In your 40’s, it may be time to switch up your hair-regimen to better care for your aging tresses.
If you’ve noticed a change in your hair’s texture and appearance as you age, you’re not alone. Many women’s hair becomes more, dry, brittle and dull with age. The good news is, you don’t have to settle for lifeless locks. We’ve rounded up the best tips to beat dry hair after 40.
What Causes Lifeless Hair After 40
Just like other parts of our body, our hair undergoes natural changes as we age. In your 40’s, oncoming menopause plays a large role in making hair changes more noticeable. The hormonal imbalances that occur during menopause can wreak havoc on your tresses in the form of thin, dry, and frizzy strands. Menopausal hair changes are caused by lower levels of estrogen and progesterone and an increased amount of dihydrotestosterone, or DHT. Estrogen and progesterone stimulate the hair-growth cycle; whereas, DHT hormones weaken the hair follicle, causing hair thinning.
Additional factors causing lifeless hair 40+ include a slow collagen production, genetics, nutritional imbalances, over-styling, excessive sun exposure, and medications.
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Tips to Beat Dry and Lifeless Hair After 40
Now that you are aware of what causes dry hair, here are a few solutions to beat it.
Feed Your Hair from the Inside Out
A well-balanced diet, full of colorful foods and essential vitamins helps to build strong hair. Include these ingredients into your diet to fortify healthy hair after 40:
- Protein will provide your strands with structure and promote stronger hair-growth. Foods like, poultry, fatty fish, eggs and dairy are strong sources of protein.
- Vitamin A makes sebum to moisturize the scalp and hair. To introduce vitamin A into your diet consider eating spinach, broccoli, and sweet red pepper.
- Vitamin B creates red blood cells, which deliver nutrients and oxygen to your scalp and promote hair growth. Sources like leafy greens, seeds, meat, and legumes are high in vitamin Bs.
- Vitamin C plays a key role in your body’s production of collagen and helps your body absorb iron, an important mineral for hair-growth. Foods packed with vitamin C include, brussel sprouts, potatoes, broccoli and citrus fruits.
- Vitamin E supports a healthy scalp by reducing oxidative stress and preserving its lipid layer. Foods like nuts, seeds, pumpkin, and spinach are great sources of vitamin E.
- Iron stimulates the hair-growth process by increasing blood circulation in your scalp. Iron is found in oysters, clams, grass-fed beef, and beans.
- Zinc helps balance your scalp’s oil production and repairs hair tissue. Shellfish, meat, legumes, and whole grains are great sources of zinc.
Care for Your Scalp
A healthy scalp is vital to supporting long-term hydrated, strong hair. Scalp build-up can suffocate the follicle root and lead to hair loss. It can also weigh down your hair, making it appear heavy and dull. A scalp cleanser will slough away dead skin, oil, and product build-up to improve follicle health. Getting rid of scalp-gunk can provide a natural lift for your roots, making your mane appear light and voluminous.
Another way to care for your scalp is through a scalp massage. Scalp massages soothe skin irritations and extends the amount of time your hair remains in the growth-phase. Scalp massages increase your blood circulation, which helps your hair derive essential nutrients to thrive. Prioritizing scalp care is an efficient (and relaxing) way to beat lifeless hair.
Cool It on the Heat
With aging hair, it is important to avoid depleting your hair’s hydration. Heat damage can leave your strands dry and brittle, so consider skipping heat-styling whenever possible. Heat opens your hair cuticles, making them vulnerable to moisture-loss and split-ends. When you can’t go without heat, ensure you use an alcohol-free heat protectant and keep your hot-tool on a low setting. It is unnecessary to exceed a temperature of 350 degrees.
Use Gentle, Chemical-Free Products
Chemical-heavy products contribute to dry, dull aging hair. Hair-products with sulfates and alcohols will strip your hair of its natural oils, leaving your hair prone to damage. Instead, look for mild products with hydrating ingredients like aloe vera, glycerin, argan oil, and mango butter. A gentle formula will serve your strands well by boosting their strength and moisture-retention.
Hair after 40 doesn’t have to be flat and brittle. To breathe life into your hair, you may consume a nutritional diet and focus on scalp-care. You can also keep your heat-styling to a minimum and prioritize the use of gentle products. These four tips will help you win the fight against dry and lifeless hair.
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