Can a hair loss shampoo really save my hair?
By Prof. Dr. Soner Tatlidede 2020-07-22
Finding a hair loss shampoo today is not something difficult: there are many different types and brands, and all claim to be the best and most effective to stop hair fall; the question is: do they really do something to save your hair from shedding? If I suffer from alopecia problems, can a shampoo for hair loss help me, or is it time to search for the cost of a hair transplant in Turkey?
The truth is that as we grow and age, the density of hair on our head also decreases, and this usually becomes a cause of concern for many people who do not feel comfortable with their appearance change, thus generating insecurity, stress and psychological and self-esteem problems. This is why many people dealing with alopecia problems sometimes turn to a shampoo to stop hair loss. But, do they really work? Let's find it out.
First of all, let's make clear that losing hair is not always a symptom of alopecia. It is completely normal during certain periods of the year to lose hair -we can lose up to a hundred hairs a day, even more- and only when that loss is excessive or when it lasts over time, then we should worry about it and go to a specialist to properly diagnose the cause of our problem, which can be more than one.
Most cases of alopecia are caused by so-called male pattern baldness, which is conditioned by genetic inheritance; but other factors such as an inadequate diet, a stressful life, or a disease, can trigger or accelerate that hair loss originally caused by genetic factors. So, once we know what causes hair fall, a question arises: can an anti hair loss shampoo do something for us?
To answer this query, there is something important we must take into account: hair follicle root -which is responsible of generating new hair- is located 3-4 mm below our scalp skin; however, when we apply a shampoo against hair loss or any other product on our head, it does not penetrate so deeply: on the contrary, it acts on the epidermis and on hair already grown (outside root).
This means that these type of products -either a hair loss shampoo for men or a hair loss shampoo for women- do not penetrate enough into scalp to affect follicles roots. In sum: no "miraculous" shampoo will be able to stop hair loss or make our hair grow again; but it can be very useful to keep our scalp and hair healthy, clean and not oily. In fact, when those periods in which hair sheds more come, it´s recommended to wash your hair almost daily.
Once we have explained what is the real function of a shampoo to prevent hair loss -at best it can be helpful with first symptoms of alopecia- another question comes: what is the best shampoo for hair loss? A quick internet search will show us pages declaring that the best hair loss shampoo is that of a specific brand, usually because it is sponsored... However, our advice is clear: do not pay attention to the brand, but to the ingredients.
A good hair shampoo must have several ingredients to sanitize hair and scalp; besides, if we refer to one against hair falling, it should include vitamins such as B3, B5, B6 and B8 (biotin). It is also convenient to include minerals such as calcium and trace elements such as zinc, in addition to amino acids such as L-cysteine, which is a vital component of hair and improves skin health. Aloe vera can also enhance hydration of scalp and blood circulation.
On the contrary, there are a number of ingredients that should not be present in any shampoo, whether it is intended or not to stop hair loss, since they are very harmful to hair; we refer to silicones, parabens -such as methylparaben or propylparaben- and sulfates (SLES or SLS). Lanolin, which increases greasiness on scalp, should also be avoided. In general, the more natural a hair loss shampoo is, the better.
In the end, when we face a severe case of male pattern baldness with irreversible hair loss, the best anti hair loss shampoo can do nothing for us. It becomes necessary then to resort to treatments and products capable of slowing down hair fall and preserve the existent hair. Nowadays we can speak mainly of three available treatments:
Valid both for men and women suffering of male pattern baldness, minoxidil is a vasodilator that helps to prevent hair loss in its initial phase -when most of follicles have not yet become deteriorated - increasing vasodilation and therefore blood circulation, making possible that more nutrients reach hair.
However, its main problem is that its effectiveness is limited; in addition, once the treatment has begun, we must continue with it for the rest of our lives, since otherwise we run the risk of losing part or even all of regenerated hair.
Finasteride is a drug that is taken orally and has the quality of blocking the enzyme 5-alpha reductase, which is the one that in presence of testosterone causes it to transform into dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a molecule that in people with a genetic predisposition due to male pattern baldness, destroys follicles. However likewise minoxidil, once started, treatment must continue all life.
Since anti-hair loss shampoo does not make hair grow again, and because of the limitations of the aforementioned treatments, many people with alopecia problems seek a definitive solution in treatments like a hair transplant. At Clinicana we have the most experienced and skilled medical team: just take a look at the reviews on hair transplant in Turkey written by our patients, and see why we're the best rated clinic. Ask for your free consultation!