Your hair is your pride and joy so, when it starts to thin or fall out, it can be difficult to deal with. For many men, the initial reaction is to use volumizing hair products or to change hairstyles in an effort to disguise the problem. Unfortunately, these efforts may not only be futile, but they might actually make your hair loss worse or, at the very least, more noticeable.
If you’re starting to lose your hair, consider it a wakeup call that you might need to take a closer look at your daily grooming habits. Here are the top five grooming mistakes men make that can make your hair loss more evident.
The Top 5 Grooming Mistakes that Accentuate Hair Loss
Grooming is more than just a daily necessity – for many men, it is a matter of pride. Your hairstyle speaks to your personality and it affects how people perceive you. When your hair starts to thin or fall out, you may start attracting a different kind of attention. The last thing you want to do is make your hair loss more evident or do something to speed up the process.
What men often fail to realize is that there are many factors which contribute to hair loss – factors that go beyond genetics and age. You may be shocked to learn that some of your daily grooming habits might actually be making your hair loss worse. If you want to stop hair loss in its tracks, stop making these five grooming mistakes:
Mistake #1: Using length to disguise a lack of volume.
When your hair starts to thin, you may be tempted to grow it out so the added length can cover some of your balding areas. What usually ends up happening, however, is that growing your hair too long on the sides may make the thinning hair on the top of your head more apparent. Instead, try a shorter all-over style like a buzz cut to disguise your thinning areas.
Mistake #2: Overusing hair products.
When you start to lose your hair, your first thought may be to stock up on products that will help you regain some of the volume you’ve lost. The problem is that many hair products are so heavy they end up weighing your hair down, leaving it looking flat or separating the strands. If you choose to use hair products, avoid creams and pastes in favor of a lightweight spray or a light-hold mousse.
Mistake #3: Shampooing too often.
Shampooing your hair is probably part of your daily hygiene ritual but it could be making your hair loss worse. What you may not know is that shampooing your hair too often could strip it of the natural oils that keep it healthy and moisturized. Rather than shampooing every day, switch to every-other-day and just rinse your hair on the days in between. If you have oily hair, you might try using a dry shampoo.
Mistake #4: Using too much heat.
If you use a blow-dryer on a daily basis, you might be damaging your hair without even realizing it. Many men make the mistake of holding the blow-dryer too close to their hair – this can cause your roots to dry out, leaving your hair looking thin and wispy. Instead, use your blow-dryer on the low heat setting and hold it at least eight inches away from your scalp.
Mistake #5: Compensating with a scruffy beard.
If the hair on your head starts to thin or fall out, you may think that growing a beard will distract from your hair loss. A scruffy, scraggly beard paired with a balding head, however, is only going to make things worse. If you want to grow facial hair, fully commit yourself by starting with a shaved or buzzed head and then grow out a well-groomed beard in a style that complements your personal taste.
Adopt These Healthy Habits to Slow Hair Loss
By quitting the five grooming mistakes discussed above you can make your hair loss less evident, but is there more you could be doing to actually slow it down or reverse it? Absolutely! Making simple changes to your hair care routine and other daily habits can help you slow down or even reverse hair loss. Here are a few healthy habits you can start today to keep your locks luscious and lustrous:
- Avoid tobacco and second-hand smoke. There is no doubt that smoking is bad for your health, but it can also contribute to hair loss. According to the results of a study published in the journal Dermatology, some of the toxins in cigarette smoke may cause damage to the hair follicles and may inhibit the hair growth cycle. Quit smoking to restore healthy hair growth.
- Manage your stress. When you become stressed your body produces hormones like cortisol and noradrenaline which, according to the results of a study published in the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology, can impair the hair growth cycle and speed hair loss. To counteract stress, take 30 minutes a day to do something you enjoy – meditation, yoga, and breathing exercises will help as well.
- Follow a healthy diet. Your hair requires certain nutrients to grow thick and strong, so make an effort to eat a balanced diet of lean protein, whole grains, healthy fats, and fresh fruits and veggies. Some of the most important nutrients for hair growth are zinc, iron, Vitamin D, biotin, and omega-3 fatty acids. In addition to a healthy diet, give yourself some nutritional insurance with a supplement that promotes healthy hair.
- Be careful when brushing. When brushing or combing your hair in the morning, be gentle to avoid excessive pulling and breakage. Using a wide-toothed comb will prevent pulling, though a soft bristle brush would work as well.
- Avoid alcohol-based styling products. While some styling products can help you get the hair you want, others can actually damage your hair. Styling products that contain alcohol may dry out your hair, making it brittle and more prone to breakage.
- Protect your hair from sun damage. When you go out in the sun you are probably most concerned about protecting your skin but your hair needs protection as well! Wear a hat to cover your hair or try a leave-in conditioner that contains sunscreen.
Hair loss is extremely common, affecting nearly two-thirds of men before they reach the age of 35, but it isn’t something you have to just roll over and accept. As a man, you have the power to instigate change in your lifestyle and in your daily habits that could effectively reduce or reverse hair loss. If you are experiencing hair loss, you would also be wise to visit your doctor to determine the best course of treatment that will help to regrow your hair or, at the least, prevent your hair loss from getting worse.