Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense. ~ Buddha
Healthy hair is what most of us desire, nevertheless, MOST women I interact with share the same commonality. Their primary goal for "going natural" is achieving longer, healthier hair. I remember not even 5 years ago for a black woman to even think she could have waist length hair was absurd and to speak of it publicly she probably would have been considered 51/50 (mental health description for psychotic) =).
No matter how much I read about natural hair care products being our savior to healthy long hair, I still have one question that prevents me from believing 100% natural products are the only way to go. What about people who grew shoulder length, mid back, bra strap and beyond who only used store bought items that were available at the local beauty supply stores and grocery stores? I was one of those people. Even though my Mother was natural and refused to put chemicals in my hair, giving me mayo treatments and such, once I was of age to take care of it on my own I only used the traditional product that gave me slick shiny hair, "grease". At age 11 and 12 there was no way I was slicking mayo on my head and a deep treatment was the furthest thing from my mind but from age 11-17 even after I got my hair relaxed I was between armpit and bra strap my entire life (until of course the chemical relaxer and my lack of understanding how to care for it took over). All this to say, don't let anyone tell you a product isn't right for you if you are getting the results you desire. Products free of petroleum, mineral oil and paraffin are better to use if you have the desire to learn and and change what is working for you. You are no less natural if you use grease and water on your hair taking good care if it then someone who chooses to use organic oils.
Leaving my hair alone to me, is just as important as what is being put into my hair. My son didn't get his first hair cut until age 12. His hair was long and thick. I hear women say all the time men's hair grows faster then ours. We notice growth so much faster in some men is because they aren't doing any thing to it. No combing daily, no constant product use. They get it braided and forget about it over the next 3-4 weeks sometimes even longer. My son didn't find hair braiding day joyful. I don't braid tight at all, he just didn't like the fuss, hes a boy :) I would wash and condition his hair with the same products I used, Joico and Aphogee (not together). Blow dry with Nexxus Heat Protect or on a lower setting if I didn't have any, and cornrow greasing his scalp with Blue Magic of every type blue, green, coconut. I wouldn't do anything else to it until it was time to braid it again sometimes waiting 4 weeks to cater to it (he would wet it in the shower which at the time I didnt realize it was providing his hair with the moisture it needed. His hair flourished. He slept with a "Doo-Rag" on at night for the first 5-7 nights and after that he could care less. No oils, no butters, no concoctions. I just left it alone. In regards to growth I believe it comes as a result of care, leaving the hair alone, gentle handling, and not just the products used.
Sharing information as I am learning too is a blessing. I cant write about anything I have tried on my own hair. For the next 6 months I will be focusing on growth and blended a growth serum together. This will be the first time Ive really focused on using oils for growth and I'm learning so much. Even though our hair grows at an average rate of 1/2 in per month, there are some essential oils that are known for growing hair in people who suffer with alopecia. Of course I've heard and read about all I've mentioned but I didn't fully understand the profound impact essential oils are said to have on hair growth. Over the next 6 months, I shall see.