A survey of 1,00 women has revealed that one in two women get antsy about ageing hair, which means locks that are thinning and losing body and volume. And it’s all down to geography: the Welsh worry most about going grey (44 per cent) while people in Scotland fret most about thinning hair (62 per cent.) And, FYI, the most age-conscious women in the UK are from Yorkshire and Humberside. Hmmm.
These useful nuggets were gleaned from a random sample of 1,060 women conducted online in January 2013 for John Frieda Brands.
We naturally lose about 100 hairs a day anyway. But hair, like skin, shows visible signs of getting older. “Our best ‘hair years’ are from teens to our thirties,” says a boffin at John Frieda Research & Development.
After this, hair starts to age. It loses thickness (in the diameter of each hair strand), colour fades and shine decreases. Being peri-menopausal or andropausal can cause increased shedding. This loss ends when the menopause ends, but what’s lost doesn’t grow back again.
The hair can also become harder to manage, less silky, grows at a much slower rate and is more prone to frizz.
And if you want to accelerate the hair ageing process, just throw in the stresses of heat styling, colour processing, aggressive styling and environmental damage. You have been warned! But these four tips can help:
There is further help at hand with these five products, which can mitigate the effects of age on hair.
1 Oribe’s Dry Texturizing Spray
Worth splashing out on as it makes you look as if you have more hair and it’s been professionally styled… really. The only downside is that it’s a dirt -magnet and after a day around town, your hair gets greasy. But with all those lovely wet shampoos to try and with the instant wonders this spray does to your tresses, frankly, my dear, you won’t give a damn. Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray from Space NK. £18 for 75ml.
2 Galvin & Galvin’s OrganicHead range
A product that’s fit for kings, but costs less than a fiver. It’s what you’d expect from The Prince’s Trust Ambassador and hair royalty, Daniel Galvin Jr (his great grandfather snipped hair in his tailcoat and his father coiffed the Iron Lady). The organic beauty pioneer has produced a range that’s so mwah, you’ll wish it had been around for your first half-century. It has no nasties in it, is free of mineral (petroleum) oils and preservatives, and oozes aloe vera, orange oil and ethical integrity. Try the shampoo and conditioner to enhance blonde hair (we’re all blonde now) and the Detox Hair Masque to give volume, mirror-shine and ooomph to tired locks. OrganicHead from Daniel Galvin Jr.
3 ESPA’s Pink Hair & Scalp Mud
Treat your locks to a weekly intensive conditioning treatment. (Hair that is dull and dehydrated looks ancient, even if you ain’t.) Leave it on overnight for best results or – like the CEO of ESPA – wear it on the beach. I’d go to the wall for most of ESPA’s products, and this mask works miracles in boosting growth and strengthening hair. Must be all that pink mud, watercress and apricot kernels. Pink Hair & Scalp Mud from ESPA. £31 for 180ml.
4 Phyto’s Phytostim Spray
This is a new solution to combat thinning hair. There’s a fortifying spray for massaging the scalp with shitake mushroom extract and grapeseed (said to stimulate hair growth, surrounding the hair bulb to slow down loss); glass ampoules of ginkgo biloba and virbunum extracts (to strengthen hair and stimulate new growth); and food supplements for the pill poppers among you. (The pills are full of B vitamins and help with healthy hair and nails.) It’s hard to tell what’s doing what when trying lots of products. But my hair’s looking A-OK, and their clinical studies support their claims. Phytostim Spray from Space NK. £34.50 for 50ml.
5 Paul Yacomine’s Micro Colourcare Blonde
This tones, conditions and shines blonde hair. It comes in a nifty silver bottle, and with its lemon and chamomile organic essential oil it smells so good you’ll want to make it into sorbet. It rehydrates, adds elasticity and enhances colour for those who like to be almost naturally platinum. Micro Colourcare Blonde from BeautyWorksWest. (There’s also Micro Colourcare Brunette, with organic chestnut and walnut oil). £17 for 50ml.