There are a million ideas out there on how to keep your locks fully “locked-in” and lush.
Hair growth averages about ½ inch per month, so if you don’t think you are hitting that mark or you just want to max out your hair growth potential, keep on reading.
Hair loss prevention ideas range from cracking an egg on your head to filtering and injecting some of your own blood (Yeah).
In this article, we have rounded up a lot of the hair growth buzz online and tried to dissect the pros and cons of each.
These tips are best for those who have general hair loss/thinning, or just want super lush locks. If your hair loss is due to an underlying medical condition, we advise that you talk to your doctor for options.
Cut the stress to up the growth:
When you are super stressed, this can cause your hair follicles to enter a state called Telogen Effluvium.
With Telogen Effluvium, a much larger percentage of your hair follicles change into the “resting” telogen phase instead of the “growing” anagen phase.
Hair follicles that are in this resting telogen phase don’t grow as usual and will eventually shed.
Luckily Telogen Effluvium is normally fully reversible once the stressor is gone.
Pros: Healthier hair and healthier life.
Cons: There aren’t really any cons to reducing stress in your life – this tip is for everyone!
Vitamins and supplements for hair loss:
The following vitamins and supplements have been shown to help support normal healthy hair growth:
Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Iron, Zinc, l-Lysine.
Aim for supplementing with 2-5mg (2000-5000mcg) Biotin, or eating 30mcg of Biotin in foods each day.
Supplements are great for hair, but with one caveat:
If you are already getting your 100% requirements of these, your body will get rid of the excess and you likely will not notice any hair changes.
Pros: Works pretty well for hair growth if you were low in any of these. (And honestly, who has a 100% balanced diet every day?)
Biotin alone works pretty well, and it is hard to take too much of it since it is water-soluble.
Cons: If you are doing great with your nutrient game, you likely won’t notice additional benefits.
You can overdo supplements – while most of these are water-soluble and will clear out of your system pretty quickly if not needed, fat-soluble vitamins like D, A, K, and E stick around and may build up, causing over-supplementation problems…including potential hair loss for Vitamin A.
Hair loss shampoo and conditioners:
The idea behind hair growth shampoos and conditioners is to bring blood flow, or hair stimulating and nourishing nutrients to the area. But, with the amount of time this is on your scalp, the effects are limited.
With hair loss shampoos and conditioners, you may have some luck if your hair woes are due to a less than ideal scalp.
If you have a scalp condition like dandruff or psoriasis, you may be losing hair due to the scalp condition and a shampoo that addresses that issue may help with hair growth.
Or, if your current shower regimen has a lot of irritating chemicals, is drying out your hair, or leaving a buildup on your scalp, it may be time to switch to something more scalp friendly. You want your scalp clean, but moisturized, for healthy hair growth.
Pros: The foods that are good for your hair are good for the rest of your body as well. It is very difficult to “overdose” on nutrients when getting them in food form vs when taking isolated supplements.
Pretty good evidence linking a healthy nutrient-dense diet to a healthy head of hair.
Cons: If you already have a balanced and nutrient-rich diet, you probably will not notice any changes in your hair from eating even more of these healthy foods.
Essential oils for hair loss prevention:
Some people swear by the application of essential oils diluted in a carrier oil to the scalp to encourage hair growth, moisture, shine, and increased blood flow.
Microneedling is thought to help by stimulating stem cells and increasing growth factors by making tiny punctures in the scalp.
Pros: Microneedling seems like a promising addition to a hair growth routine, especially if applying topical hair growth medications after the treatment. Inexpensive to purchase. It can be done at home. It can be done as little as once a week.
Cons: Microneedling can be moderately painful. Red marks may linger for a few days. Have to be careful to not push too hard with the roller.
Laser treatments for hair growth.
A sci-fi newcomer in the hair loss treatment world is low-level laser therapy (LLLT).
One study found that men who used an LLLT cap every other day for 16 weeks had a 35% hair growth increase compared to the placebo group.
This study also reported no pain or side effects from the treatment.
Pros: You will look so futuristic. The few studies that we have regarding LLLT look promising. No pain reported.
Cons: Long term safety has not been established. Expensive and time-consuming. May not work for everyone.
PRP injections for hair loss:
The PRP procedure works by drawing the patient’s own blood, spinning the blood until the platelet-rich plasma layer is separated, and then injecting the platelet solution into the scalp.
The hair growth options for women from the pharmacy include Minoxidil (Rogaine) topical and Spironolactone (Aldactone).
Prescription Minoxidil, Spironolactone, and Adenosine topical gel for women can be found through our Online Consultation to see if this medication is right for you.
Pros: There is good evidence showing that Minoxidil works well for hair growth for both male and female patients. Finasteride tablets are considered first-line for Male Pattern Hair Loss and may reduce hair-ravaging DHT levels by up to 60%. Spironolactone helps reduce androgens in the scalp. It can be easily combined with most other hair growth ideas on this list.
Cons: As with most medications, there are moderate side effects that may occur with Finasteride, Spironolactone, and Minoxidil. Finasteride can only be used in males. Spironolactone is generally reserved for women. These need to be used long term.
Ultimately, it is helpful to identify what is causing your hair to not be living up to its full potential.
Stress reduction and a balanced diet full of hair-boosting nutrients is always a good idea.
Supplements may be beneficial for hair growth in case of a deficiency, just make sure not to go overboard.
Coconut oil may be promising for hair and scalp health.
Hair loss shampoos and conditioners may help boost scalp health, but if your scalp is healthy already they probably won’t enhance growth.
Essential oils may be worth a try, but may cause irritation if not properly diluted.
Scalp massage has pretty good evidence for boosting scalp blood flow, growth factors, and hair thickness.
Microneedling is a little painful, but may benefit hair growth, especially if combined with minoxidil based treatments.
Laser treatments have moderate evidence in successful hair growth, but they are limited by the hassle and expense.
PRP injections may be moderately successful, but are expensive and patients must return for injections every 4-6 weeks.
Hair growth medications have been around for a while and are a mainstay for those who really mean business.
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