Another key ingredient is iron. While it isn’t possible to speed up the natural rate of hair growth, iron can be beneficial in maintaining a normal hair cycle for those who feel their growth rate has become sluggish, as it ensures hairs grow for their maximum length of time.
To facilitate the absorption of iron into our digestive system, Masa Ohta, lead therapist at natural hair care brand Leonor Greyl, recommends upping your vitamin C intake. She also suggests folic acid, another B vitamin, zinc, a trace mineral, which is key for making proteins, and selenium.
What are the best hair vitamins for thickness?
When it comes to hair thickness the power of proteins cannot be underestimated. Hair is mostly made up of protein, and so to ensure good quality hair, it’s important to keep your protein levels up, in particular keratin. “Keratin is best by far for hair thickness and strength,” says LYMA founder Lucy Goff. “It’s an important structural protein and if taken correctly, makes hair less prone to breakage. This is because keratin bonds to the rough edges of individual hairs, covering the cuticle, straightening it, and promoting shine and strength.” A decline in keratin can lead to the deterioration of the hair shaft, leaving it susceptible to dryness and breakage, which does not a healthy head of hair make. “A large proportion of keratin found in supplements is derived from chicken beaks and feathers,” continues Goff. “But this doesn’t have the same amino acid profile as humans, so has little to no effect. That’s why when formulating LYMA, we included Cynatine® HNS, which uses a source of keratin derived from lanolin in sheep’s wool which has the same amino acid profile as people, and is a proven form of natural keratin peptides.”
Another way to promote hair thickness is through nourishing the hair follicle, which is where your zinc and vitamin B12 come in. “The cells that make up the hair bulb, which is the part of the hair follicle that produces hair, have a high turnover rate, meaning new cells grow and replace old cells at a rapid rate.” says Jules Miller, founder of The Nue Co. “For this reason hair follicles need a constant supply of nutrients to grow and function properly.” This is where collagen can be beneficial. “Collagen is an essential building block of strong hair. It can also help anchor the root of the hair follicle to the muscle and promote scalp elasticity, making breakage and hair loss less prevalent, and allowing hair to continue to grow.
What are the best hair vitamins for hair loss?
Just as our hair follicle is integral to the quality of our hair, so too is our scalp. “The scalp is home to a complex and delicate host of microbes, this forms your scalp microbiome,” says Miller. “When healthy and diverse, this can act as a protective shield; however, when out of balance its protection against environmental stressors like pollution is weakened, which can induce hair loss and scalp irritation.” Protect your hair by protecting its microbiome. “Prebiotics are essential to supporting a healthy microbiome, in both the gut and on the surface of the skin or scalp,” says Miller.
Then there are adaptogens, such as reishi mushroom and eleuthero root, which are said to reduce and manage your levels of cortisol, which your body produces when under stress. “Emotional stress can push hair follicles into a ‘resting’ (telogen) phase so that they don’t produce new hair strands and can result in shedding,” explains Miller. This type of hair loss is commonly known as telogen effluvium.
You’ll also want to increase your intake of antioxidants – so vitamin C, E, B1, and B2, as well as iodine and vitamin B6, which help to regulate hormonal imbalances, which can also play a part in hair loss.
With all of that said, to effectively tackle hair loss it’s important to use the right topical products, and to ensure you get enough sleep, exercise and a well balanced diet.