Hair loss is a concern that lurks in the back of many a man’s mind. After all, nearly two in three men worldwide will experience some significant hair loss in their lifetime. And for many, losing their hair can feel like losing a part of themselves.
Thankfully, there are some healthy habits you can develop to help prevent hair loss. While nothing is guaranteed, it’s better to be proactive than wait for bald spots to appear. Plus, the mentality of bettering yourself can positively affect other areas of your life as well. So read on to learn about four preventative habits that will help you maintain your mane over the years.
1. Take Daily Medicine
Maintaining healthy hair follicles is the crux of keeping a full head of hair. Think of your hair follicles like the roots of a plant. If the roots get weak, the plant withers and dies. And, without roots, the plant can’t grow back. So it’s critically important to keep your hair follicles as healthy as possible over time. And one of the best ways to do so is modern medicine.
These days, hair loss medicines have come leaps and bounds in terms of development. And there are two main options: finasteride and minoxidil. Both work by restoring and maintaining the health of your hair follicles, but in different ways. Finasteride works by blocking the development of hair-harming hormones whereas minoxidil keeps blood flowing to your scalp. A key aspect of both of these medicines, however, is that they work better the sooner you use them.
Topical finasteride and minoxidil have proven to be highly effective for thousands of men around the world. So if you’re serious about preventing hair loss, incorporate either of them into your daily routine. They could be the reason you’ll still have a head full of grays into your 80s and beyond.
2. Wear a Hat
If you’re an avid outdoorsman you probably enjoy a lot of time in the sun. And, generally, a relatively low level of regular sun exposure is good for you. But if you spend longer than half an hour outside every day, you may be slow-cooking the hairs right off your head.
Like your skin, your hair is susceptible to damage from sun exposure; specifically, the ultraviolet light within the sun’s rays. UV radiation is responsible for a number of conditions, such as skin cancer and premature aging. It can also damage the fundamental integrity of the proteins in your hair. And without the necessary proteins it needs to replicate effectively, your hair can become weaker and fall out.
Rather than suffer this eventuality, offset it by simply wearing a hat outdoors. It will take the brunt of the UV hit from the sun, letting your hair chill in the shade beneath. If you’ve never worn a hat before, experiment with different styles until you find one that fits yours. There are plenty out there, and you’ll be able to enjoy your adventures to the fullest knowing your hair is safe.
3. Dry Your Hair Properly
Developing healthy hair habits isn’t only about what products you use. It’s also about using the right hair care techniques. Washing and styling and everything in between can affect your hair.
If you’re like most guys, you probably don’t think much about how you dry your hair. You simply rub your towel over your head until it isn’t wet anymore. And the faster and harder you rub, the quicker your hair gets dry. Simple, right? Well, unfortunately, this quick and simple way of drying your hair actually harms it in the long run.
You see, wet hair is more fragile than dry hair. In fact, your hair is at its weakest when it’s wet. So vigorously drying it with a towel is likely harming the integrity of your hair follicles. Instead, simply pat your hair dry, and use a softer cloth than a standard towel when possible. Cloth made of softer, finer fibers like a t-shirt works just as well for drying and is easier on your hair. Changing this one simple aspect of your life can do more work in preventing hair loss than you might expect.
4. Wear Your Long Hair Loose
If you’ve got long hair you know how excellent you feel when you let your mane flow. And you also know how much long hair can get in the way when you’re trying to accomplish simple tasks. Sometimes it’s simply easier to tie it up or pull it back than let it all hang loose. But, if you’re not careful, too much time with your hair tied tight can harm it.
Wearing tight hairstyles, like ponytails, braids, or buns, can cause what’s known as traction alopecia. This hair loss condition is caused by putting too much tension on your hair. And this tension, in turn, puts strain on your hair follicles, weakening them over time.
Opt to wear looser hairstyles more often and give your hair plenty of time to relax. When you do tie your hair up, use fabric ties instead of elastics, and don’t pull your hair too tightly. Also, wait for your hair to dry before tying because, as mentioned, it’s weaker when it’s wet. Contact your stylist or barber to ask for recommendations on how to style your unique hair. Doing so will help preserve your hairline as you age.
Happy Hair, Happy Life
Hair loss can have a psychological impact on those who suffer from it. And while there are ways to cope with hair loss, it’s better to prevent it altogether. Doing so will spare you unnecessary suffering.
The thing about hair loss is that, in most cases, it doesn’t just happen overnight. It’s the result of a series of factors that compound over time. By focusing on developing healthy hair habits, you can increase the chance that you mitigate these factors. And that way you’ll be able to enjoy a fuller head of hair well into your golden years.