What would you do to grow your hair? Eat super healthy? Take a basketful of vitamins and supplements? Drink eight to ten glasses of water a day? Buy expensive hair products or growth aids? How about a handstand?
cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by formulapuff
What if it would give you an inch of hair growth in only seven days? Ok, maybe not a handstand, but you get the point … Don’t laugh. Inversion therapy has been around for thousands of years.
Egyptian Dancer, a pubic domain image from Wikimedia. Source: Artist unknown; an ancient Egyptian ostraca found at Thebes, now in Turin Museo Egizio.
Public Domain Mark 1.0 via Wikimedia.
During an archaeological dig, archaeologists found ancient stone seals from 3000 BC that revealed various yoga poses. Yogis have used inverted poses to rebalance the mind and body from time immemorial. Some research even suggests a history much earlier than 3000 BC.
In 400 BC, Hippocrates, sometimes called the Father of Medicine, used a complicated system of ladders and pulleys to hang his patients’ upside down to relieve back pain and pressure on the spine.
Early Greek Traction Device, a pubic domain image from Wikimedia.
Source: Artist Unknown.
Public Domain Mark 1.0 via Wikimedia.
The treatment, which involves inverting the body upside down or at a slightly inverted angle, supposedly relieves tension as the weight of your body naturally “stretches” the spine. Proponents say that it not only helps ease back pain but also slows the aging of the spine. In addition, many claim that it increases circulation, stimulates the brain, enhances glandular system functioning, and relieves pressure on the abdominal organs. Hair aficionados, however, suggest that the same increased circulation that is generated from an inverted position to ease back pain can also accelerate hair growth.
Conditions that Don’t Mix Well with the Inversion Method
If you have any of the following conditons, you should avoid inversion COMPLETELY: pregnancy, hernia, low or high blood pressure*, recent stroke, heart or circulatory problems, glaucoma, conjunctivitis (“pink eye”), detached retina, spinal injury, swollen joints, osteoporosis, unhealed fractures or injuries, ear infection, obesity, or are otherwise unhealthy.
* Ladies, be sure to avoid attempting the inversion method during menstruation when your blood flow is already being manipulated physiologically.
Degree of Inversion
- A common mistake when attempting inversion therapy is inverting at an angle that’s too severe. This especially applies to beginners, who should start out at a very slight angle.
- In addition to inverting at a slight angle, beginners should also be sure to have someone “spotting” them. Inverting for the first time can cause dizziness, so it’s important to have someone close by to assist you (if necessary).
- If you have any concerns about attempting the inversion method, or just to be on the safe side, check with your doctor before you begin the inversion method.
I discovered the inversion method for hair growth while searching online for a growth aid. The whole concept of inversion to grow hair seemed completely ridiculous to me at first. In fact, I think I LOLed at the search engine result as soon as it populated. But, something about the title and the introductory video pic made me curious, so I clicked on the link and watched the vid. (You can read the original Hairlista post HERE.) After watching several videos and reading the initial Hairlista post, I decided to do my own research. I was surprised by the number of women who received positive hair growth results. So, starting today, I am officially taking the inversion method 7-day hair growth challenge. What can I say? I’m feeling adventurous! Here’s what you need to know …
- Massage an oil of your choice (that has been warmed in hot water) onto your scalp. Olive oil is recommended, but you can experiment with any oil you have on hand.
- Do a simple inversion for 4 minutes. (Suggested positions: (i) sitting in a chair or on a couch and lowering your head slightly toward feet as if you are painting your toe nails or (ii) standing at kitchen sink and lowering head as if you are getting ready to wash your hair.) For more detailed positions, check out this video:
If at anytime during the inversion you feel dizzy,
drowsy/sleepy, or abnormal in ANY way,
SLOWLY move out of the position.
- Let oil sit on scalp for at least two hours. Co-wash to remove excess oil (only if necessary).
- Repeat every day for ONLY 7 consecutive days (i.e., Sunday to Saturday).
- Wait at least 3 weeks between each attempt. Otherwise, your body gets used to the extra blood flow, and the method won’t work as well, if at all. Or, at worst, you become susceptible to some dangerous health risks. So, only attempt to do this over seven consecutive days once per month. No more!
- Enjoy your new growth!
Additional Tips & Info.
- IF YOU ARE LESS THAN 18 YEARS OLD, don’t forget to GET YOUR PARENTS’ PERMISSION BEFORE USING THIS HAIR GROWTH METHOD!!!
- IF YOU HAVE TYPE 1 (STRAIGHT) OR TYPE 2 (WAVY) HAIR: You will likely have to rinse or co-wash the oil out after only 2-3 hours. Avoid using shampoo daily because NO ONE (regardless of ethnicity or hair type) should be shampooing their hair every day. It’s unhealthy and is just too harsh for ALL hair types.
- IF YOU HAVE TYPE 3 (CURLY) OR TYPE 4 (COILY/KINKY) HAIR: You will likely be able to go several days before needing to rinse or co-wash your hair. Since I have a combination of type 3 & 4 hair, I personally apply an oil of my choice every day for 7 days. I co-wash my hair on day 4. After inverting for 7 days, I assume my normal weekly wash routine of shampooing, conditioning, deep conditioning, and styling my hair on my “wash day.”
- USE ANY OIL OF YOUR CHOICE. Although you can use any oil of your choice, I would recommend using 100% natural oils (e.g., olive oil, grapeseed oil, castor oil, coconut oil, avocado oil, etc). It’s up to you whether you want to go the extra mile and use organic and/or extra virgin oils. I usually do, but you don’t have to. It’s completely up to you.
- DO NOT COMPLETELY DOUSE YOUR SCALP WITH OIL. You shouldn’t be using 6 ounces of oil in a week’s time! If you are prone to being heavy headed, use an applicator bottle or a Roots Only bottle. I usually use 4 to 6 ounces of oil in a month’s time, just to give you a barometer of how much oil to use. That equates to about 1 to 1.5 ounces of oil a week. And, I apply daily! Keep in mind, you DO NOT want your scalp drenched, just lightly oiled.
- MINIMIZE THE AMOUNT OF PRODUCTS YOU USE on your hair while utilizing this method. You don’t want product build up.
- DOCUMENT YOUR STARTING LENGTH by measuring your hair from the side, back, and front/crown of your head. You won’t know about your fabulous results unless you measure first!
- DO NOT OVERUSE THIS METHOD. You can utilize this method a maximum of 1x per month for as long as you want the expedited hair growth. However, not every one will be able to do this. For instance, if you notice any symptoms (i.e., migraines) from doing the inversion method every month, try every other month or once per quarter. Better to be safe than sorry!
(Frequently Asked Questions)
- IS THIS METHOD JUST FOR WOMEN? SOME OF US MEN WANT TO GROW OUT OUR HAIR, TOO! No, this method IS NOT gender-specific. There’s only one requirement: the desire to grow your hair!
- DO I NEED TO HAVE A CERTAIN HAIR TYPE TO USE THE INVERSION METHOD? The inversion method works on all hair types (from type 1 to 4c), regardless of lineage. All ethnicities and hair types welcome!
- HOW DO I HEAT UP THE OIL? To heat up any oil for a hot oil treatment, take a mug and fill it about halfway with water. Heat the cup of water in the microwave for 60 seconds or until hot. (I just use my Keurig.) Place an applicator bottle (that contains the oil of your choice) in the mug of hot water. It won’t take more than a minute or two for the oil to heat up. Once the oil is very warm/hot, lightly oil your scalp. But, make sure the oil IS NOT scolding hot.
- DO I HAVE TO USE OIL? I DON’T WANT TO LOOK LIKE A GREASE BALL! I did a little experiment, back in October (2013), covering this very topic. Check it out HERE.
- CAN I USE THIS METHOD IF I’M WEARING A PROTECTIVE STYLE (I.E., BRAIDS OR TWISTS)? Absolutely! However, if you DO NOT have full access to your scalp, it may be best to skip the oil altogether. I used the inversion method without massaging my scalp or using oil of any kind. You can see my results HERE
- WHEN WILL I NOTICE HAIR GROWTH? I WANT RESULTS … NOW! I usually have measurable results (about 1/4″ give or take) after day 3 or 4. On day 8 (when I measure my hair), it’s a 1/2″ longer (or more) than when I started. If you don’t seem to have any growth after 7 days, perhaps try the method while using a growth aid/oil to boost your results.
- WHY DO I HAVE TO WAIT 3 WEEKS BETWEEN EACH INVERSION? CAN I USE THE INVERSION METHOD TWICE IN THE SAME MONTH? I WANT LONGER HAIR YESTERDAY! As always, you can do whatever your heart desires. However, it IS NOT recommended. If you overuse the inversion method, your body will adjust to the improved circulation directed toward your scalp, and you will have minimal, if any, growth. Overuse can also make you prone to headaches and weaken you physiologically. The reason the inversion method produces such stellar results is because it localizes blood flow toward your hair follicles. However, as they say, too much of a good thing can be bad. So, don’t overdo it. You’re already getting a month (or two) worth of growth in one week, so don’t be greedy or impatient. It’s not worth putting your health at risk for quadruple hair growth when you’re already getting double or triple doing the inversion method 7 days a week once a month.
- I MISSED A DAY! AM I TOTALLY SCREWED? No, as long as you are consistent the remaining days. Consistency is key. If you miss more than a day or two, you might still get results … just not as much or as visible.
- CAN I ONLY INVERT 1-2 TIMES OVER 7 DAYS FOR ONLY 1 MINUTE? I HAVE A CERTAIN LIFESTYLE TO MAINTAIN! You can modify the inversion method any way you see fit to suit your hair type and lifestyle/schedule. However, I think it’s important to keep things in perspective. Rules are meant to be followed. If you do not intend to follow the rules, that’s fine, as long as you also modify your expectations. Don’t expect to see gargantuan hair growth if you only intend to follow 1/5 of the guidelines!
Still have questions? Don’t hesitate to leave a question in the reply box below. Just remember to read and/or search the comments before posting your inquiry. I might have already answered your question!
FYI, I will post my results (good or bad) in a week. See you then!