I was prepared for many things in my early 40s but hair loss wasn’t one of them. Oh hello, is this perimenopausal hair loss? AWESOME. It can be a very testing time, so here’s seven tips for taking care of your locks during perimenopause.
Like many, I don’t have a full head of gorgeous golden locks, akin to that of a runway model. So the thought of losing some volume hurts! My crown of bleached blonde and wirey grey fine hair has taken a beating over the years. Now it seems that thanks to perimenopause, my hormones are finishing it off. Whatever happened to the hair of my youth?
HAIR GOALS. Not my hair, obvs. via GIPHY
Hair loss is totally normal
It’s always been said that hair loss is totally normal. No matter our age, we ALL lose hair (around 100-200 hairs a day, no less). But for some women approaching perimenopause (or in the thick of it), hair changes can be quite significant.
Research suggests that hormone imbalance and fluctuations is the culprit, and well, perimenopause is all that and more. There’s hair loss and hair thinning, hair breakages, changes in hair texture and hair growth can slow. And in a real catch-22, stress also contributes to hair loss, so stressing about your perimenopausal hair loss is doing nobody, least of all your scalp, any favours.
Thinning hair – it’s not forever, it’s really not!
Hair loss may make you feel self-conscious about your physical appearance, but the condition isn’t permanent. There are also steps you can take to treat hair loss and improve the quality of your hair. Follow these tips to keep your locks healthy and strong during menopause.
7 tips to nurturing your hair back to health during perimenopause
1. Keep it natural
Keeping the hair on your head as natural as possible will prevent damage. This means (brace yourselves) keeping heat and colouring to a minimum. I’m talking hairdryers, straighteners and curling wands. And that colour, balayage, root melt, toner and unicorn sparkle gloss treatment you have booked in at the hairdresser every six weeks? You might want to rethink that, the chemicals can be harsh! Gulp.
2. Eat for hair health
Diet plays a HUGE role in caring for your hair. You need plenty of protein to produce keratin, the building block of healthy hair. Eating plenty of protein-rich foods such as red meat, beans, fish, eggs and milk, as well as vegetables will serve you and your hair well.
3. Drink up!
Drink plenty of water, it keeps you AND your scalp hydrated and prevents split ends and brittle hair, so fewer breakages!
4. Reduce your stress
Before you scoff, I know, right? Life can feel like one big stress. Learning to calm your mind can help keep your hormones in check to prevent triggering an imbalance so try to practice some calming mindfulness, yoga or even some calm breathing exercises to help manage feelings of stress and anxiety.
Relax and be zen-like. THINK OF YOUR HAIR. via GIPHY
5. Wash your hair GENTLY
Wash your hair gently and less often. Obviously, it’s not ideal to have a greasy, manky mess on top of your head but you’ve got to kick that ‘wash everyday’ habit so try to stretch the days between washes. And when you DO wash it, use a sulphate-free, nourishing shampoo and conditioner and don’t vigorously scrub.
6. Cover up when outside or swimming!
When you’re outside in the sun, wear a hat to protect the hair and scalp from harsh sunlight. If you’re a swimmer, wear a swimming cap to protect your scalp and hair from harsh chlorine chemicals.
7. Talk to your hairdresser
Finally, if your perimenopause hair is really getting you down, have a chat with your hairdresser. They’ll be able to suggest some great advice from washing routines to products and some funky new hairstyles or cuts to help you live with your hair through this phase in your life. Remember, it’s NOT forever!
Ladies hang in there, our hair will make a comeback if we treat it right! via GIPHY
Of course, it’s just hair – but it’s part of the aging process which reminds us that time stands still for no woman.
So while we wait for it to grow back (and who knows, maybe it WILL grow back to be Victoria’s Secret modelish) let’s just take some ME-TIME to look after it – and ourselves as we navigate this new chapter. More power (and nourishing conditioner) to us!