The hormonal changes that happen during pregnancy don’t just affect your figure and skin: your hair is liable to undergo changes too. Here’s what to expect when you’re expecting…
Hair becomes thicker.One of the greatest changes when you’re pregnant is that hair feels fuller and more dense. You’re not growing more strands, but are rather shedding it more slowly than you ordinarily would. This happens because your body puts secondary organs (such as your hair) on standby, thereby sending the hair cycle into a ‘resting phase’ and the shedding is suspended. When on a normal cycle you loose 70-100 hairs a day, but when your system is diverted to baby formation and breastfeeding the follicles hold onto these strands until cells start to regenerate again.
Oestrogen boosts length.At any given time, around 90% of your hair is growing while the other 10% is resting. When pregnant the extra production of hormones causes hair to grow much quicker than normal, though it may behave differently than your pre-pregnancy hair in terms of texture or oil levels. The metabolism becomes more efficient and the number of cuticle production is higher. The hair can feel stronger and thicker within the parameters of each individual hair type.
Fewer toxins mean healthier hair.The grease and sweat glands on your scalp rid the body of toxins. If there are too many toxins in the follicles the hair becomes thinner. Conversely, if the toxin levels reduce the glands won’t be so active and the hair becomes shinier and more dense. When we are pregnant we get rid of most impurities through urine or perspiration, instead of the glands on the scalp generally meaning that hair appears more healthy.
There are big changes post-pregnancy too.Straight after delivery your body will be exhausted and undergoing changes, so your hair remains in the resting stage. At around six months after giving birth, expect to see some changes this is when the body rebalances levels of progesterone and testosterone. Often, any hair that wasn’t previously shed will do so now and growth slows up. Some women see it more than others but it normally shows at the front, so a receding hairline might appear. To keep your hair looking good during this period, try taking supplements to boost regeneration - I recommend protein, B complex, Spirilina, folic acid and a MSM supplement.
Ricardo Vila Nova - Trichologist, Urban Retreat at Harrods