid thigh hopefully.
    I found the LHC and started to trimm my own hair - maybe if I had not experienced this incident
    my hair would not be mid thigh in any case soon :)
    I love your posts,

    Louisa :)

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  5. Hey Louisa,
    Thank you for sharing your experience~ that must have been awful to realize what was happening, knowing you couldn't go back and fix it! I'm glad your hair is long and healthy again now!
    Love, Andrea

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  6. Hello Andrea,

    Thank you for writing about your past hair trouble. Your hair has recovered so well, I never would have imagined that it could have been anything less!

    I have had my own hair troubles, and I really hope my hair will recover! Mine became unbelievably thin after years of mis-diagnosed gluten intolerance took a heavy toll on my body. Now that the rest of me is feeling much healthier I think my hair will grow back better (so far my new growth looks better than it ever had...after all, I was having malnutrition issues for years before).

    I also want to tell you that the peanut butter idea is very interesting. I'm adding a spoonful of it to my breakfast daily now! I do think I got better growth than usual a few years ago when I was eating a lot of peanut butter. Hopefully it will help now.

    -Anethea :)

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  7. When I was a year of 10, we went to Turkey for a holiday. My mom had made a dutch braid in my hair and I was crying when I had to take this out of my hair after a day of sunbathing and pooling.. I had 4 knots or more in my hair and at that moment my sisters was very annoying like; now we had to cut your hair! hehehe! Arghh.. sisters.. think they are making funny jokes about your hair when this is happening. I now what you mean when I read this story. My mom did a great job, they were gone and it took her 3 hours.. arggh.. Not as long as yours by the way!

    Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Oh, I'm so glad your mom was able to comb out all the knots and you did not have to cut your hair after all! Thank you so much for commenting <3

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  8. Did you ever find a way to wear your hair while swimming, that didn't result in knots?

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    1. That's a good question! Now when I go swimming I try to keep my hair up in a bun and not get it wet. Although when I went swimming in a pool last summer, I wore my hair down in a braid and it was fine. The difference could have been it was pool water and not salt water. I think I will keep trying to keep my hair up and not get it completely wet when I'm swimming in salt water. I don't want to have a repeat experience!
      Thank you so much for following my blog!

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  9. Hi, Again Andrea! :)

    Recently I had a bad hair experience and wanted to share. I was blessed over the last several years to find a hairdresser who I really liked. I loved how she cut my ultra thick coarse wavy hair. She always cut my hair just how I liked it - angled in front and rounded in the back. Unfortunately, she decided to leave her job and being a hairdresser to return to school and took a part time job at a local convenience store. I was so upset - now who could I find to cut my hair the way I liked it? Well, I went to a new salon at at a local mall, found a hairdresser who seemed nice, and at first she seemed to listen to me. Against my better judgement, I allowed her to cut two long layers in back - BIG MISTAKE (I've always disliked layers on my hair because it's coarse and tends to be frizzy. If I shampoo at night, my hair takes four hours to dry and if I have layers, my hair will stick up all over the place if I sleep on it wet. Yikes! We're talking about Chaka Kahn hair here!)! And two months later, I went back and allowed her to cut my hair again. This time she didn't listen to me and did what she wanted - she cut layers all over the place and hacked it everywhere. I went home and was really upset. It took months to grow out. I HATED it. I ran into my old hairdresser and she was aghast what the other hairdresser did to my hair. I almost begged her to please fix my hair, but I somehow managed to contain myself. I didn't get my hair cut again for four months. I was so scared to go somewhere and have someone else wreck my hair, but after four months I really needed a trim. I took a deep breath and went to a family salon and had this lady cut my hair who a long long time ago cut my hair and she is a relative of a co-worker at my workplace. Before she picked up the scissors, I showed her a picture and explained to her what I wanted her to do and what I didn't want - NO LAYERS! She evened up my hair, trimmed it, and cut it the way I wanted it cut. She told me that it was going to take a year to get my hair all one length again - ugh! Now I am due again for a trim and the hair is going whacko again on me (Think Chaka Kahn puffy hair!). I need to find out when this new hairdresser is available again - I'm only going to go to her from now on. My coworkers keep telling me I need to dye my going gray hair, but I am afraid to let someone color my hair. I went to a place to have my hair colored before I was married and she did not know what she was doing and another lady at the salon had to instruct her (another example of when I should have just told them "No thank you. I changed my mind. Sorry. Bye." But I did not.). I've had a couple of people tell me that these are "God's highlights" and they like my salt and pepper hair so for now I'm just leaving it.

    You have to understand I'm very picky about my hair, who touches it, and who cuts it. I won't let just anybody cut it. Also, I suffer from something called sebborheic dermatitis, which makes my scalp break out and very sore. Right now I have another outbreak. I am seriously thinking of having a hair/scalp blog like you Andrea, but I am not as cute as you and I don't have super long hair. But maybe I can help people who have sebborheic dermatitis on their scalp? Your blog has encouraged and inspired me. If I make a blog, can I link to your blog? Maybe we can be blog sisters? :)

    Andrea, feel free to email me at: prayrosary4life@gmail.com

    I'd LOVE to hear from you! Thank you!

    May God Bless you, Andrea!

    Maria In Mass :)

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    1. Thank you so much for commenting, Maria! I emailed you at this address, I'm very glad we can be friends :-)

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  10. Reading it gives me hope Andrea :) I had long hair my whole life, I never cut off and never went to the salon was always in good condition. About three weeks ago, after washing the hair knot formed worst I have ever had anywhere:(I cried and begged my mother to help me .. she tried everything, but nothing to solve this problem. How you did, we stayed awake late and in the next three weeks, we have tried everything to save it and not use scissors. . Knot became beyond my hair until it was above my shoulders with the ends of my hair in to the knot. Yesterday we cut my hair, and my mother and I, we both cried, as my hair fell to the floor. Today, I am trying to regulate and, finding your website filled me so much hope. !! And I feel bright again! :) :) :) Thank you for sharing with me your story. You have the most beautiful hair I've seen. With best wishes from Russia!

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    1. Oh Yana, I'm so glad that you found my blog online! I am so sorry about the knot in your hair, I completely understand! The good thing is that hair does eventually grow back, although I know how sad it is for a very long time while you wait and hope for it to grow faster <3 I hope that my blog is an encouragement to you, and if you ever want to message I'd love to hear how you are doing! Thank you for writing, my new friend in Russia :-)

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  11. I'm so sorry!!but I'm glad your hair grew back to were you can't even tell that ever happened.I've heard that olive oil helps with really bad tangles, not sure if it's true or just a myth though.-Riley

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    1. Hi Riley, thank you so much for commenting! I do love using olive oil mixed with coconut oil and egg for a hair mask, thank you for the idea to use it by itself! Hopefully I won't have another hair accident ever again <3

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  12. Hello! I can't believe I just found this blog. I am 16 years old, and have hair slightly longer than classic length. This April, my family and I will be heading down to the Caribbean for a cruise, and since I don't see the ocean, or snorkel, hardly ever, I can't pass up the opportunity to snorkel, swim in the ocean, waterslides, etc. I was wondering if you had any suggestions. I was considering buying a swim cap to keep most of my hair protected. I have tried french braids, and also braids slathered in coconut oil in the past, and they are always a nightmare to untangle, especially when I am required to shower in hard water. So anyways, if you have suggestions, it will be most appreciated. God Bless!- Aneesa

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    1. Hi Aneesa, thank you so much for commenting and following my blog. I hope you have a wonderful time in the Caribbean, I'm sure you will :) A swim cap sounds like a great idea, if you can get all your hair to fit. I tried one years ago, and had a hard time getting my hair all in there. But it did keep most of my hair from getting wet, which was so nice. I would definitely say to go for it!

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  13. When I was 6 or 7 my hair r was to my waist and I got all of it cut off because I didnt want it anymore and now im 13 and its mid stomach.
    Abby

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