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Best tressed: expert solutions for fine and thinning hair

Photo by Racool Studio for Freepik

Anyone who struggles with fine, thin or sparse hair knows the daily dilemma of finding products that actually work or achieving an even occasional good hair day. The promise of thick tresses lures us into buying products that never seem to measure up to the hype. Never mind the fact that not all fine, thin or sparse hair has the same root cause.

Whether progressive or reactive, Helen Torok MD, medical director at Trillium Creek Dermatology and founder of www.hhscience.com, explains the causes of hair loss. ‘There are four types of hair loss including: alopecia areata, telogen effluvium, androgenetic alopecia, and scarring alopecia,’ she says. ‘It also depends on whether someone is male or female.’

According to Dr Torok, hair loss can be caused by life events, such as pregnancy, high levels of stress, illness or hospitalization, divorce, iron deficiency and anæmia, weight loss, autoimmune disease, cancer treatments, thyroid disorders, and hormone therapy or fluctuation.

So which ingredients should consumers look for in over-the-counter products to combat thinning hair? ‘I recommend ingredients that work together to reduce the DHT levels found within the hair follicle itself. This means a comprehensive mix of proteins, peptides and antioxidants that provide a holistic approach to hair loss and thinning,’ expounds Torok.

Additional ingredients to look out for in non-prescription, OTC products include biotin, keratin, collagen, vitamin E, iron, zinc and natural extracts like saw palmetto and ginseng. These can make your hair and scalp healthier and strengthen your hair. For those with more severe cases of hair loss, Torok suggests clinical-grade topical solutions or in office treatments, such as PRP.

Equally important is what not to do to keep hair from breaking or causing additional fall-out. ‘Over-washing hair strips its natural oils and disrupts its natural growth phases. Avoid shampoos and conditioners that contain fragrance, dyes, colourants and chemical parabens, as these disrupt hormones and increase scalp sensitivity and irritation which causes hair loss,’ Torok advises. She also recommends steering clear of hair extensions and focus instead on growing hair naturally via the use of supplements or advanced treatments, if necessary.

Finally, Torok emphasizes the necessity of having the right hair care tools, as the wrong ones can exacerbate the problem. ‘Boar and nylon bristle brushes are much more gentle on thin hair. Avoid brushes with balls on the top of its bristles, as these have the tendency to break fragile hair,’ she informs.

To help you get your hair healthy and back on track to bountiful, we’ve compiled a few product recommendations to give you the luscious locks you crave.
Burgeon Ritual
Burgeon GFH Hair Wellness Ritual
Combat hair loss, ageing, and thinning with science-backed formulas that have been meticulously crafted to address your hair’s specific needs. This groundbreaking two-step daily ritual is designed for visible improvement in hair health, growth and vitality. Specially curated superfoods and amino acids provide essential nourishment to restore and rejuvenate hair and scalp. High performance algæ combats hair ageing and greying, while promoting moisture retention and vibrancy. Proteins and antioxidants strengthen hair and help minimize fall-out. Plus, over 100 billion active probiotics work harmoniously to boost scalp health, reduce stress, and create an environment conducive to thriving hair.

Voir Rhythm of the Rain Cleansing Glacial Scalp Exfoliator
A gentle scalp exfoliator that cleanses, detoxifies and reduces the appearance of flakiness. Formulated with Canadian glacial oceanic clay, rich with over 60 natural minerals, and a blend of hydrating botanicals. Removes product build-up, dead cells and toxins. Manages sebum and scalp irritation. And the invigorating scent imparts a fresh and energized feeling.

Kyir Fuller Active Hair Serum
A plant-based, powerful combination of high-performing clean botanical ingredients. Bursting with the fresh scents of citrus, ginger and bergamot, Fuller Hair Serum is designed to transform hair’s health and appearance. The exclusive formula is loaded with natural and patented ingredients to fortify hair follicles, condition the scalp, and encourage hair growth. Featuring extracts of Redensyl, biotin, follicusan, ashwagandha, peppermint oil, caffeine, horsetail, pumpkin seed oil, green tea, alœ vera, ginger and saw palmetto.

Nature Lab Perfect Volume Thickening & Conditioning Hair Masque
Formulated with naturally thickening rice starch and densifying polymers, this weightless in-shower hair masque adds instant lift, volume, and body to fine hair. It plumps strands from root to end and simultaneously hydrates so that hair looks and feels thicker and softer. Powerful botanical ingredients like sunflower and rosemary extracts help improve scalp and hair health over time. 

Amazon Advanced Hair Growth Tonic
The Growth Tonic stimulates hair growth, improving scalp conditions. The pataua is a palm tree native to the Amazon whose rich oil is one of the most fortifying ingredients available in nature. It works wonders on fine and fragile hair, giving it four times the strength. Pataua is also a natural and efficient heat protectant and, combined with the proper technology, can make hair grow faster than normal.

Philip B. Weightless Volumizing Insta-Thick
Get a fuller head of hair instantly with this luxurious styling treatment. Breathe in the fresh magnolia scent while this styling mist gives you the full and bouncy look of a salon blow-out. Voluminous and sexy in one spray.

Unveil No. O Scalp Renewal Brush
Healthy hair needs a healthy scalp. Eco-friendly and made from biodegradable straw, regular use of this brush boosts scalp health and promotes blood circulation and flow. It detoxifies and removes debris and product build-up and dead cells. It’s also soothing and relaxing after a long day.

Marc Anthony Grow Long Leave-In Conditioner

With caffeine, ginseng and vitamin E on your side, this leave-in conditioner gives hair the moisture and strength it needs to help reduce split ends and breakage. The de-tangling formula prevents pulling and tugging that can cause breakage. Tames frizz in dry, oily, or normal hair. Paraben-free, sulphate-free, phthalate-free.

Divi to the Roots Hair Vitamins
Hair Vitamin and Supplement, Grow + Thicken contains the Divi Roots-9 complex and other clean, innovative ingredients working together to promote hair growth and thickness. Crafted with adaptogens, vitamins, minerals and a science-backed ingredient complex.

Virtue Labs Flourish Minoxidil Foam
Used by millions, minoxidil is the only single ingredient medically proven to help regrowth hair in women. Virtue’s Women’s 5% Flourish Minoxidil Foam works while you sleep, reactivating the hair follicles and stimulating growth, with visible results in as little as three months.

HH Science Grow My Hair Shampoo
This shampoo cleans and fortifies the scalp by creating a clean and healthy environment for hair regrowth and restoration, leaving hair with a healthy body, volume, and shine.


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