In the black community, many may think it’s only women who obsess about growing a full head of healthy hair. Not so! Many brothas are also on a mission to maximize their hair’s growth. If you’re one of these men, review this checklist from the to make sure you’re on the right track.

Examine your diet. Are you eating healthy foods full of vitamin B, protein and folic acid? All are proven to strengthen hair and increase the rate of hair growth.

Examine your hair care routine. Are you trimming off damaged or split ends? (Yes, men get split ends too.) These growth killers make your hair more prone to breakage. Do you keep your hair clean? Dirt can clog hair follicles and make it difficult for hair to grow. Are you using a shampoo specifically made for black men? To make sure your hair gets exactly what you need, condition every other day, and use a deep conditioner every other week. This strengthens your hair and adds shine.

Examine your hairstyling techniques. Are you saying no to chemical treatments or heat styling? These no-no’s can cause breakage, damage hair and slow its growth. If you must use heat (for example, from a blow-dryer), use a thermal protector and select the lowest setting available. And apply a moisturizer to reduce the amount of split ends and breakage so hair grows.

Examine your hair growth support extras. Are you supplementing all of the above with any special treatments? For example, do you give yourself relaxing scalp massages? Massaging the scalp helps blood circulation so nutrients reach the skin’s surface. Start by placing both hands on either side of your head. Move your fingers in slow, circular movements. Work from crown to root and wait for the warm, tingly sensations to begin.

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