As people age, they might be susceptible to hair loss or thinning. Besides medical conditions, genetics, diet, medication, and pregnancy can all play a part in losing hair or growth stagnation. Hair, of course, is an integral part of most people’s identities and is used to individualize oneself. In this way, hair acts as a blank canvas. You are the artist when you dye, cut, curl, or straighten your hair. Needless to say, losing hair or failing to see progress can cause anxiety and other negative feelings.
Krysta Biancone, the co-founder of the Santa Barbara-based Amari Salon & Spa and hairstylist at Hair by Krysta, notes that hair growth can take time and effort. For some, this might also include some lifestyle changes. Whatever the case, the path to hair growth is more undemanding than one might believe. Like any self-care or beauty regimen, the results may not be instant, but they are worthwhile.
At the root of it all (pun intended) is diet. Yes, you can eat your way to hair growth stimulation. Krysta Biancone explains that protein-based meals loaded with vitamins and minerals are ideal for jumpstarting hair growth. “Foods such as salmon, eggs, sweet potatoes, and spinach are packed with nutrients that are essential for hair health,” she explains. Unfortunately, Biancone admits that junk food can ultimately stunt this process. Thus, one should be “limiting processed foods and opting for whole grains [that] can provide your body with the energy it needs to create healthy hair follicles.”
Although this might be easier said than done, Biancone believes that this is the first step one should take to revitalize hair growth. In other words, healthy hair equals a healthy you. “Eating a nutrient-rich diet will help keep your hair looking and feeling its best,” she says. Another plus? Perhaps this can also lead to discovering new foods and recipes.
Beyond consuming a beneficial diet, Krysta Biancone maintains that the more vitamins, the better. Simply put, combining nutritious meals with health supplements can increase the chances of hair growth. Biancone recommends biotin, vitamin B complex, fish oil, and iron. She states these supplements “can help stimulate hair growth by providing the scalp with essential nutrients needed to promote healthy hair.” Furthermore, these supplements are easily accessible. You can find them at a grocery store, a health food store, or online. They won’t even break the bank!
“In addition, supplements containing amino acids, such as keratin and collagen, can help strengthen the hair shaft and improve the appearance of the hair,” she adds. However, Biancone is not a medical expert and knows everyone has different needs and health concerns. She explained, “If you are considering taking a supplement for hair growth, be sure to speak with your doctor or healthcare provider to ensure that the supplement is right for you.”
Stress can take both a physical and mental toll on someone. When the body is under constant pressure, it negatively affects your mood and immune system. Stress can lead to repercussions to your hair, among other things. Krysta Biancone explains further, “Stress can cause inflammation in the body which can prevent hair from growing and lead to hair loss.” Naturally, it’s unrealistic to cut out all the stressors in our lives. The key here, as Biancone describes, is to find balance within the chaos.
“Reducing stress through meditation, yoga, or other relaxation techniques can help encourage new growth,” she notes, before going on to say, “Getting more sleep, exercising regularly, and eating a balanced diet can help reduce stress levels and improve overall health.” Maintaining an active and healthy lifestyle is the secret to restoring hair loss and vitalizing growth. It’s no surprise, then, that Biancone gives credit to good health for hair growth.
Another way to reduce stress and simultaneously stimulate hair growth is a scalp massage. The best part? You can do this anywhere at any time. All you need are your fingertips. Moreover, this could also be a bonding experience with a loved one. This might seem simple, but there is scientific backing to scalp massages. In fact, Krysta Biancone explains, “Regularly massaging the scalp can stimulate blood flow to the area which helps promote healthy hair follicles and stimulates new growth.”
This is one of many pros to scalp massages. Biancone adds, “Additionally, it helps remove dead skin cells and increase circulation which can contribute to healthier-looking locks.” If you’re looking to up your scalp massage game or want a tool to make this process easier, there are plenty of scalp massagers on the market that can be used for wet and dry hair. They are exceptionally affordable and make good gifts for any occasion.
According to Krysta Biancone, essential oils are not just for relaxing or infusing a space with a lovely fragrance; they also lead to hair growth. “Certain essential oils, such as rosemary, lavender, and peppermint, can help stimulate hair growth by increasing blood flow to the scalp,” she explains. Essential oils, she says, can positively boost the scalp. “These oils can help reduce inflammation and nourish the scalp which helps promote healthy hair,” Biancone adds.
Like supplements and scalp massagers, essential oils are everywhere right now. They can be purchased online or at a health food store. However, Biancone notes, “Essential oils should be diluted before applying to the scalp to avoid irritation.” You can also use the essential oils Biancone listed above for aromatherapy purposes by inhaling them or using a diffuser. Additionally, you can place a few drops on your skin or in the bathtub to reduce stress, which also contributes to hair growth!