Hair might be technically totally dead, but it’s rife with emotion. Bad hair days are real – scientists have confirmed that our moods are inextricably linked to the state of our strands. But none of that compares to the horror of seeing clumps of hair clogging the shower drain.
Thankfully, thinning hair is not necessarily a permanent problem.
Working out why your locks are languishing is the first step to finding a solution.
“A healthy scalp won’t prevent hair thinning, but an unhealthy one can make the hair thinning worse,” says Lisa Caddy, trichologist
at Philip Kingsley.
“Like the skin on your face, your scalp also benefits from gentle exfoliation.”
Philip Kingsley Exfoliating Scalp Mask ($42.90) or Pantene Miracle Mask Biotin ($11.99) work to hydrate dry, brittle hair and strengthen strands.
If your hair is thinning, fragile and prone to breakage, you have good reason to avoid sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS).
“There is potential for SLS to be stripping, leading to some damage to already thinning hair,” says Prudvi Mohan Kaka, chief scientific officer at DECIEM.
“However, sulphates as a whole should not be written off, particularly derivatives used at lower concentrations as they gently cleanse the scalp and hair while respecting the integrity of the scalp.”
For thin hair
Straand The Crown Cleanse Shampoo ($24) is entirely free of sulphates and silicone, which can weaken and weigh down fine, thinning hair.
For coarse hair
The Ordinary Sulphate 4% Cleanser for Hair & Body ($12.80) contains a small amount of SLES-2 (a gentler sulphate derivative) to effectively clean the scalp without drying out hair.
For fragile hair
Wella Professionals Elements Renewing Shampoo ($32) strengthens stressed strands with panthenol and tree extract.
Dr Simone Laubscher PhD, naturopath, clinical nutritionist and co-founder of Rejuv Wellness, shares her top nutritional tips for combating hair loss.
Often hair loss is caused by low iron, so eat more iron rich foods such as spinach, dark green leafy veg or organic grass-fed beef.
Oily fish, nuts, seeds, olive oil and avocado are high in omega-3s to help prevent dry, brittle hair.
B vitamins, particularly biotin (B7), are essential for good quality hair. Vitamin C supports the integumentary system, including your hair, skin and nails.