After giving birth, women are very emotional and vulnerable. Post part hormonal changes are almost as dramatic as during pregnancy. Hormonal hair thinning makes new mums feel even more traumatic. We caught up with Anabel Kingsley, Trichologist at Philip Kingsley to help us understand this very difficult and embarrassing for women phenomenon, and if there are ways to fight it.
What causes hair thinning
“During pregnancy, oestrogen levels rise. This keeps hairs in the anagen (growth) phase of the hair growth cycle for longer than usual – fewer hairs are shed and by the end of pregnancy the hair often feels thicker and more voluminous. However, once the baby is born, or breast-feeding is stopped, oestrogen levels drop and return to normal. In approximately 50% of women this causes a type of hair loss known as ‘post partum’ shedding 6-12 weeks later. Here, hairs that were kept in the growth phase move all at once into the telogen (shedding) phase of the growth cycle creating substantial hair fall. We are not sure why it occurs in some women and not others – and why it may happen in one pregnancy and not the next.
Nothing can be done to prevent post partum shedding. While the loss can be extremely distressing, it is temporary. The shedding should stop on its own and all hairs lost will grow back.
However, certain factors can cause hair loss after pregnancy to continue for longer. The most common of these are an improper diet, nutritional deficiencies and stress – all of which are more likely with the responsibility of looking after a baby. To encourage new growth, try to eat a diet rich in protein and iron. If you leave longer than 4 hours between meals, snack on a complex carbohydrate. Energy to form hair cells drops after this amount of time. Supplements can also be extremely helpful as they provide the body with additional nutrients to produce hair cells. In terms of products, use a stimulating scalp mask once a week.
Breakage can also thin the appearance of the hair. To strengthen and add elasticity to strands, use a pre-shampoo conditioning treatment once a week.”
Following the expert opinion, we compiled a list of haircare products that might help.
Phillip Kingsley Elasticizer Therapies Egyptian Jasmine and Mandarin
Inspired by the holistic practice of Aromatherapy to harness the power of scent to balance the mind, body and soul. Expertly blended the distinctive floral notes of Jasmine to inspire harmony and optimism, while zesty Mandarin revitalises, encouraging feelings of Joy and vibrancy. The annual fragranced version of the award-winning Elasticizer combines the supercharge-boost of elasticity, moisture and strength, as offered by Philip Kingsley’s iconic original product, with a scent to stimulate the mind – making it the must have product for your hair pampering needs this lockdown.
LQ Collagen Skin Hair Nails Powder
This fantastic daily supplement contains 10,000mg of marine collagen per serving! Scientifically formulated to support not only healthy hair but also skin and nails. Contains Hyaluronic Acid, Biotin & Selenium and Vitamin C. Easy to mix, take one scoop a day and enjoy the perfect boost to your morning smoothie. Designed to deliver noticeable results in as little as 30 days.
WeDo Haircare Range
weDo is a new eco-ethical, professional brand, offering a range of vegan, cruelty-free, and 100% recyclable products, with a minimalist formula. Co-developed with the scientists of the Wella Company haircare labs, and in collaboration with hairdressers, each product has been designed with professional performance in mind. Our favourite products are Rich & Repair Mask for coarse or very damaged hair. Formulated with a rich blend of Cupuacu Butter and naturally-activated Cassava Root, the mask leaves the hair feeling smooth, easy to manage and frizz-free. We also swear by a hair & body oil elixir (hybrid) featuring Macadamia and Sweet Almond Oil.
Christophe Robin Cleansing Mask with Lemon
This amazing cleansing mask is detergent -free and has an acid pH to support hairs natural pH. It support radiance and deeply nourishes hair fibres.
Monpure London Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum
Serum gives your scalp the same five-star treatment as your highest performing serum would your skin. This hero product injects voltage and volume to your hair through a meticulously developed formula. This holy grail skincare product refreshes and renews the scalp creating the perfect foundation for lustrous, full locks. This game changing serum contains an unexpected but highly effective ingredient for hair growth. Retinol. The correct concentration of topical retinol is a potential treatment for hair loss. In conventional skincare, we love retinol for its abilities to supercharge cellular renewal and this same quality can work miracles for the hair. Monpure uses a gentle retinol ester that can be safely used on the scalp. Increasing blood flow to the scalp allows better deliver of more proteins, vitamins and nutrients to the root of the hair enforcing strength and growth.