Hair building fiber and powders are part of your arsenal in the fight against hair loss.
Unlike treatments such as transplant surgery and 5-alpha reductase inhibitors, which deal directly with the problem (the former by growing hair where there formerly was none, the latter by protecting the hair follicles and allowing hairs to grow), hair building fiber and powder offer a cosmetic solution for the symptoms of hair loss.
Put another way, rather than dealing with the problem directly, they simply, and literally cover it up.
So, What Exactly Are Hair Building Fiber and Powder? Who Are They For?
Typically, hair building fibers and proteins:
- Are keratin protein or other natural fibers
- Merge and adhere permanently to your existing hair
- Build volume
- Are electrostatically charged
Suitable for both genders, these types of hair thickener are designed for use by those who are suffering from thinning hair. The fibers need to cling to existing hair stems rather than the scalp. They don’t pretend to grow hair – they simply add volume to what’s there already.
That means, unfortunately, for those with advanced hair loss and those who are completely bald, that this is not an appropriate solution. Hair building fibers and protein cannot adhere to the scalp.
They can be used as a stand-alone treatment for thinning hair, but they will do nothing to slow the progression of autoimmune disorders such as alopecia.
They can simply disguise the symptoms of such conditions. As such, many choose to combine the use of hair building fibers and powders with enzyme inhibiting drugs, such as finasteride.
This way they get to the root of the problem while simultaneously disguising the condition.
How Do They Work?
Hair building fibers and powders are fundamentally different from other forms of treatment. You are essentially binding another fiber to your own, natural hair. The fibers or powder that you buy are usually natural, at least if they are of good quality.
A natural hair is built of keratin protein, and so it makes sense that the highest quality hair building fibers should also be built of keratin protein.
These fibers have been electrostatically charged, enabling them to entwine and bond with your existing hair, with the overall effect of building body and volume.
How Well Will it Work For You?
Hair building fiber and powder has a good reputation among people whose hair is thinning and receding, in addition to those who are developing bald patches on their scalp.
Once the fibers or powder have been allowed to bind to existing hairs – an extremely simple process that takes a matter of minutes – you should notice a significant difference.
As mentioned earlier, if you already have significant bald patches where there are no hairs at all, this treatment will not work. The fibers and powder need at least a small number of existing hairs to bind to.
Perhaps the biggest challenge will be to find an exact match for your hair color. All major brands on the market offer a range of colors – typically around 10-12 different shades, but you’ll struggle to find pink or purple hair building fibers if you’ve decided to color your hair that way.
Dyeing your hair prior to applying the hair building fibers, however, is a good way to ensure you get a good color match. Alternatively, some brands allow you the option of blending different colored fibers in order to match your natural color.
What Benefits Does it Offer?
Using hair building fibers and powder is a relative simple, yet effective way to deal with thinning or receding hair.
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Perhaps the most attractive feature is that, unlike drug treatments and transplant surgery, it doesn’t have an ‘uncomfortable side’ – there’s nothing invasive about it, there are no noted side effects and there’s no recovery period. When used properly, it:
- Provides natural-looking coverage for your hair
- Is easy and safe to use
- Doesn’t require much time to apply
- Can be used in conjunction with other treatments
- Can be styled along with your natural hair
Are There Any Side Effects?
While it is impossible to make wide, generalizing statements about all types and brands of hair building fiber and powder, it’s true to say that there have been very few complaints about problems arising from their use. By choosing natural fibers, you reduce the risk of any particular allergic reaction.
It has been speculated that the use of such treatment, specifically in powder form, may smother the hair follicle, especially in hot conditions when the pore is open and sweating.
This speculation, however, is unfounded: the powder is extremely unlikely to come into contact with the follicle – it is designed to attach to the hair stem.
No matter how low down on the stem it becomes attached, it cannot ‘smother’ the follicle, as oxygen is supplied to the follicle by a capillary at its base.
How to Use It?
Products may vary in their specific instructions of use, but in general it’s simply a case of shaking the container to loosen up the contents, and then sprinkling it evenly on those areas of the scalp which you want to beef up.
Comb through, especially if your hair is thin all over – this will give you a fuller body of hair over the whole top part of your head.
The whole process should take a couple of minutes – about the same time it is recommended you clean your teeth for. For some brands it is recommended that you apply the fibers twice daily.
Other recommendations from manufacturers include:
- Cleanse your hair to remove oil and creams before application
- Apply the fibers or powder gently and comb through
- Brush your hair once the fibers have been applied
- Massage the fibers into your hair
- Style preferably with hairspray
You are not restricted when it comes to washing your hair after applying the hair building finer or powder. Wash with your homemade shampoo (designed for hair growth) as you would usually – this will wash away the added hair building fibers.
Be careful not to get hair building fiber into your eyes. If it does happen, rinse immediately with water and consult a doctor. Fibers and powder must also not be ingested and therefore you need to store it in a secure place out of the reach of children.
What Different Types and Brands are There?
There are too many brand variations on the market to review here individually, so we’ve taken a look at three of the most popular ones in order to give you a helpful overview.
Caboki is a hair building powder spray, which is available in seven different colors. This is one of the brands which facilitates the blending of colors to match your particular shade. You can create your custom blend before applying it.
These fibers are designed to minimize the risk of provoking any allergic reaction, and as such are a better choice for people with any existing skin conditions. They don’t contain any artificial colors.
Caboki fibers are suitable for use by a wide range of people as they don’t contain any animal products. The fibers themselves are made from a cotton plant known as Levant cotton, which is sourced in Morocco. The fibers are charged negatively to help them bond to your hair.
Another popular brand of hair fibers is Toppik. Toppik is made of keratin, the same protein that your own hair is made of.
The keratin used in Toppik, however, is obtained from wool – this allows them to be dyed more effectively. As a result, Toppik can offer a wider variety of colors than its competitors.
This brand consists not only of the fibers themselves, but in addition includes an intensifying spray which reinforces the bond between the fibers and your hair, and also a spray applicator which allows for precision application, which can be fine-tuned with a brush.
On top of that, there is a whole line of products in this brand which are designed to add volume and nourish your hair.
Next up is another popular brand of hair building fibers – Viviscal. This is also one of the older brands on the market, with over 20 years of research behind it. With this brand you can choose from five different colors to try to match your own natural shade.
Like Caboki and Toppik fibers, Viviscal comes in five different colors that can be custom blended when a particular shade is desired.
Just like Toppick, Viviscal also comes with a line of backup products, which complement the original fiber treatment.
With this information to refer to, we hope you now feel confident enough to go ahead and choose which type is right for you – whether you’ll combine hair building fibers with other treatments or if you prefer simply to cover up your patches with powder.