If you've noticed that your hair seems thinner than it was in your salad days, you're not alone. While very few women actually go bald from a condition called female pattern alopecia, age can indeed be a factor is causing your once full mane to become limper than you'd like. Nobody knows exactly why, but the normal pattern in which new hairs grow in to replace those that fall out stops being as efficient.
Is there any hope for getting those replacement hairs to kick in again? Possibly. Scientists at UCLA recently found that treating bald mice with a certain compound jumpstarted the hair follicles and made hair grow again. Another team of researchers in Germany used stem cells to make their hairless mice furry once more. But whether these discoveries will ever help humans is still in doubt. For now, here are some strategies to plump up your tresses and get the thicker (younger!) look you want:
Don't over condition
Especially if you have fine, straight hair, use conditioner only on the ends. For wavy or curly hair, conditioning the whole head is all right but go easy. A couple of tablespoons worked through from roots to ends is plenty.
Use volumizing products
Shampoos and conditioners that are formulated to give your hair extra volume are worth a try. They may help at least to some extent.
Lift sections of hair and aim the dryer upward toward the ceiling. This technique fluffs up each section as you go and leaves you with a "poufier" result than if you blow the surface of the hair and aim toward the floor.
Be a curlylocks
Hot rollers do a good job of making your hair look fuller. After you take the curlers out, bend over and finger comb rather than using a brush that would flatten your do.
Try the HairMax LaserComb
This device uses a low-level laser to increase circulation in your scalp. An article in the International Journal of Cosmetic Surgery and Aesthetic Dermatology reported that some patients lost hair at first but after months of use all had higher hair counts and healthier hair. However, the LaserComb folks don't claim their product will grow new hair but only that it will enhance the quality of what you have. And now for the sticker shock: the comb costs $645. You might achieve just about the same results by regularly massaging your scalp to get your circulation going!
The only drug approved by the FDA for women is minoxidil. You rub it on your scalp. For females, the 2% concentration is recommended. This is mostly recommended for true female alopecia in which the hair loss is extreme. The treatment is expensive and as soon as you stop using the drug, hair loss recurs.