Braids shield the hair from breakage and shedding so that any hair growth is retained -- and hair is longer and thicker. While these are some amazing benefits, braids, unfortunately, won't help your hair grow faster. So if your hair is braided there are several all-natural things you can do to increase hair growth and the hair's growth rate.

  • Moisturize your hair daily. Use an oil-based braid spray to moisturize your hair and keep it healthy. It's best to moisturize braids twice a day -- once in the morning and once at night.
  • Massage your scalp with olive oil. While in the shower, use your fingertips to massage the scalp with olive oil, which helps to moisturize the scalp and clean the pores to allow new hair to grow. Scalp massages stimulate the scalp and increase blood circulation. This leads to faster hair growth because oxygen and nutrients are carried to the hair roots through the blood. Increasing the amount of blood that circulates in the scalp ensure the roots are getting the necessary nutrients.
  • Drink more water. It's vital for hair growth, so make sure to drink at least eight glasses of water a day. Water detoxifies the body of free radicals and provides better circulation of nutrients in the blood.
  • Take vitamins. Biotin and B-complex help hair grow by supplying the body with the nutrients necessary for hair production. Biotin specifically generates new hair cells.
  • Exercise regularly. Moving your body boosts metabolism, which stimulates the thyroid gland. The thyroid releases hormones into the body that generate hair growth. Getting 20 to 30 minutes of exercise three times a week is enough to see a significant increase in your hair's growth rate.
  • Eat plenty of lean protein. Hair is made up of three different types of proteins that bind together. To keep hair strong and prevent breakage, your body needs protein to maintain the natural connectivity of the proteins in the hair. Eat skinless chicken, fish, green leafy vegetables and egg whites to supply the body with enough protein for increased hair growth.