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Retinol: How Skincare’s Favourite Ingredient Benefits the Scalp

Thursday 10th March 22

hair health ,ingredient science ,scalp health
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5+ min read


The Benefits of Retinol for the Hair and Scalp

Retinol is widely celebrated as the holy grail of anti-ageing skincare. Retinol’s unrivalled ability to smooth out fine lines, regulate oil production, minimise breakouts and promote cell renewal makes it a mainstay in every beauty lover’s skincare routine. However, this incredible Vitamin A derivative is often overlooked for its boundless benefits for the hair and scalp.

MONPURE’s Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum is formulated with a retinoid called retinyl palmitate, a gentle form of retinol that has been shown to contribute to scalp health and hair growth. Let’s discover its incredible benefits…

Retinol helps reduce DHT production

Retinol’s ability to regulate the sebaceous gland and excess oil production also has an effect on DHT production, which is the androgen hormone responsible for hair loss. Sebum is a known carrier of the androgen hormone DHT, which is the primary culprit for androgenic alopecia. Although DHT resides in our blood and reaches the hair follicles internally, it is also present externally on the surface of the scalp.

Retinol works to remove this sebum build-up, containing DHT, from the scalp, and therefore helps minimise hormonal hair loss and thinning.

Retinol reduces greasy hair

Retinol works to regulate sebum production in the sebaceous gland and is needed for the optimal functioning of both the hair follicle and sebaceous gland (1). The sebaceous gland refers to the small oil-producing gland that is attached to the hair follicle and releases a fatty substance called sebum (i.e. ‘grease’) into the follicular duct and on the surface of the scalp.

A 2012 study demonstrated that retinol regulates sebaceous gland function and reduces the secretion of sebum into the follicular duct that empties out to the surface of the scalp. So, if you’ve got greasy roots or fine hair, which can often be weighed down by excess sebum, retinol may be the answer.

Retinol decreases build-up and follicle congestion

Retinol is a chemical exfoliant, meaning it decongests the build-up of dead skin cells, product build-up, sweat and debris on the scalp. Exfoliating away build-up helps cultivate the health of the scalp, and in turn, the hair. 

Retinol prevents dandruff

Regulating excess oil production on the scalp allows retinol to also prevent yeast overgrowth on the scalp. Dandruff is caused by a yeast called Malassezia that feeds on oils on the scalp. Therefore, if excess oiliness is mitigated, retinol can ward off dandruff.



Retinol helps stimulate hair growth

Research has shown that retinol increases the rate of hair growth by prolonging the anagen (growth) phase of the hair growth cycle, playing a role in converting vellus (A.K.A baby hairs) to terminal hairs, and acts in conjunction with other hair growth solutions to produce denser hair regrowth (2).

One of the most significant benefits of retinol is how it maximises the effects of other hair growth ingredients and solutions by improving the absorption of these ingredients. 

Retinol increases epidermal proliferation (i.e., skin cell renewal), improves scalp condition and compacts the outer layer of the skin called the stratum corneum, allowing other ingredients to effectively penetrate the scalp.

The star hair growth ingredient of MONPURE’s Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum, pumpkin seed extract is a kind alternative to chemical hair loss solutions. Pumpkin seed extract works to inhibit the 5-alpha reductase enzyme that converts testosterone to DHT, delivers nutrients to the scalp and increases blood circulation to the follicle. The combination of retinol and pumpkin seed extract in the best-selling serum allows the effects of the pumpkin seed extract to be significantly maximised, contributing to a reduction in hair loss and a boost in hair regrowth and health.

A common question regarding retinol and hair loss is its effectiveness when used in combination with solutions such as Minoxidil. Minoxidil boosts hair growth by causing telogen (resting) hair follicles to enter the anagen (growth) phase, therefore prolonging the anagen (growth) phase of the hair growth cycle and increasing the size of hair follicles. Minoxidil has also been shown to increase blood circulation around the hair follicle (3).

A 2007 study demonstrated that the combination of Minoxidil and retinol additively promotes hair growth in hair follicle organ cultures and can induce new hair growth in those with androgenic alopecia.

The Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum is the perfect solution to minimise hair shedding, as it is a much gentler and kinder alternative to harsh hair loss solutions, while still maximising the effects of its ingredients with the wonderful combined powers of retinol and pumpkin seed extract.

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