Hair: Tracey Hughes for RevitaLash Cosmetics Karla Majnaric
Hair: Tracey Hughes for RevitaLash CosmeticsKarla Majnaric

Hair-loss prevention is often less of a focus than treating thinning or loss that is already advanced; but MODERN SALON’s exclusive HAIR+ research shows clients want to know their options before they start losing hair, and though consumers are concerned about hair loss, they’re not sure who to turn to for information. Of course, it should be you—their stylist—they go to first.

“We recommend salons approach each client as they would their family about hair loss and thinning,” says Jared Reynolds, Zenagen founder. “It is a sensitive subject, and often clients need to be consulted about hair-loss causes first, then talk about approaches for hair-loss improvement including salon-professional products that focus on the category, like Zenagen. Bringing up the subject by asking questions like. ‘Have you noticed any increased shedding lately?’ is a great way to start a conversation with a client.”

Talking about hair thinning or loss with a client can be a challenging conversation. But if you notice a client has early signs of thinning or if they mention a concern, it’s important to be able to speak confidently and provide preventative solutions.

More than half of men MODERN SALON surveyed reported some hair loss, but more striking than that is that 75% of men are concerned about current or future hair loss. Talking to clients about thinning before it’s past the point of no return is crucial.

HAIR & SCALP HEALTH 101
When thinning isn’t genetic, it can sometimes be avoided (and if it is genetic, you can often delay or slow the process). Educating your clients on ways to side-step environmental, chemical and mechanical damage will solidify your place as their go-to hair- and scalp health expert—and will, of course, keep their hair from thinning.

“Protecting the hair from the sun and environmental pollutants is a great start,” says Dr. Nicole Rogers, Redken consultant, board-certified dermatologist and hair-transplant surgeon at Hair Restoration of the South. “Although we don’t traditionally put SPF on our hair to prevent things like skin cancer, we can use a spray version to help reduce weathering of the hair shaft. Hats are also ideal and can also help reduce the damage that occurs from free-radical formation.”

Some professional hair products are made specifically for protection against the sun’s harsh rays (like Paul Mitchell Color Care Color Protect Locking Spray, Wella Sun Protection Spray, Nioxin System 4 Scalp Treatment and Pureology Density Definer Medium Hold Crème Wax).

Francesca Dubsky, HairMax director of marketing shares a few other ways to maintain hair and scalp health:

  1. Wash with a gentle shampoo every two to three days. Washing more frequently can strip the scalp’s natural oils, which condition the hair follicle and strands.
  2. Condition regularly. Conditioner replaces moisture that was removed during the cleansing process.
  3. Manage dandruff. “Inflammation and scratching from severe dandruff can weaken the hair follicle and cause strands to shed,” Dubsky says. Recommend clients use an anti-dandruff shampoo twice a week and alternate with regular, gentle shampoo other days.
  4. Exfoliate the scalp regularly. “This eliminates excess buildup of sebum, styling products and environmental pollutants that can clog hair follicles and inhibit hair growth,” Dubsky says.
  5. Eat well. “Focus on a diet rich in essential vitamins, minerals, proteins and beneficial fats,” Dubsky says. “These nutrients stimulate hair follicles to promote a healthier scalp and ultimately, stronger hair.”
  6. Do not over-use heated styling products. Recommend clients apply a thermal protector before using.
  7. Dry shampoos are a double-edge sword. “They work great between washing, but if used too often and not completely washed out, they can clog hair follicles and inhibit hair growth,” Dubksy says.

ALL SIGNS POINT TO...
If your client doesn’t heed your advice regarding avoiding environmental, mechanical or chemical damage—or if he or she has hair loss caused by something else, there are signs that can indicate they have some thinning. According to Reynolds, increased oil production, scalp and hair irritation, and increased shedding are all early indicators of hair thinning and loss.

“Usually shedding is the first sign of significant hair thinning,” Rogers says. “Although telogen effluvium is the
typical diagnosis we use for massive, temporary hair shedding and is usually related to a major physiologic change or event (pregnancy, high fever), hair shedding can also be the presenting sign of early male- or female-pattern hair loss.”

Dubsky points out that shedding 50-100 hairs a day is normal, so you and clients needn’t be worried about the standard amount of hair going down the drain. Women often experience increased shedding after childbirth or with the onset of menopause, but it isn’t necessarily permanent.

“Hair that easily breaks or grows very slowly might mean that the hair is staying too long in the resting phase and that the hair growth stage has been shorted,” Dubsky says. “HairMax laser treatments help to normalize and extend the hair growth phase so that hair can grow longer and stronger.”

There are many treatments, tools and systems out there to help prevent and treat hair thinning and
loss—HairMax, Redken Cerafill, and Zenagen being three such options. If you want to take a deep-dive into the world of hair loss and trichology education and see what opportunities are available to you and your clients, the 2017 HAIR+ Summit from Sept. 24-26 in Atlanta brings together a community of experts—salon and medical— and stylists like you who are passionate about providing information and solutions to their clients.

For more information, visit hairplussummit.com.

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