Before discussing what to look for in a shampoo for thinning hair it is important to set out some facts about hair and hair care to avoid expecting too much from a hair shampoo.
Thinning hair is a problem experienced by millions of men and women, especially as they get older. By the time men reach the age of 50 according to some estimates, around 58% will experience a receding hairline or thinning hair or hair loss on the crown of the head.
About 25% of women experience some thinning of hair by the time they reach 50. Many women start noticing a decrease in hair density between 30 and 40 years of age and the rate of thinning looks to speed up after menopause.
So when a hair shampoo is advertised as a shampoo for thinning hair it is understandable it joins much interest.
What Is Hair?
Consider this question: What is hair?
Hair is made up of protein and keratin amongst other things. Hair is not living. Although some shampoos and conditioners can add shine and elasticity to hair, the only way to overcome damaged hair is to wait for it to grow out and cut it off.
What Does A Shampoo Do?
So what does a shampoo for thinning hair actually do? That depends.
Some hair shampoos claim to add bounce and volume to your hair. Some of them do this by using an alkaline base to give the impression the hair has body. Beware of these shampoos. For a shampoo to cleanse your hair and scalp without causing damage it needs to be properly balanced. Look for shampoos with a pH factor between 4.5 and 5.5.
In other cases, a shampoo for thinning hair performs a deep cleansing action on the scalp. Ingredients in the shampoo not only get rid of surface dirt, but also neutralize DHT, a main contributor to hair loss and thinning hair.
So if you are looking for a shampoo for thinning hair that is going to promote a clean and healthy scalp and attack DHT examine the product description carefully. (See resource box below for one such shampoo)
Attack From The Inside
But here is another aspect to consider when evaluating a shampoo for hair loss.
There is only so much that can be done from the outside. Yes, a properly formulated shampoo for thinning hair can certainly help but the factors that can have the greatest effect on promoting healthy hair growth come from the inside.
Jonathon E. Phillips, a leading hair loss analyst, believes that treating hair loss involves a whole body approach. In his groundbreaking work "Hair Loss No More" (see resource box below) he keeps that careful attention to diet and nutrition as well as regular exercise will do much more to combat thinning hair than any cosmetic application.
Healthy hair follicles need nutrients provided by a healthy blood supply that circulates well around the body. A diet that is lacking in key vitamins, minerals, and proteins will have an effect on hair growth.
Likewise a sedentary lifestyle or factors such as smoking can greatly impair the blood circulation with the result the scalp is starved of the ingredients it needs to promote good hair growth.
Mr. Phillips has devised what he calls a revolutionary program combining exercises, diet, and deep breathing to make sure the blood is well oxygenated which can do much to combat thinning hair.
So when it comes to choosing a shampoo for thinning hair be aware that this is only one part of an effective strategy to combat hair loss. Do not expect miracles, even if a manufacturer raises your expectations. A shampoo can only do so much.
Attack the problem from the outside yes but more importantly see what changes you need to make to make sure your body is performing well on the inside.
A healthy body and control over stress can do much to help the problem of thinning hair in addition to using a shampoo!