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Dihydrotestosterone and Hair Loss

August 15th, 2014

Dihydrotestosterone and Hair LossDihydrotestosterone is a chemical we have referred to in several of our articles. Commonly abbreviated as DHT, this chemical is a male hormone, converted from testosterone. High levels of it are the main cause of hair loss in men and women. However, there is more to it than just that.

DHT Love

Before we get into why an abundance of DHT is bad for those of us who want to keep our hair, there are actually DHT enthusiasts out there.  As we all have come to know, there are two populations among hair loss: those who are reluctant, and those that don’t care. A percentage of the latter makes up the enthusiasts. According to some possibly biased research, DHT is a “stronger” form of testosterone.

DHT is synthesized from testosterone daily, in both men and women. 5-10% of a male’s testosterone will be converted until their genetics or glands cause an increase of testosterone for conversion. In both sexes, a higher conversion rate begins around the time of puberty, however there is a large defining feature of it in males. DHT is what causes the formation of the male genitalia during fetal development. A lack of it throughout ontogeny will cause underdeveloped genitalia, as well as an underdeveloped prostate.

Knowing how important DHT is to the development of the male body, it is clear why many men don’t take it for granted. Those that embrace DHT have done their share of research on its benefits, and without a guess, you can find a few body building articles on it. Heralded as “3 or more times as powerful of regular testosterone,” DHT is cherished by those looking to build strength and muscle. DHT is known to play a role in not only sexual development, but also the enhancement of muscles, and hair loss.

DHT vs Hair

An abundance of DHT has a variety of effects on both genders of the human population. Although mainly active during and after puberty, it is present in the body prior to this. In terms of puberty, it controls the production of body hair, hormonal processes such as menstruation (women) and sperm production (men), amongst other hormonal changes. Later, if an abundance occurs, balding can arise.

Male Pattern Baldness, or MPB, is the corner stone result of an abundance of DHT. Hair follicles are sensitized when presented to DHT, causing them to shrink and having a shorter lifespan as opposed to the normal hair growth cycle of several years.  Hair has three phases in its life cycle: growing, resting, and dying. During MPB, the growing phase fades as the resting phase increases in duration.

Since baldness happens mostly on the scalp, this is the main area scientists and researchers study when exploring the causes and cures for baldness.  The follicle bulb, containing the dermal papilla, is responsible for hair growth. It produces and divides the cells that make up hair follicles, and although hair is dead flesh, it is a result of the papilla getting nutrients from surrounding blood capillaries beneath the scalp.

When there is an abundance of DHT, it can block or implicate the absorption of nutrients to the dermal papilla. Once this happens, MPB or other forms of baldness can occur. Hair thinning is another effect that can result from DHT. As the hair follicle weakens and shrinks, the hair will also shrink and have a thin appearance. It can also fade in color, becoming lighter until hits the point of near transparency like the small furs that cover a majority of the human body.

There are several forms of baldness, not all caused by DHT:

-          MPB, sometimes referred to as Andogenetic Alopecia, is a form of baldness that miniaturizes hairs, and causes random areas of the scalp to become bald, tending to connect and create the “pattern” effect

-          Anagen Effluvium is rapid hair loss, usually caused by chemotherapy. The division of hair cells is halted, but as noted, an abundance of DHT can stop the dermal papilla from getting nutrition, thus also halting cell division

-          Telogen Effluvium is an extreme form of shedding, usually experienced as a result of trauma, infection, stress or surgery

-          Traction alopecia is hair loss from a constant pulling, such as intensive, excessive hair styling, braiding, etc

-          Regular balding, beginning with a receding hairline and a bald spot in the middle of the scalp

Although, not all baldness is caused by DHT, because DHT tends to affect the hair follicles and the division of hair cells beneath the scalp, many hair care and hair growth treatments target the scalp. Currently, the big chemical in the hair regrowth niche is Ketoconazole, an antifungal medication that cleanses the scalp of fungal infections, the fungi that causes dandruff, and DHT. These treatments are usually products such as shampoos and conditioners, but there are also topical solutions containing other chemicals.

DHT is a big problem when it comes to hair loss and baldness. However, it is also a main ingredient in the make-up of the human male. It’s not all bad, but just like most things, it’s best in moderation.

Myths about Hair Loss

July 18th, 2014

Myths about Hair LossWe’ve all heard the many myths about hair loss. “If you keep wearing a hat, you’re going to go bald,” “If you’re going bald, you have too much testosterone,” or a family favorite, “Blame your mother.” However, none of these factors have to do with hair loss (not 100% anyways). Surprised? You’re about to learn the truth about these myths about what causes hair loss.

You get it from your Mom

This is not completely true. Yes, you will get some hair loss gene’s from your mother if her father is bald, no question about it. Surprisingly, your mother’s genes for hair loss are more dominant than your father’s. However, it’s also possible to inherit hair loss from your father’s side.

Wearing hats make you bald

People think wearing a hat makes you go bald because your head isn’t getting enough air, which doesn’t make sense because your scalp doesn’t breathe. If anything, wearing a hat protects your head and your hair from the sun.

Getting too much Sun

No, sun exposure won’t lead to baldness. Yes, too much sun exposure can cause your hair to get dry, frizzy, and dull, as discussed in this article about hair and sun damage. However, it will not cause baldness—just horrible sun burns.

Hair Styling

Hair care products and hardware are for styling, not for going bald. Using hair gels, pomade, or other similar items aren’t going to cause hair loss. However, be wary of some of the chemicals in gels and other products that can weaken or even damage hair. Moreover, over styling your hair with mechanical work i.e. flat irons. It’s hair, not an automobile.

Too much testosterone

This is the silliest one ever. The manlier you are, the less hair you have? Talk about reversing the cultural norm. Actually, most men link a lack of hair to sex appeal, but the two don’t go hand-in-hand. The real hormonal cause is an abundance of (Dihydrotestosterone) DHT, which is converted from testosterone. So, if you do have a lot of testosterone, you’re prone to having too much DHT, but too much testosterone does not equate to hair loss. A shampoo with ketoconazole will fix that though.

It’s a guy problem

Actually, it’s not just men who go bald. Have you seen those hair transplant commercials with women? Men make up about 60-70% of the hair loss population. The other 40-30% is coming from the female gender.

If you’re bald, then you’re old

Not necessarily true. Do the elderly have less hair than the youth? Yes, absolutely…most of the time. However, people can start going bald in their late teens, and 18 years old isn’t old. Wait until you’re 40 to start saying that.

Too much shampoo

This can be true depending on the shampoo you use. If it has harsh chemicals that can damage your hair, like sulfate, it’s likely that you may experience hair problems. But keeping your hair and scalp overly clean will not cause you to lose your hair. If anything, it will help get rid of the fungi and other buildup, which can cause dandruff and other problems. The only thing clean hair makes you prone to is lice.

Decreased blood flow to the scalp

Yes, the scalp needs good blood circulation to promote hair growth and thicker, fuller hair. But once you lose hair, stimulating your scalp isn’t going to magically cause hair to grow back. Decreased blood flow happens when you go bald because those areas of the scalp no longer need blood to keep the hair healthy. That’s why you may notice a lack of blood circulation in the scalp.

Trauma turns your hair grey

Physical and emotional stress can cause hair to turn grey and result in hair loss. However, if you’re not already at an age where you’re losing your hair, it will grow back once the things calm down.

Benefits of Tea Tree Oil

July 15th, 2014

Tea Tree OilThere are many causes of hair loss and everyone’s hair loss is different. However, ingredients like tea tree oil can help fight the issue directly from the roots.  Applying tea tree oil to the hair and scalp can have an effective result for various types of hair loss including hereditary, external and medical causes. This particular type of oil is obtained from the leaves of the Melaleuca Alternifolia plant which can be found in the northeast coast of New South Wales, Australia.  For many years, native aborigines have used tea tree oil to treat skin ailments such as fungal infections, burns, cuts and acne.  Used as an antiseptic, antibacterial, as well as an anti-fungal, tea tree oil also has the ability to encourage healthy hair and scalp by unclogging the hair follicles from excess oil, reducing dandruff and stimulating blood flow within the scalp.

Unclogs Hair Follicles

Hair grows from little pouches beneath the skin which are known as hair follicles. When hair follicles become clogged, they are unable to continue to produce strong hair strands.  Many who experience hair loss, also have build up on the scalp such as excess oil/sebum, which furthers the problem of hair fall.  Sebum is an oily substance that is produced on the scalp and when it is overproduced, the hair follicles can become clogged with hardened sebum resulting in weak and undernourished hair strands.  This is when tea tree oil comes into play.  Tea tree oil has the ability to dissolve the hardened sebum, freeing the follicle for healthy hair growth.

Reduces Dandruff
Tea tree oil also reduces other build up on the scalp by removing bacteria and fungi which helps alleviate dandruff and other related skin ailments like psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis.  Tea tree oil is similar to the popular hair loss ingredient, Ketoconazole, as both are considered anti-fungals which help to eliminate scaly and itchy dry patches on the skin.  Studies have also shown that tea tree oil has the ability to improve the immune system which helps to combat infections that can result in hair loss.  While dandruff may just seem like an aesthetically unpleasing nuisance, if left untreated, the dead skin that then formulates on the scalp can negatively effect the hair follicles, making tea tree oil a great solution to combat such issues.

Stimulates Blood Flow

Massaging tea tree oil into the scalp can help increase the blood flow while reducing inflammation.  When the scalp is deprived of stimulation, the hair follicles do not receive an adequate amount of blood flow, which they need in order to thrive and produce healthy hair strands.  In fact, a study revealed that men who were experiencing androgenic alopecia and hair loss had significantly less blood flow to their scalps, than men who were not experiencing hair loss.

There are many ways to stimulate the blood circulation within the scalp, including making your own tea tree oil treatment.  When deciding to make a home remedy tea tree oil treatment it is important to dilute the tea tree oil as it is very strong on its own and can result in irritation, especially for those with sensitive skin.  You can dilute the oil by mixing 1 part tea tree oil with 10 parts of any other oil like almond or jojoba oil.  Or you can always opt for an over the counter shampoo or sulfate-free conditioner that contains tea tree oil and other beneficial ingredients.

IMPORTANT: Tea tree oil should NEVER be ingested, as it is considered toxic when taken orally.

Eat Your Way Towards Healthier Hair

July 11th, 2014

Healthy Eating for Your HairIt’s pretty well known that your diet can have a direct effect on your skin. Poor diet can change the way your skin produces oil or even effect break outs. But did you know that your hair is effected by your diet as well? Although your hair may not react as quickly to your diet changes, your scalp, hair follicles & hair depend on the nutrients in your diet.

There are many other factors other than what you eat that make up how your hair reacts. Stress, sleep, medical conditions and many other sources play into the health of your hair. Why not use your diet to help your hair & keep it as healthy as you can? Below are some ‘super foods’ that will help you eat your way towards healthier hair.

Cantaloupe & Mangos

These flavorsome fruits are ripe with antioxidant beta carotene. Once consumed our bodies convert it into vitamin A, which helps products the oils that keep your scalp healthy. Being low on this vitamin can dry out your scalp & even cause dandruff.

Kale

The newly popular foodie green, kale, isn’t just good for spicing up a menu, it’s also packed with iron, beta carotene, and vitamin C. These elements help keep hair follicles healthy and oils on the scalp balanced. Don’t like kale? Try spinach!

Eggs

Get your protein here! Eggs are filled with minerals that help your hair & scalp. Iron & zinc are two of the stars in this super food. Iron helps deliver oxygen to the follicles. If you’re low on iron, it can be a cause for hair loss.

Lentils

Craving soup? Try making one with lentils. These legumes are potent with iron, zinc & even biotin. This trio of vitamins helps protect the scalp & disrupt DHT in skin.

Walnuts

These nuts are not only delicious, but rich in biotin & vitamin E. Biotin helps to repair & strengthen hair proteins. A deficiency in biotin can cause shedding issues & hair loss.

Salmon

Get fat! Salmon contains omega-3 fatty acids that are essential for your hair’s health. Since we as humans can’t product it, we need to take it in through our diet. Our hair is partially made of fatty acids & it is important to take them in.

Kiwis

Kiwis are chock full of vitamin C, which is an essential vitamin in your hair’s health. Vitamin C is helpful in circulation & supports blood vessels that nourish the follicles.

Cottage Cheese or Greek Yogurt

Both of these dairy products are rich in vitamin B5, which improves hair shine. Some studies have even suggested that vitamin B5 may have additional anti-inflammatory properties.

How to Prevent Hair Loss

July 8th, 2014

iStock_000012115939SmallHair loss is a condition that countless people suffer from around the world. With society’s increased awareness of the importance of looking and feeling their best, finding preventative methods to stay as young as possible is of utmost importance to them. There are several methods to help prevent hair falling out from the scalp, both natural and chemical based. Below are some easy methods on how to prevent hair loss.

Do less to your hair:

It might seem like this is common knowledge, but sometimes, people end up doing too many things to their scalp to prevent hair loss that they end up causing more damage than before. Taking care of your hair to prevent hair falling out has several methods, like not exposing your scalp or hair to frequent heating and drying procedures. This means that in order for you to stop hair from falling out, you must slow down on dyeing hair, be very careful on how you style your hair, as well as spacing out the frequency you use heating tools and treatments on the scalp. Doing so will allow for the hair to breathe and in turn, become healthier because of the absence of harsh chemicals to the hair follicles.

Wash and dry your hair properly:

When washing your hair with shampoo, it is pertinent to use a sulfate and paraben-free shampoo, especially if you have a sensitive scalp. To avoid split ends and excessive hair falling out, do not rub your hair with a towel after washing it. Use a cotton t-shirt or microfiber towel to prevent hair breakage. Try not to brush your hair when it is wet, because this can also cause your hair to fall out rapidly.

RELAX!

Getting your stress under control will help prevent self-damage to all parts of your body, especially your hair! Ensuring that you get adequate sleep and getting your physical activity in will help keep your hair strong and healthy.

Watch what you eat:

Believe it or not, eating specific foods can cause hair loss. For example, eating raw egg whites harbors bacteria in the body which can harm you. This food also contains a substance that binds to biotin, which prevents absorption, causing lifeless hair strands and an unhealthy diet.

Take Biotin supplements:

Taking Biotin is a widely popular method in helping prevent hair falling out. Biotin for hair loss also makes your hair thicker, stronger, and much less likely to break. People have reported fast hair growth as well as an improvement in the overall health of their hair strands.
In conjunction with addressing your hair loss issues with your doctor, these methods can prove to be beneficial for making sure your hair is in its best condition. These steps are how to prevent hair loss from occurring in the future, but nothing is guaranteed from your hair falling out if it is a genetic issue. Always make sure to consult your doctor before self-diagnosing your hair loss issues.

Ketoconazole for Hair Loss

June 17th, 2014

Ketoconazole ShampooWhat Is Ketoconazole?

Ketoconazole is a clinically proven, powerful anti-fungal used to treat various fungal infections, such as dandruff, and can help curb hair loss. Ketoconazole helps remove toxins and debris from the scalp and hair, perfectly preparing it for a hair loss shampoo to help regrow hair. This anti-fungal can also be effective in stimulating new hair growth on the scalp if you are someone who suffers from androgenic alopecia, another term for male and female pattern baldness. This condition is more common in men, but both genders can have it.

How Does Hair Loss Happen?

Androgenic alopecia usually occurs at the crown of the head in men, while women usually undergo thinning hair over the entire surface area of the scalp. Hair loss is caused predominantly due to an imbalance of dihydrotestosterone (DHT), which comes from the male hormone testosterone. Believe it or not, both men and women carry testosterone in their bodies, with men obviously carrying more. DHT binds to the receptors in the hair follicles on the scalp. It then shrinks the follicles and makes it almost impossible for healthy hair to survive, thus causing hair loss. Ketoconazole is useful in that it can counter the effects of DHT in those who suffer from androgenic alopecia.

Ketoconazole Used Orally vs. Topically

Ketoconazole is available in both oral and topical forms. Although some people do decide to take it orally to treat fungal infections of the urinary tract, skin, and mouth, there can be some harsh side effects. The most commonly used form of Ketoconazole is in shampoo for hair loss. One percent Ketoconazole is available for purchase over the counter, while higher percentages, such as 2%, require a prescription from your doctor. Of course, the 2% formula is stronger and will most likely work better, but it is important to consult your doctor before deciding to start any new regimen.

Some agree that using Ketoconazole in conjunction with systemic antiandrogens will help regrow your hair faster. This is because Ketoconazole blocks the synthesis of DHT in the scalp, while acting as an “antagonist” of the androgen receptors in your body. Since using these two products together can help block the androgen receptors more powerfully, it is said that this can lead to a more effective treatment of androgenic alopecia in both men and women.

When using Ketoconazole shampoo for hair loss, you must follow the directions accurately. Improper usage can cause irritation, however, it is in very rare cases that this happens. It is vital that you use the shampoo on a regular basis and don’t forget to skip doses. This will aid in the effectiveness of the Ketoconazole shampoo for hair loss!

Steps on How to Use Ketoconazole Shampoo For Hair Loss

  1. Make sure that your scalp is not already irritated, cut, bruised, or burning.
  2. Wet your hair thoroughly
  3. Apply a generous amount of the Ketoconazole shampoo to your hair
  4. Use your fingers to rub the shampoo into your scalp until it forms into a lather
  5. Wait one minute to ensure the shampoo gets to the scalp
  6. Rinse your scalp of the Ketoconazole shampoo thoroughly
  7. Towel dry
  8. Repeat steps 1-7 daily

Ketoconazole has also proven to be beneficial for those who suffer from different skin conditions, such as ringworm, candidiasis (yeast infection), athlete’s foot, and jock itch among others. Since Ketoconazole is such a powerful anti-fungal, it has become the first choice for doctors to recommend to their patients suffering from conditions such as these. Ketoconazole is usually applied once a day for 2-6 weeks topically for conditions such as the ones stated above.

Things to Discuss With Your Doctor before Using Ketoconazole

  1. Talk about the current medications you are taking and see if there could be possibly side effects by incorporating Ketoconazole (this includes vitamins and supplements)
  2. Tell your doctor of any allergies you may have
  3. Discuss your current medical state and condition and ensure that your body can handle the Ketoconazole
  4. Discuss your current food and drink diet to prevent any possible negative side effects
  5. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or looking to get pregnant any time soon.
  6. Tell your doctor if you have ever had a serious illness or medical condition

Ketoconazole has proven to be a beneficial solution for those suffering from hair loss. A hair loss shampoo with Ketoconazole helps clarify the scalp and hair from all toxins and debris, while removing DHT to make way for new growth!

Benefits of Biotin

June 10th, 2014

hair vitaminsThere is a lot of research regarding biotin for hair growth. Aside from improving overall hair health, biotin also benefits the skin and body. From issues such as brittle hair and nails, skin rashes, high cholesterol and high blood sugar, biotin is a vitamin vital to the body’s function. Although we’ll mainly focus on biotin for hair, we will also be touching base on the other biotin benefits as well.

What is biotin?

This is usually the number one question asked by those who may see biotin pills on the shelf of the vitamin isle or see it in an ingredient list of their hair products. Biotin (vitamin b-7) is a vitamin B complex that is also known as vitamin H. This vitamin is essential for the body’s cell growth and deficiencies may lead to harmful effects on the body. Biotin is found in several foods including egg yolks, chicken, dairy products, Swiss chard, whole wheat bread, and whole grain cereals. Though there are many foods that contain biotin, they are only comprised of small amounts, so it is necessary to find other ways to add biotin to your body.

Types of biotin

Biotin is available in pill form for overall body health and cell health.  These biotin pills are available at several drugstores both online and local. Standard pill bottles are usually priced from $8-12 dollars.

If you decide to take biotin pills, here are the recommended usages:

- 0-6 months: 5 mcg/day
- 7-12 months: 6mcg/day
- 1-3 years: 8 mcg/day
- 4-8 years: 12mcg/day
- 9-13 years: 20 mcg/day
- 14-18 years: 35 mcg/day
- 19 years and up: 30 mcg/day
- Pregnant women: 30 mcg/day
- Breastfeeding women: 35 mcg/day

Another form of biotin can also be located in other products, especially hair products. From biotin conditioners to special serums, this ingredient can be seen on the labels of several hair products for hair growth results. However, when looking for these biotin enriched hair products, be sure that they also include other beneficial ingredients for hair growth, so they can add even greater benefits to your hair. Other ingredients that work well with biotin for hair are saw palmetto, jojoba and tea tree oils, as well as sulfate free elements.

Biotin Benefits

Biotin benefits are immense and there is no question that this vitamin is an important part of your body’s health. However, biotin has proven to be beneficial in many areas of the body. One of the most popular benefits is for hair growth. Biotin repairs and strengthens hair proteins, creating both thicker and stronger locks. A deficiency in biotin can also lead to hair loss and shedding issues. If you are someone who is experiencing hair loss, in order to add nutrients to your hair, it is best to use a hair loss shampoo like Regenepure NT or condition with products that contain biotin for hair growth and thickening purposes. One of the more common topical hair products is a biotin conditioner. It is proven to provide beneficial nutrients to the hair and maintain health while adding thickness to the hair strands. Similarly to hair, nails also contain keratin making biotin an excellent source to strengthen brittle nails and improve overall nail health.

Biotin also provides internal benefits. Biotin supplements have been used to boost metabolism. When your body contains high levels of biotin it helps your body digest food quicker.  Another major benefit is its ability to balance blood sugar levels by breaking down the carbohydrates in your body. When used in combination with other medications, those suffering from diabetes may notice healthier levels of blood sugar.

Biotin Side Effects

Most vitamins do not have many negative effects, however caution should still be applied. Everything needs to be taken in moderation. It is important to use the recommended dosages per age group. While biotin has been proven to be safe for women who are pregnant and breastfeeding, it is always best to consult a doctor. You should also consult your doctor if you are receiving kidney dialysis because you may require extra dosages of biotin. At times biotin may cause breakouts, in those cases users should discontinue use and consult a doctor to see if the breakouts are directly linked to the biotin intake.

Biotin is a valuable vitamin to add to your healthy regimen. Whether you’re suffering from damaged hair, hair loss, unstable blood sugar levels, or need a boost in metabolism, biotin will provide overall bodily health with the recommended dosage. To learn about our new Intense Volumizing Biotin Conditioner visit our products page.

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