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. 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.

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

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.  

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. 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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Understanding Menopausal Hair Loss

  Many women experience hair loss as they go through the menopause. We spoke to MONPURE Resident GP, Dr Simmy Kaur to understand more about this condition and the options that are available. How does going through the menopause contribute to hair loss, thinning and dullness? As the body goes through the menopause, various hormonal changes occur to include the reduction in the production of oestrogen. Hairs on our scalp usually grow in ‘tufts’ of 3 to 4, but menopause can cause these tufts to slowly lose hairs. This process, known as hair miniaturisation, can result in finer, shorter hair and ultimately hair loss. Female pattern hair loss (FPHL) is considered to be the equivalent of male pattern baldness. FPHL usually peaks during the reproductive years and after the menopause which suggests a strong hormonal link. Women with FPHL usually notice a very gradual thinning of the hair, mostly at the top of the head but also at the sides. Some women may notice thinning of the ponytail or a change in the texture and length of the hair. Interestingly, about 50% of women with FPHL have a family history of female hair loss, which suggests that there is also a genetic component. What can we do to mitigate the effects of menopause on hair loss? Looking after the hair follicle and shaft from day one is the key to ensuring that we give our hair the best environment to grow and flourish! Hair care practices such as colouring, perming or relaxing and the use of heat can cause damage - this alongside going through the menopause can have significant effects on hair quality. Therefore, avoid chemical treatments wherever possible and keep the use of heat to a minimum!Use a good quality shampoo and conditioner to keep the hair shaft looking healthy. In addition to this, using a treatment such as MONPURE's Nourish and Stimulate Scalp Mask can help to improve the health of the scalp by 'feeding' the hair follicles with essential vitamins and nutrients. The Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum can also work wonders to help to optimise the environment of the scalp to allow the hair to grow to its optimum, exactly what the scalp-skin and hair needs at this time. MONPURE's Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum also contains pumpkin seed extract. Why is pumpkin seed extract good for menopausal hair loss? In FPHL there is an increase in the transformation of the hormone testosterone to a chemical called DHT. DHT has been shown to contribute to hair loss. This process is helped along by an enzyme called 5-alpha reductase.Pumpkin seed extract has been scientifically proven to block the action of 5-alpha reductase, therefore helping to prevent hair loss. In addition to this, it contains fatty acids, antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory properties that are essential for good hair growth. Does HRT work for hair loss? Many women ask me if the use of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is beneficial in reducing hair loss after menopause. Unfortunately HRT has not been adequately studied or licensed for the treatment of FPHL in post-menopausal women; therefore it should only be considered if it's indicated for other reasons. What kinds of medication can GPs prescribe for hair loss in older women? Are there any risks/side-effects? FPHL tends to be very gradual and follows a very particular pattern, therefore if hair loss is sudden or if the features of hair loss are unusual - other causes should be considered. Thyroid problems, low iron and low vitamin D can contribute to FPHL. All of which are easily treatable by your GP. In some cases, topical treatments like minoxidil can be considered to see if they help, however they can sometimes cause scalp irritation and increased hair growth in unwanted areas. Some women find that hair accessories and camouflage products can be really beneficial in helping boost confidence. You may have heard about the use of 'blood pressure tablets' (spironolactone) and tablets traditionally used to treat large prostates in men (finasteride) for hair loss - these are usually started after specialist referral to a dermatologist as they too can have some unwanted side effects. In recent years there has been lots of interest in newer, more innovative treatments for hair loss such as laser, micro-needling, hair transplantation and fat transfer - the results of which are very promising. Your GP can also talk to you about getting psychological support for the emotional effects of hair loss, which can sometimes be just as hard to manage as the hair loss itself - don't suffer in silence.Have a question for our team of experts? Email us at experts@monpure.com  

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What causes female hair loss?

It's normal to lose some hair. We can lose between 50 and 100 hairs a day, often without noticing. Hair loss is not usually anything to be worried about, but occasionally it can be a sign of a medical condition. It’s important to emphasise that hair loss in women is very common, more common than most people realise.  “Hair loss can vary tremendously from person to person,” notes MONPURE’s Resident General Practitioner Dr Simmy Kaur. “As a general rule of thumb - if you notice thin or bald patches, a visible scalp, a sudden increase in hair fall, or a gradual decline in the thickness of the hair, seek help from your doctor.” So what tends to cause it? Below are some of the main contributors to female hair loss. Stress “The stress hormone called cortisol regulates the normal functioning of our hair follicles,” explains MONPURE resident dermatologist Dr Sue Ann Chan. “When cortisol is present at high concentrations, it causes cells in the hair follicles to undergo apoptosis (i.e. die) prematurely by up to 40%, resulting in hair loss.” Stress and anxiety can also manifest itself as trichotillomania, characterised by an uncontrollable urge to pull out one’s hair. (See: 2 What are the different types of female hair loss?) Poor Scalp Health A healthy, calm and hydrated scalp is also a key factor in how long hair stays in its ‘anagen phase’ (growth phase) and how quickly it enters the ‘telogen phase’ (shedding phase).  “I advise my patients to care for their scalp in the same way as they care for the skin on their face,” notes Dr Chan. “Too often the scalp gets neglected which can lead to hair loss and also a dull appearance in the hair in general.”    Hormones A hormonal imbalance can lead to a number of repercussions, such as acne, weight gain – and hair loss. While oestrogens (female hormones) work to keep hairs in their anagen (growth) phase for the maximum length of time, androgens (male hormones) do the opposite, shortening the growth cycle and moving the hair prematurely into the shedding phase. This includes: Menopause “As the body goes through the menopause, various hormonal changes occur to include the reduction in the production of oestrogen,” Dr Kaur explains. “These hormonal changes can alter the natural growth cycle of the hair follicle, which can result in finer, shorter hair and ultimately hair loss.”Pregnancy (Post-Partum) While pregnancy can actually make a lot of women’s hair grow through fuller, many notice an increase in shedding once they’ve given birth. As women’s oestrogen levels return to normal after giving birth, the hair loss is just backdated shedding of hair that would have normally fallen out earlier. This should return to normal after three to six months, but the stress of pregnancy or a new baby sometimes can prolong or worsen hair loss. Hormonal Contraception “If you have hair that is particularly sensitive to androgens (male hormones), some pills may cause increased hair shedding because they have a ‘higher androgenic activity.’ These can cause hairs to stay in the resting ‘telogen’ phase for longer,” says Dr Kaur. “Stopping the pill can sometimes cause the hair to enter the shedding phase too quickly because of the sudden drop in oestrogen - causing a common, temporary type of hair loss called ‘telogen effluvium (TE).’ (The hair does grow back though, usually after about six months.)” Overactive / underactive thyroid Our metabolism is regulated by the thyroid, which controls the production of proteins and tissue use of oxygen. So if the thyroid becomes overactive (hyperthyroidism) or underactive (hypothyroidism), the hair follicles can be affected leading to hair loss, which normally manifests evenly over the scalp, as opposed to being concentrated in one specific area. Iron deficiency/anaemia Iron is probably the most important nutrient for hair growth, as without it, the body can’t produce haemoglobin – which carries oxygen via the blood to repair and maintain the cells in your body, including those that produce the protein responsible for hair growth. Crash dieting Although there’s a current craze for fasting and extreme detoxing, this can have disastrous consequences when not carried out under strict medical supervision. Reduced food intake results in a lack of nutrients needed to sustain the hair follicle (such as iron – see above) so it can function properly. The natural life cycle of hair is that it grows and then falls out, during which time there is a resting ‘telogen’ period. If the body doesn’t get these vital nutrients during this period, it can actually stop new hairs from forming – resulting in hair loss and bald patches. Illness One of the commonest causes of hair loss is called "telogen effluvium". This can be triggered by any severe illness, for instance pneumonia or a major operation. The stress of the illness causes all hair follicles to go into their resting phase and hair growth temporarily ceases. COVID-19 Many scientists are considering hair loss to be a COVID symptom. Last August, Dr Natalie Lambert from Indiana University School of Medicine and Survivor Corps published a report which stated that 65.7% of 1,700 respondents were experiencing hair loss.  Another cohort study of patients has now found that one in five people hospitalised with Covid-19 experienced hair loss within six months of first being infected with the virus. Of the 1,655 people who took part in the study out of Jin Yin-tan Hospital in Wuhan last year that has been published in The Lancet Journal, 359 - or 22 per cent - reported losing hair. Discover more and watch our film #ItsNotJustHair at monpure.com/itsnotjusthair  

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What Not To Say To Someone With Hair Loss

  While female hair loss is a topic that rarely gets talked about, the lack of understanding can lead to some awkward and potentially insensitive conversations for those going through it. But there are ways to broach the topic without causing offence. One of our campaign stars Beth Finlay tells us more ... Women’s hair loss is not exactly an easy subject to talk about and as someone who’s suffered from Alopecia Areata for 10 years, I know this all too well. Whether you know someone going through it or you’ve experienced it yourself, expressing it to people can be difficult. When my hair started falling out at the age of 17, I was unbelievably embarrassed about it. I thought people would make fun of me, think I was weird and I also thought they would be disgusted by the fact some of my hair had fallen out. I spent years worrying if someone could see my bald patches or if they knew I was wearing a wig. Losing your hair as a woman can be soul destroying and it took me years to accept myself without hair because, let’s be honest, it just isn’t normalised in society. It’s a topic that isn’t talked about enough to enable women going through it to feel comfortable in their own skin. The thing is, studies show that fewer than 45% of women go through life with a full head of hair, so if it’s so common, why is it such a taboo subject?  We’re programmed to certain beauty standards and for women this often means having perfectly unattainable hair. From our Instagram feeds to movies and TV shows we’re constantly faced with the pressure to look a certain way. So when you lose your hair and you no longer represent what’s “feminine”, it can be hard to feel comfortable in your own skin. This can make many women (including myself) feel unattractive and unworthy. Where it’s normal and accepted for a man to have a shaved head, women with no hair are often mistaken for having a terminal illness or going through a nervous breakdown.  This social stigma surrounding women’s hair loss is part of the problem. I’ve been met with many comments about my hair (or lack of it) and often they come across as rude or uneducated on the topic. I’ve developed a thicker skin but it doesn’t mean the comments don’t hurt or upset me. Society as a whole has a lack of understanding on the topic because it’s rarely talked about, so in order to teach people about it we must open the conversation.  If you’re unsure how to talk to someone about their hair loss, I’ve outlined some ways of asking or discussing it without causing offence. Be empathetic and understanding but rather than offering up advice, take an opportunity to get educated. Ways to ask women about their hair loss: I love your shaved head! What made you decide to do it? You really suit a shaved head, do you mind if I ask you about why you chose to do it? I know someone who has experienced hair loss and I just want to say you’re amazing Do you mind if I ask about your hair loss and how it happened? Could you tell me about your hair loss? What NOT to say: Do you have cancer? Are you suffering from a terminal illness? What’s wrong with you? Are you having some sort of breakdown? Maybe you should try not to get so stressed? Are you wearing a wig…? I can’t think of anything worse than losing my hair Maybe it’s your diet... Click here to learn more about our campaign and watch our groundbreaking film It’s Not Just Hair.  

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What Is Trichotillomania?

Pronounced: trik-oh-till-oh-MAY-nee- uh or often shortened to TTM or ‘trich’, trichotillomania is a type of hair loss which is an anxiety condition. Watch Hattie’s story:  View this post on Instagram A post shared by MONPURE London (@monpurelondon)   What Is Trichotillomania? Trichotillomania occurs when patients have a strong urge to persistently rub or pull out their hair. It can be accompanied by other disorders, including depression, anxiety or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). As with other types of hair loss, such as alopecia areata, periods of intense stress may trigger it.  Unfortunately, it remains one of the least researched and most misunderstood disorders, and many people feel like they’re the only ones going through it. Hair loss advocate Hattie Gilford explains: “A lot of people don't even know what trichotillomania is, even though one in 50 people have the condition. I think this is largely because people often feel too ashamed to talk about it. I really hope people watch this campaign and realise that they're not alone.”     She continues, “People often say 'just stop pulling your hair out" which is absolutely impossible – it's far from that simple. I battled trichotillomania for 18 years and it's the hardest journey I've ever been on. I felt like I was the only person in the world with trichotillomania, because it's not often spoken about.” Some people may pull their hair for sensory stimulation often focusing on the most coarse hairs on their head – as writer Ava Welsing-Kitcher wrote about for a piece in Stylist, explaining how it started:  “When I felt anxious or even just bored while watching TV, I’d absent-mindedly find my hand reaching towards my crown. The tension would build as I rifled through hairs to find the perfect one to pluck; once I had done so, the anxiety dissolved, only to be replaced with shame and frustration… but that wouldn’t stop me from repeating it. And so went the vicious cycle.” She describes how this became a regular occurrence. “As a teenager, I saw my hair pulling as a freakish bad habit … I’d catch my mother staring at my sparse crown area with such intense worry that it hurt me more than anything. ‘By getting rid of the coarse hairs, you’re denying your African heritage,’ she’d caution me, but it was never about race for me. The selected hairs just stood out, in the same way a lone grey might.” Trichotillomania is something our Head of Content Viola Levy also suffered with as a teenager. “I have naturally wavy hair and I tend to pull out any strands that are particularly coarse. I’m doing this with grey hairs too as I get older and more of them crop up. I also have a tendency to try and find brittle hair strands and snap them in half when I’m stressed,” she explains. “I did this a lot as a teenager – I remember taking a GCSE exam and the white question paper being covered in bits of my black hair by the end of the two hours. I used to pull at the nape of my neck where it was less visible (I still have tufts where it hasn’t grown back properly). When my hairdresser lifted up the back of my head, he asked why the hair was patchy and broken.” Constant hair pulling from the scalp can result in patches of hair loss, as well as scarring and infected hair follicles. It can also lead to scarring alopecia, where the pulled-out hair doesn’t always grow back. Hair pulling and subsequent hair loss can be very distressing for the person suffering it, and can interfere with their day to day lives and self-esteem. Some people with trichotillomania wear wigs or wig toppers, or style their hair in ways to disguise the areas where the hair has been pulled out. Trichotillomania also disproportionately affects women (possibly due to the fact that many of us have long hair which is easier to pull out). A staggering 70-93% of preadolescents and young adults with trichotillomania are female,* while according to the American Journal of psychiatry, adult female sufferers tend to outnumber males by three to one. In the 2010 documentary on trichotillomania Girls On The Pull, hair extensions specialist and salon owner Lucinda Ellery called it, “the worst form of hair loss that I have ever witnessed.” On her clients with the disorder, she used an intra-lace system designed to cover the area with mesh, extensions and hair, which acts as a barrier, preventing pulling and giving the hair a chance to re-grow. “The intra-lace is not a cure-all,” she noted. “Covering it up might make you feel better, but you have to learn to deal with the impulses.” Types of treatment for trichotillomania include hypnotherapy and cognitive behavioural therapy which aim to ascertain and dismantle the behavioural patterns and common triggers that contribute to the hair pulling. Talking therapies, relaxation and deep breathing techniques to deal with any underlying anxiety conditions are also used.  If you find yourself pulling your hair out, remember that you’re not alone and – most importantly – that it’s not your fault. It’s important to speak to your GP at the earliest opportunity, who can recommend the appropriate course of treatment and therapies to deal with any accompanying mental health issues.      You can also join our new community support page @It’sNotJustHair_ is a place where women with hair loss can share their stories, understand more about the condition and connect with others going through a similar experience. Hattie features in our new campaign film It’s Not Just Hair and has dealt with trichotillomania for 18 years. Click here to read more about her story. If you would like to share your own hair loss story, upload a video or selfie and don’t forget to tag @monpurelondon #itsnotjusthair . Let’s break the silence surrounding female hair loss. Have a question for our team of experts? Email us at experts@monpure.com *Mayo Clinic  

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MONPURE in Vogue

MONPURE have been making waves recently, both at home and across the pond. It’s not every day you get on the radar of US Vogue, but we recently caught the attention of writer Chloe Malle, who had this to say about our range: “The London-based brand focuses on the scalp as the key to healthy hair with a variety of hair stimulating options.”     Our awareness-raising campaign It’s Not Just Hair has also been gaining traction in the media. We were delighted when legendary British supermodel Jade Parfitt lent her support to the campaign, appearing in The Sunday Telegraph’s Stella Magazine where she spoke about her own experience with postpartum hair loss.  Speaking to beauty editor Sonia Haria, she commented: “You realise how your hair health is tied to your mental health, how you feel about yourself and how you present yourself to the world.” You can watch Jade Parfitt’s recent Insta Live chat with one of our campaign stars Beth Finlay here. Two more stars of our campaign Christala Fletcher and Rima Theisen were recently profiled in The Metro, speaking about their experiences with hair loss. ‘It’s incredibly sad that female hair loss is not deemed acceptable in comparison to male hair loss,’ says Christala. ‘Women are often judged and ridiculed for not having long flowing locks and that for some reason through negative images in the media “bald” equals “ugly” or not feminine when in actual fact it takes a beautiful strong woman to be able to rock a bald head. ‘I find it brings out each woman’s unique beauty when you remove the hair.’ And if that wasn’t enough, our Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum is a firm favourite with the editors at The New York Times T Magazine who included it in a recent roundup. “For those whose scalps are itchy, irritated or sunburned, there’s MONPURE’s Hydrate and Soothe Scalp Serum.” Discover more about MONPURE’s pioneering new campaign here.  

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