For many women the way their hair looks first thing in the morning dictates, like the weather, what kind of day they will have.
Unfortunately, for most, this usually means a bad hair day…
It’s estimated that around six million women in the UK are affected by thinning, lifeless hair including half of all women over the age of 50.
Recent research also shows that 53 per cent of all women think that their hair is one of the most important features to their attractiveness and worry that thinning hair makes them look older and less desirable.
Hair loss is far from an exclusively male problem. Women have 40 per cent chance of developing thinning hair and hair loss in their lifetimes and, like men, genetics is the main culprit. But there are many other factors that affect hair health including stress, a poor diet and, and physical damage to the follicles from excessive styling or harsh chemical treatments. Throw menopause into the mix, and you are also looking at breakage, frizz, dryness and dull, lacklustre colour.
Hardly anyone over the age of 35 doesn’t have a few strands of grey, and after 40, the hair shaft becomes finer in dimension so there’s a reduction in volume. In addition, the hair’s shape becomes more irregular, leading to changes in flexibility and manageability. Lastly, the scalp produces less sebum as we age, which can lead to dryness
But the good news is anti ageing hair care is now one of the fastest growing areas of the beauty and cosmetics industry and in almost all cases you can now find a product or treatment to help turn back the clock on ageing hair.
From vitamin enhanced thickening products to follicle boosting supplements here’s how to stay on top– follicularly speaking, of course.
If you are concerned about hair loss do see your doctor first so that it can be assessed and to rule out any underlying medical conditions.
*There are various supplements that claim to boost thinning hair. We recommend Phyto Phytophanere Capsules, formulated with vitamins B2, B5, B6 and essential fatty acids to fight hair loss whilst restoring suppleness and elasticity. £35 (120 capsules) lookfantastic.com. Also boost your Vitamin D levels as research shows that women suffering from hair loss have much lower levels of vitamin D.If you are worried, ask your doctor for a blood test.
* Hair is a barometer of inner health so avoid crash diets which can rob the hair of essential nutrients and trigger hair thinning and hair loss. Make sure you eat protein every day, vital for strong, healthy hair along with Biotin, one of the group of B vitamins. Deficiency in biotin has been linked to greying of the hair and thinning hair. Biotin rich foods include brown rice, soya beans and nuts and seeds. If you have dry, brittle hair boost your intake of essential fatty acids such as oily fish and avocados Reduced circulation to the scalp can also affect hair volume so eat more Vitamin C and bioflavonoids in fruit and vegetables which support healthy blood vessels. Regular exercise will help circulation, too.
*Address stress which can trigger excess hair loss called alopecia areta where hair falls out in patches. Try yoga, walking and getting plenty of sleep. Avoid stimulants like alcohol and coffee and try to deal with the main source of your stress.
At the Clinic
For general thinning hair there are now a number of treatments to help boost regrowth from topical medications like Minoxidil (on prescription and over the counter) to surgery.
Angel PRP Hair Boosting Therapy
Using your own blood to stimulate dormant hair follicles and encourage them to grow again is becoming one of the hottest new developments in hair rejuvenation. First, around four syringes of blood are taken from your arm and then treated in a new super fast machine, called a centrifuge, which extracts more platelets from the blood than before. These platelets are then injected into the scalp which release growth factors stimulating cells to regenerate The scalp is then stimulated with a dermaroller, a barrel-like hand roller with hundreds of very fine needles which activates a wound heal response to further boost hair follicles. Best results seen after three months when a top up treatment may be needed – from £1800 436 4441
Figures show that more and more women are having hair restoration surgery to address patchy hair loss. Over the last few years, techniques have developed enormously and hair grafts have become increasingly smaller and refined, changing from 15 to 25 hair grafts to as small as one and two hair grafts. New technologies also mean it is virtually impossible to tell when someone has had treatment. Under local anaesthetic, hair is taken from the donor area at the back of the head and transferred into the areas of hair loss. Once repositioned the hair rests for up to 16 weeks and then starts its natural growth cycle – around nine months later there will be a great improvement in the density of hair. Cost from £2000. For more info call 01737 247246
Pump up the Volume at home
A raft of new anti-agers featuring skincare technology are finding their way in hair products – try
*Make up is an inexpensive way of disguising thinning hair,
Nanogen Thickening Hair Fibres (£29.99 boots.com) attach to natural hair strands adding body and volume and will fill out thinning areas and disguise any scalp see thru – the fibres are available in several different colour shades
*Ojon Damage Reverse Thickening Styling Mist for Volume & Lift £20 www.origins.co.uk, rich in phospholipids (similar to the lipids found naturally on the scalp) and clinically proven to thicken hair this lightweight mist works on wet and dry hair and can also be used throughout the day to add volume and lift.
*Redken’s High Rise Volume Lifting Shampoo £14 with special softening polymers which penetrate hair fibres to temporarily plump and fatten each strand
*Goldwells Kerasilk Volume Foam Conditioner £17 formulated with keratin and elastin to strengthen and thicken.
*Viviscal Gorgeous Growth Densifying Elixir £19.99 www.viviscal.co.uk– a leave in treatment formulated with Biotin Keratin and Zinc to help extend the hair growth phased and reduce hair fall so hair looks more voluptuous.
* Hair Advanced by RevitaLash £149 revitalash.co.uk This breakthrough volume-enhancing formula helps transform thin, fragile looking hair with essential nutrients and fortifying peptides to help increase texture, shine and body for the appearance of healthier fuller-looking hair. Also conditions hair to help protect from brittleness and breakage
*Clip in hairpieces are great at adding instant volume and can be cut to suit your hairstyle. They cost from around £20