Besides causing a poor self-esteem and social anxiety, the main problem with hair loss is that it is not always what it appears to be. Hair loss can present a serious medical condition. If symptoms such as redness, pain, itch, scales in the area of hair loss; weight gain, cold intolerance; growth of facial growth, etc., occur alongside hair loss, it is high time you consult a doctor. During consultation, here are some factors the physician will look into.
Loss of hair from other areas in the body
The pattern of hair loss
Recent illnesses or a severe fever
Styling/grooming habits (i.e. frequency of hair dyeing, straightening, blow-drying, etc.)
Frequency of shampoo application
Quality of products used
Compulsive habits (e.g. hair pulling or scalp rubbing)
After looking into these areas, your physician will examine your scalp and hair. He/She will perform certain appropriate tests to corroborate his/her premises.
Hair Pull Test
Prior to the test however, you should not shampoo or wash your hair for 1-2 days. This hair pull test is the application of mild traction on a cluster of hair strands (about 40-60 hair shafts) from the base to the tip. Your physician will perform this on three different areas of the scalp. If he/she can extract more than 10 hair strands, the pull test is considered positive. Then, the extracted hairs will be analyzed under a microscope.
Generally, a skin biopsy involves the extraction of a small skin sample of 2-4 mm in diameter to be examined under a microscope. Physicians look into any signs of destruction and inflammation of the hair follicles and scar tissue. Skin biopsies are usually conducted if scarring alopecia such as cicatricial alopecia is suspected. These procedures do not really take long hours; hence the results may be ready in no time. Blood Tests
The physician will also conduct blood tests to rule out any medical condition. You will also undergo a hair pull test.
Hormones are the chemical messengers produced in certain endocrine and non-endocrine glands. They travel through the bloodstream to interact with receptor sites in specific target cells to: 1) regulate the metabolic processes of various organs and tissues; 2) facilitate and control growth, differentiation, reproductive activities, learning, and memory; or 3) help the body cope with changing environmental conditions and stresses. In addition to all these functions, hormones also play a very significant role in hair growth stimulation or retardation.
Pattern Baldness and Dihydrotestosterone
Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) is a chemical derivative of testosterone, the male sex hormone. It is produced when the naturally occurring enzyme 5-alpha reductase (5-AR) catalyzes testosterone. Through genetic disposition, certain hair follicles in the scalp become sensitive to DHT. Hence, when DHT interacts with the androgen receptors located in the hair follicles, it alters the hair protein synthesis, causing follicle failure. More exactly, the follicles reduce in size, hence incapable of producing normal, stronger, and thicker hair.
The condition is called androgenetic alopecia or pattern baldness. AGA accounts for 85% of hair loss cases in men and women. It tends to be inherited from either side of the family.
During pregnancy, estrogen levels shoot up, causing hormonal imbalance. Experts indicate that this imbalance prolongs the hair growth phase while retarding the shedding phase. This would explain the unusual shine and health of the hair during pregnancy. The bad news is after childbirth, the hormone levels return to normal and the interrupted shedding phase resumes. In effect, some new mothers experience unusual massive hair thinning or loss. Menopause
The same holds true during menopause when estrogen is involved. It has been said that estrogen strikes down the effects of testosterone or DHT. Menopause indicates a drastic decline of estrogen production, hence the sagging skin and breasts, emotional sensitivities, hair thinning or loss, etc.
One of the glands that secrete hormones is the thyroid. The thyroid gland secretes triiodothyronine and thyroxine (among other hormones), the hormones that affect hair growth. Hence, it would be no wonder if an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) triggers hair loss. The lack of vital hormonal signals can reverse the hair growth cycle, causing telogen effluvium.
The hormone connection to hair growth and loss is difficult to control as it is mostly only a normal aspect in life. However, to rule out serious medical conditions, it is important to consult professional.
Whether you are putting some spice in your life or simply embracing the babe that you are, bleaching the hair is both a fun and liberating way to change the look drastically. Women with a naturally “mousy” hair or those with sun-tanned skin are usually the worshippers of bleaching. However, as the cliché goes, vanity has its price. Bleaching has its own share of risks, too like hair loss.
To lighten the hair is to get rid of its darkness – permanently. Specifically, bleaching is the process of stripping off the base, natural or synthetic, color from the hair as a prelude to re-dyeing hair or achieving a certain shade of blonde. When highlifting tints do not produce the desired light blonde shade, hair stylists resort to bleaching.
Bleaching solutions may contain hydrogen peroxide, sodium peroxide, ammonium hydroxide, ammonium persulphate or potassium persulphate. These strong chemicals aid the lightening process. Lighteners, usually hydrogen peroxide, are oxidizing agents, which convert the colored chemical compounds into colorless substances. Bleaching makes the hair more porous by raising the cuticle.
Cosmetologists advise not to leave the bleach on for a long time. It can drastically melt the hair, causing excessive structural hair loss. However, aside from that, bleaching poses a number of health risks as well, especially on the skin. Even hair stylists themselves put on gloves on before applying these solutions to be safe.
Persulphate bleach powders have been associated with asthma among cosmetologists. Other potential risks include 1. damage to mucal tissues of mouth and nose; 2. respiratory tract damage; and 3. damage to the lungs.
So regardless of whether your hair stylist did a good job or not, bleaching can truly be a major risk. The bottom line is to keep it in moderation.
Women born with curly or wavy hair commonly whine about having unruly and uncontrollable locks. Some have even made it their mission to tame their hair at all costs; that includes brushing the strands endlessly or visiting the salon to have them straightened permanently.
Dryness, frizz, and tangles are only some of the complaints of having curly hair. Nevertheless, these are relatively easy to fix given the correct hair care practices and products. To keep the bad hair days away and embrace the beauty of one’s spirals, here are several truths debunking common myths about curly hair:
Unlike straight hair, curly locks shouldn’t be cut when wet
Most people think that the hair, regardless of type and texture, should be cut when wet. However, this is not the case for curly hair. Wet curls and dry curls are as opposite as night and day. Wet curls appear longer and can reach half way down one’s back, but as soon as they dry they can shrink back up to six to ten inches.
Thus, the right technique to cut curls is only when they’re dry. That way, one can choose his or her desired length and living the fear of looking like a shaved poodle would definitely be gone.
Excessive brushing won’t straighten curly hair
No matter how one tries to flatten the hair by brushing it a hundred times, the locks will never be straight as a stick. In fact, brushing or combing curly hair can disturb the natural pattern of the locks and can only cause the curls to disperse; hence, causing more frizz.
It is best to comb the curls using one’s fingers while the strands are wet and soaked with conditioner. But it should be done gently since wet hair is more prone to breakage. Also, applying an alcohol-free gel to tame the natural formation of curls and to minimize frizz is good to keep the locks manageable all day long.
Conditioning is an important component in a hair care regimen
Some people think that it’s okay to skip shampoo and conditioner at the same time to keep the natural moisture of the hair. In contrast, curly locks are much more in need of hydration since the strands are naturally porous and would need conditioner to seal the cuticles.
Conditioning the hair is essential to fight frizz and make the hair look healthier. It makes the strands look smoother; thus, allowing the light to reflect off it.
To be a master of one’s spirals, applying these simple tricks will help. Finding a good stylist that understands the needs of curly hair is also necessary to make the hair fabulous as ever.
Men value the hair just as women does. Although some of them are not particularly vain with this feature, there is one dilemma that they try as much as possible to avoid—hair loss.
Men can experience hair loss as early as in their 20s. The onslaught of this condition can be brought about by several factors, one of which is genetics. As of now, no treatment has been discovered yet to address the predicament of hair loss patients. That is why most men tend to show lack of self-esteem and feel less attractive due to the condition.
But as actor Bruce Willis brilliantly put it, hair loss doesn’t make a person less of a man. Hence, when all alternative treatments fail to make the strands grow back again, here are better ways to deal with hair loss:
Acknowledge the Condition
When no hair loss treatment works positively, the only option left is to accept the condition. It is impossible to fight hair loss once it is in its severe stages already and experimenting with various treatments might only aggravate the condition. These days, people are more open-minded and care less whether a person is losing is hair or if one is wearing a toupee or not. Men can draw inspiration from celebrities like Bruce Willis and Jason Statham who remain to be the ultimate symbols of masculinity despite the lack of hair.
Bare it All
At this point, one should opt to shave all the hair off and start rocking the bald and bold look. If one is unsure of the right way of shaving the head, going to a stylist would be a better option. Also, it is important to observe a proper scalp care regimen to avoid rashes and the like now that no strands can protect it from damage.
Confidence is Key
The lack of crowning glory shouldn’t hinder a man from pursuing the things he is most interested with. Rather than wallowing in self-pity because of baldness, redirecting one’s attention to more important things such as doing well in one’s career and finding one’s passion is a great way to boost a person’s morale. And if one is in doubt of how women might perceive their baldness, the best solution is to charm them with smooth moves like Vin Diesel’s.
Dealing with hair loss shouldn’t be a complicated task. These simple ABC’s are foolproof ways for men to channel a bald and daring vibe.
Having enviable, immaculate strands starts with choosing the best hair care products for the type of hair one has. The product doesn’t exactly need to be the most expensive or endorsed by respected celebrities. As a wise consumer, it is important to pick products like shampoos and conditioners that are especially designed for particular hair types so that one can make the most of his or her natural hair texture.
Here is a guide to help people find the right shampoo and conditioner formulations for their hair types:
Dry and Damaged Hair
As much as possible, people with dry and damaged hair should look for shampoos that do not contain sodium laureth sulfate or sodium lauryl sulfate. These chemical ingredients are too harsh on the strands as they can strip away its natural moisture. It is best to pick organic-based shampoos such as those which contain shea butter and other essential oils as they can help make the hair smooth and avoid from tangling.
Hydrating the locks is the utmost priority for those with dry and damaged strands. Using a moisturizing conditioner will help nourish the hair from the roots to the tops and restore its good condition.
Fine and Oily Hair
Fine and oily hair basically needs a shampoo which has thickening ingredients such as panthenol or wheat protein. It is also essential to wash the hair to get rid of excess oils and maintain the balance of moisture in the scalp.
While it is necessary to condition the hair, using heavy formulations will only make the hair look limp. Thus, it is advisable to use light conditioners to avoid weighing fine hair down.
Wavy and Thick Hair
Wavy and thick hair has similar needs with dry and damaged hair. Thus, it is recommended to avoid sulfate-based shampoos to prevent from dehydrating the hair.
Conditioners with silicone and protein work best for wavy and thick hair since they can reduce frizz by coating the hair follicles. Soy and wheat proteins are also great ingredients that can help improve the moisture of the hair.
Chemically Treated Hair
Straightened, permed, colored, and bleached hair is especially prone to damage since the chemicals applied may have damaged the normal texture of the strands. Hence, using organic-based and color-protecting shampoos that contain fewer cleansers can protect the hair from more damage.
Using conditioners specifically for chemically-treated hair and sunscreen products will block the harsh effects of heat and UV rays to the strands.
Understanding the basics of hair care for various hair types will make it easier for one to attend to his or her crowning glory’s needs.
If you are looking for an alternative remedy to prevent dry, dull and brittle hair strands, then evening primrose can be the answer to your hair dilemma.
Evening primrose has a long history of medicinal value. It has been used to treat a variety of ailments and conditions including arthritis, eczema, skin problem and endometriosis. With that, it is of no wonder that evening primrose can help you restore the smoothness, softness and radiance of your hair strands.
The seeds of a primrose wildflower can be extracted to product an essential oil which aids in preventing the onset of hair loss as well as restoring the hair’s radiance and health. To learn more about the benefits of using evening primrose in hair care, read on.
Evening Primrose for Hair Care
Primrose wildflower scientifically known as primula vulgaris is a perennial plant that contains essential fatty acids called gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) which is helpful in hair regrowth. Gamma-linolenic acid aids in nourishing the scalp skin, preventing flaking as well as hair dryness.
The oil derived from its seed also contains antioxidant properties that protect the scalp and the hair follicles from the damaging effects of free radicals, preventing hair problems like dry, frizzy, dull and brittle hair strands.
Here is an easy-to-do home-made hair care recipe with the use of primrose essential oil for healthier hair strands.
Ingredients: 1 whole banana (peeled) 1 capsule of vitamin e, 1 tablespoon of yogurt, 1 tablespoon wheat germ oil and 1 capsule of evening primrose oil.
Directions: In a bowl, mash the peeled banana. Then, add 1 tablespoon wheat germ oil and 1 tablespoon of yogurt. Next, squeeze in the contents of the evening primrose oil capsule as well as the vitamin e capsule and mix it with the other ingredients. Thoroughly blend the mixture and apply it on the hair. Let it sit on the scalp for 15 minutes. Afterwards, wash your hair with cold water and a natural shampoo to remove the scent and residue.
Like any other dietary supplement, you need to learn some cautions in using primrose essential oil for hair care, and that is, if you experience inflammation or allergic reaction you need to immediate contact your doctor.
Hair is a fashion statement. The way we style and adorn it can express our current moods or emotions. Having a shiny, healthy and luxurious mane can also boost our self-esteem.
These are just some of the reasons we make it a point to take good care of our crowning glory. But how do we really take care of our hair?
To learn some guidelines on the right ways to do this, then read these essential hair care guidelines.
Keep your hair clean. It is recommended to wash your hair on a daily basis to help prevent dandruff and scalp build-up. For the growth of healthier tresses, it is essential to remove dirt, grime and oil so that they cannot hamper in the development of the hair follicles.
Be gentle with wet strands. Hair strands are weak and prone to breakage when they are wet. So, make sure to never put extreme pressure by combing, pulling, tugging, twisting immediately after hair washing.
Avoid hair care products with harsh chemical content. When washing your hair, make sure to use shampoos made from organic and herbal ingredients. You also need to avoid shampoos with harsh chemicals content since they may cause scalp irritation as well as dry and brittle hair strands. Furthermore, avoid using hair colorants because it can strip off nutrients, leading to thinning hair and hair loss conditions.
Deep condition your hair strands. With the use of a natural moisturizer, you can deep condition your hair in order to nourish and strengthen the hair follicles. Deep conditioning the scalp with essential oils like coconut, olive, rosemary and lavender can help reduce the chances of split-ends as well as dry and brittle hair strands. However, to avoid greasy hair, you need to use a little amount of moisturizer or deep conditioner a couple of hours before your daily hair washing routine.
Thousands of hair care products are available in the market. However, if you prefer a natural approach to achiever thicker, stronger and healthier mane, then DIY home-made recipes are the best for you.
Do-it-yourself hair rinses, tonics, masks, and shampoos make use of ingredients which are inexpensive and very accessible. Mostly you can find the ingredients in your backyard garden or your kitchen cupboard.
What’s good about creating DIY hair care recipes is that they are not only cheaper compared to commercialized products but they are also safe since you can guarantee that the ingredients are all-natural like essential oils, fresh fruits and vegetables.
1. Hair Mask (Olive, Avocado and Honey)
This DIY hair mask promotes thicker and healthier hair strands as well as prevents the onset of hair thinning problems.
Directions: Thoroughly mix all the ingredients together until it turns creamy. Gently apply the home-made hair mask unto the hair. Massage your scalp and leave it on the hair for 15–20 minutes. Afterwards, wash your hair with water and a natural shampoo to remove the strong scent and residue.
2. Hair Rinse (Chamomile)
This DIY hair rinse is used to nourish the scalp and enhance the natural color of the hair.
Ingredients: dried chamomile – 1/2 cup and water – 4 cups.
Directions: Boil the dried chamomile for about 5 minutes. Let the chamomile tea cool down for another 3 minutes. Then, strain the tea and apply it on your scalp after your daily hair washing routine. Let it sit on the scalp for a period of 20 minutes before washing your hair with lukewarm water.
3. Hair Tonic (Mint and Apple Cider Vinegar)
This DIY hair tonic helps control sebum production in the scalp, preventing the onset of dandruff.
Ingredients: mint leaves – 1/4 cup, apple cider vinegar – 1/8 liter, and distilled water – 1/4 liter.
Boil the ¼ liter of water for 5 minutes. Add the mint leaves and the apple cider vinegar. Let the mixture set for an additional of 5 minutes. Stain the mixture to separate the tea from the leaves. Allow it to cool and apply it on the hair every night.
4. Hair Shampoo (Sage & Stinging Nettle)
A natural shampoo made from stinging nettle and sage aids in controlling oily hair strands.
Ingredients: Castile soap – 4 oz; rosemary – 1/2 oz; sage – 1/2 oz; and stinging nettles – 1/2 oz.
Preparation: In a bowl, mix all the ingredients together to create a thick paste. Put the mixture in a bottle and use it as your daily hair care shampoo.
If you want your hair to be at its very best, then you need to take good care of it. Easier said than done, right?
But, if you really want to achieve shinier, thicker and healthier hair strands, then you need to exert your time and effort in learning the rules of proper hair care. By incorporating these rules in your day-to-day routine, you can stop the onset of hair problems like hair loss, dandruff, dry and brittle hair strands.
So, if you’re planning to attain luxurious tresses like your well-loved celebrities, then here are the things you need to know.
Rule # 1: Always be nice to your hair.
This means that you need to pamper your hair in the gentlest way possible. Never use products that contain harsh chemical ingredients since they may contribute to the onset of dandruff, hair dryness, scalp irritation, or worse, hair loss. Instead opt for organic shampoos and conditioners because they are rich with vitamins and minerals that aid in the growth of healthier hair strands.
Rule # 2: Be gentle with wet hair.
Wet hair is very fragile. With that, you should never comb, twist, tug or pull your hair when it is at its most vulnerable state. As much as possible, avoid putting extreme pressure on the wet strands since they are prone to hair breakage. To dry wet strands, opt for air-drying technique as it is more gently on the hair. To do this, wrap your hair in a soft towel for 5-10 minutes. Then, remove the towel and let your hair dry the natural way.
Rule # 3: Don’t over-expose your hair to extreme heat.
The heat emitted from hairstyling tools like hot irons, blow dryers, curlers, permers and straighteners can cause damage to the hair follicles. With that, to prevent the hair from getting too dry and frizzy, minimize the use of these tools. However, when you can’t help but use these tools, it is necessary to set them on low temperature setting to prevent the hair from getting damaged.
In addition, when under the heat of the sun, protect your hair from the harsh effects of the UV rays by applying leave-in conditioners, wearing hats and scarves as well as using umbrellas.