We hear a lot about male-pattern baldness, but hair loss is a women’s issue too. Sure, we may not talk about it openly, but lackluster tresses can have an effect on one’s self-esteem — especially when you see gobs of hair in your brush after just a few strokes. Ahead, a look at the many factors that cause thinning locks and what you can do about it.
Most of us typically lose about 100 hairs a day, but this isn’t really noticeable as new hair is growing in at the same time. However, if that cycle ceases (permanently) or is temporarily disrupted, this is when you’ll start to see and feel a difference for one or more of these reasons…
WHAT CAUSES HAIR LOSS?
Heredity: This is the most common reason for men and women alike. Affecting up to 40 percent of both genders (starting as early as one’s early 20s and 30s, but closer to menopause for women), take a look at both sides of your family when you’re younger in order to give you some insight as to what’s in your future. Keep in mind that there are several factors that come into play, so genetics is not a one-size-fits-all scenario.
Pregnancy: Though not permanent (unless another factor comes into play), hair loss in pregnancy is due to the fact that an increased amount of follicles go into a resting phase. Providing there aren’t other factors to consider, this situation should resolve itself within 3-4 months after delivery.
Stress: The reasoning behind this method of hair loss comes in three main forms, one of which involves telogen effluvium. As with pregnancy, significant stress forces copious amounts of hair follicles into a resting phase, thus causing hair loss through simple actions such as brushing or washing your tresses. If the body’s immune system attacks the hair follicles, alopecia areata may be responsible for thin tresses. On a more extreme level, stress that prompts trichotillomania (the urge to pull hair from all areas of your body) can be behind a significant loss.
Nutritional Deficiencies: While there’s no denying that it can be difficult to maintain a balanced diet, the condition of your hair, skin, and nails are among the top physical signs something is missing in your diet. Feeding on fast food? Skipping meals? Drinking too much? This may very well be contributing to your lackluster mane.
Overstyling: We live in a world where we’re perpetually changing our hair color, adding extensions, and experimenting with hot tools. While that’s great in terms of reinventing our egos and staying in tune with what’s happening on the runways of Fashion Week, it’s a surefire way to stunt hair growth — not to mention, severely damage any existing tresses. Yes, even those innocent hair ties are responsible for breakage and loss.
FINDING A SOLUTION
The Most Obvious: It should go without saying that if you are losing hair due to a controllable method, work on ways to adopt stress management, go natural for a while (or speak to your stylist/colorist about a happy medium approach), and start eating whole — not on-the-go — foods.
Take A Supplement: In a perfect world, you’d be stress-free, eat a well-balanced diet, and have a family history that showcases several healthy heads of hair. Well, this is not the case for most people which is why BioSil can make up for the areas where you’re less-than-perfect. BioSil is clinically proven to increase hair volume by 12.8 percent and increase hair strength by more than 13.1 percent. In addition, BioSil helps create “light-reflecting” (shiny) hair — who doesn’t want that?
Go Topical: While we believe that the best way to treat one’s tresses is by working from the inside out, there are several topical treatments — from over-the-counter to prescription — that can help stimulate hair growth. It’s important to note that this is a temporary solution that will most likely need to be maintained, and it will not affect how you maintain your internal and mental health.
Styling Tips: We tapped salon owner — and hair loss pro — Renee Pelc of Gloss salon in Chicago’s esteemed Gold Coast neighborhood for tips on how to style thinning locks, no matter what the circumstance: “After towel drying hair, add volumizing or thickening products to damp hair. Comb through thoroughly. Next, start blow drying in the opposite direction of how you normally style your hair. Flip upside down and side to side, making sure to really focus on the roots until completely dry. Don’t be afraid to use a spritz or two of dry shampoo at your roots — even if hair is clean — to give it extra volume and staying power throughout the day.
Pelcs’ Picks: “The best thing you can do for your hair is always comb your conditioner through in the shower with a wide-tooth comb — starting at the ends (where it’s more damaged), then applying the least amount of product towards the roots. Leave the conditioner on your hair for as long as tolerable before rinsing thoroughly — your hair won’t be flat as long as you rinse well. Coconut oil and castor oil are amazing natural oils for the scalp to re- energize your hair follicles and promote growth. It’s best to add a light leave in conditioner or a heat spray with keratin to protect the hair from blow dryers, styling tools, and the sun. Also eating a healthy diet contributes to healthy hair. Foods such as eggs, fatty fish, spinach, avocados, and nuts will help promote hair growth as you age.”