It’s one of the – well for me anyway – annoying/heartbreaking side effects of the meno years.
When I noticed my hair getting finer and even receding a millimetre at the hairline I was upset. Nobody else noticed, but to me, it yelled. I did my research and discovered that almost half of women who experience hair loss/thinning don’t talk about it (a bit like menopause right?).
It should be noted here that I’m also very spoiled. As a former beauty editor my hair was always looked after pro bono but even though I don’t have much of a profile any longer my amazing high-end colourists and stylists, Jennifer and Steve Morgan of Morgan and Morgan Hair Collective in Takapuna, Auckland still look after me. I am always humbled by their generosity, and I know how lucky I am.Half of the women who experience hair loss/thinning don’t talk about it (a bit like menopause right?). Click To Tweet
Under their expertise, my long tresses (always) have been cut back to a ‘lob’ or long bob. It makes it look in better condition and not so – what word should I use here? – insipid – by that, I mean fine, flyaway.
So, I’ve been on the hunt for natural solutions and I have three to offer you. In addition, I have had a word in our scientist’s ear that we need to develop a thickening/growth hair product for Meno-She’s. Wouldn’t that be great? LOL 😀
I know how traumatic hair loss can be and I also know, through my research, how much it can affect a woman’s confidence. Plus if you’re reading this you’re probably in your 40s or 50s and statistics tell us hair loss will affect about a one-third of women by age 50.Hair loss affects about a one-third of women by age 50. Click To Tweet
It’s all to do with hormones (of course). As your estrogen levels fall hormones called androgens can cause hair follicles to get smaller, produce finer hair and, in some cases, even stop growth.
Our old foe stress is also believed to be behind an increase in hair loss, another reason we recommend incorporating stress releasing lifestyle practices into your life during the meno years. I know I say it a lot but we really want to keep the stress hormone cortisol in check and look after our adrenal glands because our adrenal glands need to be in good working order to help us through the meno years.
Here are my three go-to’s (right now):
1. Castor Oil
Castor oil is an age-old remedy for improving hair growth as it’s antimicrobial and helps increase circulation. It’s also rich in antioxidants which help support keratin and encourage strength. Recently, I got online and ordered some to test it out. I don’t know if you’ve ever used castor oil but it’s very thick and sticky.
I applied it to my roots by tipping up the bottle and dabbing it on, then massaging it in (as well as I was able to due to its sticky consistency). It’s quite a messy way to apply it. It would be more effective to get a bottle and eyedropper and apply it that way.
I left it on for an hour – sometimes overnight with a towel on my pillow – and then washed it out. A very thorough, double shampoo is called for to get it all out.
Results: my hair was in amazing condition. I’ve been a bit sporadic with it so I can’t actually swear that increased the volume but I have noticed while I haven’t had time to do it, it has seemed finer again.
2. Liquid Silica
This was a tip from a celebrity hairdresser in Sydney who used to do all the big names.
He told me to buy some pure liquid silica – not a mixture such as a hair, skin and nails formula – but pure silica and start taking it daily. He said he’d seen phenomenal results in some of his clients whose manes were part of their trademark.
As an addendum silica supplementation is meant to be a great boon in balancing hormones and many of us become deficient as we enter our 40s and beyond. Additionally, it bonds with minerals and helps transport them to the hair promoting growth and vitality.`
One caveat with this one is it can cause all hair to start growing so beware of whiskers, or get a regular check with your beauty therapist so you can enjoy your tresses.
Results: It definitely did make a difference and it’s something I want to go back to. I haven’t done it for a while as I wasn’t able to get my hands on the product I wanted and due to budget restrictions.
This one is a famous supplement for hair thickening although, with that said, the actual scientific evidence is a bit thin on the ground. To be honest with you I haven’t tried it yet as a supplement for hair per se, but it is a popular ingredient in many shampoos.
Biotin is vitamin B7 and is used by the body to convert macronutrients into energy. It’s also known as Vitamin H as it contributes to improving hair, skin and nails. A lack of it can contribute to hair loss.
It’s often included in supplements specifically formulated for the above and you can also ingest it via eggs, almonds, cauliflower (have you tried our cauliflower pizza base?) mushrooms, sweet potato, spinach, salmon and organ meats.
We require about 30 micrograms per day and alcohol, smoking, antibiotics and gut issues will all affect your levels of biotin so do a health check. It can’t hurt to consume any of the above (though as a vegetarian I baulk at the thought of organ meats!) and there is a tiny bit of evidence to show biotin may assist with hair loss.
Hope that helps ladies!
Images thanks to Ashton Bingham Unsplash