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October 16, 2019

How to Get a Healthy, Happy Scalp | Birchbox

What are the most common misconceptions about the scalp and scalp health?

If theres a problem, its not an overnight fix! One of the most common misconceptions about the scalp is that you can speed up hair growth by applying hair products, says Emmanuel. There is no product that helps the hair grow fast. You can use products to create a healthy environment for your hair to grow healthy, but it is impossible to make your hair grow faster than what your hair growth cycle allows.

Scalp eczema: Is it more common than we think? What treatment process do you recommend?

(Yes, scalp eczema is real!) Another name for eczema of the scalp is seborrheic dermatitis and using a pre-shampoo treatment is the best therapy for eradicating it, says Emmanuel. Penny James also recommends a medicated shampoo up to four times a week until you see the build-up and irritation dissipate.

Lets talk about ingredients! Is there one in particular that promotes a healthy environment for our scalps?

So, not necessarily! Scalp health starts from within. Eating a healthy diet, watching your stress levels, keeping active! These are your internal ingredients," says Emmanuel. Oh, got it!

What's the deal with scalp acnewhat causes this?

Scalp acne is very common, says James. The best way to stop it in its tracks is a very good scalp mask. A change in diet can be helpful, too.

Speaking of diet, what changes would you make to maintain a healthy scalp?

Make sure youre eating enough protein it will help to keep a healthy scalp and shiny hair," says James.

How does hair texture play into how frequently Im cleaning my scalp or washing my hair? (Spoiler: It doesnt at all!)

"The hair and scalp need to be cleaned correctly no matter what shape, size or length the hair is," says James. The frequency of shampooing your hair should not be based on your hair texture. If you have a scalp condition that causes dandruff, you definitely want to shampoo more than once a week to keep dandruff under control. At least 2 times a week would be beneficial. Most people think they need to shampoo less if their scalp, itches or flakes, but it is the opposite, you need to maintain a frequent shampoo regimen to help control dandruff," adds Emmanuel.

Weve heard of something called Trichotillomania, what is it? How can it be treated?

Trichotillomania is when you pull your hair out or pull your eyelashes out. Therapy is needed to address this complex issue, once the underlining of what triggers this is resolved then treatment to regrow the hair can be put in place," says James.

What is the normal amount of daily hair shedding? When should you see a specialist (aka should we be panicked!)?

We naturally lose about 100 hairs a day. I always tell my clients if you are noticing that the brush is looking full every time you brush your hair, its time to see a trichologist," says James. You need to see a specialist if you notice a wider part in your scalp, a thinner than usual ponytail, a receding hairline, a thin bang, bald patches, a sensitive scalp that burns, tingles or itches excessively, says Emmanuel. Dont have any of the above? You should be in the clear!

Is hair breakage more common for those with thicker, coarser hair textures? Why or why not?

Apparently most causes of hair breakage are self-inflicted. Theyre caused by the individual, cosmetologist, or a service that had a harmful effect on the hair, not thick or coarse hair. Thicker, coarser textures of hair can be just as healthy and break less, if a proper hair care regimen is followed, with patience and consistency, says Emmanuel.

TL;DR? Here are the six lifestyle tips to try and incorporate into your current routine to grow healthy hair:

  1. Find activities you can do to eliminate stress such as massage, exercise, or meditation.
  2. A hair, skin, or nail supplement will also help encourage healthy hair growth.
  3. Also, stay away from hairstyles that pull or place too much tension on the scalp.
  4. Wash your hair at least four times weekly, and apply a scalp treatment!
  5. If you blow-dry, use a boar bristle brush.
  6. Definitely make sure you're following a healthy diet with lots of protein intake.

And just like that, our scalps are already feeling a little cleaner.


Christa Lee