The Hair Growth Cycle
Hair loss is a common problem that many people face. Quite often it is due to genetics but sometimes it is due to our scalp & hair itself. But it’s important to understand our hair growth cycle first for us to know how to tackle hair loss problem with natural remedies. Hair growth consist of 3 stages:
1st stage – Anagen. This is the growing phase. Anagen begins when hair follicles get nourished for baby hair to grow. It will continue to grow until the catagen stage.
2nd stage – Catagen. This is the transitioning phase from growing to shedding. During the catagen phase, our hair follicles start shrinking & slowly detach itself from the blood vessels on our scalp.
3rd stage – Telogen. This is the resting or shedding phase. Upon reaching the telogen phase, our hair dies off from lack of nourishment & eventually falls off. Subsequently our follicles will begin preparing for new baby hair to grow into the anagen phase.
For those concerned about hair loss, the aim is to try to extend the anagen phases for as long as possible. A healthy person would have 80-90% of their hairs in the anagen phase. This is when the hair keeps growing & we need to trim it periodically. People who have shorter or disrupted anagen phase, will experience hair loss & thinning hair problems.
Tackling Hair Loss
There are 4 steps to tackle hair loss. The first step is to cleanse & restore the health of your scalp. An unhealthy scalp is among the most common cause for excessive hair fall or stunted hair growth. The second step is to stimulate blood circulation to the scalp. The goal is to ensure that nutrients can reach our hair follicles for healthy growth. The third step is scalp care. Similarly to our skin, our scalp needs nourishment for baby hairs to continuously grow. The final step is to strengthen the hair. It helps the hair to grow strong & healthy, preventing premature hair fall. A lot of emphasis are being placed on the scalp because a healthy scalp is a prerequisite for healthy hair.
1st Step – Restoring Our Scalp’s Health
This involves cleansing our scalp thoroughly with a good shampoo. The idea is to clear dandruff build-ups, harden sebum, dirt & other pollutants. Those impurities may clog the hair follicles & disrupt baby hairs from growing.
Quite often, scalp infections due to bacteria or fungi are the cause for hair loss. Those infections tend to cause inflammation of the hair follicles, which leads to premature hair fall & hinders baby hair from growing. The most common symptom of scalp infection is itchiness & excessive dandruff.
In order to treat scalp infection, the ideal solution would be a hair tonic or serum with antibacterial & antifungal properties. Alternatively, a shampoo with those properties can be helpful as well – like our Egyptian Black Castor & Carrot Seed Natural Shampoo.
2nd Step – Improving Blood Circulation to Our Scalp
A healthy blood circulation ensures important nutrients from our daily food intake & our hair care products are delivered to the follicles. That leads to stronger & healthier hair. Most importantly, it helps baby hair to continuously grow after the old hair falls off.
Among the easy methods to stimulate blood circulation at the scalp is via regular scalp massage while shampooing. Another common method is combing with a gentle comb. It works similarly as scalp massaging. But do not over comb because it may irritate your scalp instead.
3rd Step – Scalp Care
This is the step that works to extend the growing phase. Like our skin, regular scalp care is also important to remain healthy. A healthy scalp is the key to great hair after all. Hence, the primary focus here will be on nourishing our scalp with nutrients it needs for healthy & continuous growth.
Many common scalp problems arise from dry scalp. So, on top of using hair conditioner after shampoo, don’t forget to moisturize your scalp periodically with hair oils or hair mask too. It is also noteworthy to reduce the use of hair dryer & harsh chemical treatment on your hair.
A good hair oil should have the essential nutrients for maintaining a healthy scalp. So, if you are using hair oil, try to extend its use to your scalp too if possible. Then it will benefit both your scalp & hair.
4th Step – Strengthening Our Hair
This step is also part of extending the growing phase. By strengthening our hair, it becomes less brittle & doesn’t breaks off easily. One of the important minerals our hair need is sulphur. Human hair is made from a protein called keratin, which is high in sulphur content. That’s why a good amount of sulphur is needed to grow strong hairs.
Hair care like black castor oil is rich with sulphur. That explains its traditional use for stimulating hair growth for hundreds of years. But, if applying black castor oil isn’t your cup of tea, be on a lookout for hair care with sulphur in it.
Besides external hair & scalp care, diet plays an important role too. For instance, there are certain foods that may tip your hormone balance off. That subsequently makes your scalp to produce more sebum which can lead to oily scalp. On the other hand, sometimes our diet may be lacking in some critical nutrients that our hair or scalp needs. From that deficiency, it leads to various hair or scalp problem that causes hair loss. So, don’t forget a well-balanced & healthy diet! We are what we ate after all.