We all want to look as if we were photoshopped and pushed off of the pages of our favorite magazines. But the reality is that some horrible lighting, or “bad” angle, will quickly erase that illusion and remind us that everyday stresses (or just genetics, in general) prevent us from having the thick, glowing hair in magazine and television ads. But, before you throw your hands up in frustration and buy the first chemically induced product that promises a thicker and healthier mane, take a look in your pantry… You might be surprised.

First and foremost, make sure that you are maintaining a healthy diet. Like a flower, your hair relies on proper nutrients to thrive. If your body is laden with chemicals and nutrient-dense foods, your hair cannot flourish. But you can also speed up the process, if your hair is not growing fast, or thick, enough.

Egg Whites

Eggs are the ultimate protein, so what better way to strengthen, and grow, your hair than by increasing its amount of protein? You can create a hair mask (that you will then cover with a shower cap for about an hour), or simply create an egg wash to use in rinsing out your hair, after you shampoo. Separate the egg white from the yolk of one or two eggs and combine with one teaspoon honey and one teaspoon olive oil. Apply the mask to your scalp and hair. Cover with a shower cap for up to an hour and then shampoo and wash off with mild water.

Apple Cider Vinegar

If you are scared that this remedy will make your hair stink, simply add an essential oil, that you enjoy the smell of, and you have a fabulous new shampoo! Apple Cider Vinegar increases the amount of hair follicles, that your body produces, while also increasing the speed at which your hair grows, so you have more hair growing at a faster rate. Simply rinse your hair with this oil and your shower water (not too hot!) after your regular shampoo session.

Castor Oil

While castor oil may not be readily in your pantry, you can easily purchase this miracle oil at any health food store or even your local supermarket! (Even Walgreen’s carries it). Castor oil has been used for thousands of years to treat many ailments, due to its high level of natural, fatty acids. But, I am not here to tell you to ingest it (seek a professional, medical opinion if you suffer from an ailment that you think castor oil will relieve). Simply add an equal amount of the thick oil to an equal amount of base oil (like olive or coconut oil). Lather the mixture throughout your scalp and hair. Leave it on for about 40 minutes and then wash off with your regular shampoo. While increasing the rate at which your hair grows, castor oil also makes your hair thicker, adds volume and diminishes frizzing. You are now ready for your money shot!

Scalp Massage

Ultimately, the best solution for hair growth is to slowly massage the scalp (everyday). By massaging your scalp, you increase circulation, which leads to increased growth. For the best results, lightly warm some olive or coconut oil and massage the oil onto your scalp. You can leave the mask on overnight and it will reach all of your deep hair follicles, leading to stronger, thicker and healthier hair. In the end, you end up with more hair that is just as beautiful as those models’ that you secretly envy.

Gentlemen seem to have it easier, because as soon as they start balding, they can just shave their hair off, or throw on a hat to distract the public. But while female’s outfits rarely go with a hat, (and what kind of perfectly healthy and sane woman chooses to go bald?) we are left with the signature lazy girl messy bun to distract from our inadequacies.

And, while females do tend to fawn over the bad boy look that bald men give off (think Vin Diesel and The Rock), ladies also prefer a man that can easily pull off a bad boy look, while still maintaining a teddy bear interior, when dealing with us. Besides, an intimidating exterior can be achieved by many other methods. Unfortunately, not every man can pull of being a “baldy.” The good news for you is that women love to run their hands through a thick head of hair, just as much as we love bad boys. Yes, women can be strange creatures. And do not lie, you boys also like to play with your lady’s hair! But since no one wants a wad of hair in their hand, every time we stroke our lover’s mane, give these remedies a try and eliminate the need to shave your head (or throw your hair up into a messy bun!). You boys can always get a leather jacket, tattoo or even a sport car to pull of the bad boy look.

While, ultimately, these “hair secrets,” are meant to provide you with an attractive exterior, you must not forget that an attractive interior is just as (if not more) important. So take care of that winning personality first and then you can worry about looking like a hair model (or even a bad boy!).