11 Tips for Growing 4C Hair LONG - KandieKurls (2023)

This post is all about growing 4C hair long. Discover the knowledge that helped me grow my 4C curls down my back!

How exactly do you grow 4C hair?

I mean, what is the secret? Some people say, pouring rice water on your scalp makes it grow long and beautiful.

Others say to pile on the vitamin supplements, they’ll make your tresses strong, shiny, and most importantly they’ll grow it to your waist.

Are these really the answers we’re searching for?

Chances are that if you want your hair to grow a certain length then you actually care about your appearance.

You put care into how you present yourself. So, why would it be any different for your hair?

I’m not going to waste your time giving you tips with success rates that are at best anecdotal and at worst have no bearings in scientific fact.

I will, however, give you 11 tips that I found helpful for growing my own 4C natural hair.

First, What I Learned About Growing My 4C Hair

If you’ve been following my blog, then you know that I didn’t really transition. I did a big chop after an unfortunate mishap with a relaxer left me with bald spots.

So, a post like this is really important to me because I remember wondering if my hair would ever grow back? And if it did, how long would it take?

After researching the subject of growth, I picked up a great deal of valuable information.

Below, I’m going to share some of that knowledge because it may just change your perspective about growing 4C hair.

Valuable Knowledge for How to Grow 4C Hair

As long as you are healthy and aren’t mechanically or chemically hindering the process, your curls will continue to grow at an average of half an inch per month.

The rate at which your hair grows is ultimately determined by:





Seasonal changes

This rate can be negatively impacted by:



Scalp health


Haircare practices

Health concerns


Additionally, you shouldn’t focus on “growth” if you are trying to grow your hair long.

Like I said, your hair (for the most part) is going to sprout from the scalp regardless.

Your issue with hair growth lies in length retention. Meaning, the amount of hair you’re able to maintain without breaking off at the end of each month.

Now, that you know a little bit more about hair growth, read on to discover my 11 tips for how to grow (retain) your 4C hair!

#1. Start Deep Conditioning 4C Hair

On wash day, a deep conditioner is your best friend because a common trait of 4C hair is dryness.

Therefore, your hair regimen should center around moisture. If you’re not sure how to do that, I have a blog post explaining how to moisturize 4C hair.

The point of a deep conditioner is to temporarily repair the damage, replenish moisture, and prevent breakage.

Deep conditioners are vital for hair health. Especially if you are suffering from a heightened porosity due to dryness.

These products will support and in some cases re-establish the fiber’s elasticity which is a primary factor for hair breakage.

Pro Tip:

If you are suffering from extreme dryness try washing your hair more frequently.

For instance, if you wash every two weeks, try reducing that to once a week and so forth.

Remember, keeping the scalp clean and hydrated is absolutely crucial for hair growth.

Product Selection:

Shea Moisture: Purple Rice Water w/ Wild Orchid & Sweet Violet Extract Strength + Color Care Masque

This mask smells positively amazing, like… a flower-flavored yogurt… if that makes sense? It also provides excellent moisture leaving the hair soft and extremely detangled.

# 2. Stop Using Drying Products

This is an issue that we have all fallen prey to at one time or another thus a tip like the one I’m about to explain is significant.

Because we have 4C hair, we are more vulnerable to dryness, damage, and breakage.

Certain products carry ingredients that promise to moisturize our luscious locks but in reality, can actually block moisture from being absorbed into the shaft.

These products carry ingredients such as silicones and petroleum jelly (i.e.-dimethicone and mineral oil).

Also, the more you weigh your hair down with these types of products the harsher the shampoo you’ll need to use in order to cleanse the curls.

This will lead to a reduction or flat-out depletion of the hair’s natural oils thus further drying out your tresses.


Shoot for natural or softer ingredients in your products.

Product Suggestions:

100% Pure Honey & Virgin Coconut Restorative Shampoo

100%Pure Honey & Virgin Coconut Restorative Conditioner

As I am Leave-in Conditioner

All great for hair prone to dryness. Leaves strands soft, fluffy, and well moisturized.

# 3. Protect Your Ends

If growing out 4C hair is the goal, then protecting your ends should be the most notable part of your regimen.

This is because the root to mid-shaft is the youngest part of your hair. Hence, it needs less protection.

The ends are the oldest and most porous part of the hair. As it comes into contact with the environment and other surface exposures, it loses moisture.

Consequently, the hair becomes less elastic and more brittle. As a result, splintering occurs, followed eventually by breakage making length retention nearly impossible.

Pro Tip:

Protecting your hair is a three-step process.

Keep this portion of the hair well moisturized. Use hydrating products and water to do this.

Don’t forget to balance the moisture in the hair with adequate protein.

A mixture of protein-based products and protein treatments within your regimen should do the trick.

Tuck away the ends and use a silk or satin headscarf at night.

# 4. Stop Air Drying Your 4C Hair as Much

Without trying to sound too dramatic, let me just say air drying may be ruining your 4c hair.

This is a tough one because we come from a culture that styles our hair while wet. To understand the problem with this, let me back up a second.

Our hair fiber is covered in several overlapping layers of scales called cuticles.

These cuticles are held to the hair shaft by the cuticle membrane complex. Think of it as the hair’s natural glue.

The CMC regulates how much water gets absorbed into the fiber.

When your hair gets wet, the fiber swells from the inside prompting the cuticles on the surface to extend outward. Then as the hair dries it starts to contact.

However, when you choose to air-dry the strands, the water is left in the fiber longer.

This swelling and contracting process over time damages the CMC causing it to bubble and crack.

The damage inflicted prevents the “glue” from rebinding the cuticles to the shaft and as a result, the cuticles also become lifted and flared.

In short, this means the hair loses its ability to regulate moisture, thus heightening porosity.

You don’t have to stop completely. Simply, do it less often than you normally would. I suggest every two or even three weeks.

Pro Tip:

Using a blow dryer with continuous movement five or six inches away from the hair will cause less damage than air drying.

However, you may still be exposing your hair to mechanical damage using a comb or a brush.

Product Suggestion:

If you have the money to shell out, a better option would be to use the REVAIR Reverse Air dryer.

It has three settings warm, hot, and cool. All temperature settings are guaranteed to cause less heat damage than using a traditional dryer.

Plus it dries the hair in about 90 seconds or less while simultaneously straightening your curl pattern and I’ll explain in a minute why that’s a good thing.

It also comes with a no-risk thirty-day refund policy and a year warranty. This is very helpful for growing 4C hair long!

# 5. Trim Less

I know. You’ve probably heard people say to trim more when you want to grow your curls. This is good advice if you want healthy hair.

Then, sure. Trim like crazy. However, this may not be the best option for someone who wants to retain length because you would be essentially cutting off more hair than you’re growing.

I am familiar with this.

There was a point in my hair journey where I was cutting inches off my hair every six to eight weeks or so.

Not only was this not helping me to retain length, but I also wasn’t taking care of my hair properly.

Thus, the trims were pointless because my hair would become damaged again very quickly. It was like a never-ending cycle.

My advice: if growing 4C hair is your goal, then cut it to a comfortable length. Afterward, make sure to care for your ends until it’s time to trim them again.

Keep up your regimen to avoid any more damage. Then at a time you specify (maybe every two, three, or four months) your choice, you can trim at your discretion.

Pro Tip:

You can also trim the hair more frequently by cutting a tiny bit of hair at a time. Like an eighth of an inch or smaller.

The point of this is to maintain your length while slowly getting rid of your damaged ends.

# 6. Stretch Your Curl Pattern

Stretch your curl pattern! Since our hair curls or coils and does so tightly, the sebum (natural oils) has a hard time slithering down the length of our strands.

Without this lubrication, our tresses have no moisture to keep them elastic.

And as you know, this leads to dryness, brittleness, frizziness, tangling, split ends, and ultimately breakage.

Elongating your curl is beneficial for a multitude of reasons.

The obvious one is that the hair would be easier to keep moisturized. Also, our tangles would be dramatically reduced and we could better control frizz.

Not to mention, trimming the hair in this state would provide you with better accuracy.

Stretching the hair would give your hair more bounce and movement as well if you are obsessed with it like I am.

# 7. Touch Your Curls Less

Try to touch your curls less. I know it can be fun to try all of the different hairstyles but you should be mindful.

Remember, our hair is the driest hair type so it is among the most fragile. Plus, the longer it gets the more porous it is.

Tugging, pulling, and manipulating your hair in any way too often is a gateway to breakage.

This will ruin its chances for length retention which is the goal here. Even simply touching your hair puts it at risk of snagging and moisture depletion.

Your best bet is to wear your curls in a protective hairstyle most of the time and then let it out to breathe.

If you really want to style it, do so sporadically and in a way that does not compromise the health we are working so hard to build.

Things like braiding the hair too tight, brushing or slicking it back, using high temperatures, etc…

# 8. Protect Hair From Sun

I have mentioned this in previous posts but it bears repeating again. The sun can be extremely damaging for all types of hair but especially for type 4 and 4C hair.

Why? Because our strands are so fragile and sometimes very thin. If you live in an area where the sun is always shining your strands may experience sun damage.

These leaves are strands even drier, depleting it of moisture and leaving it vulnerable to split ends.

You’ll always be able to tell sun-damaged hair because it will lighten the color. Turning it often a brown or reddish-brown.

It’s actually very similar to grass. If our hair becomes too dry it will begin to break off along the ends which will ruin any length that we have managed to grow.

The best way to combat this is to wear a hat, scarf, or some kind of covering. Also, you could put a little sunscreen in a bottle of water and spray the hair.

# 9. Use a Clarifying Shampoo

This is important because our strands tend to collect dirt and experience product build-up.

So, washing the hair with a clarifying shampoo every so often will help keep it clean and prevent the debris from blocking the moisture to our strands.

# 10. Use a Moisturizing Shampoo

Likewise, washing hair with a good moisturizing shampoo is important as well. It is very important that we monitor our hair.

We have to make sure it is not too soft. This is a clue that we should be implementing more moisturizing products into our regimen.

Washing your hair with a moisturizing shampoo is crucial to maintaining balance.

# 11. Protein Treatment for Strands

Switching to a protein treatment or protein-based products every once in a while is also crucial to growing and maintaining length.

Protein will keep our hair strong and help prevent our hair shaft from snapping.

This is imperative to hold on to the most vulnerable parts of our hair.

The ends! Always apply your products to the oldest parts of your hair. If you can keep the hair from splitting that is the key to longer locks.

Growing 4C Hair Long Tips – Q & A

How to Make my 4C Curls Grow Faster?

Growth is determined by sex, genetics, hormones, and seasonal changes. As of now, there is nothing known to science that can enhance the speed by which your hair grows.

Even vitamin supplements have not been proven to increase the speed of hair growth.

Vitamins are essential to the process of hair growth because the root of the hair needs nutrients to promote growth which it receives through the blood supply.

It is also better to obtain these vitamins through foods rather than supplements as there is a growing number of studies that suggest their outright ineffectiveness, increased harmful effects, and or limited effectiveness in the absence of a deficiency. (Always consult with your doctor about the best method for your health.)

If you are still skeptical of products and supplements’ inability to grow hair, there is an easy way to check.

Any legitimate business or site advertising a product or item for hair growth will likely use one of two words as their selling pitch.

They’ll say this product helps “promote or stimulate” hair growth.

Finding anyone willing to say this “so and so product” grows your hair would be nearly impossible because it is not true.

In any case, your growth rate may fluctuate anyway as hair is often thought to grow faster during the summer.

Foods to help “promote” hair growth.


Dark green vegetables




Final thoughts!

I love this topic. I can talk about it all day and to be honest there are tons of other tips I could give you.

However, I wanted to share the ones that I thought would serve you the most on your journey to retaining length.

These are all things that I learned along the way. After trying so many things these seven tips or what I found to work best to achieve my goal.

Sure, it takes a lot of work, but in my opinion, the reward is all the more satisfying.

What about you? What are some of the things you’ve tried or have worked well on your hair journey to retain length? Feel free to leave a response or comment in the dropbox below.

Until next time!

11 Tips for Growing 4C Hair LONG - KandieKurls (2)


There are some affiliate links above and I may receive commissions for purchases made through links in this post at no additional cost to you. However, these are all products I highly recommend and personally use. Also, I am not a medical or hair professional and should not be thought of as such. The tips in this post are based on personal experience and research. I do not guarantee results. Please follow the advice at your own risk.


Barrell, Amanda. “How Fast Does Hair Grow? Facts and Healthy Hair Growth Tips.” Medical News Today, MediLexicon International, 23 Oct. 2019, www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/326764.php#influencing-factors.

Callahan, Chrissy. “This Is the Trick to Getting Your Hair to Grow Longer, Faster.” TODAY.com, 5 July 2018, www.today.com/style/how-make-your-hair-grow-faster-t131559.

Mursu J; Robien K; Harnack LJ; Park K; Jacobs DR; “Dietary Supplements and Mortality Rate in Older Women: The Iowa Women’s Health Study.” Archives of Internal Medicine, U.S. National Library of Medicine, 10 Oct. 2011, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21987192-dietary-supplements-and-mortality-rate-in-older-women-the-iowa-womens-health-study/.

“Supplements: Nutrition in a Pill?” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 25 Oct. 2017, www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/supplements/art-20044894?pg=1.

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