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Just How Realistic is Super Long Hair? We Asked An Expert

photo of woman with super long hair

It seems clear now that the dolls we played with as kids gave us crazy unrealistic expectations about growing hair. If yours had calf-length dark brown hair and never seem to be slowed down by all those tangles, it may have looked like waist-length hair was an easy goal to hit.

For most of us, damaged hairsplit ends, and regular haircuts squash any dreams about growing super long hair. If you just can’t get the idea out of your mind, however, we’re about to lay some knowledge on you.  If 2018 was the year of the choppy lob and the blunt bob, then rest assured 2019 ushers in the reign of the long-haired lady. As our friends over at Refinery29 point out, the recent showing of fashion it-girls and influencers at Paris Fashion Week with super long hair means the trend is about to break through into the mainstream.

We spoke with Carly Quist, Kérastase artist, about everything you need to know before trying to attain doll-length hair. Looking to start fresh with a bold new vibe and polished hairstyle for 2019? Let your mane grow long. These pro-approved strategies for a princess-like mane can help you get there.


Is super long hair even possible for most people?

Technically, yes, most people can grow very long hair. Quist is quick to point out that it’s not for everyone, however.

Take into consideration face shape—does long hair even suit you? Then you need to think of your lifestyle and maintenance...Is long hair realistic for your everyday routine?

Mid-back hair will require twice the maintenance of shoulder-length hair, so be prepared to care for your mane like it’s a newly adopted pet. The longer those ends grow, the more fragile they’ll be, so this is one time you can’t skimp on that maintenance routine.

How can you grow super long hair?

When Quist’s clients come to her chair looking for extreme length, her first step is to craft a strategy of care and maintenance that sets them up for success (and perfect braids).

“I like to make a hair plan with my clients,” she explains. “if you haven't had super long hair before, you will need to adjust how you style it, the length of time you have for styling it and maintaining it.”

One of the most hotly debated topics when it comes to long hair is whether or not to trim it during the grow-out process. Quist falls securely on the side of shearing those dead ends away.

“What happens is the ends start to become weak and don't look as full, and you end up cutting more off the longer you wait,” she explains.

Additionally, you’ll still want to look pulled together even though you’re not quite at your goal length. Regular trims can create shape and help maintain the look of healthy hair, so you’re polished every step of the way.

Styling also comes into play, even with the longest of hair. Professionals style super long hair using different techniques than they might for a lob or pixie cut. If you clue your stylist in on your goal, he or she will be able to show you new ways to keep your mane in check.

How do you care for super long hair?

There’s a reason you hear so many women talking about chopping most of their hair off. As a general rule, more length equals more effort every morning. In Quist’s view, signing up for a super long mane means agreeing to the enhanced care routine—particularly if you have color-treated hair.

“The longer the hair gets, no matter what color service, the more time and product it will take to color the hair for your stylists, which then is going to up the end cost,” Quist advises.

If your stylist knows you’re eagerly planning for waist-length hair, he or she may recommend subtle highlights or balayage to create a lower maintenance routine.

Of course, your hair is only as good as your at-home care routine—particularly if you’re going for inches.

“The key is to make sure you are properly cleansing the hair—shampooing every inch of your hair and scalp thoroughly without all the hair getting in the way—to remove any excess product buildup and oil,” Quist says.

If your ultimate goal is length, we recommend trying the Kérastase Resistance Extensioniste length strengthening system. Formulated for hair seeking healthy length, the system strengthens and fortifies hair for reduced breakage.

When it comes to your fragile ends, the stylist recommends taking an extra step to make sure they’re moisturized. From Kérastase, she loves Aura Botanica Baume Miracle. The multi-nourishing balm for hair and skin helps impart moisture, which can be a blessing for dry, over-processed ends.

“I like to think of it like a lip balm for the hair,” Quist explains. “You can apply it in the morning or pop it in your purse, and you can top up that nourishment on the go throughout your day.”

Once you’ve set a goal, clued in your stylist, and invested in the right products, you’ll be on your way to finally achieve the super long hair you’ve been daydreaming about. Above all else, Quist recommends investing time and effort in your mane. Within weeks, you’ll reap the rewards of your effort.

“Take care of it! I see so many women with long hair don't take proper care of it,” she says.

Care routine in hand, you’re set for success.

Interested in a personalized care routine for super long hair? Use our salon locator to book an appointment with a stylist near you.

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