If you have wavy, curly, or coily hair, most likely you’ve experienced hair shedding. With most of us, it can be concerning when hair falls out on a daily basis, but it’s actually completely normal! The question is, what causes hair shedding? How much hair loss is too much? And, how can one prevent it?
What is shedding and is it normal?
Shedding is when the hair follicle naturally falls out from the root. Let’s not confuse this with hair breakage. Breakage occurs when the hair follicle is damaged and literally breaks off. You can see the difference between breakage and shedding by looking closely at the hair strands. If you see a bulb (sort of like a plant bulb) at one end, it’s shedding. If you notice split or frayed ends, then you have breakage. Unfortunately, shedding is more common for people with textured hair because we don’t wash or brush our hair compared to people with straight hair. In reality, it’s normal to lose up to 100 hairs per day. Each strand lasts anywhere from 2 to 5 years. On a daily basis, hair grows and dies, some faster or slower depending on how you take care of yourself. So if you’re only washing your hair once or twice per week, it’s possible to see hundreds of strands of hair come out in the shower all at once! Just remember that this is completely normal and you’re not alone.
What if I’m losing more than 100 strands?
If you’re losing more than 100 strands of hair per day, then you’re dealing with excessive shedding, which is also fairly common. Excessive shedding can be caused by several different reasons which include giving birth, stress, scalp buildup, dandruff, losing weight, certain illnesses, and more. If you can identify the reason for the shedding, you can most likely prevent or slow this down. If shedding has been a concern for some time now, and you can’t figure out the specific cause, try seeing a dermatologist for a more in-depth discussion.
Can I prevent shedding?
In a nutshell, not entirely. While you can lessen the amount of hairs that shed, you’ll never be able to fully prevent shedding. If you’re really concerned about the amount of shedding, it’s recommended to see your hairstylist or dermatologist.
How can I lessen the amount of shedding?
- Find the right cleanser and conditioner for your hair texture. This will ensure that your hair won’t dry out or be damaged which could lead to shedding.
- Remove product build up. Product build up and dandruff can block your roots which affects new growth and breakage to older strands, so be sure to clarify and exfoliate a few times a month.
- Don’t skip, or rush, your detangling process when you wash your hair. Using a pre-poo before cleansing and finger detangling afterwards can make a huge difference.
- Consider switching up your products. Your hair may be “over them.” The product itself may have changed . Whether the company improved their formula or your hair changes (which happens naturally), your hair’s needs may change. It’s okay to change up your hair products, just listen to your hair and what it needs.
- Look at your nutrition. Could your body be lacking certain nutrients, particularly iron and magnesium? It may be a good idea to meet with a nutritionist to learn what nutrients are best for your body and hair.
- Be cautious of your hairstyles. Any style that your hair holds for too long that’s too tight or restricting to your hair’s follicles may cause hair loss, otherwise known as traction alopecia.
Do you deal with shedding? Have any tips to reduce shedding? Sound off in the comments below!