Have you noticed that you need to clean out your hairbrush every few days? Is your shower drain clogging up with rogue strands? We’re here to tell you that you haven’t accidentally used depilatory cream instead of your shampoo (eek!) – nope, hair loss is a thing, and it’s not just your grandpa whose locks are thinning.
Hair loss is very common and many women of all ages experience hair breakage, thinning and loss. So, while they may not talk about it over Friday night margaritas, it’s likely it’s happening to at least one of your friends, too.
Now that you know it’s not just you, what can you do about it? Read on to understand four causes of hair loss that could be behind your thinning locks, so you know what can be done to get your hair back on her A-game.
When the body is very low in iron, this can result in a condition called telogen effluvium, which basically refers to excessive shedding of the hair. ‘Excessive’ is generally defined as any hair loss that exceeds the typical rate of 50-100 strands per day.
So, if you’ve noticed your strands are making a mass exodus and you already know you have low iron, this may be to blame. If you’re not sure, it can be worth asking your GP to check your iron levels.
Once this is confirmed, it’s vital to boost your body’s iron reserves. Follow your doctor’s advice on this one, but it can be helpful to boost the iron-rich foods in your diet, such as eggs, dark leafy greens and/or red meat. A hair growth supplement may also help.
2) Scalp infection
Hair loss is often caused by underlying scalp infections – not the sexiest of topics we know, which is also why you may not have heard as much about this common cause of hair loss. It’s important to mention though, as you may be suffering a hair loss-inducing scalp condition without realising it. The best thing? If this is the cause, it’s easily treatable.
Some people have a fungal infection on the scalp called ringworm, which results in small, circular patches of scaly, itchy skin. If you suspect this may be the culprit causing your hair to fall out, check with your doctor, who can prescribe an antifungal medication to clear things up asap, so your locks can return to their former glory in a jiffy.
If you've been given the all-clear but still suffer from the itchy, dry or flakey scalp, you might need to consider switching to cleaner hair care with fewer preservatives. Some preservatives can irritate and dry out the scalp, plus have been linked to harmful health concerns. Always look for products that are free from parabens, sulphates, phthalates, DEA. Choose products like our Dandruff Repair range here, it's bursting Peppermint Essential oil and Zinc Pyrithione to soothe the scalp and whisk away the flakes.
3) You’re on the pill
If you’re like many women, you’ve been popping that little daily pill every morning for so long that you barely notice it – but taking the contraceptive pill can have a big effect on your hormones which can, in turn, change the condition of your hair.
In particular, birth control pills that contain androgens (such as testosterone) have been linked to hair shedding at an increased rate. As above, this one requires a conversation with your doctor – but if it is identified as a potential cause, it can be solved fairly easily by asking her to switch you to a more suitable (aka lower in androgens) contraceptive pill.
Yep, Mum and/or Dad could be legitimately to blame. According to dermatologists, heredity is actually the most common cause of hair loss (thanks, genes). Signs include thinning at the hairline, or a widening part. And the other thing? It can start in your 20s.
But, before you freak out and head to the nearest wig store, take solace in the fact that there are things that can be done to reduce further damage and loss, and make your hair the very best she can be. Try a clean beauty haircare range with fewer synthetics, make sure you're taking hair growth support vitamins (may we suggest this one?) and always brush hair when dry to prevent breakage and further damage.
Psst! You can shop our full range of hair-saving products here.