Long Hair

Donna Cosmato
woman with long hair
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Long hair can be both enormously beautiful and problematic. To tame their tresses and keep it looking its best, individuals should investigate the proper cuts, shampoo and hair products, and efficient care. This way, your hair is long, gorgeous and relatively trouble-free to maintain.

Get Support and Style Ideas

Growing out and maintaining long tresses can come with a host of questions and concerns. There are a number of online support groups, forums, and clubs designed to help women in this area, whether their hair is already long or they are in the process of growing it out. These groups can provide support, be an open community where women can share their own hair stories and experiences, and offer style ideas and product tips. Popular sites include:

  • Long Hair Community: Find articles on hair care, member-uploaded photo albums, product reviews, and ask questions about your hair concerns. Some portions of the site are unavailable until you are registered. Site priveleges increase with the number of forum posts you place; for example, after 25 posts you can create your own photo album.
  • Long Hair Care Forum: This site is designed to support and meet the needs of women of color. Ask about products, specific hair questions or problems, post and view pictures, and share your hair care experiences in this online communityh of over 120 thousand members.
  • Long Hair Happenings: This HairTalk sub-forum offers support and a community to ask questions, post pics, and share experiences. You'll also find dozens of other hair-related topics on the HairTalk Forums.
  • Rapunzel's Delight: This unique blog welcomes interaction with readers and offers an eclectic mix of hair history, health, and photography.
  • Long Hair Loom: Discussion boards, healthy hair care, and photos make this hair community an educational and fun place to visit.

Cuts for Long Hair

Long hair works well with a variety of different hair cuts, including spiral perms, layers, and simple trims. Depending on whether the hair is curly or straight, the cuts can be varied to produce an almost infinite variety of different looks.

Everyday Styles

Everyday styles for lengthy hair may be both functional and attractive. Many women choose to leave their hair loose with only a small amount of spray, gel, or other holding chemicals to help it retain its shape and stay under control. Using accessories is also popular, particularly hefty clips or ponytail holders that can pull hair back and out of the way with minimal effort. Long locks may be quickly styled into braids, messy ponytails, flips, or other casual looks for a different do every day.

Specialty Styles

For formal occasions such as proms, weddings, parties, or just a special night out, there are many different specialty styles that look stunning with long hair. Updos are particularly popular, and involve pulling the hair tight to the scalp and arranging the lengthy locks in an intricate pattern, ringlets, or sophisticated twist at the top of the back of the head. Layered ponytails can help pull hair back with a dignified arrangement, and French braids are a more elegant variation on more everyday styles. Many long styles are accented with clips, flowers, jeweled pins, or other specialized hair accessories for even more elegance and distinction.

Choosing the Best Hair Products

While there are many different long styles to choose from, in order to keep it looking its best you must choose the appropriate shampoos, conditioners, and treatment products. Often, the longer hair gets the more liable it is to break and split, creating a fuzzy, messy appearance. Smoothing products and anti-breakage treatments help strengthen hair and prevent incidental damage.

Very long hair is also more susceptible to sun damage because it is further from the healthy natural oils exuded from the scalp, so products with SPF protection are often recommended. Brushing hair thoroughly with a daily routine can help distribute natural moisture and preserve the hair's soft, silky texture. Individuals with colored hair or who use stressful styling techniques such as curling irons, blow dryers, and other heating tools should investigate specialty products that help assuage that damage. Deep conditioners can also be used periodically to maintain hair health.

Hair Care for Long Hair

Trim Hair

There is more skill in caring for a long style than with a short, easy-to-maintain style. Many people think that to grow hair longer, it shouldn't be cut, but the longer hair goes without a trim, the more split ends and frayed strands it will develop. Hair should be cut every six to eight weeks to remove damage and encourage further growth.

Choose Accessories with Care

When using accessories, choose those that will be easy to remove and do not have sharp edges or high-friction materials that will pull and potentially break hair. Hair also breaks more easily when it is wet, so it is advisable to let hair air dry as much as possible before brushing or styling.

Keep Tangles at Bay

Tangles are the number one problem with longer hair. To prevent tangles, use detangling conditioners and brushes with coated tips. When you will be in a windy situation like outdoor activities, riding in a car with open windows, or a windy day, consider choosing a contained style such as layered ponytails or braids to keep hair under control and avoid tangles.

To remove tangles, use a wide-bristled brush or comb and start with the edge of the snarl rather than attempting to comb through the entire tangle at once. Do not tug mercilessly; not only is it painful, but you may break the hair and create split ends. If the tangle refuses to budge, rub a small amount of conditioner into it, and let it sit for a few minutes before trying again.


Long hair is an attractive, versatile style, but it takes great care and dedication to maintain lengthy locks at their healthiest, most beautiful level. By choosing the proper products, following a regimen of dedicated care, and using styles best suited to long locks, you are sure to have gorgeous tresses each and every day.

Long Hair