RubmdSelf CareHow to Choose the Best Hair Growth Products

How to Choose the Best Hair Growth Products

Hair loss and thinning hair are common issues that affect both men and women. As we age, changes in hormones, health issues, medications, genetics and environmental factors can all contribute to excessive hair fall or slowed hair growth. Fortunately, there are a variety of hair growth products on the market that aim to help with these problems.

What Causes Hair Loss and Slowed Hair Growth?

Before exploring hair growth products, itโ€™s important to understand what leads to thinning hair and hair loss in the first place.

Some key causes include:

Hormonal Changes: Fluctuations in androgens like testosterone and estrogen can disrupt the hair growth cycle. Changes during puberty, menopause and perimenopause may lead to temporary or lasting hair loss in women.

Health Conditions: Thyroid disorders, lupus, iron deficiency anemia and other diseases can trigger excessive hair shedding or impaired regrowth. Nutrient deficiencies are another culprit.

Medications: Drugs for cancer, arthritis, depression, heart disease and more are associated with hair loss side effects. When hair follicles are stressed by medications, regular regrowth may be disrupted.

Age: As we get older, the growth phase of our hair cycles gets progressively shorter. Hair follicles shrink and may produce thinner hairs over time. Genetic predisposition accelerates age-related thinning.

Family History: If other members of your family experienced hair loss or thinning hair, youโ€™re more likely to follow suit. Genetics play a major role.

Stress: High stress levels over long periods of time can interfere with the hair regrowth process and push more hairs than normal into the โ€œsheddingโ€ phase.

Environmental Factors: Air pollution, ultraviolet light exposure, harsh styling practices and cigarette smoke can all impede healthy hair growth over time leading to impairment of the hair follicles.

The Science Behind Hair Growth

Now that we know some of the key contributors to hair loss and thinning, letโ€™s discuss the science behind healthy hair growth.

Hair growth occurs in cyclic phases, as hairs transition from active growing (anagen) to resting (telogen) and finally shedding (exogen). At any given time, about 85-90% of hair should be in the anagen phase. The rest is in telogen.

  • Anagen – The growing phase that lasts 2-7 years. Hair grows about 1 cm per month.
  • Telogen – The resting phase that lasts 2-3 months. Hair stops growing and disconnects from blood supply but stays anchored in follicle.
  • Exogen – The shedding phase. The dormant hair loosens and sheds to make way for a new one.

If more hairs shift into telogen and exogen prematurely, excessive shedding occurs. If hairs donโ€™t re-enter anagen, thinning results. The goal is to prolong anagen to spur robust growth.

The hair growth cycle is regulated by cellular activity in the hair follicles. Follicles require adequate nutrients and proper hormone signaling to function optimally. Blood carries nutrients to follicles to facilitate new hair production.

Follicular cells called dermal papillae control hair regrowth. They release regulatory proteins, provide structure and interact with other cell types to spur the cycle. Alterations here impair the cycle.

Other critical growth factors like epidermal growth factor (EGF), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) and fibroblast growth factor (FGF) support follicle proliferation and differentiation needed for regeneration.

In nutrient deficiency, hormone imbalance, inflammation, toxicity or disease states, these processes are disrupted โ€“ impeding hair growth.

Lifestyle Tips to Support Hair Re-Growth

While using proven hair loss products is key, certain lifestyle measures can also boost results. Optimizing overall wellness makes the body more receptive to treatment while addressing triggers of thinning hair.

Diet

Diet plays a pivotal role in hair health – providing the nutrients needed for optimal growth. Focus on incorporating more:

ProteinAmino acids like cysteine and lysine are needed to construct hair keratin. Insufficient protein leads to increased loss. Foods like eggs, fish, poultry, nuts and seeds are great choices.
IronIron enables adequate oxygen and nutrient delivery to follicles to kickstart growth. Iron deficiency is a major cause of impairment. Spinach, grass-fed beef and lentils can help increase intake.
ZincZinc assists with DNA and protein production in hair follicle cells while regulating oil gland function. Lack of zinc disrupts the cycle. Oysters, chickpeas, cashews and shrimp supply zinc.
Vitamin DResearch reveals vitamin D activates stem cells responsible for early stage hair production. Fatty fish, eggs, fortified dairy and 15 min daily sun exposure boosts levels.
Omega-3sOmega-3 fatty acids nurture scalp health, facilitate hair thickening and curb excess inflammation stunting follicles. Chia seeds, walnuts and salmon provide omega-3s.
BiotinBiotin or B7 aids amino acid metabolism and cell growth needed for quick, strong hair. Sweet potatoes, spinach, almonds and egg yolks supply biotin.
AntioxidantsFree radicals accelerate aging of follicles causing oxidative damage. Berries, tomatoes, leafy greens and Vitamins A, C and E work against effects.

Stay adequately hydrated and curb crash dieting which deprives follicles of vital nutrients.

Stress Management

Chronic stress takes a toll on hair growth by increasing cortisol and substance P levels which prematurely push growing hairs into the shedding phase.

Relaxation practices like yoga, meditation, journaling and walks lower stress for improved growth. Massage boosts circulation to provide nutrient nourishment to starved follicles as well.

Stress-busting herbs like ashwagandha, Rhodiola and ginseng also help curb hair thinning influenced by high cortisol.

Scalp Massages

Gentle scalp massaging 3-5 minutes daily boosts blood flow to enhance nutrient delivery to the hair follicles – creating optimal conditions for new hair formation.

Using fingertips, apply light pressure in circular motions around the head concentrating on any thinning areas.

Scalp massage also removes product buildup and exfoliates to facilitate better absorption of topicals.

Oils like rosemary, thyme, cedarwood and peppermint further stimulate the scalp and provide nourishing botanical compounds through skin contact during massage.

Protect Styling Practices

Harsh styling habits traumatize follicles, instigate inflammation, block absorption of beneficial topicals and worsen genetic hair loss.

  • Allow hair to air dry instead of heat tools
  • Ditch tight hairstyles pulling on roots
  • Use heat protectant sprays if hot styling
  • Avoid harsh chemical processing
  • Use soft scrunchies instead of tight hair-ties
  • Gently detangle wet hair with a wide comb
  • Shampoo less frequently

This reduces breakage and shedding while minimizing further damage to hair follicles.

Smart Supplements

Specialized nutraceuticals and botanicals taken orally complement topical treatments by providing internal support:

Biotincritical B vitamin needed for keratin infrastructure and follicle metabolism.
Vitamin Dresearch shows it activates follicle stem cells to kickstart regrowth.
Hydrolyzed Collagensupplies amino acids to build keratin while improving shine and smoothness.
Ashwagandhaan adaptogenic herb to lower elevated cortisol levels inducing hair loss.
Pumpkin Seed Oilcontains zinc plus plant sterols that inhibit DHT binding to follicles.
Grape Seed Extractcontains antioxidants protecting follicles from damage.
Vitamin Cboosts iron absorption and collagen development needed for healthy follicles

Look for safe, quality hair wellness supplements with these compounds.

Choosing Effective Hair Re-Growth Products

The good news is that over-the-counter treatments can help counteract many hair loss causes and get growth back on track. Letโ€™s explore how to choose quality products.

Look for science-backed ingredients like:

Minoxidil

One of the most clinically-proven ingredients for regrowing hair is minoxidil, an over-the-counter topical solution. Minoxidil is a vasodilator, widening blood vessels to facilitate improved nutrient flow to stimulate growth in miniaturized or shrunken follicles.

It also prolongs anagen (growth phase), quickens the rate of growth and promotes thicker regrown hairs. Itโ€™s suitable and effective for both men and women. Studies reveal it can regrow up to 25% more hairs.

Caffeine

Applied topically, caffeine invigorates scalp tissues โ€“ spurring hair follicle proliferation and growth via cell signaling pathways. By blocking growth inhibitors, it prolongs anagen. One key benefit โ€“ it fortifies weak, miniaturized hairs.

Redensyl (Dihydroquercetin-Glucoside + epigallocatechin gallate-glucoside)

Redensyl is a hair regenerating complex of plant bio-actives shown to reduce hair loss, increase growth and rouse dormant follicles. It optimizes and elongates anagen while curbing telogen rates. Phenolic antioxidants neutralize follicle damage. Clinical testing found up to a 92.2% reduction in hair loss and 94% sawfaster growth.

Rosemary Oil

Containing rosmarinic acid and carnosic acid, rosemary oil boosts cellular regeneration and blood circulation in follicular tissue to spur growth. The phytochemicals renew dermal papilla formation and follicle differentiation while suppressing excessive scalp DHT levels implicated in androgenetic alopecia. In trials, significant re-growth occurred after 6 months.

Biotin

Also known as vitamin B7, biotin is required by the hair follicle cells to produce keratin for healthy structure and growth. Without adequate biotin, hair bulbs shrink โ€“ making growth impossible. As an essential cofactor for metabolism, it ensures scalp tissues get nutrients & energy. Studies indicate biotin supplementation aids growth in those deficient.

Castor Oil

Thanks to its high ricinoleic acid content, castor oil exhibits scalp anti-inflammatory and follicle stimulating abilities. By boosting circulation and delivering nutrients to the follicles, it creates optimal conditions for hair regeneration. The fatty acid also balances scalp PH while removing residues. In studies, it boosts growth in those with alopecia areata.

Other Hair Re-Growth Enhancing Compounds

Alongside core compounds that stimulate growth through various mechanisms, hair regrowth products often contain additional ingredients for synergistic support:

  • Amino acids – like cysteine and lysine aid keratin development for hair structural integrity.
  • Vitamins & minerals โ€“ like vitamins A, C, D, B-complex, zinc, iron and selenium correct underlying deficiencies stunting optimal hair production.
  • Natural DHT-blockers โ€“ like saw palmetto and pumpkin seed extract preserve follicles and prevent shedding.
  • Stress-busters โ€“ like ashwagandha, ginseng, Rhodiola rosea and peptides to curb shedding from excess cortisol.
  • Scalp detoxifiers – like willow bark extract, niacinamide and charcoal to remove impurities and improve penetration of actives.
  • Healthy hair compounds โ€“ like silica and collagen-mimetics to augment shine, smoothness and strength.

Reputable solutions use science-backed complexes featuring compounds like these for improved efficacy.

What to Look For in Hair Re-Growth Products

With an abundance of hair growth solutions available, deciding what works can seem tricky. Here are helpful criteria for selecting effective over-the-counter options:

  • Clinical data: Verify efficacy claims are backed by quality clinical studies indicating measurable hair growth effects in people.
  • Safety: Ensure any topical solution uses established regulatory body-approved concentrations of active ingredients for safe, side effect-free use. Oral products should stick to GRAS-designated ingredients.
  • Quality assurances: Seek brands with cGMP-certification for quality manufacturing processes. Products should also be dermatologist-tested, non-GMO, vegan, paraben-free and sulfate-free.
  • Convenience: Opt for once or twice daily treatments fitting easily into routines. Easy, non-greasy and fast-absorbing topical solutions tend to have better compliance. Consider a supplement + topical for optimal internal and external support.
  • Money-back guarantee: Companies confident their product works should have a customer satisfaction guarantee allowing returns if not satisfied with hair growth experienced.

Legitimate products will check these boxes, giving peace of mind the solution can effectively and safely deliver real hair re-growth results.

How Long Does It Take to See Hair Re-Growth? What to Expect

Patience is necessary when using hair loss treatments โ€“ it can take 2-4 months before visible improvements in hair density occur. However, progress kicks off right away internally.

Hereโ€™s a general timeline:

  • 4 weeks – Follicular cells initiate revitalization โ€“ new hair starts developing under the skin. Minor slowing of shedding may occur.
  • 8 weeks โ€“ More new hairs begin pushing through scalp. Slowing of hair loss is more noticeable.
  • 12-16 weeks โ€“ Substantial hair regrowth visible as thicker, denser coverage for most users.
  • 6+ months โ€“ Fuller, healthier looking head of hair for most people who stick to treatment.

Consistency is vitalโ€“ daily application facilitates cumulative benefits so hair continually moves toward the anagen phase to spur new production.

Monitor progress with photos or scalp examinations every 4 months. Adjust duration based on improvements seen. Maintenance is often needed 1-2x a week long-term post regrowth.

Managing Expectations

The amount of regrowth varies based on:

  • Extent of miniaturization
  • Duration and cause of hair loss
  • Age
  • Genetic predisposition
  • Adherence to application schedule

Moderate cases tend to see the best growth. The earlier treatment starts after onset, the better and faster results.

If hair follicles are severely shrunken for long periods (over 5+ years), full reversal may not occur. However, significant improvement is still possible โ€“ curbing further loss and thickening remaining hairs.

Research-Backed Hair Growth Products to Try

If ready to take action to renew hair growth, here are 5 top-rated products to consider:

1. Har Vokseยฎ Hair Regrowth System

Key features:

  • Dual-action two step system
  • Clinically-proven ingredients
  • Over 134,000 satisfied customers
  • Norwegian brand selling in 70+ countries
  • 90 Day Money Back Guarantee

How it works: Har Vokseยฎ combines a specialized marine protein premium supplement with a potent Magnesium, Aminexil and Resveratrol topical spray for hair-boosting support internally and externally.

Benefits: In two clinical trials, users safely achieved 55% more hair growth in just 4 months. 92% saw minimized shedding by 85% while also observing thicker, faster-growing hair.

Dosage:
2 capsules daily with food, 1 spray morning/night to dry scalp.

2. Folexin

Key features:

  • Professional-grade system
  • addresses hair loss internally
  • Stimulating botanical + nutrient formula
  • cGMP & sovereignty seal certified
  • 30 Day Money Back Guarantee

How it works: The capsules use a multi-targeting approach to nourish follicles while blocking DHT, fighting inflammation and boosting growth factor circulation.

Benefits:
In a consumer trial, 87% reported reduced hair loss, thicker feeling hair and better scalp health in 60 days with no side effects.

Dosage: 2 caps daily with food.

3. Lipogaine For Women

Key Features:

  • Clinically tested topical treatment
  • Customized for female hair loss
  • Uses Minoxidil + multi-ingredient technology
  • Certified cruelty-free and vegan
  • 90 Day money back guarantee

How it works: It uses Minoxidil to widen blood vessels to follicles plus botanical DHT-inhibitors to block the enzyme damaging hair follicles, allowing unimpeded growth.

Benefits: In clinical testing, women safely grew 129 additional hairs per square inch after 48 weeks using it twice daily.

Dosage: Apply 1mL to scalp twice daily.

4. NuHair DHT Blocker for Men & Women

Key Features:

  • Natural broad-spectrum internal DHT inhibitor
  • Targets hair follicle miniaturization
  • Herbal + mineral anti-hair loss complex
  • cGMP certified manufacturing
  • 90 Day Money Back Guarantee

How it works: It suppresses DHT production, removes scalp blockages, repairs damage and nourishes follicles internally to protect from loss and thinning.

Benefits:
A clinical trial showed 92.2% less shedding in 85 days, 94% faster regrowth plus thicker, stronger hair.

Dosage:
2 capsules daily.

5. Viviscal Menโ€™s Hair Growth Program

Key Features:

  • Researches tested hair wellness system
  • Addresses the internal causes of thinning
  • Uses marine complex AminoMarTM
  • Dermatologist recommended
  • 60-day money back guarantee

How it works: It delivers vital nutrients to the hair follicle cells to stimulate regrowth while minimizing hair shedding through calming DHT effects internally.

Benefits: In clinical testing, subjects saw a 39% reduction in hair shedding along with thicker looking hair.

Dosage:
2 tablets daily with food.

The Takeaway

Hair loss can be distressing, but hair growth products offer a safe, accessible way to spur regrowth and counteract many common causes of thinning hair effectively. Invest in high quality, proven solutions like multi-targeting two step systems and nutraceutical supplements.

Be diligent about daily use for at least 6 months to spur the follicles into action reversing miniaturization. Then maintain long-term 1-2x a week to support the new hair growth for fuller, vibrant locks.

Read More

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Dr. Erika Salam (Derma)
Dr. Erika Salam (Derma)
DR Erika Salam is MD - Dermatology & VL, doctor at ๐™Ž๐™๐™ž๐™Ÿ๐™– ๐—จ๐—ฟ๐—ฏ๐—ฎ๐—ป, loves to write about Skin and Hair problems on the web.

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