Healthy hair habits to improve your hair growth
Dr. Aysha Butt is the Medical Director of FROM MARS, and is a GP Partner at Woodcote NHS Medical Practice.
Right, it’s time to do something about that hair. A combover isn’t an option. You’re not ready to go full-on Statham just yet. You need a solution. But, did you know how you live your life can actually impact the health of your hair? Are you wondering how to improve hair growth and health? We’ve got you.
There are loads you can do to improve your hair growth, and we’re not just talking surgery and medications (although those are effective). You can make a range of lifestyle changes, most of them small and easy, that can improve the quality of your hair.
Let’s get into it.
How can I improve the quality of my hair?
You can make small changes to your lifestyle that, when taken together, can have a lasting impact on your hair. So, if you’re asking, “how do I keep my hair healthy” or “how can I make my hair strong”, you might like to try these handy tips:
Eat a nutritious diet
Just like the rest of your body, your hair needs a range of nutrients to grow properly and be healthy. If your hair doesn’t get enough of these nutrients, it can lose its shine, damage more easily, not grow properly, and it can even fall out.
Your hair needs minerals like zinc and iron, vitamins like vitamin A, B, C, D, and E, and other nutrients, like omega oils. You can make sure you get these nutrients by eating a healthy and balanced diet. You can also top yourself up with a daily multivitamin and omega oil supplement.
Try a biotin supplement
As well as a multivitamin and omega oil supplement, you can also try biotin. It’s a type of B vitamin that’s needed for hair growth and it keeps your hair, skin, and nails healthy. If you don’t get enough biotin in your diet, your hair can suffer and even fall out. And whilst the research on biotin is still in its early days, biotin supplements have been shown to return hair in people who’ve experienced thinning on their scalps.
Cut back on shampoo and other hair care products
This might sound counter intuitive, but you shouldn’t shampoo every day. The chemicals in shampoos that clean your hair, including sulfates, also remove sebum from your hair. Sebum is the oil your hair naturally produces that protects it – losing sebum can make your hair vulnerable to damage.
Only wash your hair when it needs it. And try and cut back on the amount of other hair care products you use, like styling products, as these can also remove sebum and damage your hair.
Turn down the heat in the shower
A hot shower can feel better than almost anything else, but too much heat could irritate your scalp and may affect hair growth. Keep your shower warm rather than hot if your hair isn’t as thick as it once was.
Dry your hair carefully
The heat of a hairdryer or rubbing your hair vigorously with a rough towel can damage it. If your hair is short, let it dry without touching it. If you have to use a hairdryer, put it on a cooler setting. And if you have to rub your hair dry, try using an old t-shirt that should be kinder to your hair strands.
Protect your hair from the sun
The sun can damage your skin, but it can harm your hair too. Over time, UV radiation in sunlight can cause your hair to lose protein, which can weaken and damage it. If your hair is thinning too, sunlight can also burn your scalp, which isn’t going to do you any favours either. If you have to be out in the strong sun for any length of time, consider wearing a hat.
Stress is bad for health, and that includes the health of your hair. Too much stress can even make your hair fall out (a condition called telogen effluvium). We know that relaxing and de-stressing can be easier said than done, particularly if you’ve got a demanding job, family issues, or relationship worries. But it can work wonders for your hair and all-round mental and physical health. Find what works for you and don’t feel any guilt about taking the time for some self-care.
Use scientifically proven hair loss medications
The above tips can help keep your hair healthy and can protect you against some forms of hair loss. But sometimes you must face the facts – if your hair loss is caused by male pattern baldness (MPB), then you’ll need more than lifestyle changes. You’ll need to take an effective hair loss medication.
You can find a huge variety of hair loss products online, but unfortunately, most of them are fakes and frauds. When it comes to fighting male pattern baldness, finasteride (Propecia) is scientifically proven to be an effective treatment. It can halt hair loss and even regrow lost hair.
If you have MPB, and you’d like to try finasteride, you can order it directly FROM MARS following an online consultation with our doctors.