Anti-Aging Tips for Your Hair
Anti-aging skincare is big business these days, and anti-aging haircare is a growing trend, too. As Baby Boomers and Gen Xers look for ways to stave off the effects of age, hair-care companies are rolling out products to meet the demand. Here’s what you need to know about how hair changes over time, how to protect your hair, and how to counteract changes you don’t like.
How time and age change your hair
Most of us think of graying hair and hair loss as the two main issues with hair and aging, but there are other changes, too, and some of them can start as early as your twenties, according to WebMD.
Thinning hair is most noticeable among men with male pattern baldness, but women (and men without classic MPB) can lose up to 35% of their hair by the time they hit retirement age. The individual hairs that remain are smaller in diameter than younger hairs, too. The overall result can be hair that’s challenging to style without exposing your scalp to sun damage, especially along the part in your hair.
Most of us leave the oily-hair stage behind as we age, but the downside is drier hair, which can be more prone to breakage and hard to style. Most of us also earn at least a few gray hairs, and some of us experience the anti-frizz styling challenges of wiry hair for the first time once we hit middle age. Some people don’t mind these changes, but if you do, there are some steps you can take to help you hair look its best.
How to protect your hair
Dermatologists’ and hair care professionals’ number-one recommendation is simple: protect your hair from the sun. UV rays can lighten hair at any age, but they’re especially tough on older, thinner hair that’s already low in pigment. If you color your hair, sun exposure can fade it out. Thinner hair means more potential sun damage to your scalp, a common location for skin cancer that can be hard to spot in its early stages. Slap on a hat (ideally one with UPF protection built in) to protect your hair.
Stylists recommend a gentle touch when combing, detangling, drying, and heat styling older hair. Any motion that twists or pulls on the hair increases the chance of breakage and split ends. A leave-in conditioner can help protect your hair and give it some shine.
How to improve your hair’s appearance
Beyond coloring your gray, if you choose, and using a leave-in conditioner, there are other things you can try to revive your hair’s luster. Beauty brands have introduced anti-aging shampoos, conditioners, and styling products designed to add volume, moisture and shine to older hair. Good Housekeeping, InStyle, and other magazines have put together “best of” lists for anti-aging hair care. As with skincare, you can spend as much or as little as you want.
If newly wiry hair has you wondering how to tame the frizz, NaturallyCurly.com can help you plan ahead for humid hair days. Plug your zip code and hair type into the site’s Frizz Forecast to get styling and product recommendations based on your local humidity and dewpoint.