Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Hair, hair everywhere

About three years ago now I started having pretty serious issues with my hair. I have always had very fine hair, but it had always been healthy and there was a lot of it. All of a sudden, I was losing my hair in clumps and what was left was dry and brittle. As it turned out, I had some thyroid issues that needed to be addressed. It was the loss of my hair and the horrible fatigue and 'foggy' head that ultimately got me to go to the doctor. Our bodies are always trying to tell us something!

Once I was able to sort out the medical side of things, I was still left with very thin, breakable hair and no clue how to get it back. I tried everything, but ultimately realized there wasn't going to be a quick fix. I wasn't going to wake up with my hair having regrown with beautiful flowing locks. Not gonna happen. It's been a looooooooong road, but I'm finally getting there! People just meeting me wouldn't even know that I'd been struggling with my hair. It looks... normal. Yay! So I thought I'd share the steps I've taken to get to this point. 

1. Healthy hair starts on the inside
Sometimes your hair, skin and nails are the first external signs of what is going on internally. I never realized that losing my hair could be a symptom of a greater problem. So first things first, deal with any underlying issue and get that resolved. From there, be mindful of what you're putting into your body. Eat your fruits and veggies and take your vitamins (turns out we all should have been listening to our mothers after all). For vitamins, I take Vitamin E, Evening Primrose Oil, Hair Skin and Nails, Vitamin D, and Super Collagen +C.

Vitamin E: Promotes healthy skin, protects against bladder cancers and is vital for brain health. Less of a hair growth vitamin, but was recommended to me. 

Evening Primrose Oil: This has a TON of health benefits, one of which is improved hair health. I removed this one for a period of time and really noticed the difference. This is now a staple. 

Hair, Skin and Nails: The name says it all. This supplement contains a large amount of Biotin which is why I don't take a separate Biotin pill. 

Vitamin D: Not for hair growth, I just happen to have a Vitamin D deficiency (like much of the free world). Protects against depression, cancer, and heart disease. 

Super Collagen +C: Another recommendation and late addition to the line up. Since adding Collagen to the mix people have actually complimented me on my hair. ME! Hair compliments! Amazing.

2. Embrace dirty hair
Everyone hears this all the time, but that's because it is true. DO NOT wash your hair everyday. I go every other day. Your scalp produces natural oils which are beneficial for your hair. Nature knows what it is doing. When you DO wash your hair you should...

3. Lather, rinse, and REPEAT
Yup. Wash your hair twice before conditioning. I read this on another blog and thought she was nuts. "Won't that dry out my hair even further?" But the truth is, it's really cleaning your scalp which is where you will get dirt and product build up. If you are using a non-drying shampoo, you will really notice a difference. 

4. If it's wet, let it set
Your hair is most breakable when it is wet. Use a wide tooth comb and don't over do it. Get it untangled and then leave it alone.

5. Avoid hot, hot heat
We all know this. We all fail at this. Heat is not healthy for your hair. Let your hair air dry as frequently as possible and avoid flat irons and curling irons when you can. If you must use heat, use a protective spray. 

6. Scissors only - no razor
If you are trying to grow your hair or you have very fine hair, do not let your stylist use a razor on your hair. This will only make your hair break and split faster then a regular cut. Opt for scissors and go with a blunt cut. 

I'm still working to get my hair back to 100% but I can tell you, these steps have really helped. I'm hoping to find some 'before and after' pictures, but hair is tough to photograph. I'll keep you posted.



  1. I think an iron supplement would also go well. Women need iron in their diet. Some is lost each month during menstruation. Loss of hair is used as an indicator by Naturopaths of low iron.

    1. Yup! My hair was breaking off like crazy and it was really thin. My doctor ordered blood tests and saw I was anemic and placed me on iron supplement. My hair completely recovered, no more clumps in the sink and very little breakage!

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