From a young age, girls are enchanted by princessian beauty...from a long-haired mermaid with fiery red locks to that chick trapped in the tower with remarkable golden hair. We’re taught that our hair is our crown, and are brainwashed into believing that we must adhere to near impossible standards to shine. That’s why, for women in particular, hair loss can be a devastating dose of reality...it’s a total shock to our sense of identity!
So, how can you clear the hurdle? Well first of all, don’t obsess over it - doing so will only serve to increase anxiety, which can compound the issue with stress-related hair loss. Instead, stay calm, be kind to yourself, and focus on a positive outlook.
While drugs like Minoxidil are tempting with their claims of fast, effective hair regrowth, studies have long shown that such chemical-based solutions can have devastating side effects to our overall health. So how can we effectively encourage hair growth without drugs and chemicals? Keep reading to find out!
What’s Stress Got To Do With It?
While most folks think of stress reduction in terms of happiness, heart health and weight loss, it’s also a vital step in curbing hair loss and jump-starting regrowth. We’re not saying all hair loss is stress-related, but it’s definitely a major factor for more people than you may realize.
While reducing stress can be as hard as making big decisions and embarking on major life changes, it can also be as simple as a shift in perspective and 15 minutes a day of your time and attention - which is where we’d recommend you start for the purpose at hand.
Here are a few quick, easy ways to de-stress:
- Exercise Daily: Whether it’s yoga, boxing, or a walk around the block, physical activity is a vital piece of the stress-reduction pie. Find something that either calms you or helps you work out your frustrations...just make sure it’s something you enjoy, as consistency is the only way to reap lasting results.
- Quiet Time: Whether it’s a nice hot bath, 20 minutes with a good book, post-meal meditation, or a pre-bed prayer, 15 minutes a day of quiet relaxation is a fast, easy way to calm your mind and body, lower stress hormones like cortisol, and ramp up the production of happy hormones serotonin.
- A Positive Perspective: Rather than getting bogged down with “I can’t” and “I have to”, try shifting your focus to “I can” and “I will”. People who empower themselves to keep a more positive mindset by owning their choices and responsibilities (rather than being a slave to them) are much less likely to suffer the effects of stress. Instead of saying “I have to work out”, say “I GET to work out” instead...being mindful of the way we talk to ourselves and those around us is the first step on the path to positivity!
- Talk It Out: At the end of the day, sometimes just talking to someone about your worries is the best medicine. Whether it’s your mom, your spouse, a trusted friend, or a therapist, venting your frustrations can not only provide an incredible sense of relief, but can also serve as a starting point for talking your way to solving the root issue and eliminating the stressor altogether.
The Ever-Magical Scalp Massage
Massages aren’t just relaxing - they also help your body heal and repair itself. That’s why hairstylists massage your scalp at the salon... massages don’t just feel good, they truly do good!
Simply put, massage dilates blood vessels beneath the skin...wider vessels means enhanced blood flow. In the case of scalp massage, increased blood flow means increased follicular nourishment...and since every hair on your head is located within a follicle, their nourishment is the key to hair health and strand retention.
Ideally, you should be massaging your scalp for 3-5 minutes each time you shampoo your hair. If you just can’t tack on the extra time in the shower (we get it - some water heaters are smaller than others), you may want to consider getting one of those oh-so-relaxing wire scalp massagers for some waterless stimulation on break at the office or during evening TV time.
Shampoo Shop & Wash Wisely
Natural thickening and growth shampoos are one of the hottest breakthroughs in modern cosmetic science. These products actually promote regrowth and aid retention by repairing and nourishing the scalp and underlying follicles...by solving the most common conditional issues, such shampoos are a phenomenal option for those who want to steer clear from chemical formulas.
Beyond fighting hair fall and supporting growth long-term, thickening shampoos also work to plump the hair strands - lending a fuller, more voluminous appearance in the short-term. Kind of like the way dermal filler boosts your lips, these products function as a shiny outer coating and strengthener, helping to swell and gloss hair with each wash.
Once you’ve found the right shampoo (BOLDIFY Hair Thickening Shampoo is always a good place to start!), it’s important to use it consistently at least twice a week, massaging into the scalp with each wash to ensure maximum benefit. It’s also important to keep in mind that washing your hair every single day may or may not be the best option for you...for some, shampooing daily can be beneficial, while for others washing every other or even every third day helps to enhance scalp health. When in doubt, seek the advice of your stylist for guidance on wash frequency.
Take Extra Care During Styling
In the infinite struggle to draw attention away from our insecurities, it’s easy to forget that sometimes the things we do to help us today only hurt us tomorrow. Chemical-laden styling products, blow dryers, scalp-irritating brushes and curling irons may provide instant gratification in the form of volume today - but over time, the damage can far outweigh the benefits.
Let’s face it...for most of us, stopping cold-turkey just isn’t an option. We have life to live, and the best way to navigate it with the confidence we deserve is to make the most of what we’ve got. Rather than throwing your whole routine out the window and resigning yourself to suffering in silence with lifelessly limp locks, there are some simple tweaks you can employ to make your routine much less damaging long-term.
Like selecting a shampoo, you should aim to find products that are as natural as possible and not only serve a styling purpose, but also help to nourish the scalp and hydrate hair. A high quality hair serum is always a good idea if you’ll be using any heated styling methods (hair dryer, curling iron, flatiron, etc.) as they generally offer thermal protection to guard against heat-induced damage. BOLDIFY 3-In-1 Hair Thickening Serum acts as a leave-in conditioner, a thermal protectant, and a thickener - and is Biotin infused for enhanced scalp health!) Never use a brush to detangle wet hair...saturated strands are most vulnerable to stretching stress and breakage. Always use a wide-toothed comb, starting at the ends and working your way towards the scalp for gentle, easy detangling. If you use brushes during your blowout, be sure to partially dry hair with gentle tousling by hand first, and choose a high-quality boar bristle or boar/nylon-combo-bristle brush for finishing to safely smooth strands and protect the integrity of the scalp.
Stay Hydrated & Well-Nourished
It should go without saying, but proper hydration and nourishment is absolutely essential for wellness in general, and it’s especially important for scalp health - which is, of course, at the root of hair health (pun intended).
While older hydration standards would have us believe that 8-8oz glasses of water per day would suffice, new studies show that optimal hydration happens with about half of your body weight in ounces of water per day. (For example: If you weigh 150 pounds, you should be drinking 75 ounces of water daily.) Proper hydration supports a number of essential health benefits and the absorption of practically every vital nutrient; in regards to scalp health specifically, it can help to hydrate, repair, and properly nourish follicles - all necessary benefits to maximizing hair growth.
A well-balanced diet is also important in terms of hair health...being that human hair is made up of around 90% Keratin and requires collagen for bouncy resilience, it only makes sense that we need to intake sufficient levels of healthy proteins and a wide array of other vitamins and minerals to support the production of Keratin and collagen for stronger, healthier locks.
I’ll say what we’re all thinking: Noone is perfect. Nobody achieves nutritional perfection all the time, and stressing out about it certainly won’t help! We all have times where we fall short of getting what our bodies need with food alone...hence the popularity of nutritional supplements.
While a reasonably balanced and intentional diet is ideal, supplements are a phenomenal way to fill in any gaps. (Hey, not everyone loves lima beans!)
Meeting the Recommended Daily Intake (RDA) for essential nutrients like Vitamins A, B and E are an easy way to support a healthier, fuller head of hair, while Biotin supplementation can further enhance hair quality and texture. (Quality and quantity, folks!) But be careful...many supplements sneak in dangerous binders, fillers, and additives, which - in the end - can affect the overall safety and efficacy of a supplement. (Sugar and preservatives should NOT be disguised as “nutritious” - which is why we developed our Vegan, Sugar-Free, No-Nasties like our Hair Gummies!
Whether you start small with one or go big with them all, you can’t go wrong with these all-natural, tried-and-true hair saving hacks!