Ladies and gentlemen, I have a public service announcement to make. At some point in our lives, 50% of us will suffer from hair loss. According to the American Hair Loss Association, androgenetic alopecia, or male pattern baldness, accounts for 95% of hair loss in men. On top of that, by age 35, two thirds of American men will experience significant hair loss. Although hair loss mostly occurs in men, we are not exempt, ladies!
40% of Americans that experience hair loss are women. So, how do we prevent hair loss? Unfortunately, there are no cures that work for everyone, but you may be able to find a solution that works for you! Hair loss has many causes and very few FDA approved solutions, so let’s walk through this info. Ready? Let’s do it.
What Causes Hair Loss?
Hair loss is found to be largely hereditary, but can also be caused by diseases or environmental factors like certain prescription drugs, hormone disorders, nutrition imbalances, and radiation exposure. You could be causing your hair loss yourself, too! If you wear weaves regularly, use hair relaxers, or always blast your hair dryer on high; you might make yourself go bald, honey. Stress, sudden weight loss, pregnancy, or emotional and physical shock can cause temporary hair loss as well, so remember to relax!
The leading cause of hair loss is male pattern baldness, which is caused by genetics and the hormone dihydrotestosterone. (A very sexy hormone, if you catch my drift.) MPB, according to the National Institute of Health, has been linked to other conditions like heart disease and prostate problems in men, or hormonal imbalances in women. (This condition affects more than half of all women, too! Although, alopecia rarely causes total baldness in women and the hairline does not recede; the hair will instead get thinner across the scalp.)
When should I start worrying about my hair loss?
Let’s be clear, it is totally normal for your hair to fall out! It’s apart of the hair “circle of life”. Everyone has about 100,000 hairs on their head, and loses about 100 every day. I know that sounds scary, but it’s not! If you feel as though you’re losing more than 125 hairs a day, then it MIGHT be time to worry.
Each strand of your hair has it’s own little life cycle, which starts with a long growing phase that lasts between 2 and 8 YEARS. About 80% of our hair is in this phase at any given time, but while most of our hair is growing, some hairs are ready to fall out! That other 20% of our hair is going through a resting phase, where no growth occurs. Then, after the resting period, those hairs fall out and new ones grow in their place!
If you’re starting to think you’re losing more hair than normal, don’t lose your mind! Try the “hair-pull test” to see if it’s worth seeing your dermatologist about. To test how rapidly you’re losing hair, grab about 40 hairs at an inch above your scalp with your thumb and forefinger, pull just hard enough to lift your scalp a bit, then slide your fingers across the hair from shafts to ends. Count the number of hairs in your hand, and if there are more than 6, something could be wrong.
How can I treat hair loss?
There are currently very few treatments for thinning hair and hair loss, but there are some well-known options to try! The most common treatment for male pattern baldness is Minoxidil, which is more commonly known as Rogaine! Rogaine is applied to the scalp directly in a foam or with a dropper twice a day, and can help re-grow hair and prevent further hair loss.
As much as that sounds great, Rogaine doesn’t work for everyone. (Rogaine should not be used by women.) Only about 30-40% of people using Rogaine see significant hair growth. In addition to this, it may take 8 to 12 months to start seeing growth at all! There are also some side effects you may want to avoid altogether. For example, you may experience scalp irritation, increased facial hair growth, or an accelerated heart rate.
Rogaine is also a commitment; if you stop using it, all of the hair you’ve regrown will fall out, and you’ll go back to losing hair the same way you did before you’d started taking it. (Sad day.)
There is another medication to treat baldness in men called finasteride, or its brand name Propecia. This little tablet can help stop hair loss and stimulate growth, but it has some fairly undesirable side effects as well. Another product we can recommend for thinning hair or hair loss is the Naturaltech Energizing Superactive. This product by Davines is specifically designed to stimulate hair growth in causes of hormonal hair loss, and it comes with little dropper to make things easy! (You can use this the same way you would use Rogaine.)
What if these options don’t work for me?
If these options do not work for you, try asking your hair stylist about a new hair style that might cater to thinner hair. Layered bobs or lobs are great options for thin women’s hair, and there are plenty of great hairstyles for thin men’s hair as well! Try to find some styles that suit you and might also give you more volume. Your stylist may also have recommendations for your hair routine that may help prevent more hair loss, so ask away!
Thanks for reading!
Thanks for checking out this edition of the TouchUps Beauty Blog, and we hope you found this information helpful! If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to give us a call, send us an email, or come see us at our Chandler, AZ location! Catch you next time.