We all notice a bit of hair fall when we wash it in the shower. But how much is too much? Beauty journalist Viola Levy investigates…
With recent events contributing to an increase in hair loss, more of us might be monitoring the amount of hair that we find in the plughole or on our hairbrush during washing and styling. I myself have noticed that I lose about a handful of hair every time I wash it. But how much hair loss in the shower is normal and how much is a sign of actual hair loss?
If you notice a bit of hair loss in the shower, it’s not necessarily anything to worry about. Washing the hair can dislodge strands that have already been shed by the scalp but have not fully fallen out. However, if you’re noticing a higher amount than normal it might be a good idea to consult a doctor just to make sure.
“We lose on average around 50-100 strands a day,” notes MONPURE resident dermatologist Dr Sue Ann Chan. “So if you wash your hair everyday, you can expect to see a small handful, which might look like more if your hair is longer and thicker. But if you don’t shampoo every day, then this amount can be doubled or even tripled when you do wash it, which may lead you to wrongly thinking you are losing your hair.” she adds.
“On the other hand, if you’re noticing that you’re losing vastly more hair than normal when you wash and brush it – complete with signs of thinning and bald patches on the scalp – then you might be experiencing hair loss,” she notes. “Hair loss has plenty of causes, which can include wearing too-tight hairstyles, hereditary factors and stress.”
But sometimes even excessive hair loss can just be a phase and not a long-term problem. “For example, if you’ve just had a baby, then a larger amount of hair loss is expected,” Dr Chan explains. “As oestrogen levels return to normal, hair loss is just backdated shedding of hair that would have normally fallen out earlier. Everything 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.”
“If you’re not sure if you’re experiencing hair loss or excessive hair shedding, a dermatologist can help differentiate between the two and determine what you may be experiencing.”
If you’re not entirely sure that you’re losing your hair but want to protect your scalp and strands after washing, one way is by using a wide-tooth comb to detangle your hair after you’ve rinsed off and towel dried. Unlike a regular brush or fine-tooth comb it’s less likely to drag and yank on your hair which can contribute to more falling out. Start from the ends of the hair and work your way up to the roots. MONPURE’s Heal and Energise Jade Comb doesn’t just look exquisite on a dressing table but works to gently detangle hair after washing, as well as stimulating the scalp, helping to regulate mood, improve blood circulation and promote positive energy. (It’s made from pure jade stone, which is often used in crystal healing to relieve low moods.)
Also when tying your hair, avoid regular hair bands which can snag the hair and put pressure on the hair follicle – leading to traction alopecia. Switch things up with silk hair ties such as MONPURE’s Style and Protect Silk Scrunchie Trio, each one made from 100% mulberry silk that is a lot more gentle on your delicate strands.
Both are available as part of MONPURE’s Ultimate Scalp and Hair Health Gift Set, which contains their complete collection, designed to give your scalp and hair everything it needs to flourish, so that it can stay strong and help weather the storm of stress and hair loss. The perfect Christmas gift or treat-to-self!
If you’re worried about or experiencing hair loss, you can speak to your GP or dermatologist, otherwise organisations such as skinsupport.org.uk (which covers hair loss) together with alopecia.org.uk can be great sources of support and advice. You can also email our dedicated team of experts with any questions you may have at email@example.com.