When we think about hair loss, we usually picture senior men. However, hair loss in women under 30 is more common than you’d think. There are millions of millennial women struggling with hair loss right now. If you’re struggling with hair loss, there’s no need to worry. There are tons of different solutions that could be right for you. Here are some of the causes of hair loss in millennial women and how to combat them.

Causes

Female Thinning HairBirth Control

Believe it or not, your birth control pills can contribute to hair loss. Fluctuating hormones, particularly estrogen, disrupts your body’s natural hair growth cycles. When your hormones fluctuate, the periods of growth in these cycles shorten and the periods of rest become more frequent. Starting a new birth control, switching pills, or going off of the pill will cause your hormones to fluctuate and can contribute to hair loss. The bright side of this problem, though, is this hair loss isn’t permanent, and should settle down when your hormones do.

Stress

Whether you’re studying for exams, trying to find a new job, or moving out of your parents’ house, this period in your life comes with serious stress! Stress can lead to a condition called telogen effluvium, which decreases the amount of hair follicles on your scalp and causes your hair to fall out. Stress can also lead to trichotillomania, a condition where women compulsively pull their hair out. If you live a very high-stress life, it could be the cause of your hair loss.

Diet

Going vegan might seem like a great idea, but it could cause hair loss. If you’re not getting enough protein and iron, your body will shut down hair production to save energy. Because women are prone to iron deficiency, it’s even more important to watch your iron intake. Conversely, if your diet consists of McDonalds, pizza, and wings, you could also experience hair loss. In order to stimulate hair growth, you need to make sure that your body is getting enough of all the right nutrients. 

Smoking and Heavy Drinking

It’s no secret that smoking can cause some health problems down the line. However, the chemicals from cigarettes can cause hair loss right now. The chemicals can disrupt your hair growth cycle and lower your circulation, causing less blood flow to your hair follicles. When your scalp doesn’t get enough blood, hair growth slows.

Heavy drinking can be a problem as well. The occasional happy hour and night out is totally fine, but consistent, heavy drinking can decrease the zinc and iron in your body. When these nutrients decrease, your body will shut down its hair growth process to conserve energy, causing thinning or hair loss. 

Excessive Styling

In the age of impossibly gorgeous Instagram models, it’s normal to want your hair to look as close to perfect as possible. However, constantly dyeing your hair will damage your hair follicles and cause thinning. Different heat products like straighteners, curling irons, and blow dryers will also lead to damage and thinning. Tight braids, cornrows, or tight buns and ponytails can put serious stress on your scalp that will also lead to hair loss. Excessive styling might make your hair look perfect today, but the hair loss won’t be worth it! 

Solutions

Sleep

Most of us live caffeine-fueled, sleep-deprived lives. However, sleep is incredibly important to your health. Maintaining a regular 7-8 hour sleep schedule will help your hormone regulation to decrease chances of fluctuation. It will also maintain your body’s natural healing processes. Getting enough sleep can help repair the damage done to your body that caused your hair loss and stimulate hair regrowth.

Stress Relief

It’s hard to avoid stress in our day-to-day lives. However, it’s important to relieve stress whenever you can. Whether it’s a regular massage, weekly brunch with the girls, or a Sunday Netflix binge, giving yourself time to relax and let off some steam will greatly improve your health. When you take steps to relieve the stress in your life, stress-related causes of hair loss will subside.

Eating Healthy

Proper diet doesn’t just mean eating the latest superfood. It’s important to make sure you’re getting all of the nutrients that you need to keep your body functioning properly. When your body is low on nutrients, especially protein and iron, your body can shut down hair production and you’ll experience hair loss. Maintain a healthy diet and eat nutrient-rich foods. There are some foods that are particularly helpful in preventing hair thinning and hair loss, such as salmon and carrots. Check out a full list here! Overall, maintaining a healthy diet will combat any nutrient deficiency-related hair loss.

Go Natural

There’s a lot of pressure to look perfect these days, but don’t be afraid to embrace your natural look! Ditch the straightener for your natural curls. Choose your natural color over the platinum blonde look. Avoiding excessive styling will help prevent hair loss and will give you a new sense of confidence. There’s nothing wrong with going all out with your styling on a night out, but let your hair rest in your day-to-day life. Your scalp will thank you for it!