Summer’s higher temps can push follicles into a “resting phase” that leads to a major uptick in hair loss. But we’ve found three science-backed tricks that will rev up regrowth and leave your hair looking lustrous in no time.
Suds with sandalwood.
Washing with a sandalwood-scented shampoo boosts hair growth hormones in the scalp by 30 percent in six days, suggests British research — and the reason couldn’t be more intriguing. “The same olfactory receptors in our nose that help us identify scents are also found in hair follicles, where they seem to play a role in controlling the hair growth cycle,” says Joshua Zeichner, MD, director of cosmetic and clinical research in the department of dermatology at New York’s Mount Sinai Hospital. When follicles sense the unique aroma of sandalwood, they interpret it as a signal to extend their growth phase, resulting in longer, fuller hair.
Rinse with white tea.
Just like a cup of caffeine gives you an instant energy boost, a topical dose of the stimulant reenergizes flagging follicles, sparking new growth in 83 percent of women, according to German research. “Caffeine stimulates hair growth by targeting the DHT hormone that causes follicles to shrink,” explains dermatologist Debra Jaliman, MD, author of Skin Rules ($9.27, Amazon). In fact, caffeine is so effective, another study showed that it prevents hair loss just as well as 5 percent minoxidil. The natural Rx: Rinse just-washed hair with 8 oz. of cooled white tea, massaging into the scalp for one minute. In addition to growth-boosting caffeine, the brew is packed with EGCG, a polyphenol proven to shield follicles from damage.
Drizzle oil over sides.
Grilling up veggies? Enjoy them with a drizzle of olive oil, walnut oil, or avocado oil. French scientists found that a whopping 90 percent of women slowed their hair loss and 87 percent reported thicker, fuller hair within six months by boosting their intake of omega fatty acids found in healthy oils. Researchers credit the nutrients’ ability to block free radical damage to cells that results in hair thinning.
This article originally appeared in our print magazine.
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