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Hair Loss in the Menopause

October 04, 2022

Hair Loss in the Menopause

Here at the Michael Van Clarke Salon we’ve seen generations of clients go through the menopause. For 40 years I’ve touched and felt the changes, witnessing the difference in hair with my own eyes. 

It's a poignant time; the kids are off out into the world, and these women may have more time to focus on looking after themselves than they've had for decades. But they’re experiencing huge physical and emotional changes – and then hair, skin and nails, suddenly and inexplicably are in the worst condition ever. So many forty something women are required to be polished and glamorous in their senior roles in business, law, finance, media etc., yet this hormonal rollercoaster is still whispered about.

Mood swings and hot flushes are anticipated in the menopause but women are often not aware or prepared for thinning hair. Research shows that about 40% of women will experience this.

Many women feel this area is taboo. One friend finally went to a doctor thinking she had mental health problems, and was relieved to discover it was linked to their plummeting oestrogen levels.  Whilst scary and unsettling, it’s a natural and usually temporary stage in life, which can be managed to minimize the effects.


Peri-menopause and menopause hair loss happens slowly, a result of the changing amounts and ratios of hormones in the body, but once it is noticed, it seems like the hair has thinned overnight. 50 percent loss can occur before it's visibly noticeable.

Women may experience the thinner ponytail, sparse patches around the front hairline, noticeably wider partings, an excess of hairs collecting in the hairbrush or the bathroom, or a general thinning across the whole scalp. Any noticeable hair loss can be very distressing, leading in some cases to a loss of confidence and self-esteem, even depression and social withdrawal.


Hormones - A gradual decrease in oestrogen and progesterone leads to higher ratios of testosterone in the body, which may also increase in quantity. These changing ratios affect the amount and quality of the hair. This excess balance of testosterone impacts the hair follicles and results in thinner hair, particularly in women who are more sensitive to androgens (male hormones) than others.
Hair grows in a cycle of three distinct phases: Growing – Resting – Shedding, and physical or emotional stress can move hair early from the growing phase into the resting phase. When it then moves to the shedding phase, more hair is lost than normal in a short period and the hair that replaces it will be thinner and weaker. The menopause, poor diets, and stress can all affect this cycle.

Whilst most doctors agree that replacing these hormones can alleviate some of the symptoms of menopause, they don’t seem to cure the issues of the hair follicles.

Other Factors  High stress levels, genetic predisposition, imbalance of other hormones such as thyroid, nutritional deficiencies from poor diets, medications and illness, can also have a concurrent effect.

Menopause does not last forever. After menopausal hair loss, the hair will start to grow again, usually within 6 months to 2 years after occurring. This can differ from one individual to another.


How to care for thinning hair

1. Treatments - Our LifeSaver Pre-wash Treatment will maximise the thickness and protection of the hairshaft at all times. But especially when hair is thinner and more fragile it will plump up the volume and give fullness shine and flexibility.

 

Bought as a Gift - ★★★★★ 5 out of 5 stars

My friend has been complaining of hair breakage and hair loss for quite some time due to menopause, so I got this set for her to try, and she couldn’t believe the difference it made to her hair. It made her hair softer and more manageable with less knots. Thank you MVC

Does What it Says! - ★★★★★ 5 out of 5 stars

LifeSaver Ultra saved my crispy menopausal bleached hair! I had tried most cult products! I can’t remember how it compares to the original as I was impressed by that too but was desperate to re-strengthen my hair and go for intense. Really makes my hair feel softer and stronger,

 

 

2. Shampoos and

 

Conditioners - 3’’’More Inches Cashmere Protein Shampoos and Conditioners all boost hair health and natural thickness. The 3’’’More Inches Volumising range will add body to finer softer hair types and the 3’’’More Inches Moisturising range helps smooth and control coarser or chemically treated hair.


Really Great Products - ★★★★★ 5 out of 5 stars

I'm 62 with post menopausal hair loss which has really impacted my life, my social life and self-confidence. My hair has thinned and can be knotty and very frizzy; it hates humidity. Believe me when I say I've tried every hair product on planet Earth thus far. This kit gave me a chance to try to pre-shampoo treatment. It's wonderful. Rich but not greasy, smells delicious, easy to apply, doesn't stain anything, washes out so well and tah dah! leaves my hair calm, not  a bit of frizz in sight. It's a real winner and all the other masks will be consigned to storage cupboard. The shampoo and conditioner are also great. My hair actually looks thicker and more bouncy. I can now let my hair dry naturally and it doesn't look like a haystack, it looks shiny and under control. Very very happy and highly recommend these products.

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Super Soft and Stronger Hair - ★★★★★ 5 out of 5 stars

I have under active thyroid and I am going through the menopause so my hair was shedding and breaking and felt coarse and was difficult to style and wouldn’t hold a curl. I have now been taking the Powershot nutrients since November 2021 and I am very impressed with the results so far. My hair feels much softer and is looking and feeling much thicker than it has done for years, my hair seems to grow much quicker too! One of the amazing side effects of taking these supplements is that my eyelashes are also much longer and looking fabulous as well. I must say that I am taking the supplements in conjunction with using the 3MI range of hair care and I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending them to others.

Amazing - ★★★★★ 5 out of 5 stars

18 months ago my hair was falling out in clumps due to the menopause it happened so quickly it was very distressing for someone with thick curly hair to what felt like overnight having a hairline you could see through ! I knew I needed to do something to both stop it getting worse and try and help it to get back to normal . I decided to give the Power Shots and Lifesaver treatment a go. I already loved the shampoo and conditioner so it made sense to try these as well. No one including me can believe the difference they have made , how full and healthy my hair now looks ! I religiously took the supplements daily and used the lifesaver pre wash before every hair wash (twice a week ) and it has paid off ! I wish I took before and after photos for those that didn’t see me so they can really appreciate the difference . Friends and family can’t believe how full and healthy it now looks ! Its better than before the menopause hit ! It took time and patience but it was worth the wait they are both amazing products I will not be without !


3. Nutritional Supplements - Vitamin supplements shouldn’t be a substitute for a varied diet, but can help those with an unbalanced regime. Vitamins and minerals are vital for overall health. Biotin is especially important to keep the hair healthy because it functions in the synthesis of hair proteins like keratin. Lack of biotin has also been associated with hair breakage, hair loss, and brittle nails. 3’’’More Inches Hair & Nails Nutrients has an award-winning advanced formula of essential vitamins and minerals to support general wellbeing with an emphasis on brighter, stronger, healthy hair and nails. It’s especially suited to vegans as it also provides significant levels of iron and Vitamin B12.

4. Cutting - Getting the outline and shape of the haircut right will make a dramatic difference to how thick the hair looks. It will also make styling quicker and simpler. If a lot of hair has been lost around the hairline an A-Line haircut may exaggerate this. Proper graduation and even a wide fringe may be a better solution.

5. Styling - If your heat-styling routine is a little rushed and aggressive this may be a good time to go easy. Speak to your hairdresser about better techniques that are more precise and gentler. With styling, less is usually more.

Medical Treatments - Medical treatments that are promoted and may help mitigate hair loss include prescription minoxidil solution, laser therapy, finasteride (for post-menopausal women only) platelet-rich plasma injections (PRP is also known as "vampire hair growth treatment"), but I personally cannot vouch for any of these as I haven’t conducted any rigorous testing.


Michael Van Clarke




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