Minoxidil – How Rogaine for Women Works

Rogaine For Women

The medication minoxidil is most commonly known as Rogaine. It is often associated with male pattern baldness, but now there is also Rogaine for women. It has been reformulated in multiple different products and targeted to women with hair loss or baldness. If you are a woman who is looking for help with your bald spots, hair loss or thinning, minoxidil may be the solution for you.

Chemical Compounds in Rogaine For Women

Minoxidil was originally used to treat hypertension (high blood pressure), but somehow doctors discovered that applying it topically on the scalp created hair growth. Bet you’re wondering how that lab experiment came to be! Minoxidil for women with hair loss works by stimulating growth in the follicles and lengthening the growing phase of the hair growth cycle, but the exact chemical influences are not yet known – they just know it works. Studies have found that minoxidil products such as Rogaine for women actually work better than for men. This is believed to be because male pattern baldness is genetic (inherited from their male family), while female pattern baldness is generally a result of external factors.

Using Rogaine and Minoxidil Safely

Minoxidil is the one hair growth compound that is approved by the FDA for female hair loss. This is important since even though so many other products are on the market, no other topical hair growth solutions are sanctioned by the FDA. It is also important to note that minoxidil for women only comes in 2% concentration, while the male formula is closer to 5%. Note for women: Do not use the male formula thinking “it is the same thing, just different packaging.” This is not true, and can actually cause a lot of problems, so stick with the specific minoxidil or Rogaine for women unless instructed by your physician.

Rogaine For Women
Minoxidil is the only hair growth compound that is approved by the FDA for female hair loss.

Side Effects of Minoxidil

If you use male strength minoxidil as a woman, you can experience hair growth in places you would not prefer. This includes your face, neck, chest, arms, hands, or anywhere else you might accidentally touch the solution. Even with the 2% strength, you should be very careful with the solution.

Other side effects can include: skin irritation, discoloring of the hair around the area applied, and even allergic reactions. This is mostly because the brand name Rogaine no longer owns the patent. People often buy generic versions that have different chemical compositions. Make sure to read the label of a generic minoxidil product to make sure you are not allergic to the ingredients. Stop use if you experience severe irritation or worsening hair loss.

If you prefer using a product that is full of only natural ingredients, there is an alternative. Nutrafol hair health supplements are natural and contain a combination of ingredients that work together.

Waiting For it to Work

You are probably thinking, “How fast can this stuff work? I need help now!” As with anything, you really need to be patient. Results typically show in about two months, and most studies find that the results “peak” after four to six months. However, it is recommended to be used for a year, to make sure the maximum amount has been applied and also to make sure your body has become used to the new generation of hair. Also keep in mind that for the product to work, you have to follow the directions on the bottle. Apply twice daily, let it air dry, and wash the solution from anywhere you do not want hair to grow! Do not wash your hair for at least four hours. And do not play with or comb the hair excessively until you start to notice hair growth.

What You Need to Know About Scalp and Hair Serums

Hair Serums

Choosing the right hair serum can be the difference between healthy, shiny looking hair and permanent damage to the hair, which is why it’s important to pick the right hair serum for you.

The hair care industry is a big booming business, as many people are conscious about the way they look. Your hair – or even lack of it – can cause you to suffer poor self-image, anxiety and depression. With that in mind, various companies, both notable and ones of ill repute have come out with many scalp and hair serums that combat hair fall and promote hair growth. With so many products advertised, at times, it is hard to know which products are recommended and which ones you should avoid.

What are Hair Serums and How Do They Work?

Hair and scalp serums are liquid silicon based content with amino acids and ceramides added that act as a mask for your scalp and hair. These hair serums help in keeping the scalp healthy, preventing dandruff from forming. Since hair serums are silicon based they do not penetrate the hair shafts but instead coat them, and help protect from environmental damage like heat, sun and wind. People who want to control their hair’s frizziness or people with curly hair, can use hair serums as it helps in preventing hair loss during styling.

Hair Serums
Hair serums are silicon based, which means they do not penetrate the hair strands but instead coat them, protecting them from the elements of sun, heat, wind and styling. Serums are a great way to get a shiny and healthy looking hair.

What are the advantages of using Hair and Scalp Serums?

If you have rough or dry hair, you may find it hard to manage it while styling. Many people use hair serums because after your hair dries, it becomes unmanageable. Hair serums contain silicon which help make your appear hair lustrous due to the coating it leaves on the hair. This way, your hair is also protected from the harsh rays of the sun, humidity and various types of pollution which bombard our bodies every day. After use, you might notice that your hair becomes smooth and silky – helping in hair styling.

Serums also act as a conditioner. Many oils can leave your hair looking greasy –not a desirable quality! Hair serums are a better alternative to many oils, because they help in smoothening out your tangled hair – giving your hair an appearance of life and adding a nice sheen. Many hair serums protect your hair from sun damage due to their UV protection formulas.

They also help prevent damage while styling as many electrical appliances for your hair can cause it to overheat. Heating irons and curling tools can cause damage and the serum acts as a protective layer.

Selecting the Right Hair Serum

As with any product that we use on our bodies, it’s important to choose the correct product for you, avoiding side effects and further damage. This smooth Crème from Julien Farrel comes highly recommended as the styling cream smoothens and moisturizes your hair. It is rich in Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamins B, C, E and Panthenol. This enables it to leave your hair feeling silky and hydrated. It comes recommended by many Dermatologists and does not contain any harsh chemicals, which is why it is our preferred choice.

Many people wonder what the correct way of using hair serums is. They’re very simple to use – all you need to do is apply the desired amount on your hair (not your scalp) so that your strands are coated with the serum. After applying, you shouldn’t need to worry about your hair because the serum will help manage and protect it for you.

For other ways how to take care of your scalp, read these tips from Nutrafol.

Hair Loss Causes and How to Reverse Them

Hair Loss Causes

Hair is found everywhere on humans except on the soles of the feet and palms of the hands. However, it is most evident on the scalp because hair anywhere else tends to be shorter and lighter in color. All hair is made of keratin, a protein produced in hair follicles. The hair you see is actually dead keratin cells that have been pushed out of the scalp at a rate of approximately six inches each year. In a healthy individual about 90% of the hair found on the scalp is in a growing phase, but hair loss causes this growth rate to be interrupted.

Family History – Hair Loss Causes and Genes

Genetics can play a significant role in when a person begins experiencing hair loss, and how much hair they will eventually lose. Androgenic alopecia is a genetic condition that can affect both men and women. In men, it presents as a receding of the hairline that can begin as early as their teens. In women, it typically presents as a noticeable thinning of the hair, but it doesn’t usually start until sometime after their 40s.

Vitamin Deficiency – Can Be Helped by Taking a Supplement

Numerous vitamins and minerals contribute to healthy hair growth and fullness. Some of these include iron, selenium, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, and biotin. When one or many of these are lacking in the diet, it can lead to thinning of the hair and even hair loss. Fortunately, this is one of the hair loss causes that can be addressed. Increasing the missing components in the daily diet, or augmenting one’s diet with vitamin supplements, can help to ensure your hair is growing in the healthiest way.

Hair Loss Causes
There are many reasons for hair loss. Stress is usually one of them.

Stress and Physical Trauma

Any physical trauma can shock more hair follicles than normal to enter the shedding stage, which leads to temporary hair loss. Extended periods of stress can affect cortisol levels, which can also result in hair loss. Hair loss causes, like stress or physical trauma, will most likely reverse themselves as the natural hair cycle of growth and shedding returns to normal. Prolonged stress affecting cortisol levels needs to be reduced to restore balance and hair growth. The ingredients in Nutrafol help to nourish healthy hair growth by multi-targeting potential triggers of poor hair health, making it unique.

Pregnancy and Postpartum

Interestingly, pregnancy tends to make hair appear fuller, but postpartum is one of the causes of hair loss. This is because the hormones that help promote healthy growth for the baby also help hair growth. Once you give birth, those hormones begin to return to normal levels. Additionally, the physical trauma of giving birth may cause the hair to suddenly enter the shedding phase. Eventually, pregnancy-related hair loss should resolve on its own. Some, however, may want to start to early prevention.

Trichotillomania – An Unusual Disorder

Trichotillomania is a disorder that causes individuals to pull their hair out. It is an irresistible urge that can eventually lead to very thin hair or the loss of all hair. Sometimes, hair loss causes a person to develop this compulsion, which leads to even less hair for the person. It’s a nasty cycle.

Many hair loss causes can be addressed with lifestyle changes

When an individual first notices their hair is thinning, it can be scary. However, many hair loss causes can be addressed with dietary and lifestyle changes and may not necessarily be cause for alarm.

The Facts About Aloe Vera for Hair Growth

Aloe Vera For Hair Growth

Did you know that you can use aloe vera for healthier hair growth? This succulent can help fight toxins in your body, and is loaded with nutrients that are great for your body as well as for your hair.

Often times it is good to be the non-conformist in the group, and the aloe plant is no exception – while most plants do not contain essential amino acids, aloe does. Amino acids are those building blocks of protein that the body cannot manufacture and are usually only found in meat. Aloe vera actually contains 20 of the 22 human-required and seven out of eight essential amino acids, some of which are vital for producing keratin. You can use aloe vera for hair health both topically and by ingesting it.

Aloe vera also has the ability to absorb and remove toxins as it goes through your digestive system, which keeps your stomach in balance. It helps the digestive system and promotes good gut bacteria.

Remember that there are many causes of hair loss, which usually work together to set off triggers. To get away from that, the hair needs to be nourished from the outside in.

Natural ingredients are best, with no chemicals, toxins or hormones to mess up your system; after all, we are trying to correct an imbalance, not add to it.

How Aloe Vera for Hair Growth Works

Some plants just naturally do their job, such as horsetail or saw palmetto. But aloe vera is particularly outstanding. Here is how it works. First of all it stimulates blood circulation along the scalp. Blood circulation and a healthy scalp are important parts of the hair growth cycle. In the first hair cycle phase, anagen, hair is growing and cells are dividing. In order to do this the follicles must be nourished, and they rely on blood circulation to feed them. Hair grows from the root, or follicle, and the follicle relies on blood supply; if blood vessels are clogged, the blood supply will be cut off and hair growth will go into its resting phase for an indefinite period of time. Circulation will be non-existent and the anagen phase of the hair grow cycle will be interrupted, so you will shed hair.

Secondly, aloe vera is chock-full of nutrients, has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties and will slough off dead cells, dandruff and sebum that can clog the hair follicle. Seborrhea, which is an accumulation of sebum on the scalp, contributes to hair loss.

Finally, aloe vera is alkalizing which brings the pH balance of the hair to a better level, promoting hair growth and helping the hair retain water and moisture. That is how aloe vera for hair growth can help you if you have problems with thinning hair.

Aloe Vera For Hair Growth
Aloe vera is a miracle plant loaded with nutrients and is fantastic for your skin, hair and digestive system. Eat it, wash with it or use it as a cream.

Anti-pruritic Properties

Aloe vera has anti-pruritic properties, which simply means it lessens itching and dryness of the skin, which can be a symptom of pruritus ailments, like psoriasis of the scalp. Psoriasis, an autoimmune disease, is characterized by the excessive production of skin cells and buildup of dead cells on the skin’s surface. The anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties of aloe vera soothes the skin, reduces redness, scaling, itching and inflammation of the scalp. This helps to increase the scalp health and to promote hair growth. It is also extremely moisturizing and penetrates deep into the skin. Aloe vera can also be eaten, and then detoxifies the body from within.

Nutrafol Research

We have done a lot of research at Nutrafol, and much shows that a combination of internal (such as stress, nutritional deficiencies, illnesses) and external (such as environmental toxins) triggers can create a never-ending cascade of free radicals – those rogue cells responsible for aging and diseases.

To work around these factors and maintain good hair health, you can use a natural hair supplement to help get your body back on the right track. Make sure that your hair supplement targets all the different aspects of hair health through a variety of ingredients. Of course, always remember that it’s important to wind down and eat a balanced diet.

Photo credit: Aloe Vera, courtesy of [titanium22 via Flickr]

Vitamins for Hair Loss – The Role of Vitamin A

Vitamins for hair loss

Hair loss is a problem that a large number of people are faced with today, so supplementing with vitamins for hair health can be beneficial. There are many factors that contribute to hair loss. One of these are deficiencies of vital nutrients and minerals in the body. Let’s take a look at the importance of vitamin A in maintaining healthy hair and how a deficiency could lead to hair loss.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin and is available in a number of forms including retinol, retinal, retinoids, and dehydroretinol. It is important for treating and reducing the symptoms of many health conditions such as vision diseases, including cataracts and glaucoma, premenstrual syndrome, malaria, measles, diarrhea, hair loss, and a lot more. If you don’t get enough vitamin A in your diet and notice hair loss, hair supplements supporting healthy hair growth that contain vitamin A could be an option for you.

How Vitamin A Prevents Hair Loss

A crucial vitamin for healthier hair is vitamin A. As a result of different metabolic processes, our body continuously produces free radicals, which are highly damaging for normal cell growth. Similarly, our hair follicles are also damaged due to free radical production. Vitamin A has antioxidant properties that help stop the free radical from forming in the body and restoring hair health. Also, normal levels of vitamin A in the body are associated with better blood circulation, which greatly promotes hair health and hair regeneration.

Vitamin A supplements can also prevent wilting of the hair follicles and dryness of the scalp. Due to this, thinning is greatly prevented because a consistently moisturized scalp assures stronger and well-nourished hair.

Types of Vitamin A Deficiency

There are two types of Vitamin A deficiency: primary and secondary.

In primary deficiency, you do not get enough dietary vitamin A from what you eat – different animal and plant sources such as liver, dark leafy vegetables or fruits. This deficiency can be treated either by increasing the dietary intake of vitamin A or taking supplements.

In case of secondary deficiency, different factors such as alcoholism, smoking or zinc deficiency affect the effective absorption of vitamin A from your intestines. This leads to increased deficiency of vitamin A in the body. This type of deficiency can only be treated by fixing whatever is contributing to decreased absorption of vitamin A.

Symptoms of vitamin A deficiency in the body include impaired vision, dry eyes, conjunctivitis and a weakened immune system.

Get a complete list of reasons why we lose our hair and what vitamins can be taken to help prevent it.

Vitamins for hair loss
Hair loss can occur for many different reasons, such as hormonal changes, diseases, side effects from medications or vitamin deficiencies.

What Is Vitamin A Toxicity?

Efficient quantities of vitamin A promote can help promote natural hair heath and reduce hair loss. But too much of it can lead to nausea, vomiting, dryness of the skin and eyes, and even hair loss. This is because vitamin A is fat-soluble, so it’s not as easy for the body to dispose of excess vitamin A as with a water-soluble vitamin.

Vitamins For Hair Loss – How Much Is A Good Amount?

It is uncommon for a vitamin A deficiency if you eat a healthy diet. If you take supplements, be mindful so you don’t intake too much. A great suggestion is to eat a balanced diet. The recommended dose of vitamin A in treating chronic hair loss diseases such as alopecia is between 5,000 to 25,000 IU per day.

So, What Foods are Rich in Vitamin A?

Eating a balanced and varied diet is a great way to get enough vitamin A. Examples of food high in vitamin A are carrots, sweet potatoes, dark leafy greens such as kale, squash, romaine lettuce, dried apricots, tuna or tropical fruits like mango.

If your lifestyle makes it hard to always eat in a nutritious and balanced way, taking supplements with vitamins that benefit your hair can be a good option. They contain a mix of all the ingredients that promote hair health and can supplement your daily intake when needed.

The Essential Protein – The Link Between Keratin And Hair Growth

Keratin and Hair Growth

Some may not know that keratin and hair growth are closely linked, but keratin happens to be one of the most essential components in having strong and healthy hair. For people that have problems with brittle hair or hair loss, taking supplements or eating protein-rich food may help ensure your hair is sufficiently supported, helping your body produce more Keratin and healthier hair growth.

What Is Keratin?

Keratin is a protein that is formed by the combination of eighteen different amino acids. It plays an important role in hair growth, hair regeneration, and overall hair health. Keratin is produced through the multiplication and differentiation of cells, which are present beneath the scalp skin layer.

Some of these keratinocytes move out to the edge of the hair follicles in order to make up the outer and inner root sheaths of the hair, which are the protective layers around the hair follicle. The remaining  become elongated in shape to give rise to the hair shaft. During this process, the keratinocytes will be filled with a lot of keratin fibers. When they have produced enough keratin fibers they die and leave the system.

Why Keratin And Hair Growth Are Connected

Every hair on your head consists of 90% keratin. It gives your hair strength and elasticity and because it is made up of long chains, it allows the hairs to turn, bend and fold without breaking. Keratin is not just elastic in nature but also insoluble in water. This increases its strength even more and is why the hair can withstand both extremely high and low temperatures. If you have enough keratin in your hair, the hot summer rays and striking cold winds of the winter are less harmful to your hair.

This is why hair products meant to protect your strands from the heat of styling tools such as flat irons, curling irons, blow dryers or coloring tools contain keratin. Applying keratin externally acts as a protective barrier for the hair and protects it from the harmful effects of these radiations.

Keratin and Hair Growth
Keratin is a protein that makes up 90% of every hair. It helps in keeping the hair strong and shiny.

Be Careful In Hot Sun or Cold Weather

Although hair can tolerate environmental stressors if it is supplied with sufficient keratin, consistent exposure to them at extreme levels can damage the bonding between the keratin strings, which are majorly responsible for maintaining the shape of every hair. Once the long strings of keratin get damaged and broken, keratin loses its non water-soluble property and it’s washed away. Because of this reason, many hair care products contain keratin as a potent ingredient to prevent keratin deficiency within the hair follicles.

Keratin also plays its role in making the hair shinier, suppler, and thicker in volume. In case of dry hair, keratin-containing hair oils and shampoos are recommended since external keratin therapy provides maximum protection against loss of moisture from the hair. If you want some extra keratin from the inside, some natural hair health supplements contain a bioactive type of keratin.

What Can You Eat To Get More Keratin?

Keratin is not found in any food, but if you eat food that is rich in protein and specific vitamins, it can help your body produce more of the hair-important protein. It’s not only great for your hair, but also for your skin and nails. Here are some examples of food that can help your body produce more keratin and healthier hair growth.

Sulfurous Foods
Sulfur-rich amino acids make up proteins like keratin. You find them in foods with a lot of protein, meaning meat, beans and eggs, and also some vegetables like onions, kale and asparagus.

Protein-rich foods
Even more protein – so red meat, chicken, eggs, fish, yogurt and dairy products. Vegetarian options for high protein foods are beans, nuts, quinoa and nut butters such as peanut or almond butter.

Biotin-rich foods
Biotin helps metabolize the amino acids that produce keratin. You can find it in foods like nuts, beans, whole grains, mushrooms and cauliflower. Also, many hair supplements have biotin high up on their list of ingredients. Just remember that biotin is water-soluble, so it can be lost when cooking food in water.