Yup, Shampoo for Thinning Hair Is Legit—Here’s What You Gotta Know

Yup, Shampoo for Thinning Hair Is Legit—Here’s What You Gotta Know

Figure out how much hair you’re losing

If you’re worried about thinning hair, see a dermatologist immediately—they can cocktail prescription topicals, prescribe oral medications, and even inject your scalp with cortisone to slow down shedding and inflammation.

But in general, as a loose guideline, remember that “you lose about 50 to 100 hairs every day, which is about 0.001 percent of your hair,” Dr. Burg has told Cosmo. It’s not until you notice that amount “double or tripling,” Dr. Burg has explained, that you’ll need to take action and see a dermatologist—and that’s especially true if you’re dealing with bald spots, a sudden receding hairline, or a vast difference in hair density.

Evaluate your age, genetics, and lifestyle changes

First off, Dr. Gohara explains that everyone’s hair thins naturally with age: “If you consider everyone’s hair densities in their thirties, forties, fifties, and so on, you’ll see that it doesn’t look the same as it did in their teens and twenties.” She says you must consider genetics, explaining that when and how quickly your hair will thin is genetically predetermined, just like your eye and hair color.

And then, Dr. Gohara explains that there are many other issues that can organically cause hair thinning: Stress, dieting or lack of nutrition, hormonal changes, post-pregnancy, and even over-processing the hair. This type of hair loss is called telogen effluvium—a ~fancy~ way of saying temporary hair loss—and if you correct the issue at its core (i.e., proper nutrition, less stress, seeing a doctor), the hair loss will gradually stop after a period of time.

If you establish that genetics—or any of the above reasons—are the cause of your thinning hair, the best that these shampoos can do is add volume, which in turn can essentially “mask” or minimize the appearance of hair loss by adding fullness and body to the hair. So look for formulas that specifically say “thickening” or “volumizing” on the bottles.

Determine if you have a scalp condition

Reason #780 to go see a dermatologist: There are a ton of inflammatory scalp conditions that can contribute to hair thinning and hair loss, such as dandruff, dryness, psoriasis, and more.

If you have dandruff, an over-the-counter dandruff shampoo containing the active ingredient ketoconazole will help kill the dandruff-causing yeast on your scalp. If you have an irritated, dry scalp, a scalp-oil treatment, a moisturizing and gentle shampoo, and a soothing scalp serum should be your go-to. As for a shampoo specifically for thinning hair, look for a gentle, moisturizing, and anti-inflammatory formula that can potentially aid in healing your scalp.

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