The Impact of Hard Water on Scalp and Hair Health

If you’ve been battling with an irritated and flaky scalp, lifeless and flat hair, or even breakage and hair loss, your hard water showers may be the culprit. While hard water is considered healthy to drink, it has proven to have adverse effects on your skin and hair, which can lead to a myriad of issues. But first and foremost, what is hard water? What is hard water? Hard water refers to water that contains a high percentage of the minerals calcium and magnesium, and even traces of metallic elements, according to the Water Quality Association (1).  In comparison to ‘soft’ water sources, such as rainwater and filtered bottled water, hard water tends to cause a buildup on household appliances, can cause our clothing to become faded and stiff, and is also harsh on our scalp and hair. In fact, a study conducted in 1999 compared the uptake of calcium and magnesium by human hair from waters of 24 different locations throughout the world. Water of high hardness was found to result in greater hair absorption of these metallic elements (2) Hard water in the United Kingdom The UK is home to exceptionally hard water, with major cities like London, Oxford and Newcastle amongst the most severely affected, exhibiting around 200mg of calcium carbonate per litre. In fact, 60% of the UK is classified as having hard water (3), making it the default supply for most citizens across the country. So what are some of the telltale signs you have hard water on your hands? Signs of Hard Water Soap isn’t lathering sufficiently Clothing feels rough to the touch Build-up of limescale (deposits) on taps, glassware and appliances “Film” on shower doors or bathtubs Why is hard water harmful to your scalp and hair? There are several ways in which hard water can impede the health of your scalp and hair.  One 2016 study (4) involving 15 females found that hard water damaged their hair. This was found after washing hair samples in both hard water and distilled water for 30 days. At the end of the study, the participants’ hair had: Decreased in thickness Was rough in appearance and texture Additionally, a global hair sampling study with over 300 participants from nine countries was conducted in 2013 (5), which investigated the levels of calcium, magnesium, copper and iron on participants’ hair. The study found that: Metal levels increased from hair root to tip, which was attributed to hair contact with hard water Individuals who coloured their hair had statistically significantly higher levels of metal deposits Individuals who perceived their hair health as poor had higher metal levels on their hair. The buildup of minerals found in hard water produces a film on the hair and scalp, making it difficult for moisture to penetrate, leaving it flat and lifeless. The minerals also block follicles, leading to itchiness and inflammation. Additionally, hard water lifts the cutle, compromising it’s integrity. This erodes the hair’s elasticity, making it rough to the touch, dry and more brittle. Hard water is also notorious for interfering with hair colour, resulting in faded, dull and sometimes even discoloured hair. Primary symptoms you may experience from washing your hair with hard water include: Breakage Thinning Tangles Dry scalp Dullness Brassiness or a green hue Frizz Some experience hair loss as a result of hair breakage MONPURE’s Guide in Counteracting the Effects of Hard Water Firstly, consider installing a filter in your shower. While this may seem slightly excessive, filtered showerheads are specifically designed to eliminate all of the nasty minerals in your water, thus protecting your hair and scalp from their detrimental effects. The Wonders of Vegan Silk Peptides Vegan silk peptides are a revolutionary ingredient that can work to curb the harmful effects of hard water. Their film-forming properties deliver a physical and breathable “second-skin” to the hair and scalp. This delivers a robust barrier function against aggressors, including the damaging minerals characteristic of hard water. In fact, vegan silk peptides improve carbon particle removal up to 26%. Additionally, the significant protective properties of this ingredient improve hair colour protection by 35%, as well repair thermal damage by 72%. ​​The application of vegan silk peptides yields scientifically-proven results, and fosters a stronger, healthier and more resilient scalp and hair environment. Vegan silk peptides also improve the hair’s smoothness and shine, leaving it silky to the touch. Vegan silk peptides can be found in high percentages in MONPURE’s Strengthening Silk Protein Shampoo, Strengthening Essence-Conditioner and Nourish and Stimulate Scalp Mask. This foundational trio will bolster the strength and condition of the hair and scalp with every use, while combatting the effects of hard water. The Strengthening Silk Protein Shampoo also stars vegan Keratin, a protein which forms the building blocks of the hair strand. This ingredient will also work to fortify fine hair, rebuild damaged follicles and protect the hair from future damage that may be wreaked by hard water. Opt for a Scalp Mask When confronted with hard water, it is essential to treat your scalp and roots to a mask that will aid in locking in moisture, conditioning the scalp, as well as reviving and softening your locks from root to tip. MONPURE’s Nourish and Stimulate Scalp Mask works to improve scalp health by ‘feeding’ hair follicles and skin cells with the essential nutrients it needs to prosper. It stimulates follicles, while hydrating and relieving the scalp discomfort left in the wake of hard water. The mask fosters a healthy dermatological condition for the scalp, which as the hair’s incubator, will positively impact the natural growth, retention and health of the hair. This scalp mask also stars vegan silk peptides, that not only repair fragile or damaged hair strands, but also protect the hair and scalp from harmful aggressors, including the harmful mineral deposits found in hard water. Indulge in Vitamin-Rich Solutions Hair-healthy vitamins, such as vitamin C are extremely effective in mitigating against the effects of hard water. Vitamin C, otherwise known as ascorbic acid, works to remove the mineral build-up and discolouration produced by hard water.  MONPURE’s Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum not only works to calm irritation, quench dryness and promote cell renewal, its infusion of ascorbic acid breaks down hard water deposits and impurities, eliminates brassiness and discolouration, shields damage and bolsters supreme moisture retention - restoring life back into hair and scalps confronted by the aftermath of hard water. MONPURE’s Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum is also imbued with Vitamin C (ascorbic acid), alongside other hair boosting ingredients such as pumpkin seed extract, retinol and lactic acid. This pioneering formula is the ideal solution for combating the hair loss that may be spurred on by the effects of hard water. Working to stimulate the scalp, decongest follicles, minimise thinning and cultivate growth - this serum actively promotes thicker and fuller hair with every use. References: (1) https://www.wqa.org/learn-about-water/perceptible-issues/scale-deposits (2) https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10570842/ (3) https://www.thameswater.co.uk/help/water-quality/hard-water (4) https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26711619/ (5) https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23305149/

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Ebony-Renee Baker: "Growing Out My Textured Hair Was Self-Preservation" A Journey Towards Natural Hair

Recently, my hairstylist told me that he wished he hadn’t relaxed, blown out and chemically straightened as much natural hair as he had in his career. I told him of my natural hair journey and the near decade it took for me to embrace my natural 3C curls. “It was a different time,” we’d both conceded, as he washed hair and took me back to his chair for a wet trim. I was twelve years old when I received my first straightening iron, and by the time I’d even considered returning to my natural curls, I was convinced the damage was far beyond repair. As a mixed-race woman (I’m half Jamaican and half Filipino), my hair is something that’s part of my identity and tells a story without words. But growing up, that’s definitely not how I saw it. Frizzy. Fuzzy. Messy. Big.Unprofessional. These are the words I associated with my hair – whether they came from others (hairstylists and friends alike), or were the ones I told myself, right before picking up the straightener. But somewhere along the line, our beauty standards shifted, natural hair appeared more and more in western media and I found the confidence to say enough is enough. During that (literal) return to my roots, I realized it’s not just hair. Feminist writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie once said: “Hair is hair – yet also about larger questions: self-acceptance, insecurity and what the world tells you is beautiful. For many Black women, the idea of wearing their hair naturally is unbearable.”For me, embarking on that “unbearable” journey over two years ago was the beginning of my self-acceptance, and in the long run, my self-preservation. Accepting my hair in its natural form meant presenting my full self to others. It meant being unapologetically me. And it meant building my own self-worth.Black. Beautiful.Confident. Me.Along with the re-growth of my coils, these words found their way to the forefront of my mind instead of the former. At one point I remember looking at a photo of myself with my dark curly hair – messy and falling in all directions – and thinking, “THIS is what I’m meant to look like.” These days, I’m quite vocal about decolonising our beauty standards and accepting that internalised racism is more common than we think. The beauty of having been through my journey though, is knowing that we’re all capable of change, and oftentimes change is good.So no, it’s not just hair. In my case, my hair is what makes me, me. And whatever that means in the future – whether it’s giving it the TLC it needs, wearing it naturally, or experimenting with different styles too – I look forward to looking back at my hair stages and feeling pure joy rather than regret. By Ebony-Renee Baker

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Interviewing expert skincare therapist, Tarryn Warren, about the power of a scalp facial

  MONPURE partnered with celebrity skincare therapist and expert, Tarryn Warren, for the first ever immersive scalp facial at the Bodyism wellness studio in Notting Hill. Tarryn Warren’s brand was founded on three main principles: skin health, individualised bespoke approach, and technology-driven solutions. The MONPURE team sat down with Tarryn to discuss the importance of a scalp facial, a revolutionary treatment in the beauty industry.What’s the importance of a scalp massage for scalp, follicle and hair health?Tarryn: “We are trying to aid oxygenation and circulation to the scalp, as this will improve the follicles. Deep massage and lymph drainage all help with scalp health, and therefore, hair health.”What is an easy scalp massage to do at home?You really want to get your fingers in the scalp, a bit of pressure to get the circulation going and even a bit of movement to drain the lymph so that you can more nutrients into the hair follicles Why is exfoliating the scalp important?Tarryn: “It’s the same as the rest of the face really. We want to increase cell turnover and get rid of the excess dead skin and sweat that can clog our follicles.”Why is it important to take care of the scalp?Tarryn: “A hair follicle incubates for two weeks before it comes to the surface, so looking after the scalp - keeping it nourished and supple - is going to allow the follicles to flourish, thereby allowing for thicker and healthier hair.”Why do you love MONPURE?Tarryn: “I love MONPURE because they put the scalp first, thereby creating healthy hair follicles that lead to healthy hair. It’s ethically sourced, recyclable, and the ingredients are beautiful. What is your favourite MONPURE product?Tarryn: “My favourite product is the Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum. As a skincare therapist, I love ingredients. It includes retinol, AHA and lots of vitamins that are amazing for the hair. I personally use it 3 to 4 times a week!”

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The MONPURE Guide to Fine and Thin Hair

Most of us will experience some degree of fine hair and thinning as we age or undergo menopause, while some of us are born with it. However, the treatment of fine and thin hair has been somewhat misleading over the years in the haircare space.The established mantra in haircare is to ‘avoid the top of your head at all costs’ if you have fine and thinning hair, especially when it comes to conditioner. But, we are here to debunk that so-called rule, unpack the science of fine and thin hair, as well as teach you how to effectively treat hair that is gradually losing its density and thickness over time.Hair thickness and densityMany people confuse hair thickness (fine hair) and hair density (thin hair), and even using the terms interchangeably. However, 'fine' refers to the actual diameter of your individual hair strands, while 'thin' refers to the amount of hair strands on your head.As you age, your hair reduces in both thickness and density. Let’s unpack what’s happening biologically with hair thinning.The process of hair thinningThe most common causes of hair thinning are male and female-pattern-baldness, otherwise known as ‘androgenic alopecia', the latter of which is often a symptom of menopause. Androgenic alopecia is a gradual condition that is caused by the increased presence of the hormone, DHT (1). DHT is a byproduct of testosterone and its conversion is helped along by an enzyme called 5-alpha-reductase. So what happens when this hormonal imbalance occurs? The hair follicle shrinks (follicular miniaturization), producing a shorter, thinner hair shaft. The growth (anagen) phase shortens. The time between the shedding (telogen) and new growth (anagen) phase lengthens (2). Follicular miniaturizationDuring follicular miniaturization, hair follicles that were once producing healthy hairs start to generate thinner hairs with more fragile shafts (3). So what is the outcome of hair thinning? Shedding increases The start of new growth is delayed The result is both finer and thinner hair (4). Over time, especially in the case of menopausal hair loss, hair becomes more brittle, fragile and thin. As well as more sparse in density. In women undergoing androgenic alopecia, gradual thinning usually begins at the part line and sides, followed by increasing diffuse hair loss radiating down from the top of the head (5).  Read more about the difference between hair loss and thinning here. How Fine Hair Is Different1. Surface AreaFine hair is smaller in diameter than average sized hair, therefore the protective outer ‘cuticle’ layer of the hair covers a less dense middle. This results in an increased surface area relative to its mass. As a consequence, products with large molecules such as oils and conditioners can coat these hair strands and weigh them down because the hair mass itself isn’t as robust as average sized hair (6).2. DeformationBeing lighter than average, fine hair can collapse under weight and is more prone to deformation. This means that it is more susceptible to the effects of gravity and outside forces resulting in it becoming more easily malleable. This sensitivity to force means that when fine hair is loaded with products, it tends to hang flatter, with less body and volume than coarser hair types (6). Debunking Fine Hair Myths Historically, the management of fine and thinning hair has been misguided but we are here to shift that thought process. Fine and thinning hair requires a routine revamp As your hair thins and becomes finer over time, it is important to change your shampoo and conditioner to those with lightweight consistencies and clean, fortifying ingredients, particularly targeting the scalp, follicles and hair shaft simultaneously. Many formulas on the market are filled with harmful, waxy ingredients that weigh down roots with their large molecules and heavy residues. The fallacy of only conditioning the ends The fallacy that conditioner is purely designated to treat the ends of the hair only further facilitates the ongoing cycle of dehydrating the scalp. This can lead to: An overproduction of sebum that contributes to weighed-down, oily, weak and malnourished hair. People with fine hair need to deliver moisture, nutrients and care to their scalps to ensure that they don’t fall into this trap.The cycle of starving the scalp: how do we break it?Many women with fine and thinning hair use harsh shampoos, packed with sulphates, silicones and parabens, that strip the scalp of its natural oils and moisture, and As it has been drummed into us to only condition the ends, the scalp’s moisture is never replenished. The result? A neglected scalp equates to a never-ending cycle of dehydration and starving the scalp of essential nutrients - which is the foundation of healthy hair. Fine hair doesn’t have to mean flat hairThe solution is to opt for clean, lightweight and skincare-inspired formulas, and to nourish the scalp just like you would your skin. A key philosophy at MONPURE is about giving the scalp the same care and attention as the skin on our face, and that includes bestowing it with moisture and nourishment.We understand that many women worry about their fine, flat and thinning locks being weighed down and appearing greasy and lifeless when they apply products to the scalp. However, MONPURE’s formulations totally revolutionise this assumption. Our scalp-centric range is ultra-lightweight, strengthening and nourishing. It prioritises the often-neglected, yet most important part of the whole ecosystem - the scalp. Without the fear of a greasy or weighed-down aftermath.MONPURE’s Guide to Caring for Fine and Thinning HairDon’t shy away from conditioning the scalp MONPURE’s Strengthening Essence-Conditioner, inspired by K-beauty regimes, resembles a skincare essence with its lightweight texture. It is meant to be enjoyed by both the scalp and lengths, as it delivers optimum moisture without any worry of greasy consequences. Our conditioner, coupled with the Strengthening Silk Protein Shampoo, fortified with vegan silk peptides, is scientifically proven to repair, protect and rebuild frail and damaged strands, which is often an unfortunate reality for those experiencing hair thinning or finer hair with age. Go beyond shampoo Just like with skincare, exfoliation is an essential step in maintaining a healthy and balanced scalp. For those with fine and thinning hair, it's essential to go beyond shampoo and introduce a gentle exfoliator to ensure a thorough cleanse. MONPURE’s Clarifying Scalp Scrub works to gently buff and slough away the impurities, product-buildup and debris that clog our follicles, weigh down our locks and impede healthy hair growth. While a scrub is essential in ridding the scalp of the nasties that give a greasy and flat appearance, it also primes the scalp for the optimal absorption of other active ingredients that are effective for fine and thinning hair. Give your hair a boost from within The best-selling Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum is the hair growth boosting hero that started it all. It’s a go-to for anyone dealing with fine and thinning hair, working to boost fine locks to their optimum potential, and combating hair thinning at the source. This serum is certainly a key component of any thin and fine-haired regime. Its hero ingredient, pumpkin seed extract, blocks the 5-alpha reductase enzyme responsible for converting testosterone to DHT - the androgen hormone which is the main culprit for thinning hair. Skincare acids retinol and lactic acid work together to exfoliate the scalp for improved absorption of other hair boosting and nourishing ingredients, as well as decongesting follicles to ensure bouncier and healthier hair. Discover the wonders of fine hair solutions in the Great Lengths Regime. At MONPURE, we want to re-educate women with fine and thinning hair about the significance of treating the scalp with love and care, just like you would your skin. Our lightweight and high-performance range, potent in plant actives, is transforming the treatment of fine and thin hair within the haircare space. Have any questions about fine or thinning hair? Reach out to experts@monpure.com. References (1 & 2) https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/68082(3) https://healthfully.com/miniaturization-of-hair-follicles-5212526.html(4) https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17034520/(5) https://www.ccjm.org/content/88/3/173(6) http://science-yhairblog.blogspot.com/2012/03/how-fine-hair-is-different.html

London Fashion Week presents Osman Yousefzada X MONPURE London

MONPURE London entered into an exciting partnership with fashion designer Osman Yousefzada for London Fashion Week 2021. Osman Yousefzada’s SS22 show titled ‘What Happened to Last Season's Collection?’, powered by MONPURE as the Headline Hair Sponsor, took London Fashion Week by storm. Boasting a celebrity front-row guest list second to none (hint: supermodels, popstars and Vogue Editor-in-Chief), the show executed an array of mind-blowing hairstyles and luxury garments, all while upholding the central ethos of sustainability and artistry. The Osman X MONPURE Partnership MONPURE’s collaboration with Osman Yousefzada’s sustainable collection (SS22) is truly the perfect fit. As pioneers in the haircare and fashion arenas, we both champion a commitment to sustainability in the luxury space, upholding the ethos that luxury should not exist at the expense of people or the planet. Both brands, founded in Britain, entwine a unique sense of artistry into their creations that pay homage to the craftsmanship and expertise behind the scenes. Powered by MONPURE for all-things-hair, the collection unveiled fifteen looks in total, and took place at the London restaurant Amazinco in Mayfair. The Osman X MONPURE partnership succeeded in showcasing that luxury and sustainability can coexist, while opening up the conversation around ethical practice in the luxury space. Behind the Scenes at Osman X MONPURE MONPURE London powered ‘everything hair’ backstage, collaborating with super-talented session stylist, Ryo Narushima, to create incredible and unique runway hairstyles. The show exhibited phenomenal hair looks, with MONPURE as the secret to the show-ready styles. MONPURE’s Backstage Secrets to Runway Hair The Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum was the superstar solution for prepping the model’s beautiful hairstyles before they hit the runway. The session stylists applied this best-selling hair boosting elixir to the models’ scalp in sections, before moving on to styling. The serum works to cultivate volume, with its hair strengthening ingredients bestowing immediate body and thickness to any hairstyle! The Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum was an essential step, working as a soothing and hydrating heat protectant to prepare the model’s hair before using styling tools. The serum was applied to the models’ scalp in sections as a luxurious calming treatment to ensure that their dry or irritated scalps were nourished, moisturised and soothed before the session stylists worked their magic. Hair Chats with Osman Yousefzada’s Models of the Moment The MONPURE team sat down with the models to discuss their personal hair care routines. Many of the models emphasised the importance of conditioning when it comes to their regimes. Models’ hair often undergo the taxing effects of heat styling, and are prone to heat damage and even breakage. What’s the MONPURE solution? MONPURE’s ​​Strengthening Essence-Conditioner is an ultra-lightweight conditioning ‘essence’ that nourishes fine hair without leaving it greasy or weighed down. Vegan Silk Peptides repair follicles and strands to increase smoothness and shine, argan oil improves hair elasticity, preventing split ends, while Pro Vitamin B5 hydrates and soothes the scalp. Let’s Hit the Runway It was a star-studded front-row, including British Vogue Editor-in-Chief Edward Enninful OBE, supermodel Jourdan Dunn and singer-songwriter Kehlani. The result of the harmonious collaboration, bringing together sustainability, ethical practice and artistry in the luxury arena, was a display of abstract silhouettes, architectural tailoring of the utmost couture construction as well as layered textures and colours in shades of crimson, orange and cobalt blue. The garments’ proportions were oversized and exaggerated, with the likes of balloon sleeves and cascading ruffles down the skirts of the show-stopping gowns. Osman’s influences stemmed from Afghanistan and the Indian subcontinent, with the collection including mirrored fabric panels, and opulent Pakistani wedding jewelry. The eminent front-row guests took home an exclusive luxury goody-bag, filled with MONPURE’s coveted luxury scalp serums, the Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum, and the Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum. As the show closed, the industry’s most illustrious celebrities were seen with more than one bespoke goody-bag in hand, excited to indulge in the groundbreaking benefits of MONPURE’s solutions. Our Shared Ethos of Sustainability Both brands, MONPURE London and Osman Yousefzada, hold the central ethos of sustainability very close to our hearts. As a pending B-corp, cruelty-free, PETA approved and vegan scalp and hair care brand, MONPURE pledges to safeguard environmental and social impact over profit margins. As part Osman Yousefzada’s ‘What Happened to Last Season’s Collection?’, the designer created garments with TENCEL™ Luxe, a luxury filament made from sustainably sourced wood pulp that is transformed into a biodegradable, endless filament holding properties comparable to silk. In comparison, MONPURE’s products are formulated with a high percentage of an innovative ingredient - vegan silk peptides, that are scientifically proven to fortify hair, repair damage and protect the hair and scalp from external aggressors. Processed by fermenting plant starch, our vegan silk peptides require less energy, fewer raw materials and generate less waste than traditional silk peptides from silkworms. It is a completely vegan, sustainable and biodegradable silk alternative that mirrors Osman Yousefzada’s use of TENCEL™ Luxe. Each of our suppliers are handpicked for having the highest ethical standards, while our packaging stars 100% post-consumer recycled plastic (rPET), recyclable shipping boxes, as well as fully biodegradable and compostable packaging chips. Biodegradability is the major focus of Osman’s collection too, as each of his long-lasting pieces can return to the earth with minimal environmental impact. The restaurant Amazonico also rings true to the ethos of sustainability, due to its ongoing partnership with the global deforestation charity, One Tree Planted. Aligning with both of the brand’s ethos, for every guest attending the runway show, one tree will be planted in the Brazilian Amazon forest. We are proud to have entered into a partnership with such a groundbreaking force in Britain’s fashion industry, whose advancements in environmentally sound, closed-loop production intrinsically align with our own. With ‘luxury meets sustainability’ at the core of our shared vision, the Osman Yousefzada X MONPURE SS22 fashion show has truly left the industry spellbound and sparked an important conversation in the beauty and fashion industries. We are proud to be spearheading the way forward as a quintessentially luxury brand.

Hair Loss vs. Hair Thinning: What’s the Difference?

The conversation around female hair loss is often overlooked, but we are here to reassure you that experiencing hair loss or hair thinning over your lifetime is completely normal - in fact, 80% of women experience noticeable hair fallout by the age of 60 (1).  Keep in mind that hair shedding is a totally normal part of life, and we lose between 50 to 100 hairs every day, with no cause for concern. However, various biological and environmental imbalances can disrupt this state of affairs. Hair loss and hair thinning are often muddled up, even though they each have distinct causes and manifestations. Our resident GP, Dr. Simmy Kaur, helps us break down the difference so that you can be armed with all the information needed to identify and treat your own hair loss or hair thinning.   Hair Thinning  Hair thinning is a gradual process over time. A common example of hair thinning is ‘androgenic alopecia.’ The word ‘androgenic’ refers to the increased presence of male hormones that leads to hair thinning. Androgens are male sex hormones that are secreted by both the ovaries and adrenal glands in women.  Various hormonal and genetic factors can contribute to a stronger presence of a by-product of the male hormone testosterone, called DHT. But what is happening on a biological level? The enzyme 5-alpha reductase facilitates the conversion of testosterone to DHT. This leads to a stronger presence of male hormones, and a weaker presence of female hormones (oestrogen and progesterone). So what happens when the hormonal balancing scales are tipped? The hair follicle shrinks The growth (anagen) phase is shortened The time between the telogen (shedding) and new anagen (growing) phase is lengthened The result? Hair growth becomes thinner, more brittle and falls out faster Hair thinning usually begins at the scalp, parting line or sides of the scalp This is followed by a more diffuse pattern radiating from the crown A few causes of hair thinning: PCOS Menopause Zinc deficiency Vitamin D deficiency Genetics and aging   Hair Loss Hair loss refers to a sudden onset of hair loss caused by an external or internal factor. So why do we suddenly lose hair when we experience a shock to the system? An example of this is ‘telogen effluvium.’ In severe cases, up to 70% of growing (anagen) hairs are abruptly shifted to shedding (telogen) hairs (versus the normal 15% that elicits shedding before a new anagen phase). (2).   How does telogen effluvium manifest? Usually 2-4 months after the eliciting incident as this timeframe typically represents the duration of an entire hair growth cycle.  It usually resolves itself over time (as opposed to the regressive nature of hair thinning). Hair loss is visible diffusely (it is spread out throughout the scalp). A few causes of hair loss: Postpartum hair loss Thyroid disorders Iron deficiency Stress  Although hair loss and thinning can be rather confusing, narrowing down the differences and possible causes are key to effective treatment. Most importantly, it’s essential to recognise that hair loss and thinning among women is a lot more common than we think, and shouldn’t be a taboo discussion! MONPURE offers some wondrous treatment solutions to foster the ultimate healthy hair growth environment. Discover MONPURE’s healthy hair growth solutions with the Great Lengths Regime, carefully formulated to target the scalp and hair follicles. These four innovative products work in tandem to protect, rebuild and boost maximum hair growth. Read more about fine hair and thinning here. Let’s break the silence surrounding female hair loss together! Join our empowered and supportive hair loss community, powered by women, on instagram @itsnotjusthair_, or share your story with #ItsNotJustHair.   https://www.hairlossdoctors.com/blog/2015/06/02/female-hair-loss-statistics-know-158887  https://dermnetnz.org/topics/telogen-effluvium/ 

The Impact of Hard Water on Scalp and Hair Health

If you’ve been battling with an irritated and flaky scalp, lifeless and flat hair, or even breakage and hair loss, your hard water showers may be the culprit. While hard water is considered healthy to drink, it has proven to have adverse effects on your skin and hair, which can lead to a myriad of issues. But first and foremost, what is hard water? What is hard water? Hard water refers to water that contains a high percentage of the minerals calcium and magnesium, and even traces of metallic elements, according to the Water Quality Association (1).  In comparison to ‘soft’ water sources, such as rainwater and filtered bottled water, hard water tends to cause a buildup on household appliances, can cause our clothing to become faded and stiff, and is also harsh on our scalp and hair. In fact, a study conducted in 1999 compared the uptake of calcium and magnesium by human hair from waters of 24 different locations throughout the world. Water of high hardness was found to result in greater hair absorption of these metallic elements (2) Hard water in the United Kingdom The UK is home to exceptionally hard water, with major cities like London, Oxford and Newcastle amongst the most severely affected, exhibiting around 200mg of calcium carbonate per litre. In fact, 60% of the UK is classified as having hard water (3), making it the default supply for most citizens across the country. So what are some of the telltale signs you have hard water on your hands? Signs of Hard Water Soap isn’t lathering sufficiently Clothing feels rough to the touch Build-up of limescale (deposits) on taps, glassware and appliances “Film” on shower doors or bathtubs Why is hard water harmful to your scalp and hair? There are several ways in which hard water can impede the health of your scalp and hair.  One 2016 study (4) involving 15 females found that hard water damaged their hair. This was found after washing hair samples in both hard water and distilled water for 30 days. At the end of the study, the participants’ hair had: Decreased in thickness Was rough in appearance and texture Additionally, a global hair sampling study with over 300 participants from nine countries was conducted in 2013 (5), which investigated the levels of calcium, magnesium, copper and iron on participants’ hair. The study found that: Metal levels increased from hair root to tip, which was attributed to hair contact with hard water Individuals who coloured their hair had statistically significantly higher levels of metal deposits Individuals who perceived their hair health as poor had higher metal levels on their hair. The buildup of minerals found in hard water produces a film on the hair and scalp, making it difficult for moisture to penetrate, leaving it flat and lifeless. The minerals also block follicles, leading to itchiness and inflammation. Additionally, hard water lifts the cutle, compromising it’s integrity. This erodes the hair’s elasticity, making it rough to the touch, dry and more brittle. Hard water is also notorious for interfering with hair colour, resulting in faded, dull and sometimes even discoloured hair. Primary symptoms you may experience from washing your hair with hard water include: Breakage Thinning Tangles Dry scalp Dullness Brassiness or a green hue Frizz Some experience hair loss as a result of hair breakage MONPURE’s Guide in Counteracting the Effects of Hard Water Firstly, consider installing a filter in your shower. While this may seem slightly excessive, filtered showerheads are specifically designed to eliminate all of the nasty minerals in your water, thus protecting your hair and scalp from their detrimental effects. The Wonders of Vegan Silk Peptides Vegan silk peptides are a revolutionary ingredient that can work to curb the harmful effects of hard water. Their film-forming properties deliver a physical and breathable “second-skin” to the hair and scalp. This delivers a robust barrier function against aggressors, including the damaging minerals characteristic of hard water. In fact, vegan silk peptides improve carbon particle removal up to 26%. Additionally, the significant protective properties of this ingredient improve hair colour protection by 35%, as well repair thermal damage by 72%. ​​The application of vegan silk peptides yields scientifically-proven results, and fosters a stronger, healthier and more resilient scalp and hair environment. Vegan silk peptides also improve the hair’s smoothness and shine, leaving it silky to the touch. Vegan silk peptides can be found in high percentages in MONPURE’s Strengthening Silk Protein Shampoo, Strengthening Essence-Conditioner and Nourish and Stimulate Scalp Mask. This foundational trio will bolster the strength and condition of the hair and scalp with every use, while combatting the effects of hard water. The Strengthening Silk Protein Shampoo also stars vegan Keratin, a protein which forms the building blocks of the hair strand. This ingredient will also work to fortify fine hair, rebuild damaged follicles and protect the hair from future damage that may be wreaked by hard water. Opt for a Scalp Mask When confronted with hard water, it is essential to treat your scalp and roots to a mask that will aid in locking in moisture, conditioning the scalp, as well as reviving and softening your locks from root to tip. MONPURE’s Nourish and Stimulate Scalp Mask works to improve scalp health by ‘feeding’ hair follicles and skin cells with the essential nutrients it needs to prosper. It stimulates follicles, while hydrating and relieving the scalp discomfort left in the wake of hard water. The mask fosters a healthy dermatological condition for the scalp, which as the hair’s incubator, will positively impact the natural growth, retention and health of the hair. This scalp mask also stars vegan silk peptides, that not only repair fragile or damaged hair strands, but also protect the hair and scalp from harmful aggressors, including the harmful mineral deposits found in hard water. Indulge in Vitamin-Rich Solutions Hair-healthy vitamins, such as vitamin C are extremely effective in mitigating against the effects of hard water. Vitamin C, otherwise known as ascorbic acid, works to remove the mineral build-up and discolouration produced by hard water.  MONPURE’s Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum not only works to calm irritation, quench dryness and promote cell renewal, its infusion of ascorbic acid breaks down hard water deposits and impurities, eliminates brassiness and discolouration, shields damage and bolsters supreme moisture retention - restoring life back into hair and scalps confronted by the aftermath of hard water. MONPURE’s Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum is also imbued with Vitamin C (ascorbic acid), alongside other hair boosting ingredients such as pumpkin seed extract, retinol and lactic acid. This pioneering formula is the ideal solution for combating the hair loss that may be spurred on by the effects of hard water. Working to stimulate the scalp, decongest follicles, minimise thinning and cultivate growth - this serum actively promotes thicker and fuller hair with every use. References: (1) https://www.wqa.org/learn-about-water/perceptible-issues/scale-deposits (2) https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10570842/ (3) https://www.thameswater.co.uk/help/water-quality/hard-water (4) https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26711619/ (5) https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23305149/

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Ebony-Renee Baker: "Growing Out My Textured Hair Was Self-Preservation" A Journey Towards Natural Hair

Recently, my hairstylist told me that he wished he hadn’t relaxed, blown out and chemically straightened as much natural hair as he had in his career. I told him of my natural hair journey and the near decade it took for me to embrace my natural 3C curls. “It was a different time,” we’d both conceded, as he washed hair and took me back to his chair for a wet trim. I was twelve years old when I received my first straightening iron, and by the time I’d even considered returning to my natural curls, I was convinced the damage was far beyond repair. As a mixed-race woman (I’m half Jamaican and half Filipino), my hair is something that’s part of my identity and tells a story without words. But growing up, that’s definitely not how I saw it. Frizzy. Fuzzy. Messy. Big.Unprofessional. These are the words I associated with my hair – whether they came from others (hairstylists and friends alike), or were the ones I told myself, right before picking up the straightener. But somewhere along the line, our beauty standards shifted, natural hair appeared more and more in western media and I found the confidence to say enough is enough. During that (literal) return to my roots, I realized it’s not just hair. Feminist writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie once said: “Hair is hair – yet also about larger questions: self-acceptance, insecurity and what the world tells you is beautiful. For many Black women, the idea of wearing their hair naturally is unbearable.”For me, embarking on that “unbearable” journey over two years ago was the beginning of my self-acceptance, and in the long run, my self-preservation. Accepting my hair in its natural form meant presenting my full self to others. It meant being unapologetically me. And it meant building my own self-worth.Black. Beautiful.Confident. Me.Along with the re-growth of my coils, these words found their way to the forefront of my mind instead of the former. At one point I remember looking at a photo of myself with my dark curly hair – messy and falling in all directions – and thinking, “THIS is what I’m meant to look like.” These days, I’m quite vocal about decolonising our beauty standards and accepting that internalised racism is more common than we think. The beauty of having been through my journey though, is knowing that we’re all capable of change, and oftentimes change is good.So no, it’s not just hair. In my case, my hair is what makes me, me. And whatever that means in the future – whether it’s giving it the TLC it needs, wearing it naturally, or experimenting with different styles too – I look forward to looking back at my hair stages and feeling pure joy rather than regret. By Ebony-Renee Baker

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Interviewing expert skincare therapist, Tarryn Warren, about the power of a scalp facial

  MONPURE partnered with celebrity skincare therapist and expert, Tarryn Warren, for the first ever immersive scalp facial at the Bodyism wellness studio in Notting Hill. Tarryn Warren’s brand was founded on three main principles: skin health, individualised bespoke approach, and technology-driven solutions. The MONPURE team sat down with Tarryn to discuss the importance of a scalp facial, a revolutionary treatment in the beauty industry.What’s the importance of a scalp massage for scalp, follicle and hair health?Tarryn: “We are trying to aid oxygenation and circulation to the scalp, as this will improve the follicles. Deep massage and lymph drainage all help with scalp health, and therefore, hair health.”What is an easy scalp massage to do at home?You really want to get your fingers in the scalp, a bit of pressure to get the circulation going and even a bit of movement to drain the lymph so that you can more nutrients into the hair follicles Why is exfoliating the scalp important?Tarryn: “It’s the same as the rest of the face really. We want to increase cell turnover and get rid of the excess dead skin and sweat that can clog our follicles.”Why is it important to take care of the scalp?Tarryn: “A hair follicle incubates for two weeks before it comes to the surface, so looking after the scalp - keeping it nourished and supple - is going to allow the follicles to flourish, thereby allowing for thicker and healthier hair.”Why do you love MONPURE?Tarryn: “I love MONPURE because they put the scalp first, thereby creating healthy hair follicles that lead to healthy hair. It’s ethically sourced, recyclable, and the ingredients are beautiful. What is your favourite MONPURE product?Tarryn: “My favourite product is the Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum. As a skincare therapist, I love ingredients. It includes retinol, AHA and lots of vitamins that are amazing for the hair. I personally use it 3 to 4 times a week!”

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The MONPURE Guide to Fine and Thin Hair

Most of us will experience some degree of fine hair and thinning as we age or undergo menopause, while some of us are born with it. However, the treatment of fine and thin hair has been somewhat misleading over the years in the haircare space.The established mantra in haircare is to ‘avoid the top of your head at all costs’ if you have fine and thinning hair, especially when it comes to conditioner. But, we are here to debunk that so-called rule, unpack the science of fine and thin hair, as well as teach you how to effectively treat hair that is gradually losing its density and thickness over time.Hair thickness and densityMany people confuse hair thickness (fine hair) and hair density (thin hair), and even using the terms interchangeably. However, 'fine' refers to the actual diameter of your individual hair strands, while 'thin' refers to the amount of hair strands on your head.As you age, your hair reduces in both thickness and density. Let’s unpack what’s happening biologically with hair thinning.The process of hair thinningThe most common causes of hair thinning are male and female-pattern-baldness, otherwise known as ‘androgenic alopecia', the latter of which is often a symptom of menopause. Androgenic alopecia is a gradual condition that is caused by the increased presence of the hormone, DHT (1). DHT is a byproduct of testosterone and its conversion is helped along by an enzyme called 5-alpha-reductase. So what happens when this hormonal imbalance occurs? The hair follicle shrinks (follicular miniaturization), producing a shorter, thinner hair shaft. The growth (anagen) phase shortens. The time between the shedding (telogen) and new growth (anagen) phase lengthens (2). Follicular miniaturizationDuring follicular miniaturization, hair follicles that were once producing healthy hairs start to generate thinner hairs with more fragile shafts (3). So what is the outcome of hair thinning? Shedding increases The start of new growth is delayed The result is both finer and thinner hair (4). Over time, especially in the case of menopausal hair loss, hair becomes more brittle, fragile and thin. As well as more sparse in density. In women undergoing androgenic alopecia, gradual thinning usually begins at the part line and sides, followed by increasing diffuse hair loss radiating down from the top of the head (5).  Read more about the difference between hair loss and thinning here. How Fine Hair Is Different1. Surface AreaFine hair is smaller in diameter than average sized hair, therefore the protective outer ‘cuticle’ layer of the hair covers a less dense middle. This results in an increased surface area relative to its mass. As a consequence, products with large molecules such as oils and conditioners can coat these hair strands and weigh them down because the hair mass itself isn’t as robust as average sized hair (6).2. DeformationBeing lighter than average, fine hair can collapse under weight and is more prone to deformation. This means that it is more susceptible to the effects of gravity and outside forces resulting in it becoming more easily malleable. This sensitivity to force means that when fine hair is loaded with products, it tends to hang flatter, with less body and volume than coarser hair types (6). Debunking Fine Hair Myths Historically, the management of fine and thinning hair has been misguided but we are here to shift that thought process. Fine and thinning hair requires a routine revamp As your hair thins and becomes finer over time, it is important to change your shampoo and conditioner to those with lightweight consistencies and clean, fortifying ingredients, particularly targeting the scalp, follicles and hair shaft simultaneously. Many formulas on the market are filled with harmful, waxy ingredients that weigh down roots with their large molecules and heavy residues. The fallacy of only conditioning the ends The fallacy that conditioner is purely designated to treat the ends of the hair only further facilitates the ongoing cycle of dehydrating the scalp. This can lead to: An overproduction of sebum that contributes to weighed-down, oily, weak and malnourished hair. People with fine hair need to deliver moisture, nutrients and care to their scalps to ensure that they don’t fall into this trap.The cycle of starving the scalp: how do we break it?Many women with fine and thinning hair use harsh shampoos, packed with sulphates, silicones and parabens, that strip the scalp of its natural oils and moisture, and As it has been drummed into us to only condition the ends, the scalp’s moisture is never replenished. The result? A neglected scalp equates to a never-ending cycle of dehydration and starving the scalp of essential nutrients - which is the foundation of healthy hair. Fine hair doesn’t have to mean flat hairThe solution is to opt for clean, lightweight and skincare-inspired formulas, and to nourish the scalp just like you would your skin. A key philosophy at MONPURE is about giving the scalp the same care and attention as the skin on our face, and that includes bestowing it with moisture and nourishment.We understand that many women worry about their fine, flat and thinning locks being weighed down and appearing greasy and lifeless when they apply products to the scalp. However, MONPURE’s formulations totally revolutionise this assumption. Our scalp-centric range is ultra-lightweight, strengthening and nourishing. It prioritises the often-neglected, yet most important part of the whole ecosystem - the scalp. Without the fear of a greasy or weighed-down aftermath.MONPURE’s Guide to Caring for Fine and Thinning HairDon’t shy away from conditioning the scalp MONPURE’s Strengthening Essence-Conditioner, inspired by K-beauty regimes, resembles a skincare essence with its lightweight texture. It is meant to be enjoyed by both the scalp and lengths, as it delivers optimum moisture without any worry of greasy consequences. Our conditioner, coupled with the Strengthening Silk Protein Shampoo, fortified with vegan silk peptides, is scientifically proven to repair, protect and rebuild frail and damaged strands, which is often an unfortunate reality for those experiencing hair thinning or finer hair with age. Go beyond shampoo Just like with skincare, exfoliation is an essential step in maintaining a healthy and balanced scalp. For those with fine and thinning hair, it's essential to go beyond shampoo and introduce a gentle exfoliator to ensure a thorough cleanse. MONPURE’s Clarifying Scalp Scrub works to gently buff and slough away the impurities, product-buildup and debris that clog our follicles, weigh down our locks and impede healthy hair growth. While a scrub is essential in ridding the scalp of the nasties that give a greasy and flat appearance, it also primes the scalp for the optimal absorption of other active ingredients that are effective for fine and thinning hair. Give your hair a boost from within The best-selling Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum is the hair growth boosting hero that started it all. It’s a go-to for anyone dealing with fine and thinning hair, working to boost fine locks to their optimum potential, and combating hair thinning at the source. This serum is certainly a key component of any thin and fine-haired regime. Its hero ingredient, pumpkin seed extract, blocks the 5-alpha reductase enzyme responsible for converting testosterone to DHT - the androgen hormone which is the main culprit for thinning hair. Skincare acids retinol and lactic acid work together to exfoliate the scalp for improved absorption of other hair boosting and nourishing ingredients, as well as decongesting follicles to ensure bouncier and healthier hair. Discover the wonders of fine hair solutions in the Great Lengths Regime. At MONPURE, we want to re-educate women with fine and thinning hair about the significance of treating the scalp with love and care, just like you would your skin. Our lightweight and high-performance range, potent in plant actives, is transforming the treatment of fine and thin hair within the haircare space. Have any questions about fine or thinning hair? Reach out to experts@monpure.com. References (1 & 2) https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/68082(3) https://healthfully.com/miniaturization-of-hair-follicles-5212526.html(4) https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17034520/(5) https://www.ccjm.org/content/88/3/173(6) http://science-yhairblog.blogspot.com/2012/03/how-fine-hair-is-different.html

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London Fashion Week presents Osman Yousefzada X MONPURE London

MONPURE London entered into an exciting partnership with fashion designer Osman Yousefzada for London Fashion Week 2021. Osman Yousefzada’s SS22 show titled ‘What Happened to Last Season's Collection?’, powered by MONPURE as the Headline Hair Sponsor, took London Fashion Week by storm. Boasting a celebrity front-row guest list second to none (hint: supermodels, popstars and Vogue Editor-in-Chief), the show executed an array of mind-blowing hairstyles and luxury garments, all while upholding the central ethos of sustainability and artistry. The Osman X MONPURE Partnership MONPURE’s collaboration with Osman Yousefzada’s sustainable collection (SS22) is truly the perfect fit. As pioneers in the haircare and fashion arenas, we both champion a commitment to sustainability in the luxury space, upholding the ethos that luxury should not exist at the expense of people or the planet. Both brands, founded in Britain, entwine a unique sense of artistry into their creations that pay homage to the craftsmanship and expertise behind the scenes. Powered by MONPURE for all-things-hair, the collection unveiled fifteen looks in total, and took place at the London restaurant Amazinco in Mayfair. The Osman X MONPURE partnership succeeded in showcasing that luxury and sustainability can coexist, while opening up the conversation around ethical practice in the luxury space. Behind the Scenes at Osman X MONPURE MONPURE London powered ‘everything hair’ backstage, collaborating with super-talented session stylist, Ryo Narushima, to create incredible and unique runway hairstyles. The show exhibited phenomenal hair looks, with MONPURE as the secret to the show-ready styles. MONPURE’s Backstage Secrets to Runway Hair The Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum was the superstar solution for prepping the model’s beautiful hairstyles before they hit the runway. The session stylists applied this best-selling hair boosting elixir to the models’ scalp in sections, before moving on to styling. The serum works to cultivate volume, with its hair strengthening ingredients bestowing immediate body and thickness to any hairstyle! The Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum was an essential step, working as a soothing and hydrating heat protectant to prepare the model’s hair before using styling tools. The serum was applied to the models’ scalp in sections as a luxurious calming treatment to ensure that their dry or irritated scalps were nourished, moisturised and soothed before the session stylists worked their magic. Hair Chats with Osman Yousefzada’s Models of the Moment The MONPURE team sat down with the models to discuss their personal hair care routines. Many of the models emphasised the importance of conditioning when it comes to their regimes. Models’ hair often undergo the taxing effects of heat styling, and are prone to heat damage and even breakage. What’s the MONPURE solution? MONPURE’s ​​Strengthening Essence-Conditioner is an ultra-lightweight conditioning ‘essence’ that nourishes fine hair without leaving it greasy or weighed down. Vegan Silk Peptides repair follicles and strands to increase smoothness and shine, argan oil improves hair elasticity, preventing split ends, while Pro Vitamin B5 hydrates and soothes the scalp. Let’s Hit the Runway It was a star-studded front-row, including British Vogue Editor-in-Chief Edward Enninful OBE, supermodel Jourdan Dunn and singer-songwriter Kehlani. The result of the harmonious collaboration, bringing together sustainability, ethical practice and artistry in the luxury arena, was a display of abstract silhouettes, architectural tailoring of the utmost couture construction as well as layered textures and colours in shades of crimson, orange and cobalt blue. The garments’ proportions were oversized and exaggerated, with the likes of balloon sleeves and cascading ruffles down the skirts of the show-stopping gowns. Osman’s influences stemmed from Afghanistan and the Indian subcontinent, with the collection including mirrored fabric panels, and opulent Pakistani wedding jewelry. The eminent front-row guests took home an exclusive luxury goody-bag, filled with MONPURE’s coveted luxury scalp serums, the Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum, and the Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum. As the show closed, the industry’s most illustrious celebrities were seen with more than one bespoke goody-bag in hand, excited to indulge in the groundbreaking benefits of MONPURE’s solutions. Our Shared Ethos of Sustainability Both brands, MONPURE London and Osman Yousefzada, hold the central ethos of sustainability very close to our hearts. As a pending B-corp, cruelty-free, PETA approved and vegan scalp and hair care brand, MONPURE pledges to safeguard environmental and social impact over profit margins. As part Osman Yousefzada’s ‘What Happened to Last Season’s Collection?’, the designer created garments with TENCEL™ Luxe, a luxury filament made from sustainably sourced wood pulp that is transformed into a biodegradable, endless filament holding properties comparable to silk. In comparison, MONPURE’s products are formulated with a high percentage of an innovative ingredient - vegan silk peptides, that are scientifically proven to fortify hair, repair damage and protect the hair and scalp from external aggressors. Processed by fermenting plant starch, our vegan silk peptides require less energy, fewer raw materials and generate less waste than traditional silk peptides from silkworms. It is a completely vegan, sustainable and biodegradable silk alternative that mirrors Osman Yousefzada’s use of TENCEL™ Luxe. Each of our suppliers are handpicked for having the highest ethical standards, while our packaging stars 100% post-consumer recycled plastic (rPET), recyclable shipping boxes, as well as fully biodegradable and compostable packaging chips. Biodegradability is the major focus of Osman’s collection too, as each of his long-lasting pieces can return to the earth with minimal environmental impact. The restaurant Amazonico also rings true to the ethos of sustainability, due to its ongoing partnership with the global deforestation charity, One Tree Planted. Aligning with both of the brand’s ethos, for every guest attending the runway show, one tree will be planted in the Brazilian Amazon forest. We are proud to have entered into a partnership with such a groundbreaking force in Britain’s fashion industry, whose advancements in environmentally sound, closed-loop production intrinsically align with our own. With ‘luxury meets sustainability’ at the core of our shared vision, the Osman Yousefzada X MONPURE SS22 fashion show has truly left the industry spellbound and sparked an important conversation in the beauty and fashion industries. We are proud to be spearheading the way forward as a quintessentially luxury brand.

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Hair Loss vs. Hair Thinning: What’s the Difference?

The conversation around female hair loss is often overlooked, but we are here to reassure you that experiencing hair loss or hair thinning over your lifetime is completely normal - in fact, 80% of women experience noticeable hair fallout by the age of 60 (1).  Keep in mind that hair shedding is a totally normal part of life, and we lose between 50 to 100 hairs every day, with no cause for concern. However, various biological and environmental imbalances can disrupt this state of affairs. Hair loss and hair thinning are often muddled up, even though they each have distinct causes and manifestations. Our resident GP, Dr. Simmy Kaur, helps us break down the difference so that you can be armed with all the information needed to identify and treat your own hair loss or hair thinning.   Hair Thinning  Hair thinning is a gradual process over time. A common example of hair thinning is ‘androgenic alopecia.’ The word ‘androgenic’ refers to the increased presence of male hormones that leads to hair thinning. Androgens are male sex hormones that are secreted by both the ovaries and adrenal glands in women.  Various hormonal and genetic factors can contribute to a stronger presence of a by-product of the male hormone testosterone, called DHT. But what is happening on a biological level? The enzyme 5-alpha reductase facilitates the conversion of testosterone to DHT. This leads to a stronger presence of male hormones, and a weaker presence of female hormones (oestrogen and progesterone). So what happens when the hormonal balancing scales are tipped? The hair follicle shrinks The growth (anagen) phase is shortened The time between the telogen (shedding) and new anagen (growing) phase is lengthened The result? Hair growth becomes thinner, more brittle and falls out faster Hair thinning usually begins at the scalp, parting line or sides of the scalp This is followed by a more diffuse pattern radiating from the crown A few causes of hair thinning: PCOS Menopause Zinc deficiency Vitamin D deficiency Genetics and aging   Hair Loss Hair loss refers to a sudden onset of hair loss caused by an external or internal factor. So why do we suddenly lose hair when we experience a shock to the system? An example of this is ‘telogen effluvium.’ In severe cases, up to 70% of growing (anagen) hairs are abruptly shifted to shedding (telogen) hairs (versus the normal 15% that elicits shedding before a new anagen phase). (2).   How does telogen effluvium manifest? Usually 2-4 months after the eliciting incident as this timeframe typically represents the duration of an entire hair growth cycle.  It usually resolves itself over time (as opposed to the regressive nature of hair thinning). Hair loss is visible diffusely (it is spread out throughout the scalp). A few causes of hair loss: Postpartum hair loss Thyroid disorders Iron deficiency Stress  Although hair loss and thinning can be rather confusing, narrowing down the differences and possible causes are key to effective treatment. Most importantly, it’s essential to recognise that hair loss and thinning among women is a lot more common than we think, and shouldn’t be a taboo discussion! MONPURE offers some wondrous treatment solutions to foster the ultimate healthy hair growth environment. Discover MONPURE’s healthy hair growth solutions with the Great Lengths Regime, carefully formulated to target the scalp and hair follicles. These four innovative products work in tandem to protect, rebuild and boost maximum hair growth. Read more about fine hair and thinning here. Let’s break the silence surrounding female hair loss together! Join our empowered and supportive hair loss community, powered by women, on instagram @itsnotjusthair_, or share your story with #ItsNotJustHair.   https://www.hairlossdoctors.com/blog/2015/06/02/female-hair-loss-statistics-know-158887  https://dermnetnz.org/topics/telogen-effluvium/ 

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What to know this Psoriasis Awareness Month

August marks Psoriasis Awareness Month, making it the ideal time to spread awareness about this condition, as well as the MONPURE treatment options that can alleviate its symptoms. Psoriasis is an inflammatory and autoimmune skin condition that can affect the skin, including the scalp. It is caused by the rapid overproduction and build-up of skin cells, in which the immune system mistakenly sends signals to these skin cells to multiply too quickly. It manifests as raised patches of flaky, dry and reddened skin.  Unfortunately, this condition is chronic (meaning it has no cure), and presents itself in cycles or flare-ups. The exact cause is still contested, however, research points to a possible hereditary link. Around 2% of the UK population suffer with psoriasis, with most cases occurring before the age of 35. What is scalp psoriasis? Scalp psoriasis can affect the scalp, hairline, nape of the neck and around the ears. Other scalp conditions, such as dandruff or seborrheic dermatitis, may resemble psoriasis, however, scalp psoriasis appears powdery with a silvery sheen. Symptoms of severe scalp psoriasis can include: Itchiness Dry, flaky and red bumps A burning sensation Hair loss (psoriasis doesn’t cause hair loss, but inhibits the health of the hair growth environment). Why is it important to shed light on psoriasis during the month of August? There is a significant amount of misinformation and misconceptions about psoriasis. Many people assume this skin condition is contagious, which can lead to feelings of isolation for those affected. However, psoriasis isn’t contagious - it’s autoimmune - meaning the body’s immune system is attacking itself. What are some triggers of psoriasis? Psoriasis is aggravated in cycles for a few days or weeks, after which one goes into ‘remission’, whereby the symptoms are clear and just about unnoticeable. But what are some of the external triggers that can set off a new bout of psoriasis? Stress Heavy alcohol use Smoking Skin injury, including cuts, sunburns or bug bites Infection (strep throat is a common trigger) Pregnancy and hormonal changes Medications for high blood pressure, mood disorders or arthritis Many psoriasis sufferers note that their condition worsens during winter and improves in warmer months with increased sun exposure (but beware of sunburn). How can we alleviate your psoriasis at MONPURE? For those battling with scalp psoriasis, MONPURE offers formulas that cannot cure the skin condition altogether, but can effectively alleviate and mitigate its symptoms. Our range boasts plant-based, high performance active botanicals that are free from synthetic and chemical processing. With sensitive skin conditions (like psoriasis) in mind, our products are scientifically and dermatologically tested to ensure that they are supremely gentle on the scalp, while still delivering flourishing results. Purify Buildup Our Clarifying Scalp Scrub’s jojoba beads gently buff away the excess skin cells and debris that psoriasis sufferers grapple with during a flare-up. By refining and purifying the scalp’s environment, it improves the absorption of its hydrating and soothing ingredients, argan oil and shea butter. Combat Inflammation Our Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum serves as the ultimate antidote to the dryness and irritation spawned by psoriasis. This calming concoction stars witch hazel and allantoin that soothe and relieve inflammation, while accelerating wound healing. Pro vitamin B5 is a deep penetrating moisturiser for the scalp, leaving the skin fortified and soothed. Protect and Condition Our Strengthening Essence-Conditioner’s lightweight formula performs a double-act with strengthening and moisturising properties. Vegan silk peptides’ breathable barrier function protects the compromised scalp from external aggressors, while argan oil and pro vitamin B5 nourish and hydrate in tandem. Relieve and Nourish Our Nourish and Stimulate Scalp Mask cultivates scalp health, while soothing, hydrating and relieving the discomfort provoked by psoriasis. Aloe vera, a famed anti-inflammatory, locks in moisture and soothes, while vegan silk peptides shield against environmental irritants. Camellia tea oil, rich in antioxidants, feeds the scalp essential nutrients.    

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Debunking common haircare myths

There are certain hair and scalp care myths that many people seem to confuse and mistake, making it more difficult to effectively treat the underlying cause. Whether it be the confusion between grease and product build-up, or a scramble between damage and dryness, at MONPURE, we debunk these misconceptions and educate as a precursor to beneficial treatment.      What’s the difference between dry and damaged hair? Dry Hair Although both dry and damaged hair can appear dull, brittle and frizzy, many people mistake the two, despite the fact that they involve entirely different conditions. Dry hair is usually associated with one's environment, such as changing weather, swimming in the salty ocean or chlorinated pools, or even washing one’s hair too frequently. The key to overcoming a dry mane is simply hydration. Once you inject a healthy dose of moisture into your regime and mitigate the effects of environmental forces, your hair will thank you to no end. Curb parched locks from the root with the Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum, which works to soothe irritation and lock in moisture like a sponge.   Damaged Hair Damaged hair, in contrast, is a direct upshot of an active addition of chemicals, products or heat to the hair. Whether in the form of chemical treatment, regular heat styling, or bleaching the hair, these processes break down the protective cuticle of the hair shaft, resulting in damage to the structure of the hair itself. The antidotes to this are protein, which will rebuild the make-up of the hair, as well as nourishment, which will feed the hair and scalp the vitamins and antioxidants it requires for healthy growth.   View this post on Instagram A post shared by MONPURE London (@monpurelondon)   The MONPURE Solution With that in mind, opt for the Shampoo + Conditioner imbued with strengthening vegan silk peptides and keratin, as well as the Nourish and Stimulate Scalp Mask, which will deliver an essential infusion of fortifying hair and scalp ‘food’.   What’s the difference between grease and product build-up on the scalp?   Oily Scalp The scalp naturally accumulates build-up in line with our lifestyle, climate and hair care regime. The scalp secretes a natural waxy-oil called sebum from the sebaceous glands beneath the skin. While some people produce more than others, sebum is essential in preserving moisture and protecting the scalp-skin from infection. As we are active, the scalp also produces sweat, which often exacerbates the appearance of a greasy scalp.    While these natural secretions are not harmful in and of themselves, if left untreated they can clog the hair follicles - leading to potential hair loss, inflammation or infection. Along with sebum and sweat production, the shedding of skin cells may also cause buildup or flakiness on the scalp.   Product Build-up On the other hand, product build-up refers to an accumulation of residue left from hair products that build up over time, ultimately leading to an oily appearance. These shampoos, conditioners and styling products often contain waxes, synthetic silicones and parabens that cling to the hair strands and scalp-skin. Once this excess has collected, it becomes much more difficult for moisture and nutrients to effectively penetrate the hair and scalp. Without correctly treating the build-up, even freshly washed ‘clean’ hair will appear dull, flat and lackluster.   The MONPURE Solution At MONPURE, we address issues at the source (the scalp). While grease forms part of our body’s natural secretions, and product build-up results from layers of waxy product residue, both may block the hair follicles, causing inflammation or hair loss. Get back to basics with the Shampoo + Conditioner set, which will thwart product-buildup and grease with clean and gentle formulations (free from all the ‘undesirables’). Gentle and regular shampooing, particularly with a ‘double-cleanse’, will aid in dislodging and preventing build-up from the scalp surface.   View this post on Instagram A post shared by MONPURE London (@monpurelondon)   For good measure, cast off remnants and grease to restore a healthy scalp equilibrium with the Clarifying Scalp Scrub. This combination clarifies the scalp while leaving the lengths nourished and hydrated.

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Unpacking Menopausal Hair Loss with expert Dr. Simmy Kaur

We sat down for an expertly-grounded Instagram Live dialogue with our resident GP, Dr. Simmy Kaur, to unpack menopausal hair loss, the science behind it and the various treatment options that are available. As women age, menopause is a natural hormonal phenomenon that leads to a multitude of possible symptoms, hair loss being one of them. The primary culprit for this change, according to Dr. Kaur, is a gradual decline in oestrogen levels. However, as maintained by our resident GP, there are treatment options and products available that may help alleviate this physiological and psychological adjustment.   What is menopause? Dr. Kaur defines the parameters of menopause to entail the lack of a period for a course of 12 months, that usually occurs around the age of 51. The scientific community considers going through menopause before the age of 45 as ‘early menopause’. As women age, their ovaries gradually produce fewer follicles, which are essentially responsible for producing the hormone oestrogen. This subsequent reduction in oestrogen accounts for various symptoms, from hot flushes to urinary problems. Menopausal Hair Loss One menopausal symptom that is often overlooked is that of hair thinning or hair loss, which Dr. Kaur maintains is also a direct upshot of the degeneration of oestrogen production. She notes that while many women report diminishing skin elasticity and dryness as a result of menopause, this same consequence certainly encompasses the skin of the scalp. She echoes our ethos here at MONPURE, reiterating that the scalp should be treated as an extension of the skin, and should thus be considered and nurtured accordingly. Menopausal hair loss is characterised by gradual thinning or shortening of the hair. Dr. Kaur advises that if one has experienced sudden or distinct hair loss, one should visit a doctor to assess potential underlying deficiencies or illnesses that would need to be addressed medically. In terms of menopausal hair loss, depending on its severity, Dr. Kaur refers to minoxidil, a topical solution for female patterned hair loss that may serve to subdue the process. She also praises recent developments in hair loss treatment technology, in which therapies such as microneedling or laser therapy are yielding promising results.   Psychological and Lifestyle Factors An aspect of hair loss that should be emphasized, according to Dr. Kaur, is its psychological impact. Many women report a significant effect on their mental health, including feelings of anxiety, hindrances to self-esteem and even depression. Dr. Kaur offers viable actions women can take pre-menopause to quell its associated symptoms, highlighting that although menopause is a natural occurrence that comes with age, a healthy lifestyle in terms of diet, exercise, sleep and stress-reduction are integral buffers to the onset of acute menopausal symptoms.   Photo by @anitaaarch. MONPURE’s Solutions to Menopausal Hair Loss According to expert Dr. Simmy Kaur, the MONPURE range is brimming with products that cultivate the best possible environment for a thriving scalp, even under fluctuating conditions, in that they are expertly formulated with scientific grounding and clean active ingredients. She pays particular homage to the Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum, in which pumpkin seed extract works to block the conversion of testosterone to DHT, a known hair-loss culprit. As menopause is precipitated by a reduction in oestrogen, the hormonal balancing scales are tipped and testosterone holds a stronger presence. By inhibiting the enzyme 5-alpha reductase that causes this conversion, pumpkin seed extract functions effectively to obstruct hair loss and maximise growth. Dr. Simmy also praises the Nourish and Stimulate Scalp Mask, which is infused with the hero ingredient Camellia Tea Oil that delivers a hit of nourishment to the hair and scalp, ultimately optimising the scalp and hair-growth environment, while leaving your mane silky to the touch.

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The MONPURE Summer Scalpcare Guide

Rejoice, summer is finally here! Sure, we are undoubtedly turning to our sun dresses, sunglasses and sunblock to equip us against the rising temperatures, but where do our hair and scalp fit into our updated regime? Many of us tend to overlook the necessity of caring for our scalp-skin during the heat of summer. Alas, these sweltering temperatures are bound to wreak some havoc on our hair and scalp. Whether it be sunburn, exposure to the elements, increased sweat production or dry and brittle strangs, it is clear that our scalp-skin and hair need a little extra care and attention during the summer months. What is gospel at MONPURE is the notion that a healthy scalp equates to healthy hair (and thicker, fuller hair at that), and consistent scalpcare can prevent  issues such as hair loss – the latter of which affects 40% of women in their lifetime. What’s more, studies have shown that the scalp-skin ages just as fast as our facial skin, which can be exacerbated by increased sun exposure. With that in mind, here are MONPURE’s tips to summer-proofing your hair and scalp. Add oil-control to your formula The sweatiness of summer only worsens the usual measure of dirt, debris and oil build-up found on your scalp. While facial exfoliation is a mainstay in our skincare routines, exfoliating the scalp-skin often falls below the wayside. Unwanted oiliness and build-up can function to clog the hair follicles, leading to irritation or even the inhibition of hair growth entirely. Imbued with the summery scent of sweet orange and rosemary, our Clarifying Scalp Scrub should form the heart of this summer’s regime. It’s biodegradable jojoba beads gently lift away any lingering debris, dry skin or oil, while the nourishing properties of shea butter and argan oil boost shine and moisture from root to tip. Ward off UV damage Ever heard of free radicals? You might be familiar with them in facial skincare – they’re essentially unstable molecules which can attack healthy tissue. The primary cause? Sunlight – or UV rays to be specific. As you may be aware, there are different kinds of UV rays. UVA are the kind that cause premature ageing, while UVB rays cause sunburn. (An easy way to remember: A = ageing, B = burning). As well as ageing the scalp-skin, UVA rays penetrate the hair structure which can destroy colour pigment leading to colour fade. While UVB rays both burn the scalp and target the surface of the hair. This damages the cuticle layers and breaks down the keratin protein (the hair’s building blocks) and lipids, leaving it weak and fragile. Introducing a topical scalp care product that is teeming with antioxidants is an effective way to arm your scalp against these environmental aggressors as well as the hazardous elements synonymous with summer. Our Nourish and Stimulate Scalp Mask’s hero ingredient, camellia tea oil, delivers an instant infusion of antioxidants and vitamins that work to neutralize the free radicals produced by the sun, ultimately providing protection and nourishment. Quell dryness through ‘essence’ conditioning Although incredibly refreshing, chlorine and salt water can be harsh on our delicate strands, causing them to be brittle, dry and lackluster. This is only aggravated by the damage inflicted by the summer sun. Amplify hydration and battle breakage with our Strengthening Essence-Conditioner, which departs from traditional wisdom surrounding conditioning, and encourages both scalp-skin and hair-length nourishment with its lightweight texture. Performing a dual role of protecting against environmental pollutants as well as bestowing a restorative ‘second skin’ to the hair shaft and scalp, its vegan silk peptides are unparalleled defenders against the sun and sea water’s damaging effects. The accompanying moisturising double-act of argan oil and Pro Vitamin B5 leave the hair and scalp supremely nourished throughout the summer months. Deliver a soothing solution Sun damage refers to a form of radiation burn caused by overexposure to UV rays, which leads to direct DNA and cell damage. If your scalp is feeling the heat or is slightly sunburnt,  gently applying a few drops of our Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum through your roots can remedy the pain, inflammation and redness from a day out in the sun. The formulation of redness-reducing witch hazel, cell regenerating allantoin and moisture-locking Pro Vitamin B5 will do well to subdue any harm precipitated by the sun.   Have a question to put to our experts? Drop us a line hello@monpure.com

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The top ingredients to soothe scalp irritation

If your scalp is feeling itchy and irritated, there are certain hero ingredients designed to give it everything it needs to ensure it stays calm, healthy and hydrated and prevent any future flare ups. (Look after your scalp and it will thank you for it!) Read on to find out more. Witch Hazel    When it comes to natural ways to care for your scalp and hair, witch hazel comes with a whole heap of benefits – particularly if your scalp is oily, flaky or prone to irritation. Most of its extracts come from tannins found within its leaves and bark, which then get processed and formulated into topical treatments for your skin and scalp. Witch hazel is a natural anti-inflammatory, which means it’s ideal for preventing and treating irritated and inflamed scalp-skin. It’s also an astringent – which means it works to tighten pores and dry out any excess oil on the scalp, preventing greasy roots and irritation. Aloe Vera    You might already be familiar with this ingredient as a popular after-sun or sunburn remedy. It’s a succulent plant that grows in arid landscapes around the world and is full of what’s known as polysaccharides which are famous for their hydrating and anti-inflammatory powers by inhibiting the effect of chemicals (enzymes) called cyclo-oxygenase (COX) enzymes. These COX enzymes release chemicals called prostaglandins, which are involved in the production of pain and inflammation at sites of injury or damage. So less prostaglandin, means less irritation (so it’s a hero for preventing issues like redness, itching and dryness).   Pro Vitamin B5   Otherwise known as ‘pantothenic acid’, this is a great ingredient if your scalp is dry and flaky. It works in many different ways, notably as a humectant – which means it works like a sponge – rapidly absorbing moisture and locking it in. It’s also used to treat wounds and irritation, possessing anti-inflammatory properties and helping to activate the proliferation of cells that are important for wound healing and restoring the skin barrier function. It additionally encourages skin cell regeneration, so your scalp is left fortified and soothed. Allantoin   Despite its technical-sounding name, this is actually an extract from the root of the comfrey plant. Famed for their healing and soothing properties, comfrey leaves have been used for centuries to help heal cuts, grazes and swelling. It acts as an emollient to lock in moisture, preventing flaky skin and irritation. It’s also a keratolytic, which means it exfoliates dead skin cells as well as increasing cells’ water content, working like a sponge to absorb and retail moisture. All of the above ingredients can be found in our Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum, which you can shop here.  

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How long does it take to repair damaged hair?

Follicles feeling a bit fried? There are ways to restore it to its former glory. If your hair has been damaged – either by heat, bleach or general wear and tear – it can lose its natural elasticity and moisture. The time it will take to repair is entirely relative to the extent of the damage. If it’s seriously frazzled, then you might have to just wait for it to grow out, so this will depend on how quickly your hair grows. Using products that are designed to nourish the scalp and hair can definitely speed up this process, but on average you’d be looking at six months to a year to fully see a difference in your hair’s condition. Read on to find out how to get it back to looking its best. 1. Cut your losses  While you can try and replenish it with conditioners and oils, split ends are a lost cause. (Despite what some claim, split ends can’t ‘seal’ back together.) Unless you trim the ends of hair which are split and broken, the damage can travel further up the hair shaft so it’s best to get them cut and focus on nourishing the roots and mid-lengths of the hair. 2. Use gentle, non-drying products If you have damaged hair, start by cutting out harsh, drying ingredients from your hair care regime, which includes silicones, sulphates and ‘bad’ alcohols – often found in shampoo. And you’re in luck, because MONPURE products– like our Strengthening Silk Protein Shampoo and Strengthening Essence Conditioner – contain none of the above, and also star vegan silk peptides to boost the condition and strength of hair, making it less vulnerable to heat damage by providing a ‘second-skin’ effect to the scalp and hair follicles. Hydrating ingredients such as glycerin and aloe vera can also revive dry, damaged hair (found in both of the above products, together with our Clarifying Scalp Scrub). 3. Invest in a good conditioner While alcohol in haircare is seen as detrimental to its condition, our Strengthening Essence Conditioner does contain two alcohols: cetyl alcohol and cetearyl alcohol – however, these are ‘good’ alcohols for your hair. Because instead of making hair dry and brittle by dissolving its natural oils, they work as humectants, which draw moisture into the hair like a sponge, helping it to become smooth and preventing knots and tangles. As well as vegan silk peptides (see above) our conditioner also contains panthenol, another hydrating ingredient, to leave hair shiny and strong. 4. Be gentle when brushing and styling Hair strands are extremely fragile, so it’s important to treat them with care – especially when wet. Rough drying with a towel and brushing too vigorously can further the damage. Swap your cotton towel for a less abrasive microfibre version and pat your hair dry gently. Once fully dry, brush from the ends of the hair upwards to loosen tangles. According to our resident dermatologist Dr Sue Ann Chan: “When it comes to boosting hair growth, I would advise to avoid common causes of hair ‘wear and tear’. For example, limit use of ceramic straighteners or hairdryers on a high setting. It’s also best to avoid pulling your hair back in tight braids or ponytails.” If your hair is naturally wavy or curly, try working with your natural texture rather than spending hours trying to get it poker straight. If you have to use heated styling tools, try using a lower heat setting and always prep hair beforehand with a heat protector spray.  5. Feed your follicles to speed up healthy hair growth While you might not be able to rewind the clock on hair that’s dry and broken, you can give new hair growth the best possible chance with our Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum and Nourish and Stimulate Scalp Mask. This formidable duo work to stimulate the scalp, improve cell turnover and help prevent hair loss and thinning with the help of vitamin-rich castor oil, collagen boosting retinol and pumpkin seed extract (the latter scientifically proven to block an enzyme linked to hair loss) – while actively promoting thicker, fuller hair growth.  Any questions for the team? Feel free to email us at experts@monpure.com.  

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