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3 WAYS Smoking Marijuana Can Cause Hair Loss – 3 Month Study!

  • June 22, 2017 /
Marijuana blunt and buds

The occasional use of marijuana may not cause long-term effects. However, long-term use can lead to hormonal changes, a slowdown in hair follicle cell production, and an increase in stress levels. All of these contribute to hair loss.

In this post, I’ll discuss the effects that chronic marijuana use can have on hair loss. This will include a look at a number of scientific studies, and what I recommend you do to combat marijuana-linked hair loss.

IMPORTANT! Take the hair loss quiz at the end of this article to learn whether marijuana is causing your hair loss, and what you can do about it.

Marijuana: A Cure-All or Underlying Threat?

Marijuana, also referred to as cannabis, is a popular recreational drug that’s slowly finding its legal footing in a number of countries, including the United States, Canada, Mexico, Switzerland, and Spain.

The leaves of a marijuana plant

And, while the drug is certainly touted as a cure-all – for anything from pain to stress to seizure control – there’s still much that’s not known about marijuana and its ill effects on the body.

One ill effect that’s not commonly talked about is hair loss.

That’s right – it’s been scientifically proven that the active ingredient within marijuana, THC, can cause a number of bodily changes. Some of these lend themselves to hair loss.

3 Ways Regular Marijuana Use Can Be Linked to Hair Loss

Aside from the fact that marijuana is an inhalant and, therefore, harmful to the lungs and throat, it can also cause hair loss through a variety of mechanisms. Let’s look at the three most common.

It Causes Hormonal Changes

Hormones are a vital component of many major bodily functions, but if you have Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA), then hormones play an important part in your hair loss.

AGA is caused by sensitivity to DHT, a hormone that’s produced when 5-alpha-reductase (an enzyme) attaches to testosterone.

testosterone to DHT

In the majority of individuals with AGA, an overproduction of DHT isn’t the issue. Instead, normal levels of DHT trigger responses in sensitive hair follicles and lead to hair miniaturization and loss.

As a result, many hair loss treatments aim to reduce the presence of DHT in the hair follicles.

(Learn more about Propecia and why I WOULDN’T recommend its use.)

Now, back to marijuana use.

Studies have shown that use of marijuana can reduce LH and FSH levels in the body. These two hormones (classified as gonadotropins) are important in the production of testosterone, and less of these levels means less testosterone in the body.

A diagram showing the effect that regular marijuana use has on hormone levels in the body

In theory, that’s great – less testosterone means less DHT.

In practice, low testosterone levels can lead to a number of ill health effects. To name just a few:

  • Reduced sex drive
  • Inability to sexually perform
  • Inability to get and keep an erection
  • Infertility
  • Increased body fat
  • Decreased muscle mass
  • Decreased body hair
  • Fatigue
  • Anxiety and depression

One thing to note is that chronic use of marijuana may result in less symptoms and stabilization of affected hormone levels. This is believed to be due to tolerance, but it doesn’t mean that chronic users can’t suffer from the symptoms mentioned above.

It Slows Cell Production

Throughout the cycle of hair growth, the production of new cells plays a key role. In fact, cell development is a major part of the anagen phase of hair growth.

A study performed in 2007 by researchers at the University of Debrecen found that endo- and exocannabinoids inhibit growth of the human hair follicle.

Cannabinoid receptors are located throughout the body, and they are involved in many physiological processes. These include appetite, pain-sensation, mood, and memory.

The body produces its own cannabinoids – known as endocannabinoids. However, THC found within marijuana is known as an exocannabinoid, and it attaches to the cannabinoid receptors just like endocannabinoids do.

As discovered by the researchers, “the prototypic endocannabinoid, AEA (which may even be produced within human HF), and … the exocannabinoid, THC, both inhibit human hair shaft elongation and induce apoptosis-driven HF involution (catagen) in vitro”.

A side-by-side comparison of hair shaft length in the control group and AEA (cannabinoid) group

A side-by-side comparison of hair shaft length in the control group and AEA (cannabinoid) group.

In simplest terms, cannabinoids can inhibit the proper development and growth of the human hair shaft, and induce hair loss.

A graph showing the effect that cannabinoids have on hair growth cycle

As shown above, this is done by increasing the percentage of hairs in catagen phase. As the amount of AEA (exocannabinoid) increases, so too does the percentage of hair follicles in catagen phase.

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It Induces Stress

Cortisol is a hormone produced within the human body during periods of stress – either physical or mental.

Contrary to popular belief, THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), can actually increase cortisol levels. In relation to hair loss, this can induce a condition known as telogen effluvium.

As mentioned above, the hair growth cycle occurs in three phases: anagen, catagen, and telogen.

Telogen effluvium occurs when the hair follicles enter the telogen phase of the cycle prematurely. This can be due to injury, illness, hormone changes, or stress, and it leads to an excess shedding of hair.

Fortunately for many sufferers of telogen effluvium, the condition is short lived. However, if the stressor is not removed (in this case, THC), it can continue indefinitely.

Although is a cigarette being used in the experiment, I thought it was a cool way to show some of the chemicals that can be deposited in the lungs from smoke:

What You Can Do to Combat Marijuana-Linked Hair Loss

If you believe that your hair loss is linked to marijuana use, there are a few things you can do to lessen the issue (or get rid of it altogether).

Decrease Marijuana Usage

While stopping use altogether may yield more significant results, many users are wary of doing so. This is especially true if you’re using marijuana for medicinal purposes.

Marijuana buds and a prescription note

If you use marijuana medicinally, stopping use of the drug may lead to unwanted symptoms. However, reducing use can have positive effects on hair growth.

My recommendation, then, is to decrease marijuana use.

While there’s no doubt that THC has a few benefits related to occasional use, the drug is an inhalant and comes with a number of ill effects. This includes an increased risk of cancers and related diseases.

Increase Nutritional Intake

A common side effect of THC intake is increased appetite.

However, this appetite increase doesn’t usually relate to an increased intake of healthy, nutritional foods. Instead, you’re more likely to find yourself munching on carbs and sugary snacks.

This can have negative effects on your body, and this can lead to even further hair loss.

Fortunately, this can be easily combated by increasing your nutritional intake and ensuring that your body receives the vitamins and minerals it desperately needs.

An easy way to increase nutritional intake is to consume a diet of colorful fruits and vegetables.

A balanced diet provides you with vital nutrients and minerals

Such foods contain vitamins A, B, C, and D, niacin, iron, magnesium, calcium, and so much more.

In addition, I recommend you eat mostly alkaline foods.

The foods you eat are either acidic or alkaline. When you consume more acidic foods, your body’s pH balance goes out of whack. This can result in excess production of DHT or other side effects that can cause hair loss.

(Learn more about the best diet for hair growth.)

Find the Alternative Cause

While it’s true that marijuana use can cause hair loss in some individuals, it may not be the only factoring contributing to the issue.

From genetic predisposition to chronic illness to medication, there are many causes of hair loss. If you’ve used marijuana previously without ill effect, or if you believe it’s only contributing a small amount to your problem, then it can help to find and treat the true cause.

The easiest way to do this is through an elimination diet (to rule out food triggers).

Essentially, you cut out the “usual suspects” for 23 days. This means no egg, no gluten, no dairy, no soy, no fast food, and no alcohol for the entirety of the 23 days.

After this, you reintroduce the foods one by one over 96 hour periods.

For example, on day 24, reintroduce gluten into your diet.

Eat it, and take note of how you feel over the next 48 hours.

Eat the food again, and take note once more of how you feel. If no reactions occur (such as digestive upset, rashes, itching, hives, etc.) then you may add it back into your diet.

However, you may notice that certain foods leave you feeling sluggish. This can be an autoimmune response, and this may mean that the food is a trigger for your hair loss.

Other causes of hair loss may be hormonal, or you could have an underlying condition contributing to the issue. To rule these out, I recommend you get blood work from your physician.

Conclusion

While you may not want to give up marijuana entirely, there’s no doubt that chronic use is linked to hair loss. This may mean you’ll need to make a few changes to your current use rate, or live with the ill effects.

Of course, there could be other causes contributing to your hair loss.

In this case, I recommend you take the hair loss quiz below. The results will help you to better understand the cause of your hair loss, as well as what you can do to stop it.

Is Your Hair Loss Reversible?

Question 1 (of 6)

How many years have you had hair loss for?
Select the number of years below.

Avodart For Hair Loss – 6 Big Reasons Why I Would Never Use It!

  • June 21, 2017 /
0.5mg Avodart prescription containing 30 capsules

Avodart has been proven to regrow hair by blocking DHT within the body. However, there are severe side effects associated with it… and as soon as you stop using it all the hair your regrew (and more) will quickly fall out!

In this article I’ll explain the pros and cons of using Avodart, so you can make a good decision about whether you want to use it. I’ll also give you some natural alternatives (which I highly recommend using instead.)

Two-thirds of American men dealing with some level of androgenetic alopecia by the age of 35, there are many men who are willing to try anything to regain their natural hair.

As with any type of prescription medication, when you start taking something new, you want to find out as much as possible about the drug.

That is why we have put together this helpful guide for men who are considering taking Avodart.

What is Avodart?

As with many prescription medications that are available today, Avodart can be used to treat more than one health condition.

Many times, doctors will find that a drug that is marketed to treat one condition, will end up having a positive effect on other medical issues.

The generic name for Avodart is Dutasteride. GlaxoSmithKline originally developed it to treat the symptoms of BPH, or benign prostatic hyperplasia, also known as an enlarged prostate.

The medication can reduce the size of the prostate and relive the symptoms associated with BPH such as difficulty urinating, the need to urinate more often, or the urgent need to go.

Since 2009, Dutasteride has been approved in South Korea to treat androgenetic alopecia, or male pattern hair loss.

However, it has yet to be approved for hair loss treatment in the United States, therefore it is commonly used as an off-label drug. Dutasteride is also known to be effective in treating female hair loss as well.

While it is commonly used for hair loss and many people have seen positive results after taking the drug, Avodart is controversial due to the potentially harmful side effects that are associated with it.

How Does Dutasteride Help with Hair Regrowth?

Men who suffer from male pattern hair loss or BPH both have a high level of the hormone that is known as dihydrotestosterone, or DHT. This hormone is produced from your body’s natural testosterone by the enzyme 5-alpha reductase.

Biochemical research has shown that men who have substantial hair loss and those who have BPH both have higher levels of this enzyme in their scalp or bloodstream.

Alternatively, men who do not have either of these conditions have much lower levels of the enzyme present.

Avodart works by preventing the effects of the 5-alpha reductase enzyme, which blocks the formation of DHT. That pauses a trigger element in the development of hair loss in men, as well as the development of BPH.

It helps to increase the number of scalp hairs and fills in the thin areas.

The results of taking Avodart will vary from one person to the next. Typically, users do not re-grow back all the hair that they have lost.

While DHT is a condition that occurs gradually, taking Dutasteride can help to delay the process of hair loss.

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How Effective Is Avodart?

Dutasteride is known to have a much more powerful 5-alpha reductase inhibitor than the leading hair loss treatment Propecia, or Finasteride.

Propecia only inhibits type 2 and 3 of the enzyme while Avodart reduces the effects of type 1 as well.

A study that was performed by the Bernstein Medical Center for Hair Restoration that included 416 men with male pattern hair loss between the ages of 21 and 45 showed that Dutasteride was more effective than Finasteride.

The men were given various doses of Dutasteride, 5 mg of Finasteride, or a placebo each day for 24 weeks. The results showed that those who took 2.5 mg of Dutasteride had better results than those who were taking 5mg of finasteride.

On average, the men in the study could grow around 109.6 hairs while taking 2.5 mg of Dutasteride and those taking 5mg of Finasteride only grew 75.6 hairs.

What Do Customers Have to Say About Avodart?

Although Avodart is known for having potential side effects that can be very dangerous, the drug has received many positive reviews from all types of users.

Those who have seen the best results taking Avodart are on the 0.5mg pill. Testimonials include pros such as hair growing back thicker and fuller, few side effects, and reduced body hair growth.

But there is also an equal amount of reviews where users say that they have experienced a low sperm count, issues with their libido, and even some who have had their equilibrium thrown off.

And there are also many who experienced no good or bad effects at all. They still had thinning hair even after taking the drug each day for months.

Overall, most users will agree that Avodart is far more effective than Propecia, and there are plenty of clinical trials that back up those opinions.

Recent Studies Supporting the Use of Avodart

Although the drug is not approved in the US to treat male pattern baldness, many studies have been performed to find out how effective Dutasteride is in curing hair loss.

A study published on PubMed.gov in 2007 compared the effectiveness of Dutasteride in treatment of male pattern hair loss on identical twins. Seventeen pairs of twins were used in the study that took place over one year.

In the randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled study one twin was given 0.5mg of Avodart each day for 12 months while the other twin took a placebo.

The study looked at hair growth using before and after photos, hair counts and patient surveys.

The result of the study showed that Dutasteride improved the hair growth of the men taking the drug over the course of a year in comparison to their identical twin brothers who took the placebo.

Sixteen out of the seventeen sets of twins who participated in the study could easily determine who took the real drug and who took the placebo.

The clinical trial proved that Dutasteride reduced hair loss progression in men who had male pattern hair loss.

Another study performed in 2010 looked at the efficacy, safety, and the tolerability of Avodart 0.5mg. The goal of this trial was to look at the effects of the drug as well as how effective it was in treating male pattern hair loss.

153 men between the ages of 18 and 49 took part in the study. They randomly received 0.5mg of Dutasteride or a placebo for six months. Scientists looked at changes in hair counts, subject assessment, and before and after images.

Those who took Avodart during the six-month trial had a significant difference in hair growth and they also were all able to tolerate the drug well.

The Potential Dangers of Using Avodart

While there is a lot of talk about the side effects of taking Dutasteride, they are very similar to side effects from taking finasteride.

The reason side effects are so common with these drugs is because 5-alpha reductase inhibitors don’t simply reduce your DHT levels in the scalp.

They also reduce the levels of DHT all throughout your system. Which means that your hormone levels will be lower, which can cause issues such as…

  1. Impotence
  2. Low Libido
  3. Difficulty achieving orgasm
  4. Irregular ejaculation
  5. Low Testosterone
  6. Low Sperm Count

Since Dutasteride is stronger than finasteride, and can reduce DHT levels by as much as 95 percent (compared to finasteride 71 percent average), those who take Avodart instead of Propecia are more likely to experience these and other side effects.

While some men may be willing to live with low libido or a decrease in testosterone levels to regrow their hair, Dutasteride can also cause other, more serious, and life-threatening side-effects to occur.

The drug has been linked to an increase of high-grade prostate cancer over the years. That is because it can temporarily reduce the growth of benign tumors located on the prostate.

That masks the detection of early stage prostate cancer and delays the diagnosis until it is essentially too late.

Increased chances of side effects compared to placebo from 0-24 months

How Can I Get Avodart?

Recently the FDA completed the Phase II hair loss study for Avodart/Dutasteride. The results were released at the American Academy of Dermatology meeting held in San Francisco.

The results were very convincing, and the Phase III trials that looked at the drug’s effect on Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia have also been completed and are ready to be submitted to the FDA sometime this year.

This means that Avodart may be approved and marketed for hair loss sometime next year.

Until then, you can’t get Avodart prescribed to you by your doctor, unless you need it for other reasons pertaining to an enlarged prostate.

There are some places online where you can find more information on where to purchase the drug from an overseas provider, but you should do that at your own discretion.

Conclusion

Avodart has been shown in more than one clinical trial that it is a powerful alternative to Propecia in terms of reversing hair loss in men.

However, the fact that it is so strong also means that it comes with some serious side effects as well. Plus, it has yet to be approved by the FDA, at least for now.

Is Your Hair Loss Reversible?

Question 1 (of 6)

How many years have you had hair loss for?
Select the number of years below.

Inside Elon Musk’s Hair Transformation – How Did He Do It?

  • June 21, 2017 /
Before and after hair transplant

Elon Musk is a man of extraordinary accomplishments. He’s been in the limelight for over two decades, a period during which, along with unprecedented entrepreneurial success, has seen him undergo normal physical transformation just like any other man.

But did you know that Mr. Musk once sported a balding head? Well, going by his latest look, you might be forgiven for thinking that the man has always had a full head of hair.

Hairs along Elon's hairline appear to be transplanted

Bonus: Check to see if your type of hair loss is reversible by taking my new 6 question quiz at the bottom of this article.

Comparing the Past to the Present

A good way to capture Elon Musk’s remarkable transformation might be to take you back to the mid-90s when he first become famous for his business successes.

At the time, it was clear to anyone who cared to look that he was fast losing hair at the front third of his head.

Perhaps the first picture, taken some time around the unveiling of PayPal, best illustrates the state of his hair back then.

His bare front scalp can be seen in the second picture, taken alongside his first wife, Justin Musk. At the time, he was in his late 20s.

Elon Musk and Peter Thiel launching PayPal. Musk has noticeable thinning and receding throughout the top of his head.

Although most of the hair loss was concentrated around his crown, a closer look reveals he was gradually losing hair all over his head. You will notice that his hair was particularly thin above both his ears.

In fact, the nature of his hair loss ruled out the possibility of male pattern baldness, which is usually characterized by a receding hairline while the hair on other parts of the head remains relatively thicker.

It’s highly likely that Elon Musk would now be at Norwood stage 5 or 6 had he not decided to do something about it.

Enter 2012 with Elon talking about having fun with his new car:

What Kind of Hair Restoration Did Elon Musk Use?

That Elon Musk did something to his hair is not in doubt. The big question has to do with what exactly it is that he did that brought about thick, frizzy hair after just a couple of years.

Like many business magnates in Silicon Valley, he must have had several options owing to pretty deep pockets and worldwide connections. It’s important to note that the man himself has never publicly revealed the details of the hair restoration technique or some other cosmetic development that he tapped.

This brings us to the analysis of two of the most plausible techniques that he might have turned to.

1: Hair Loss Medication

Finasteride and Minoxidil are two of the most recommended hair loss medications currently in the market.

Although it’s possible that Elon Musk’s remarkable hair restoration has been brought about by the use of such drugs, it’s important to point out that they merely stop further hair loss rather than stimulating the growth of new follicles.

Besides, they are ridden with side effects such as skin rash, swelling, and even impotence.

In addition, Elon Musk would have to take the meds for an extended period of time.

2: Hair Transplant

This is by far the most plausible technique the tech guru must have tapped. Hair transplants are incredibly advanced.

So much so that such surgical procedures take just a few minutes, depending on the extent of hair loss in a patient.

Real hair follicles (donor’s hair)are simply transferred from one section of the scalp to another with the help of very sharp scalpels.

Was Elon Musk A Good Candidate for A Hair Transplant?

A good candidate for a hair transplant is someone with a sufficient, stable supply of donor’s hair, enough to cover the balding areas as well as any other areas that might lose hair in the future.

Individuals past the age of thirty are particularly fit for hair transplants as their hair loss patterns are usually well established compared to younger patients.

Mr. Musk definitely had lots of donor’s hair at the back of his head, going by his pre-restoration pictures. He had lost a significant amount of hair at the front of his head as well as around his temples.

Discover If Your Hair Loss Is Reversible
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So, it’s A Hair Transplant! FUT or FUE?

Elon Musk may be mum about his hair, but all indications point towards a hair transplant. In fact, qualified surgeons like Dr. Yates, based in Chicago, contend that Elon Musk most likely went under the scalpel.

Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT) and Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) are both credible methods used during hair transplants.

FUE technique takes small grafts of 2-3 hairs at a time from the back of the head and transplants them to the front

While the former involves removing a strip of hair from the back of the head, dissecting it and implanting it into the balding area, the latter involves harvesting of individual hair follicles which are then directly implanted onto the specified area.

An FUE transplant along the hairline, right after surgery

FUT leaves behind a linear scar at the donor site which has to be tended to for a period of time after surgery, but FUE leaves little or no scarring.

FUT can leave a linear transplant scar

Besides, there is minimal downtime. And that’s why our money is on Follicular unit extraction with respect to Elon Musk’s hair.

The FUT strip harvesting method

How Long Did the Procedure Take?

FUE takes place over a number of sessions, with each session taking 3-4 hours.

Spreading the transplantation over several sessions would allow for the visibility of the hair transplant to be concealed.

This in part explains why no one seems to have noticed any sign of a transplant in the case of Elon Musk, despite the SpaceX mastermind being heavily involved in public events throughout the last couple of years.

Did He Need the Hair Transplant?

“Need” might be too strong a word in the context of Elon Musk’s hair restoration.

Although hair transplants among celebrities are usually controversial, most of them are driven by human hair’s incredible aesthetic power.

In fact, a study featured in the National Library of Medicine confirms this. Elon Musk’s hair possibly didn’t need a facelift, but his decision can be well understood in the context of a celebrated personality determined to put forward his best image.

Did It Hurt?

The mere thought of someone literally harvesting your hair may trick you into thinking that the process is excruciating.

Yet it is not!

Elon Musk must have been administered an anesthesia prior to the procedure, which is standard practice across the board.

That should have effectively obliterated any possibility of pain. 

How Much Did Elon Musk Pay for His Hair Transplant?

As a billionaire, Elon Musk definitely had enough resources to put paid to his hair loss.

In a diverse hair transplant market with hundreds of clinics and surgeons offering hair restoration services, it might be difficult to quote the exact amount of money Mr. Musk dished out.

However, the average cost of hair transplant surgeries is around $10,000. That figure may be lower or higher depending on the number of grafts an individual needs.

It may be safe to assume that Elon Musk paid more than that, in part because as a celebrity, he must have sought the services of only the best hair surgeons in the world.

That would have enabled him to keep the entire foray discrete, away from scrutiny by the media and paparazzi.

Will His Hair Fall off after Some Time?

It might be important to note that a hair transplant is not a ticket to perpetually thick, voluminous hair.

The procedure helps to restore hair that’s already lost, but it cannot shield an individual from future baldness. In addition, the harvested grafts must be strong and healthy.

Otherwise, they may die soon after implantation, rendering the entire procedure ineffective. And that definitely applies to Elon Musk.

However, hair transplants are incredibly durable, more so when the procedure is carried out by a qualified and experienced physician.

Provided the tech guru went out for the very best, you should not expect to notice a low hairline on his head anytime soon.

Elon Musk’s decision to go for a hair transplant may be debatable. But one thing stands out: He is proof that balding men can have the hair of their youthful days restored.

His incredible transformation confirms that it’s possible to create an astonishing natural appearance thanks to advancement in medical expertise and technology.

Is Your Hair Loss Reversible?

Question 1 (of 6)

How many years have you had hair loss for?
Select the number of years below.

The 5 Best ‘Makeup Solutions’ to Cover Bald Spots!

  • June 20, 2017 /
Scalp micropigmentation is a semi-permanent solution to a bald spot

In this article you’ll learn how to cover up a bald spot using ‘makeup’. You’ll learn the 3 most effective temporary, and semi-permanent solutions to making your hair look thick and full.

At the end of this article I’ll also introduce you to some of the more natural methods (no ‘makeup’) and long term solutions to the problem of hair loss and bald patches.

When you finish the article I highly recommend taking my 6 question quiz to find out if your type of hair loss is reversible.

Introduction

But first, a study showed that those who looked at photos of people with full hair versus a bald condition rated the men with full hair more dynamic, masculine and dominant.

And a survey showed that 62 percent of men who had hair loss in the survey agreed that it could affect self-esteem, and 43 percent said that losing hair caused concern about “losing an important part of personal attractiveness.”

In women, hair loss can be even more devastating in a culture that isn’t as accepting of baldness in women as it is in men.

Dr. Shani Francis, a fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology and director of the Hair Disorders Center of Excellence at Northshore University HealthSystem in Illinois, told Medical News Today that hair loss in women can be linked to lower self-esteem and an altered self-image.

It can even lead to depression and less enjoyable socializing.

So depending on how you personally view baldness, it may be imperative to cover up bald spots.

Inventive ways to cover bald spots abound; from concealers to sprays, there are solutions that help with every level of thinning hair.

So whether you’re looking to cover some slight thinning or more extensive bald spots, below are some of the top cosmetic options to make hair appear thicker

Hair Loss Concealers

One of the most popular types of makeup for covering bald spots is hair loss concealers. These can include popular brands like TOPPIK, Bosley and CUVVA.

Mainly, these products are colored Keratin proteins that are statically charged.

See the video below on how quickly and effectively it works:

In most cases, you spray the product on and it intertwines with existing hair, and then you pat it down. That makes the hair appear thicker.

Here’s a before and after photo using Bosley concealer:

Bosley concealer makes hair look thicker

Many of these products are also made to be resistant to wind, sweat and rain. But then they wash out with shampoo easily.

Because the product intertwines with hair, it’s the best option for hair that is mildly to moderately thinning.

Mineral Makeup

If you have a specific bald patch on your hair that’s on the more mild side, this popular trick might be an easy option. It’s an especially neat option for thinning hair where the hair part is getting wide and you can prominently see the scalp.

For this you’ll just need a mineral face powder. The mineral powder is helpful because the inorganic nature makes it stick to skin better, even while sweating.

You’ll also want a powder that will match your hair colour, for instance a dark brown powder to go with dark brown hair. If you can’t find the exact shade of your hair, go a bit darker.

Here’s how to easily apply mineral makeup to cover bald spots:

  •      You’ll apply using a puff or makeup sponge.
  •      Dab the powder directly onto the bald spot using the puff or sponge.
  •      Make sure to spread the makeup well into the surrounding hair itself to blend.

What you’ll notice as you dab is that the powder adheres to the scalp. It’ll darken that spot so it looks far less noticeable.

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Eye Shadow

Very similar in nature to the mineral makeup, another popular trick to hide bald spots is to use a simple eye shadow.

This is a good trick for smaller bald patches up near the front of the hair that need some light filling in, since eye shadow comes in smaller containers.

This is also a better way to get a colour that matches your hair more closely, since eye shadow comes in every colour imaginable.

Here’s how to use eye shadow to cover bald spots:

  •      For this you’ll use a stiff, short bristle makeup brush.
  •      You’ll apply using the brush, lightly painting the eye shadow on in streaks to begin with.
  •      Then blend out the colour with your finger.

It’s one of the easiest options for covering bald spots with makeup.

Here’s a quick video to show you exactly how it can work:

Temporary Dye Sprays

If you’re not into dumping makeup on your head, another easy cosmetic way to cover bald spots is what’s essentially spray paint. But for your scalp.

These are usually sold as products that temporarily cover gray spots.

You can buy these in shades that match your hair colour, making it a more customizable option than the mineral powder would be. These are also made to be long lasting throughout the day, and then you wash them out at night.

You’ll simply spray it where the hair thinning is going on.

You’ll want to hit the scalp as directly as you can. That will add colour to the scalp, making the bald spot less noticeable overall.

Here’s a before and after photo using Gray Away:

Gray Away hair dye can help bald spots look less obvious

Again, since this adds color in and around already existing hair, it’s a good option if you have more mildly thinning hair, especially cases where the hair part looks too wide or spotty.

Scalp Micropigmentation

All of these options have been good for mild to moderate hair thinning. But what are you to do if you have more extensive hair loss?

That’s where scalp micropigmentation comes in. It’s not exactly using a traditional makeup to cover bald spots, but it fits firmly in the cosmetic category.

Scalp micropigmentation is a very fancy term for a hair tattoo. It places pigment in the dermal layer of the skin, leaving the scalp looking like the person simply has a very close-cropped buzz cut.

According to a study from The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, “Scalp micropigmentation offers a good nonsurgical alternative treatment for hair and scalp deformities….

Unlike medical devices, scalp micropigmentation offers a tattoo-based, non-medical ‘cover-up’ that effectively hides unsightly conditions on the scalp and creates the illusion of thicker hair.”

The study goes on to state that it’s a solid option for the most stubborn of balding cases like alopecias that have not been responsive to treatment.

Here are pictures of before and after scalp micropigmentation from the study:

Semi permanent scalp micropigmentation helps to cover bald spots from diffuse hair loss

As you can see, there is a noticeable difference from before and after the procedure. Much less scalp is visible.

However, under a strong light, the scalp does look a bit strange, and it almost looks like the scalp is dirty.

A Better Solution Than Using Makeup

Using makeup to cover a bald spot is a temporary solution. It also clear that none of the above are in any way perfect.

They also take a lot of time and money to maintain.

After all, do you really want to have to spray your hair with concealer everyday?

Luckily you’ve come to the right place because I’ve spent 4 years researching how to naturally reverse hair loss.

So, instead of trying to cover up your bald spot, let me tell you that it is possible to regrow your hair.

Yes… it is harder!

And it takes much longer than simply applying some makeup or dyeing your hair.

But, in the long term, this is really the only solution.

And it is possible!

I know because I’ve done it, and I’ve also helped others naturally regrow their hair too.

Of course, you can still use the cosmetic procedures I’ve talked about here while you wait for the regrowth to happen.

But I highly recommend you put your focus on natural regrowth, rather than just trying to cover up the problem.

For example, here at Hair Loss Revolution we take a multi-pronged approach to tackling the problem.

This involves:

  • Diet changes to reduce inflammation, eliminate nutrient deficiencies and optimise the body for hair growth.
  • Lifestyle changes to eliminate the triggers of hair loss (things like hot showers, shampoos etc)
  • Scalp solutions – making your scalp healthy again and the perfect environment for hair growth. Healthy scalp, healthy hair. We have homemade mixtures that can be applied to the scalp to stimulate hair growth.
  • Scalp massages and exercises as a powerful way to increase blood flow to the hair follicles and massively increase hair growth

You can find out all about these methods by browsing the articles on our blog.

I also recommend taking the quiz below to find out if your type of hair loss is reversible.

Is Your Hair Loss Reversible?

Question 1 (of 6)

How many years have you had hair loss for?
Select the number of years below.

Sebum Buildup – The 3 BIG Causes & 2 Steps To Getting Rid Of It!

  • June 19, 2017 /
Unhealthy scalp leads to unhealthy hair

If you want to have thick, healthy hair, you must have a healthy scalp! Scalp sebum build-up is a sign that your scalp is not healthy and this may lead to hair loss if not treated properly.

In this post, I’ll share all I know about sebum buildup and its connection to hair loss. I’ll outline the process and causes, as well as show you the two-step method of ridding your hair of sebum buildup once and for all.

BONUS: Take the one-minute quiz located at the end of the article to learn more about the causes of your hair loss, as well as what you can do to treat and reverse it.

What is Sebum?

Sebum is the medical term for skin oils that are produced from microscopic sebaceous glands found under the surface of the skin.

This guide will touch upon sebum found within the scalp, however it’s also produced in great quantity on the face, and is produced elsewhere on the body (except the palms of your hands and soles of your feet).

Sebum buildup on the scalp

The production of sebum is natural and necessary, as it provides the scalp and hair with moisturization and keeps the scalp’s delicate pH in balance. Though, as you’ll see, too much of a good thing isn’t a good thing in and of itself.

Can Sebum Buildup Cause Hair Loss?

Sebum buildup on the hairAs with many functions of the human body, sebum production is a process that requires balance.

If too little sebum is produced, the hair becomes brittle and and the scalp becomes dry. If too much sebum is produced, the scalp becomes overwhelmed by oil and the hair follicles become clogged.

So, in short, yes; sebum buildup can cause hair loss. Now, let’s take a closer look.

Sebum Buildup and Hair Loss: Understanding the Process

The growth of hair is a process that takes part in stages.

Stage 1: Anagen – The stage of active growth, wherein hair bulbs form and hair pushes through the scalp.

Stage 2: Catagen – The stage of transition, wherein the hair follicle begins to be pushed from the papilla.

Stage 3: Telogen – The stage of rest, wherein hair begins to fall from the scalp to make room for new, anagen phase hair growths.

However, many things can disrupt the hair growth cycle and lead to premature thinning and hair loss. One such thing is sebum buildup, and here’s how:

Sebum, as mentioned above, is produced from sebaceous glands. These glands are connected to the hair follicles, and they release sebum from the same pores that produce hair.

A diagram of the sebaceous gland

When excess oil is produced, the sebum has nowhere to go. This leads to a buildup within the pore, known as a sebum ball or plug, which then impacts the hair follicle and the hair growth cycle.

A diagram showing sebum buildup and blockage

If buildup is allowed to remain to the point of blockage, inflammation is common. This is because the pore and hair follicle become irritated.

Even if the current hair growth cycle continues to completion (telogen), a new cycle may be hindered from starting. This is because there is simply no room within the pore for new hair to form and grow.

What Causes Sebum Buildup on the Scalp?

While any number of medical conditions and environmental factors can contribute to the buildup of scalp sebum, the three causes listed below are the most common.

Androgenetic Alopecia

Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA) is the most common form of hair loss.

AGA is believed to be triggered by DHT, a natural hormone found within the body. Unfortunately, those with AGA are sensitive to the hormone, and this triggers a process known as hair follicle miniaturization.

DHT effect on the hair follicle

As miniaturization occurs, the sebaceous gland grows. This means that more oil is produced and sebum buildup becomes more likely.

Unfortunately, this only continues the cycle of hair loss. As more sebum is present within the scalp, more DHT is trapped within the follicles. If untreated at the earliest signs, it can be difficult (even impossible) to reverse.

(Do you know the early signs of balding? Learn more here.)

Poor Diet

High-fat, greasy foods are a large part of the modern Western diet. This can contribute significantly to the overproduction of sebum, and can trigger irritation, inflammation, and blockage of the hair follicle.

Of course, the best way to combat this is to reduce (or completely cut out) greasy foods.

You can also add in a number of foods that are known to alkalize the bloodstream and, therefore, alkalize the scalp’s pH.

Improper Hygiene

It’s commonly believed that washing your hair too little can lead to an oily scalp; actually, washing your hair too much is more likely to cause overproduction of sebum.

When you wash your hair with shop-bought products, you strip your hair and scalp of natural oils. This means the sebum must be replaced, and the sebaceous gland activates.

Washing your hair too frequently leads to a constant production of sebum. This means you’ll need to wash your hair more often, and the cycle continues.

A man washing his hair in the shower

There are two things you can do to break the cycle.

First, you can cut down on the frequency of hair washing. This will vary by individual, though I recommend four times per week at the most.

Second, you can switch to gentle, homemade shampoos.

The ingredients in such shampoos are not as harsh, so your natural oils won’t be completely stripped away. This cuts down on sebaceous gland activities, and ensures your scalp has the right amount of oil.

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The 2-Step Guide to Reducing and Preventing Sebum Buildup

If sebum is causing your hair loss, then you’ll be happy to know that there are a few things you can do to combat it.

Step 1. Remove Excess Sebum from the Scalp

To prevent the continued loss of hair, you’ll first need to remove the sebum that’s present.

I recommend the use of a salicylic acid peel, which is best used after a cleansing shampoo.

Salicylic Acid Peel

Ingredients:

  • Salicylic acid (15% solution or less)
  • Coconut oil

Directions:

Once your hair has been shampooed and rinsed thoroughly, apply coconut oil to the entirety of your scalp. Allow to sit on your scalp for 30 minutes.

With a pipette or eye dropper, apply the salicylic acid to your scalp in sections. Pay particular attention to trouble areas (such as those with dandruff or noticeable thinning).

An eye dropper collecting liquid from a bottle

Allow the acid to sit on your scalp for 10 minutes, and then rinse completely. Peel away any excess salicylic acid that has been left behind.

Hair Benefits:

Salicylic acid is known to thoroughly cleanse pores and remove any buildup or residue. Unfortunately, it also has a drying effect.

With coconut oil applied beforehand, however, you can prevent your scalp from being entirely stripped or moisture.

(Learn more about coconut oil’s many benefits for hair growth.)

This simple combination, then, thoroughly removes sebum plugs while also hydrating the scalp and hair.

Step 2. Prevent Buildup from Returning

With the excess sebum now removed from your scalp, the follicles can heal and the hair growth cycle can restart. But how can you prevent this buildup from returning in the future?

First, I don’t recommend any kind of normal shampoo. Although this may temporarily help your scalp feel clean, the chemicals that are used in this process only end up damaging the scalp in the long term.

My favourite and most simple solution is to just use a few teaspoons of apple cider vinegar diluted in water and massaged into the scalp during a shower.

Doing this a few times a week is a much better option than any kind of fancy shampoo.

Use apple cider vinegar to wash hair and gently clean the scalp

It will also help any hair loss problems tremendously.

Second, you must find and treat the underlying cause of your excess sebum production. Only then can you ensure that you’re protected against further buildup and blockage.

But how can you go about finding the cause?

This will take a bit of time and patience on your end, but here are two steps that I suggest:

  1. Do an elimination diet. When eating a varied diet, it can be difficult to know what (if anything) is causing your issues. An elimination diet will enable you to find the exact food groups that may be triggering sebum overproduction so you can purge them.
  2. Remove chemicals from your hair care routine. A number of chemicals found in popular, store-bought products – including shampoos, conditioners, gels, and serums – can mask symptoms. While this is helpful in the short term, this can cause permanent issues (even irreversible hair loss) in the future.

While the above two steps aren’t the only ways to pinpoint the cause, they can help to clear up a lot of uncertainties and provide you with the answer you seek.

Changing Your Diet To Prevent Scalp Sebum Build Up In The First Place

Let me be absolutely clear about this…

To get rid of scalp sebum (reduce it to an acceptable level) you must improve your diet.

If your diet isn’t right, your body will continue to produce excessive amounts of oil (and toxins) and excrete them through the scalp causing a lot of scalp and hair issues.

Cleaning up your diet will lead to a drastically better and healthier scalp, and allow you to regrow your hair naturally.

I can’t go into too much detail in this article, because I’ve written about diet in other articles, however I will give you some of my best tips now.

Firstly, reduce unhealthy oil intake and replace them with natural, healthy oils.

So…

Stoping eating fried foods, stop cooking with vegetable oils. Also cut down on your intake of processed meats as well as grilled or fried high fat meats.

Coconut contains a natural form of tocopherol as well as other beneficial hair growing substances

Replace those unhealthy fats with fats from coconut, avocado, nuts, seeds and cold water fish.

Secondly, start each morning with 1 pint of warm water, containing the fresh juice of 2 lemons.

Warm lemon water helps to clean the digestive tract

This will help to sweep through your digestive system, clearing out any gunk and grime left over from the foods before. This also helps your body remove toxins and process foods more efficiently.

Thirdly, try a vegetable juice detox. This is my favourite way to quickly clean out the body and stop the build up of sebum on the scalp from the inside-out.

Learn more about the detox here.

Conclusion

The buildup of sebum on your scalp can be embarrassing; after all, it will leave your hair oily and lackluster. However, it can also lead to hair thinning and loss if allowed to continue.

Fortunately, the steps outlined above can get you started on treating the issue.

The main point here is that excessive sebum buildup can cause hair loss, but using natural methods, such as changes in diet and apple cider vinegar for shampoo, will help the problem.

If you’re in need of a bit of extra help, be sure to take the quiz below.

The results will help you to pinpoint the cause of your hair loss so you can treat the underlying issue.

Is Your Hair Loss Reversible?

Question 1 (of 6)

How many years have you had hair loss for?
Select the number of years below.

5 Ways To REVERSE Low Progesterone Related Hair Loss!

  • June 16, 2017 /
Progesterone capsules

Hormones – like testosterone and estrogen – can play a key role in hair thinning and loss. However, progesterone is another such hormone, and low levels can lead to hair loss in both men and women.

In this article, I’m going to discuss the role that progesterone plays in hair loss. While it tends to play a bigger role in female hair loss, low levels of the hormone can affect males just the same.

I’ll discuss the common causes of progesterone-related hair loss, as well as the treatment most recommended by doctors.

In addition, I’ll touch upon FIVE ways you can naturally increase the levels of progesterone within your body. This will lessen the impact of progesterone-related hair loss, and may even enable you to regrow lost hair.

NOTE: Be sure to read to the end of the article so you can take the six-question hair loss quiz provided below. The results will help you to better understand the causes of your hair loss, and tell you which treatments are best for you.

What is Progesterone?

Progesterone is a natural steroid and sex hormone that is produced within both female and male bodies.

It plays a more significant role in women (and is, therefore, present in larger quantities), but is also a precursor to testosterone in men and is necessary for their reproductive health.

The chemical structure of the hormone progesterone

Progesterone is typically produced by the ovaries at the end of the menstrual cycle. This helps to keep the cycle in check, and it also leads to the production of estrogen and cortisone.

How is Progesterone Linked to Hair Loss?

As a vital hormone, progesterone contributes to a number of important functions within the body. For women, this includes the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, and menopause.

A lack of progesterone (either partial or total) can lead to a variety of health issues, including hair loss. But why?

In the case of hair loss, progesterone is actually a natural inhibitor of 5-alpha-reductase. This is an enzyme that converts testosterone into DHT, and DHT is believed to be the main cause of pattern hair loss in both men and women.

Without the presence of progesterone (or with not enough), 5AR is able to perform its converting activities. This means more DHT is produced, triggering further hair thinning and loss in those with Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA).

Symptoms of Low Progesterone Levels

As treatment of pattern hair loss is most effective in the beginning stages, it’s important to know what to look for if you suspect low progesterone levels.

In females, symptoms include:

  • Low sex drive
  • Menstrual cycle irregularity
  • Hot flashes
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Migraines

In males, the symptoms are as followed:

  • Low libido
  • Increased body fat (especially in abdomen and chest)
  • Depression
  • Exhaustion and fatigue
  • Decreased facial hair

If you suspect low progesterone levels are causing your symptoms above, the it’s best to seek the help of a doctor.

With a few simple tests, more serious conditions can be ruled out and your doctor can help you to come up with a treatment plan.

What Causes Low Progesterone Levels?

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

PCOS is a common condition that affects women. The condition leads to the enlargement of ovaries and the presence of ovarian cysts, and it can cause irregular menstrual cycles and infertility as a result.

In women with PCOS, low progesterone levels are always present. This is because women with PCOS tend to ovulate irregularly (sometimes not at all), and progesterone is released during ovulation.

Progesterone levels throughout the menstrual cycle

Without ovulation, progesterone cannot be produced.

In addition, women diagnosed with PCOS are also at greater risk of developing diabetes or insulin resistance. This is because insulin resistance can also contribute to low progesterone levels, though the reasons for such a link are not currently known.

Illness and Medications

The body is a delicate system. As such, it’s possible for illnesses and medications to wreak havoc and cause irregular hormone production.

Medications that may cause low progesterone levels include steroids, hormone treatments, and oral contraceptives.

In many cases, such medications intentionally cause low progesterone levels; and, while this can treat certain conditions or prevent pregnancy (in the case of birth control pills), it can also lead to issues in women who already suffer from lower-than-average progesterone.

Chronic Stress and Anxiety

Hormones interact with human cells by docking to locations on the cells known as hormone receptors. In many cases, these receptors can accept a variety of different hormones.

This is true in the case of progesterone and cortisol, two hormones that dock to the same receptors within the cell.

In individuals with chronic stress or anxiety, coritsol levels increase within the body. This means that cortisol is taking up more receptors than usual, and it can lead to low progesterone levels as the hormone is unable to dock.

Menopause

While this is a natural phenomena, it’s also one that can lead to low progesterone levels and, as a result, hair loss.

As ovulation ceases during menopause, the production of progesterone slows. This means estrogen becomes the predominant hormone, and this can cause a number of uncomfortable symptoms.

Estrogen Dominance – An Epidemic

I mentioned above that estrogen dominance can occur during menopause. However, it can at other times, too; and, it can affect both men and women.

In recent decades, the use of estrogen-containing products has increased.

These products most famously include plastics (found in food containers) and parabens (found in cosmetics), but even the estrogen found in birth control pills and other medications is making its way to water sources and contaminating drinking water.

But what does this have to do with progesterone?

As mentioned previously, hormones work to balance each other. When estrogen is continually consumed, however, it can become difficult for progesterone to keep up.

The effects of estrogen and progesterone on the female body

Symptoms of estrogen dominance are similar to symptoms of low progesterone; but, they can also include:

  • Water retention
  • Weight/fat gain
  • Mood swings
  • Thyroid dysfunction
  • Foggy mind
  • Insomnia

In addition to the above symptoms, hair loss can also occur.

Progesterone Therapy for Hair Loss

If it has been determined that low progesterone levels (or estrogen dominance) are the cause of your hair loss, then your doctor may recommend progesterone therapy.

When you undergo progesterone therapy, you receive either an oral or topical dose of progesterone (or both, depending on the severity of the issue and aggressiveness of treatment).

This will help to increase the body’s levels of progesterone, and bring the hormone levels back into balance.

Prometrium progesterone capsules

Prometrium is a popular progesterone brand.

As progesterone plays a larger role in the production of DHT in women, progesterone therapy is a common treatment method. It can have positive results in men, but progesterone treatment is typically not the first route recommended by doctors in males.

If progesterone therapy is prescribed by your doctor, a few brands that may be recommended include:

  • Prometrium
  • Estrace
  • Estradot
  • Androgel
  • Climara
  • Estragel

With the help of your doctor, you can choose the right medication.

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Can Men Use Progesterone Therapy to Treat Hair Loss?

As mentioned above, progesterone therapy is typically recommended for women experiencing pattern hair loss. However, there are men who use this treatment – either alone or in conjunction with other methods – and see positive results.

Progesterone is a precursor to testosterone, but it can also help to inhibit the activities of 5-alpha-reductase (the enzyme that converts testosterone to DHT).

If you do decide to go ahead with progesterone therapy, I recommend adding in a few other methods. For example, you could add other 5AR inhibitors to your hair care routine and diet, or even add in such practices as microneedling and scalp massage.

5 Ways to Naturally Increase Progesterone Production

If you believe you’re suffering from low progesterone levels, it’s best to consult your physician.

However, there are things you can do on your own to increase progesterone production and lessen (or even completely stop) the symptoms associated with this condition.

1. Avoid Estrogen-Increasing Foods

As mentioned above, when there is more estrogen present within your body than progesterone, this can lead to a condition known as estrogen dominance. If not kept in check, this can further lower the levels of progesterone and lead to further hair loss.

Phytoestrogens are naturally-occurring estrogens that are derived from plants. When consumed, these can lead to an increase in estrogen levels within the body.

Apricots and cranberries in a bowl

Apricots and cranberries contain phytoestrogens.

Foods that contain high levels of phytoestrogen include:

  • Soy
  • Peas
  • Cranberries
  • Prunes
  • Apricots
  • Oregano
  • Sage
  • Flaxseed

Does this mean you should avoid the above foods altogether? Absolutely not.

The foods listed above all include a variety of health benefits. However, it’s important to eat a balanced diet, and keep an eye on your intake levels of the above foods.

2. Take Control of Stress

The more stress you experience, the higher the levels of cortisol within your body. This then means that progesterone is unable to interact with your cells as required, and this can lead to hair thinning and loss.

Fortunately, there are natural ways to reduce stress levels.

One of the easiest – and most efficient – ways to reduce stress on a regular basis is controlled breathing and meditation.

Meditation

Meditation can lower stress levels, leading to reduced levels of cortisol.

Both practices enable you to take control of your body, and they can be practiced anywhere at anytime.

3. Consume Foods With the Right Vitamins and Minerals

As mentioned, a balanced diet can do much to decrease estrogen levels and bring your progesterone back into check.

However, if your low progesterone levels aren’t related to high estrogen, then there are more considerations to make. Let’s take a look, then, at the vitamins which can contribute directly to progesterone production.

Vitamin B

Vitamin B plays a key role in the metabolism of estrogen in the liver. With improper metabolizing of estrogen, more would be present within the body. This would lead to hormonal imbalance and lowered levels of progesterone.

While this vitamin cannot be produced by the human body, there are a number of foods you can add to your diet to boost vitamin B levels. These include:

  • Beef liver
  • Tuna
  • Salmon
  • Potato
  • Ground beef
  • Cottage cheese

The great thing is is that all of these foods can be easily incorporated into your regular diet.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a vital human nutrient, and it contributes greatly to the production and repair of collagen.

In addition, vitamin C has been shown to increase the levels of progesterone within the female body, and is a great supplement for those with low progesterone levels.

Zinc

Zinc is an antioxidant, but recent study findings also suggest it may be able to regulate the production of progesterone.

While further research is needed, the present study showed that depletion of zinc contributed to ovarian dysfunction in female mice.

4. Maintain a Healthy Weight

Excess weight can put stress on the body, and this can lead to hormonal imbalances.

To bring your hormones back into alignment, then, it’s important to maintain a healthy weight.

For the majority of individuals, this can be done through exercise and healthy eating. However, it’s best to consult with your physician prior to the start of a new diet or exercise regimen.

5. Get Glucose Levels Under Control

With insulin resistance linked to low progesterone absorption, it’s vital that you get your glucose levels under control.

Of course, this will likely require the help of an endocrinologist and perhaps even a registered dietitian.

Conclusion

If your hair loss is related to low levels of progesterone, you’ll be happy to know that you don’t have to live with the effects. There are many treatments that can help to increase progesterone levels, and this can put an end to pattern hair loss in both men and women.

While I do believe that the use of progesterone medications can be helpful for individuals combating progesterone-related hair loss, I do recommend you consider the natural methods outlined above.

In addition, my popular course Hair Equilibrium can help you to better understand the role that diet plays in hair loss, and what you can do to combat your hair loss naturally.

And, don’t forget to take the quiz below! In just one minute, you can learn the most likely cause of your hair loss and – most importantly – the steps you can take to stop and perhaps even reverse it.

Is Your Hair Loss Reversible?

Question 1 (of 6)

How many years have you had hair loss for?
Select the number of years below.

Apple Cider Vinegar for Hair Loss – 5 Ways I Used It To Regrow My Hair!

  • June 15, 2017 /
Apple cider vinegar for hair loss

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) is an all-natural health supplement that has been gaining popularity in recent years. One reason for this is due to its hair benefits, enabling you to cleanse your scalp and hair follicles and accelerate hair growth.

In this post, I’ll introduce you to apple cider vinegar and its variety of uses. This will include a look at the five ways in which ACV can combat hair loss.

In addition, you’ll learn four ways to add ACV to your hair care routine and how to use this supplement most effectively.

BONUS: Once you’ve read through the article, I recommend you take the six-question hair loss quiz at the end. The results will tell you more about your hair loss (including whether it’s reversible), and this will help you to determine if apple cider vinegar is the right treatment option for you.

The Rise of Apple Cider Vinegar

As a centuries old folk remedy, apple cider vinegar has been used for a variety of medicinal and cosmetic purposes around the world.

Apple cider vinegar in a bottle with apples

This supplement contains a number of beneficial minerals and nutrients, including vitamins b and c, and niacin. In addition, it contains malic acid, acetic acid, and citric acid – all which have their own benefits.

In recent years, apple cider vinegar has grown in popularity among the health and wellness community. That’s because there are many general health benefits which ACV provides, including weight loss, blood sugar control, lowering of cholesterol, and lowering of blood pressure.

How Apple Cider Vinegar Can Combat Hair Loss

In addition to the above mentioned benefits, apple cider vinegar can also be a treatment option for individuals suffering from hair loss. Let’s discuss a few things it can do.

It Removes Buildup from the Scalp

Scalp buildup is a common occurrence, and it occurs as a result of daily living.

Buildup consists of sebum, dirt, dead skin, hair products, pollution, and even harmful chemicals (such as DHT). This buildup can clog the hair follicles, and this makes it difficult for hair growth to continue.

(Learn natural ways of unblocking hair follicles here.)

As a cleansing rinse, apple cider vinegar can gently remove this buildup and prevent it from returning by balancing the scalp’s pH level.

It Improves Blood Circulation to Hair Follicles

Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA), also known as Male-Pattern Baldness (MPB), is the most common cause of hair loss in both men and women. To understand why this is, it’s important to know how AGA works.

First and foremost, DHT is a chemical believed to contribute most significantly to the hair loss suffered by those with AGA. This is an androgen (sex) hormone that’s produced from testosterone with the help of 5-alpha-reductase (5AR).

testosterone to DHT

Individuals with AGA don’t usually have more DHT; instead, their follicles are more sensitive to the normal levels present within their hair follicle cells.

Eventually, this sensitivity leads to miniaturization of the hair follicle and an interruption of the hair growth cycle.

The miniaturization of hair follicles

As miniaturization occurs, blood flow to the follicles is restricted. This leads to poor delivery of oxygen and vital nutrients, as well as less removal of waste and buildup.

Apple cider vinegar, however, can improve blood circulation. While this itself won’t reverse hair miniaturization, ACV can also remove DHT from the scalp and lessen irritation.

It Treats and Prevents Dandruff

Dandruff is an embarrassing problem, but it’s also one that causes much discomfort and can even lead to hair loss.

There are a number of natural remedies for this condition, however.

While not much is known about the mechanism, it’s believed that the acidity of apple cider vinegar makes it difficult for Malassezia – the fungus responsible for dandruff – to live and spread.

While not a direct cause of hair loss, dandruff can be responsible for increased thinning. This is because scratching of the scalp can stress the hair and follicles, and can even result in permanent scarring if allowed to continue.

It Prevents the Growth of Bacteria and Yeast

A common problem among hair loss sufferers, bacteria and yeast overgrowths can lead to permanent scarring and continued thinning and hair loss.

A few of the more common infections include dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis (yeast), scalp folliculitis (bacteria), and impetigo (bacteria). These can be uncomfortable and unsightly, but they can also cause permanent hair loss if not addressed immediately.

Seborrheic dermatitis on the hairline

Seborrheic dermatitis is a severe form of dandruff, and it can cause flaking, itching, irritation, and inflammation.

(Learn how you can battle dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis with natural products.)

Malic acid is a compound found within ACV, and it contributes significantly to its antiseptic abilities.

With regular use of ACV then, you can treat infections and prevent them from reappearing. This is vital if you want to maintain the health of your scalp.

It Targets Free Radicals and Reverses Signs of Aging

Free radicals are atoms present within the body. However, they’re missing an electron and must scavenge it from other atoms – healthy ones – in order to complete themselves.

These scavenging abilities lead to the degradation of vital cells, including skin and hair cells. This contributes to advanced aging, and it can make hair loss possible.

antioxidants fight free radicals

Antioxidants rid the body of free radicals by donating an electron. This makes it so the free radicals are “complete” and no longer have to scavenge from other bodily cells.

Citric acid, however, is an antioxidant found within ACV. This compound works to target and rid the body of free radicals, and this protects healthy cells from their scavenging.

Bragg organic, raw apple cider vinegar

Availability and Cost

Aside from its many health and cosmetic benefits, the two greatest things about apple cider vinegar is its 1) availability; and 2) low cost.

Apple cider vinegar can be found in grocery stores and health markets around the world, and it can also be purchased online from retailers such as Amazon.

To reduce costs, I recommend purchasing in bulk.

A 16-oz bottle of Bragg Organic ACV costs only $9.64 ($0.60/oz). However, a 128-oz bottle of the same brand costs $42.44, but that only comes out to 33 cents per ounce!

Of course, there are a variety of other brands to choose from.

IMPORTANT: When purchasing apple cider vinegar, ensure that it contains “mother”. This is a pulpy substance, and it’s where the majority of the vitamins and minerals reside. ACV without the mother will NOT deliver the same results.

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4 Ways to Add Apple Cider Vinegar to Your Hair Care Routine

Of course, you won’t experience any of the above benefits if you don’t use ACV regularly. With this in mind, here are three ways you can easily add to your daily routine.

Add It To Your Diet

While the majority of hair-related benefits come from direct application to the scalp, adding ACV to your diet can improve your body’s overall health. As a result, your scalp and hair will be healthier, too.

This versatile diet staple can be added to just about any recipe or meal. Add a few tablespoons to soups, stews, and broths. Or, use it as a base for your salad dressings and marinades.

If you like the tangy flavor, or if you just want a more direct way of consumption, you can even mix into water and tea.

Here’s a delicious tea recipe from Dr. Axe that you can easily add to your morning or night routine:

Ingredients:

  • Warm or hot water (12-16 oz.)
  • Apple cider vinegar (2 TBSP)
  • Lemon juice (2 TBSP)
  • Ground ginger (½ to 1 TSP)
  • Cinnamon (¼ TSP)
  • Cayenne pepper (dash)
  • Raw, local honey (1 TSP) (optional)

Directions:

Heat the water to desired temperature, and then combine all ingredients. Stir well, and enjoy!

Apple cider vinegar tea

Health & Hair Benefits:

All of the ingredients included in the above recipe are beneficial to your overall health.

ACV, as mentioned, can control blood sugar levels, lower cholesterol, and lower blood pressure. In addition, it can increase blood circulation to help cleanse and purify your scalp and hair.

Lemon juice is a digestive aid, helping to break down mucus and line the tract. In addition, it’s an antioxidant.

The three herbs contained within the recipe – ginger, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper – also contain a variety of health benefits. Ginger, for example, is an anti-inflammatory while cayenne pepper is known to increase blood circulation.

Last, honey is a known antiseptic, but it can also add a touch of sweetness to offset the tang and spice of the tea.

Make Homemade ACV Shampoo

Ingredients:

  • Apple Cider Vinegar (1 cup)
  • Water (1 cup)
  • Rosemary (1 bunch)
  • Jojoba Oil (1/4 cup)
  • Peppermint Essential Oil (10 drops)

Directions:

Steep the rosemary in boiling water, remove from heat, and allow to steep until room temperature. Discard the rosemary, and pour the rosemary tea into a shampoo container. Combine the rest of the ingredients, and stir well.

Lather the mixture onto wet hair, and massage the shampoo into your scalp for at least 3 minutes. Allow to absorb for another three minutes, and then rinse thoroughly.

Hair Benefits:

This shampoo recipe is a combination of cleansing and soothing, both of which contribute to the health of your hair follicles.

The rosemary tea works to soothe irritation and inflammation, while the jojoba oil hydrates and ensures proper moisturization. Additionally, the peppermint oil balances the scalp’s pH and leaves a comforting tingle.

Of course, the apple cider vinegar gently cleanses and removes harmful buildup without stripping your hair of essential oils.

Make an ACV Hair Rinse

If simplicity is what you’re looking for, you’ll be happy to learn that an ACV hair rinse can be made in just a matter of minutes.

Ingredients:

  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Water

Directions:

Combine the two ingredients in a 1:1 ratio, and store in a cool, dry place.

Before use, shake the mixture well.

To use, pour over wet hair. Leave in for 10-15 minutes, and massage your scalp to be sure the mixture reaches all areas. Rinse thoroughly, and repeat at least twice per week.

A woman rinsing her hair in the shower

Hair Benefits:

As mentioned previously, ACV is an excellent way to remove buildup from your hair and scalp. With the help of this gentle rinse, then, you can cleanse and nourish the scalp while gently removing any harmful chemicals and other buildup.

Create an ACV Scalp Tonic

A bit more powerful than a rinse, this tonic can be used to gain more stimulating results.

Ingredients:

  • Apple cider vinegar (2 TBSP)
  • Cayenne pepper extract (3 drops)

Directions:

Combine the two ingredients in the bottle of your choosing, and mix well.

Using your fingers or a pipette, apply the mixture to problem areas of your scalp. Gently work the combination in by massaging with your fingertips, and leave the tonic on for at least one hour (though, you can also leave it on overnight).

Rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water, and repeat the process at least three times per week.

Hair Benefits:

This tonic not only cleanses your scalp and hair follicles, but it also stimulates active hair growth by increasing circulation to the follicles.

Conclusion

As a cheap and effective hair loss treatment supplement, I urge you to consider adding apple cider vinegar to your regular hair care routine.

While the results may not be as dramatic as minoxidil or finasteride, ACV can supplement your health and contribute to a balanced and clean scalp. This is essential for the growth of strong, healthy locks.

I do recommend you use ACV alongside other natural treatment options to boost results.

To learn more about the hair loss treatments that will work for you, take the quiz below.

Is Your Hair Loss Reversible?

Question 1 (of 6)

How many years have you had hair loss for?
Select the number of years below.

Does Revivogen Work? – An In-Depth Guide + 3 Natural Options

  • June 13, 2017 /
Revivogen hair loss treatment

In this article, I’m going to review Revivogen. While not as popular as Pura D’or or Regenepure DR, it’s a product that’s growing in popularity among hair loss sufferers and worth a look.

I’ll discuss the claims, reviews, and scientific evidence, and this will help you to best determine whether it’s right for you.

As an aside, I do not use shop-bought hair products in my own hair care routine. This is because I stray away from chemicals and preservatives – both of which are present in this hair care product.

However, I know that many of my readers are interested in such products, and I want to provide you with the best information available.

Now, if you determine that Revivogen is not the product for you, I will provide alternative (homemade) options at the end.

BONUS: Be sure to take the hair loss quiz at the bottom of the article. It will help you to determine the best course of action for treating your hair loss.

What Is Revivogen?

Developed and manufactured by Advanced Skin & Hair Inc., Revivogen is a series of hair loss treatment products. This line of products include shampoo, conditioner, and growth serum.

Revivogen scalp therapy

The main product appears to be the growth serum, with manufacturers touting it as a cure for hair thinning and loss.

The shampoo and conditioner seem to be additional supplements you can include in your routine, and are claimed to promote the effects of the serum.

Revivogen Ingredients

The Revivogen ingredients list

While Revivogen does have a number of natural ingredients (including saw palmetto, grapeseed extract, and Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA)), you’ll notice a few preservatives and chemicals included.

In fact, the first ingredient is alcohol, and this can cause drying of the scalp (especially if you have sensitive skin). In addition, there’s EDTA and even added perfumes.

What Are Its Claims?

Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA) is caused – in large part – by sensitivity to DHT.

With this in mind, Revivogen claims to stop testosterone from entering the hair cells, and therefore makes it impossible for DHT to be produced. Even further, the product is claimed to reduce hair thinning within 60 days of use.

To better understand the product’s claims, you’ll need to understand the process of DHT production.

DHT is an androgen (sex) hormone that is present in males. It’s essential to male development, which is why DHT should never be blocked altogether. However, there are two areas of the body where DHT is produced.

The first area is the prostate, and the second is within the hair cells.

The DHT produced in the prostate is responsible for sexual development and libido, while the DHT produced nearer to the scalp is responsible for hair loss in those with AGA.

DHT (no matter its location) is produced when 5-alpha-reductase (5AR) meets up with testosterone. The enzyme then converts testosterone to DHT, which then latches on to androgen receptors at the hair follicles.

testosterone to DHT

Now, with that information laid out, Revivogen’s claims can make a bit more sense. If testosterone cannot enter hair cells, then no DHT can be produced.

According to Revivogen’s website, “when DHT production is reduced, hair thinning and shedding genes become dormant, hair [loss] ceases and the follicles begin producing healthy, normal hair once again.”

And, this is true. However, does Revivogen lead to such results?

Does Revivogen Really Work?

As I’ve never personally used the product, I cannot say one way or the other whether Revivogen’s claims are true.

However, Revivogen does contain a number of ingredients known to block DHT. These include:

Saw Palmetto Extract

Saw Palmetto is a plant that was used extensively by Native Americans, and works much the same as Propecia.

In essence, saw palmetto inhibits 5AR when used topically and orally. Its inhibition of 5AR was proven in a 2016 research study.

In the study, saw palmetto was applied to the shaven flanks of hamsters with either testosterone or DHT.

As suspected, saw palmetto was most effective at reducing pigmentation of the flank area (a sign of androgen activities) when combined with testosterone, because it was able to inhibit 5AR before it converted to DHT.

Saw Palmetto topical use on hamsters

If saw palmetto blocked DHT instead of 5AR, the results would have been opposite (with saw palmetto working better alongside DHT).

It’s typically taken in powder capsule, though there are also tablets, liquid extracts, and even dried whole berries.

Grapeseed Extract

Unlike saw palmetto, grapeseed extract doesn’t inhibit DHT; instead, it works by increasing blood circulation and jumpstarting the hair cycle (bringing the hair from telogen to anagen).

The effectiveness of this approach to hair growth was studied on mice in 1998, and the results were favorable.

In fact, as you can see in the image below, hair growth in the grapeseed group (C) was actually just as effective as Minoxidil (B).

While DHT is believed to be the main cause of hair loss in individuals with AGA, decreased blood circulation and slowing down of the hair cycle are two negative effects of the hormone.

So, while grapeseed extract doesn’t stop hair loss at the source, it does help to counteract its negative effects.

Both increased blood circulation and a boost to the hair cycle will decrease hair thinning and loss, and they may even reverse the effects of hair loss in individuals with early signs of AGA.

Oleic and Linoleic Acid

Both classified as fatty acids (with linolenic being an omega-6 and oleic being an omega-9), these acids are essential for human health.

Aside from their differences, both of these acids have been shown to inhibit the effects of 5AR. This is excellent news for sufferers of AGA!

How to Use Revivogen

The cornerstone product – Scalp Therapy – is a serum that’s applied directly to the scalp on a daily basis.

To apply, part your hair (either with your fingers or a comb) near the thinning area. Use one or two sprays for an area the size of your palm, or use 10 to 20 sprays for the entirety of your scalp.

Leave the product on overnight, or apply during the day and leave on for at least three hours.

If using alongside another hair loss treatment (such as Rogaine or Propecia), apply the products at least three hours apart.

This will allow each product time to absorb, and will lead to the least amount of interaction between the active ingredients.

Side Effects of Revivogen Use

The Revivogen website claims that less than 2% of users experience “transient mild scalp irritation” during use. This isn’t alarming, as the use of any product – natural or not – can certainly cause irritation (especially when first used).

Such side effects may include:

  • Itching
  • Dryness
  • Burning and/or tingling
  • Flaking

If you experience any symptoms of an anaphylactic reaction following use, stop using immediately. These symptoms include:

  • Swelling of the mouth, throat, tongue, lips, or face
  • Difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • Hives
  • Vomiting and/or diarrhea

If you have sensitive skin, I recommend testing the product on a small patch of skin. The wrist is best as its easy to access and monitor reactions.

Reviews of Revivogen – What Consumers Are Saying

There are a range of product reviews, though the rating on Amazon tends to hover around 3.1 out of 5 stars.

A common theme throughout the reviews was the mention of Revivogen’s use alongside other hair loss treatment products, including Rogaine and Nizoral shampoo.

A review discussing the use of Revivogen with Rogaine

A review discussing the use of Revivogen with Rogaine and Nizoral shampoo

In fact, the website makes mention of this on its FAQ page, so it seems to be a popular choice for users of Revivogen to combine it with other treatments.

However, quite a few reviews did mention that they weren’t sure if the product was truly working as claimed.

A three star review of Revivogen

As mentioned previously, Revivogen is a brand with a few different hair products. While the reviews above are focused on the brand’s main product – the hair growth serum – the shampoo and conditioner also have reviews of their own.

The reviews for the shampoo appear to be much more favorable, though there aren’t as many as for the growth serum so it’s a bit difficult to compare.

Overall, users like the natural ingredients and minty scent:

A review of Revivogen shampoo

Discover If Your Hair Loss Is Reversible
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Revivogen Availability and Cost

You can purchase Revivogen directly from the source, or you can find it in online shops, such as Amazon.

A 3-month supply of the Scalp Therapy (three 2-oz bottles) will cost you $99, while a 6-month supply will cost $185.

Both the shampoo and conditioner are equally-priced, coming in at $24/each for 12-oz bottles.

For a bit of cost savings, you can purchase a 3-month supply of Scalp Therapy in addition to one bottle of shampoo for $109, or the 3-month supply of Scalp Therapy in addition to one bottle of shampoo and one bottle of conditioner for $119.

What Should You Expect from Use?

If you decide to go ahead with Revivogen use (though, I will get into the homemade alternatives below), it’s important to know what to expect. This will help you to better gauge your progress.

According to developers of the drug, there are four stages to Revivogen use.

At two to four weeks into treatment, you’ll likely notice increased shedding.

This is normal, as the ingredients are working to initiate the anagen phase of hair growth and hairs in the telogen phase must first be shed.

Within 60 to 90 days of consistent use, developers claim there will be significant growth and increase in density.

The results of 6 months of Revivogen use on female

At three to six months into treatment, thickness will continue and you’ll begin to notice a fuller head of hair.

Finally, after 16 to 18 months of use, maximum improvement is reached. At this point, you can drop down to using Revivogen just three to five days per week.

Are There Homemade Alternatives?

I advocate the use of homemade products whenever possible. That’s because when you make your own products, you know exactly what’s in them, and you can tailor them to fit your exact needs.

So, are there homemade alternatives to Revivogen?

Yes.

DHT-Blocking Shampoo

Revivogen claims to block DHT through inhibition of 5AR. However, there are ways to do this without the presence of scalp-damaging chemicals and preservatives.

Here’s one recipe that makes use of saw palmetto (a natural ingredient present within Revivogen):

Ingredients:

  • Warm water (1 cup)
  • Baking soda (1 tablespoon)
  • Apple cider vinegar (1 tablespoon)
  • Citrus essential oil (5 drops)
  • Saw palmetto gel (1 capsule)
  • Olive oil (2-3 teaspoons)

Directions:

Add the water, baking soda, vinegar, citrus essential oil, and olive oil to the bottle of your choosing. The baking soda and vinegar WILL react, so be sure to use a non-airtight container.

A woman lathering shampoo on her hair

With the use of a knife or needle, pierce the saw palmetto capsule and squeeze the gel into the above combination.

Mix the concoction thoroughly with a spoon (to avoid further reaction from the baking soda and vinegar, do NOT shake).

Hair Benefits:

As a gentle cleansing agent, the baking soda and vinegar work together to dissolve excess oils and scalp buildup. This then enables the citrus essential oil (an antioxidant) to do its job more effectively and rid your scalp of free radical buildup.

As a DHT blocker, the saw palmetto removes DHT from the surface of the scalp, and the olive oil enables the saw palmetto to penetrate the hair follicles, breaking down any clogs or blockages (of which DHT may be a part).

Hair Growth Serum

While the removal of DHT from your scalp will put an end to hair thinning and loss, it may not be enough to reverse the effects of hair loss. That’s where my all-natural hair growth serum comes in.

Ingredients:

  • Emu oil
  • Saw palmetto
  • Hyaluronic acid
  • Apple polyphenol
  • Magnesium oil (optional)

Directions:

Using a dark-colored container (to protect the oils from sunlight), combine the above ingredients.

First, combine the hyaluronic acid and emu oil in equal parts, and then add the saw palmetto in a 6:1 ratio (hyaluronic acid/emu oil: saw palmetto).

Add the apple polyphenol in a 6:1 ratio (6 parts mixture:1 part apple polyphenol) and mix well. If using magnesium oil, add into the mixture until it’s the consistency of your liking.

You can apply the serum directly to your scalp, but I recommend you use a dermaroller first. This will open up the pores and improve absorption, and it will also improve blood circulation making the combination most effective.

Once the serum has been applied evenly, leave on overnight and rinse in the morning.

Alkaline Diet

The absolute best thing you can do for your hair is to alkalize your diet. Let me explain.

The foods and drinks you consume are either acidic or alkaline (except for water, which is basic). As such, they leave an “ash” after being consumed, and this ash is then absorbed by the bloodstream.

The net pH balance will determine the pH balance of your bloodstream.

Unfortunately, the modern Western diet is highly acidic. This means many people have a bloodstream with an acidic pH, and this can wreak havoc throughout the body (including the scalp).

In fact, the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase (responsible for the conversion of testosterone to DHT) works well in an acidic environment.

If you suffer from AGA, this is particularly harmful to your scalp and can lead to further hair thinning and loss.

To combat this, then, you can alkalize your diet (and, as a result, your bloodstream).

A chart showing the various alkaline foods

Add alkaline foods to your diet to combat hair loss

How?

First, I recommend cutting these four foods from your diet:

  1. Dairy.
  2. Carbonated beverages.
  3. Sugary cereals.
  4. Greasy foods.

These are the foods most likely to trigger hair loss, as they’re not only acidic but also may trigger inflammation and slow down digestion.

Next, I advise you add some of these foods to your regular diet rotation:

  • Alfalfa
  • Almonds
  • Apple
  • Asparagus
  • Bananas
  • Beet greens
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Chestnuts
  • Cholerella
  • Coconut
  • Coriander/Cilantro
  • Hazelnuts
  • Kale
  • Kelp
  • Lime
  • Pineapple
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Spinach

These are the foods that will alkalize your bloodstream, reduce the activities of 5AR, and prevent production of DHT.

Fortunately, you can easily add these foods to your diet by juicing, or with the addition of a morning smoothie. My favorite recipe contains:

Blended up each and every morning, I get my day off to a great and healthy start.

Conclusion

There’s no doubt that Revivogen contains a number of natural hair growth stimulants, such as saw palmetto and grapeseed. However, I would not recommend this line of products to my readers. Why?

I believe that what you put in and on the body is a large factor in your overall health. Even though Revivogen contains a few natural ingredients, it also contains chemicals and preservatives that your body can do without.

With this in mind, you can receive the same results (perhaps even better) with all-natural products that you make yourself. In addition, the cost for such homemade products will be significantly cheaper than Revivogen.

If you’d like to begin on a natural hair growth journey, I recommend my popular course Hair Equilibrium.

You’ll learn all about the importance of natural ingredients (both for eating and using on your scalp), and how you can get started incorporating them into your hair growth routine.

I also urge you to take the six-question quiz below. The results (out of 100) will give you an idea of how reversible your hair loss is, as well as what you can do to treat the source.

Is Your Hair Loss Reversible?

Question 1 (of 6)

How many years have you had hair loss for?
Select the number of years below.

Minoxidil 5% vs 10%: Which Is Best for Hair Growth?

  • June 12, 2017 /
Is Minoxidil 10% or Minoxidil 5% better for hair growth?

Minoxidil is a popular treatment, used widely by men and women with hair loss. And, while 2% and 5% are the most common dosage solutions used, the 10% solution could be a more effective way to improve hair growth results.

In this article, I’m going to compare minoxidil 10% to minoxidil 5%. There are no direct studies available on the topic, but some assumptions can be made based on the research studies that are available.

In addition, I’ll share with you an alternative treatment method to minoxidil that I (and many others) have used with much success over the past few years.

BONUS: Is your hair loss reversible? Find out by taking the one-minute quiz that’s located at the bottom of this article.

Minoxidil in the Treatment of Hair Loss

Minoxidil was developed in the 1950s, first marketed as an ulcer treatment drug, and then as a vasodilator.

As studies continued, it was found that the use of minoxidil led to unexpected hair growth.

It was believed to be a result of its vasodilating properties, enabling the capillaries in the scalp to become dilated and improving their abilities to deliver nutrients and oxygen to the hair.

A box of Kirkland brand Minoxidil

As time wore on, further studies were performed to better understand minoxidil’s role in the treatment of hair loss. This eventually led to its FDA approval in 1988, and it’s been available ever since.

(Are you considering adding minoxidil to your hair loss treatment routine? Learn about its most common side effects here.)

Is Minoxidil 5% or Minoxidil 10% More Effective?

While there are no current studies that directly compare minoxidil 10% vs minoxidil 5%, there are a few studies that can help us to better understand how minoxidil works in various doses.

One such study was performed in 2002, and it compared a 5% solution of minoxidil to a 2% solution in men with Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA).

The study consisted of 393 participants (with a total of 351 completing it), and it lasted for 48 weeks. At the beginning of the study, 157 men were assigned to the 5% minoxidil group, 158 were assigned to the 2% minoxidil group, and 78 were assigned to the placebo group.

Once baseline data (including nonvellus hair count) was collected, patients were instructed to apply 1 mL of solution (either 5%, 2%, or placebo) to their scalp twice per day (with a total daily dose of 2 mL).

After the initial visit (week 0), subjects returned every 4 weeks until week 32, and then every 8 weeks until the end of the 48-week trial. Safety and effectiveness evaluations were performed at such times.

These were the results as seen in week 48:

The results of a study on 5% minoxidil vs 2% minoxidil

The information we’re most interested is located on the right side of the table labeled Pairwise comparison P value. This tells us which of the compared solutions is superior.

In all of the investigator results (nonvellus hair count, change in scalp coverage, and benefit from treatment), you’ll notice a significant preference for 5% minoxidil over 2% minoxidil.

Remember that nonvellus hair count was measured at baseline? Here’s a look at the changes experienced by study participants over the course of the trial:

Minoxidil 5% vs Minoxidil 2% in nonvellus hair count

As easily noticed above, the 5% minoxidil solution performed better than the 2% solution during all evaluations.

This study wasn’t the only one to see such results, though. A similar study was performed in 2004, but this time with a focus on female-pattern hair loss.

As expected, the 5% minoxidil solution performed better than both the 2% solution and the placebo.

Dose Response – An Understanding of Drug Effectiveness

As shown above, dose response is a common occurrence in scientific research.

But what exactly is dose response, and what does this mean for the effectiveness of minoxidil?

In simplest terms, dose response is an expected increase in effectiveness as dosage increases.

For example, when subjects were treated with 5% minoxidil (instead of 2%), their results were better (more hair growth, increased density, etc.).

Of course, there are exceptions to the rule. However, as highlighted by the studies above, it seems that minoxidil is one drug that follows this rule.

So, while we don’t have a study that compares 10% minoxidil and 5% minoxidil directly, it’s safe to say that the 10% solution would likely show more results than the 5% solution.

Keep in mind that the results, while increased, aren’t likely to be proportional to dosage.

What I mean is that you can’t expect to see twice as much hair growth with the 10% solution than the 5% solution, because dose response doesn’t typically happen as such.

At around 10% I would expect results to plateau even if the dosage was increased. This is the law of diminishing returns, where side-effects would increase without any benefits.

Side Effects: Minoxidil 10% vs. Minoxidil 5%

With increased results, will there also be increased side effects?

The active ingredient within minoxidil, minoxidil sulfate, is fairly harmless.

It’s the non-active ingredients, such as alcohol and propylene glycol, that tend to cause the more noticeable side effects (particularly those related to skin irritation).

This means that, technically speaking, increased side effects should not be seen with increased dosage.

Is is possible? Absolutely. In fact, an increase in pruritus, local irritation, and hypertrichosis was noted in the 5% treatment group in the 2004 study referenced.

That’s why higher doses (including 10% solution) are only available through prescription and require the oversight of a doctor while in use.

(Are you suffering from itchy scalp due to minoxidil use? Learn how to fix the issue here.)

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What if Minoxidil 5% Isn’t Providing Desired Results?

It’s unfortunate, but sometimes even those medications that are touted to be a miracle cure by so many users don’t work for certain individuals.

But what if Minoxidil 5% is working moderately well, but you feel that results are behind others on a similar regimen?

Before and after minoxidil

While Minoxidil can provide stunning results for some individuals, your own experience can vary.

First, I would recommend you not compare yourself to others, even those who’re taking the same treatment steps as you.

Hair loss is typically a multi-factored occurrence, and everyone will react differently to the same course of treatment.

Of course, you can always seek the help of a dermatologist, and perhaps receive a prescription for 10% minoxidil.

However, there’s a much different path I would encourage you to take, and that’s a natural one.

What I mean by this is, instead of masking the issue as minoxidil does, why not treat your hair loss at the source?

The Natural Alternative to Minoxidil Treatment

I’ve written extensively on the removal DHT from the scalp, as well as how you can make your own minoxidil at home.

And, while these methods certainly have worked for many individuals (myself included), it’s not the method I recommend.

Why?

I believe there’s a more natural approach to the reduction of DHT within the body, and that’s through alkalization of your diet.

Let’s take a closer look at what I mean

5-alpha-reductase is the enzyme responsible for converting testosterone to DHT. It also happens to thrive in acidic conditions.

When 5-alpha-reductase converts testosterone to DHT, it can lead to hair miniaturization in those who are sensitive to the hormone.

Unfortunately, the modern diet is full of acidic foods, including carbonated beverages, sugary grains, and dairy. In the end, this consumption leads to an acidic pH within the bloodstream, and it enables 5-alpha-reductase to do its job.

(Learn more about the foods that inhibit 5-alpha-reductase here.)

Alkalizing your bloodstream, then, is the key when it comes to putting a stop to 5-alpha-reductase’s activities and impairing the production of DHT directly at the source.

How can you do this?

Well, the obvious answer is to add more alkaline foods into your diet. Fortunately, this is a lot easier than you may think, and even just a few small changes here and there can make a large impact.

A pH food scale

You see, the farther you move away from processed and refined, the closer you are to alkalizing your diet and, ultimately, your bloodstream.

Now, one of the things I like to do every morning is drink a smoothie. Not only does this get me off to a healthy start, but it also sets the tone of the entire day.

Here’s a recipe that I’ve been working on over the past few years.

Every single ingredient listed has a specific purpose, and you’ll also notice that the ingredients which are included in the acidic-alkaline scale above (such as berries, almond, coconut, and banana) all fall on the alkaline side.

Conclusion

While no studies have been performed to compare minoxidil 10% and minoxidil 5%, the results from 5% vs 2% studies suggest that a higher dosage can deliver better results.

So, should you switch to minoxidil 10% if  you aren’t seeing results with the 5% solution? That’s only a question you can answer. However, I urge you to consider taking the natural route before making the decision.

If you’re not sure where to begin, I recommend starting with the hair loss quiz below. The score you receive (out of 100) will tell you just how likely it is for you to regrow your hair, and the answers you provide will enable you to receive valuable information on the kind of hair loss you suffer from.

Is Your Hair Loss Reversible?

Question 1 (of 6)

How many years have you had hair loss for?
Select the number of years below.

11 BEST Hairstyles for Receding Hairline | +3 Tricks for Hairline Regrowth!

  • June 12, 2017 /
Daniel Craig's short hairstyle works great with his receding hairline

A receding hairline is typically a sign of further hair loss to come. This is an alarming realization for many, and while you’re working on combating the issue, you still want to look good and feel confident.

Fortunately, there are things you can do while working on your hair loss to bring back your confidence and self esteem. One thing is styling your hair in such a way as to draw attention away from your hairline’s recession.

In this post, we’ll take a look at 11 hairstyles that are ideal for receding hairlines.

Whether you’re looking to call attention away from the hairline, or cover the recession completely, at least one of these styles will stand out and offer you just what you’re looking for.

BONUS: At the end of this article is a hair loss quiz.

The results (out of 100) will help you to better understand the type of hair loss you suffer from, as well as whether reversal of hair loss is possible. Be sure to check it out when you’re done reading!

What Causes a Receding Hairline?

As a chief complaint of men around the world, a receding hairline is a common occurrence. But what causes the hairline to recede?

There are three main causes for hairline recession. These include:

Traction Alopecia

This form of hairline recession is a direct result of overstimulation, and it can affect both men and women if not taken care of early.

A few examples of overstimulation include wearing a tight ponytail/bun, too much brushing/style, and wearing a hat frequently. Eventually, even in individuals with healthy hair follicles, the follicles will become overstimulated.

This results in unnecessary stress and, in severe cases, hair thinning and loss.

Male-Pattern Baldness

Perhaps the most common cause of baldness in men, Male-Pattern Baldness (MPB) is a condition related to DHT sensitivity and hair miniaturization.

In men with MPB, the hair follicles at the front of the scalp (the temporofrontal region) are particularly sensitive to DHT. This is a by-product of the sex hormone testosterone, and sensitivity to it can mean noticeable issues.

As the follicles become affected by the hormone, they begin to miniaturize. This, then, leads to the miniaturization of the hair and, eventually, hair thinning and loss.

Due to the particular location of sensitive androgen receptors, this is why men tend to experienced baldness at the front of the scalp. This is known as a receding hairline, and is a tell-tale sign of further hair loss to come.

Genetics

This is tied into MPB, but it also deserves its own section as it is possible to have none-MPB hair thinning and hairline recession.

If recession runs in your family, then you may also experience natural recession as you age. This doesn’t mean you can’t do things to stop this recession, however.

The tips outlined further below can also assist in regrowing genetics-related recession.

How to Tell If Your Hairline is Receding

Prior to styling your hair, it’s first important to determine whether your hairline is receding, or whether you simply have a higher-than-usual hairline as a result of maturation.

This can be difficult to determine; especially if you’re aging, or if MPB runs in your family.

However, understanding the difference can help you to better treat the issue, as well as choose a hairstyle that will be most flattering (now and in the future).

One of the most confusing issues comes when trying to determine whether your hairline is receding or maturing. The main thing to focus on is the recession pattern – that is, is your hairline even or uneven.

An even hairline – one which is generally even from temple to temple – is the sign of a maturing hairline. An uneven hairline, however – one which has deeper recession in the temples – is an early sign of MPB.

Now, a few things can confuse this. For example, if you have a natural widow’s peak (or, widower’s peak in your case), then your hairline may look as if it’s receding when it’s not.

However, a natural widow’s peak is typically present from early childhood, while a widow’s peak related to hairline recession begins to develop in the teens and early adulthood.

(Learn more about widow’s peaks, and whether yours is a sign of hairline recession.)

11 Best Hairstyles for Receding Hairline

If you’ve determined that your hairline is receding (or, if your mature hairline is further back on your head than you’d like), here’s a few hairstyles you can try.

Of course, the best course of action is to treat the recession before it continues to deepen (more on this later). But, for now, let’s take a look at a few stylish ways to hide it.

The Clean Shave

The easiest option – by far! – the clean shave is a classic option for those with thinning hair.

Vin Diesel close shave

Vin Diesel is a great example of confidence in the face of hairline recession.

This is a hairstyle that’s as close to the scalp as possible, and it can minimize the impact of your hairline’s recession with very little effort.

In fact, it’s a great way to embrace the balding look! For a bit of inspiration, take a look at actors like Vin Diesel, Bruce Willis, and Jamie Foxx.

The Buzz (or Crew) Cut

The style most synonymous with military service, the buzz cut is a close-to-the-scalp cut with a few centimeters of hair left on the scalp.

Jim Carrey with the buzz cut hairstyle

While Jim Carrey is only in the earliest stages of recession, the buzz cut still flatters his hairline and gives him a dapper look.

While this may seem like an odd choice for someone looking to draw attention from hair thinning and loss, it actually helps to better define your facial features. This will keep eyes from the hairline and will act as a plain-sight cover up.

The Regulation

If rugged is your goal but you aren’t too thrilled with the idea of a close cut, the regulation is exactly what you’re looking for.

The name is a bit of a misnomer – after all, it’s not technically a “regulation” haircut for those in the military.

However, it’s a variation of the crew cut that’s popular for those who want a bit of a longer, more tousled look.

This style works well because it utilizes the hairline for the part. This may seem counterintuitive, but it means you can work with what you have to create a natural look.

The Undercut

If you want to draw attention away from your receding hairline, an undercut will bring attention to all the right places.

Essentially, the undercut is a style where length is kept on the top of the head, but a shaver is taken to the sides to provide a crew cut.

In recent years, this cut has gained popularity among the ladies; however, it’s still a great option for men who want a dapper look that’s a bit on the longer side.

The Taper

Similar to the undercut, but with more ‘cut’ involved, the taper is a style that slowly fades from crown to base.

This is a style that’s similar to the fade, but it involves more length on the top and sides of the head.

The name of the style is quite descriptive of the cut itself, with a tapering effect that begins with a medium-to-long length on the top and a faded style at the base.

The Textured Crop

This purposely-messy ‘do is a great look for those who have longer hair on the very top of the scalp and want to bring it forward to cover recession.

Jude Law textured

Jude Law wearing a textured look, calling attention away from his hairline recession.

Texture is a great way to add volume to your hair and distract from your hairline. This style typically utilizes an undercut base (though, not always), but with longer hair on top.

The top of the hair is then texturized (with a combination of expert hair clipping and pomade) and fluffed.

This requires a bit more maintenance than some of the other styles, but is a good choice for those who want to sport a more youthful look.

The Messy Cut

A look that simply covers up your hairline, the messy cut is a good choice for those who want medium-length locks without having to worry about recession.

Jude Law messy cut

In comparison to the textured cut above, Jude Law uses this messy look to cover his receding temples.

Famously worn by the Beatles, the mop cut is coming back into vogue. This is because the cut offers a number of style options – from a slick and clean ‘do to a controlled, but messy, look.

Use the cut to expertly hide your hairline, and no one will be none the wiser.

The Side Fringe

This is a subtle nod to the comb over (which we’ll look at later), but one with a modern twist.

Fringe (also known as bangs) is a shortened portion of hair that lies on the forehead. If you’re experiencing hairline recession, you may not think bangs are possible.

However, a side fringe, which can utilize hair from your crown and side of your head, can be a great way to make your hair look fuller.

The Pompadour

This is perhaps the classiest style on the list, and one which offers styling (and hairline hiding) versatility.

Joaquin Phoenix pompadour hairstyle

Joaquin Phoenix sporting the pompadour hairstyle while portraying Johnny Cash in 2005’s Walk the Line. At this point, Phoenix’s hairline is crossing from mature to receding.

The pompadour is a style that can be utilized with cuts such as the undercut or side fringe. You pick the side lengths you’re comfortable with, while keeping the top layer of hair medium-to-long.

You can then style in anyway you’d like, such as straight back, to the side, or with a middle part. This works by collecting your hair into a voluminous mane, and draws attention away from any thinning areas.

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The Brush Up

A messier version of the pompadour, the brush up is another textured look that adds volume and style to subtly cover a receding hairline.

Will Arnett brush up hairstyle

The brush up, as worn by Will Arnett, adds texture and volume.

Instead of a smoothed back look which is commonly associated with the pompadour, the brush up works to add in texture and character. Essentially, it’s an “incomplete” pompadour, as the ends of the hair stand up straight instead of laying back.

The Comb Over

This is a style that works for very few individuals, but can hide hairline recession when done correctly.

The comb over is perhaps most synonymous with balding, and is usually seen as a desperate attempt to cover up hair loss.

Adam West with the comb over

The late Adam West wore the comb over well, using medium-length hair from the top and sides to cover the temples.

However, individuals with medium-to-long hair on the sides of the scalp and minimal hair loss on the top of the scalp are great candidates for the look. Essentially, you want to supplement the hair on the top of the scalp, not add hair.

How to Stop Hairline Recession

While the hairstyles above are good for temporary cover up, hairline recession will continue if you don’t treat it immediately.

With this in mind, here are a few tips for stopping hairline recession and possibly even regaining your youthful hairline.

Use Homemade Shampoo

Whether your receding hairline is a result of DHT buildup, or it’s from an underlying scalp condition (such as dandruff or seborrheic dermatitis), homemade shampoos can provide you with the cleansing and healthy properties you require.

Unlike store-bought shampoos, homemade ones are free of chemicals and preservatives. This means they are gentler on your scalp and hair, and they contain the necessary ingredients to treat, nourish, and rejuvenate.

Another great thing about DIY shampoos is they’re cheap and easy to make. This means you can experiment with different ingredients and create a solution that works best for your scalp.

To get started, all you need is a cleansing agent, an essential oil (or more than one), and a carrier oil. Here’s one recipe to give you a bit of inspiration.

Ingredients:

  • Water (1/2 cup)
  • Liquid Castile Soap (1/2 cup)
  • Aloe Vera Gel (1/3 cup)
  • Olive oil (1 teaspoon)
  • Almond Oil (2-3 teaspoons)
  • Geranium Essential Oil (10 drops)

Directions:

Combine the ingredients in the container of your choice, and mix thoroughly. Later onto wet hair, and massage into scalp for 1-3 minutes. Keep the shampoo on your scalp for an additional 1-3 minutes, and then rinse thoroughly.

A bottle of e.alba oil used to regrow hair

Hair Benefits:

Both olive oil and almond oil provide a hydrating touch, while the aloe vera gel soothes an irritated scalp and alkalizes the environment. In addition, the geranium essential oil provides anti-inflammatory properties and boosts blood circulation to the scalp.

Utilize Scalp Massage and Manipulation

If your hairline has already begun to recede, then you’ve experienced a process known as hair miniaturization. In simplest terms, your hair follicles became so damaged that the hair growth process slowed.

This led to the growth of slighter, more brittle hair strands (known as vellus hairs). In the end, the process of hair growth ceased completely, and your hair follicles were then no longer able to produce hair.

While you can’t bring dead hair follicles back to life, you can revitalize damaged hair follicles. One way to do so is with scalp massage and manipulation.

Both techniques increase blood flow to the scalp. This increases the delivery of oxygen and nutrients, and it also improves the removal of waste (such as DHT).

Stimulate new hair growth with a dermaroller.

Getting started is easy. You can manually massage your scalp, doing so for 5 minutes a day. Or, you can utilize a microneedling tool (known as a dermaroller) to really get the blood flowing.

Change Your Diet

The best way to treat MPB is from the inside out. This means changing your diet to reduce foods that are acidic, greasy, and otherwise unhealthy. In addition, you can add foods that combat DHT production and balance your bloodsteam’s pH.

To get started, I suggest you start slow.

This may mean incorporating alkaline foods into your diet (such as adding them to your favorite recipes, mixing them into a delicious smoothie, or juicing them.)

Or perhaps cutting a food group with some not-so-beneficial side effects (such as refined grains and processed meats).

Acid foods can reduce the rate or keratization leading to slower hair growth

Choose to eat more foods that are alkaline and less foods that are acidic.

This is a long-term solution, and also one that will offer some of the best results.

Conclusion

In the midst of your hair loss treatment, there are things you can do to reclaim your self confidence. This includes wearing a hairstyle that best complements you, and that covers your hairline as you’d like.

Now that you’ve found a great hair style, it’s time to focus on what matters – finding the cause of your hair loss and treating it at its source. You can do this with the Hair Equilibrium program.

This popular program will get you on the path to hair regrowth. That’s because the program focuses on long-term solutions that can be done naturally.

Before you get started with the program, however, why not take the six-question quiz below? The results will help you to better understand your hair loss, as well as determine whether regrowth is a possible goal for you.

Is Your Hair Loss Reversible?

Question 1 (of 6)

How many years have you had hair loss for?
Select the number of years below.

1 2 3 15

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