Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Anti-Ageing Hair And Skin Care

The advertising and marketing of cosmetic products needs a great title, one that grabs your attention.

Anti-Ageing cosmetics fits that requirement. However, the products need to work. They are usually in a higher price range. Can they deliver the results you want? Some of the products have claims made about them that are not allowed, according to cosmetic labelling regulations. See the FDA reference below. I have seen a number of anti-ageing hair care products come and go over the years. Most of them disappear.

There is no turning back time. You can take proper care of your hair and skin and that is by following basics. Skin needs to be kept hydrated and so does hair. Both need to be protected from the ravages of UV. Those two steps alone can work wonders and not cost a lot of money.

The reality is that for many women and men, hair thins with age. Some lucky individuals do not go through that but many do. What are the solutions?

There are thinning hair drugs in cosmetic bases for both men and women but there are simple solutions as well. Hair colour can add hair volume, natural colour like pure henna, which yields a red orange colour and can yield a deep burgundy colour with continued use, and conventional hair colour. Not overused, both can work well. Henna is in most cases a permanent hair colour. Another natural solution can be cassia senna, often referred to as "netural henna" although it is a very different plant, that can yield a pale golden yellow to no colour, and colour results can last a month or longer. It can also turn hair an unattractive brassy colour.

Cassia senna can be made to yield reddish tones by adding acidic ingredients to it, as the colour it imparts is pH sensitive. A number of herbal rinses used for hair colour are pH sensitive in terms of colour results.

Other herbs and plants used for temporary hair colour can add temporary volume as well. Like henna and cassia they coat the hair and the coatings wash out over time, between applications. These coatings are usually resins and mucilage.

Conventional anti-ageing hair products coat the hair to make it appear thicker with polymers and other ingredients, and some contain drying alcohol. While all of these solutions can work, there can be downsides. These include hair dryness, heaviness, split ends and breakage if the products are overused and the hair is not clarified at some point with conventional product use, to remove excess coatings, or enough time has not elapsed with natural product use, to allow coatings to be gradually washed out between reapplications.

A simpler solution to help thinning hair can be to use lightweight hair products for your regular hair care routine and not use too much of any of the products on the scalp area. I use a shampoo that does not cause build-up, catnip (it gives me gray coverage with a pale yellow colour as well) and mineral oil baby oil, which wash out easily with one shampooing, to not cause build-up problems. All of them are lightweight. My scalp is not nearly as oily as it once was but I still need to be careful with not overdoing it, when I apply anything to my scalp that contains, or is an oil. All have resulted in extra hair volume for me. It is a matter with any products of finding the right balance of amounts for you.

There are numerous lightweight shampoos and conditioners on the market that are inexpensive. They can be supplemented by using a lightweight, non-drying oil as a grooming aid, used carefully, for shine, retaining or adding moisture, conditioning and detangling, while not causing extra build-up.

The more lightweight the hair products you use are, the more hair volume you have.

You do not need to spend extra money on expensive hair care products with a catchy title. A number of products designed to add volume to hair often contain a high percentage of polymers too, and that means extra build-up. Uncomplicated products that are labelled for "normal" hair can be a better choice and milder.

Conventional hair colour can add volume to hair by leaving the hair swelled because of the pH needed, and the cuticles roughened. Shampoos and conditioners for colour-treated hair are usually more acidic to counteract that but they also often contain extra silicone, oils and other ingredients, which can leave your hair heavy and cause more build-up, than products for "normal" hair.

To give your hair more natural volume after such colouring, and deal with post colouring effects, you can use a well diluted, white vinegar rinse, which will not negatively affect your fresh hair colour, after shampooing with a shampoo for "normal" hair that is "safe for colour-treated hair" (read that as not too strong to cause dryness that can allow extra water to enter the hair and cause colour fading). Then condition with a lightweight conditioner if needed, and use a lightweight non-drying oil for extra shine, moisture, conditioning and detangling.

There is new follow-up scientific research, with the abstract included under the article, in "References", on "curing" gray hair. The operative word in the article is "may". No product based on the research is available yet. I Tweeted it recently and I have included it as a reference here, and a reference on anti-ageing resources.

Medical News Today, "Cure for Gray Hair And Vitiligo Found", with abstract, 2013
FDA, Import Alert 66-38, 2013
Fighting Ageing!, "Resources"
Mayo Clinic, "Medical Edge Newpaper Column", 2013
See Also