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by: Better Not Younger
October 05, 2020
On average, women reach menopause at 51, and the years leading up to this milestone are known as perimenopause. Hormonal imbalances and other natural processes that we experience during perimenopause trigger a multitude of changes in our bodies: metabolism grows sluggish, wrinkles deepen, and our hair thins, dries up, and falls out!
There are plenty of menopause-related changes we are powerless to stop. Thankfully, the condition of our hair is not one of them. Keep reading to learn the six ways your hair changes after 50, and the six hair care solutions to counter them.
Structural proteins like keratin are our hair’s building blocks. As we near menopause, the amount of keratin available to our hair follicles declines. Reduced keratin leads to weak, fragile, inelastic strands.
Post-50 hair can develop a coarse texture, even if it was smooth and sleek throughout your life. Your cuticles’ overlapping cells become thinner and more damage-prone. This vulnerability allows moisture to escape, and your cuticle layer remains open instead of lying flat the way healthy hair does.
Hair follicles typically go through a predictable cycle of growth and rest; however, mid-life hormone fluctuations can interfere with this schedule. Hair grows slower, and it falls out sooner because of the truncated active growth phase.
Hair follicles shrink with age, creating a cramped space for your strands to grow. As your hair fibers regenerate, they emerge finer than before. The reduced diameter of each shaft, especially when matched with decreased growth activity, can lead to diminished hair volume.
The pigment that gives our hair its color is called melanin. Our follicles have access to a finite number of melanin-producing cells. Once depleted, they are only capable of producing unpigmented white hairs.
There are glands on your scalp responsible for producing sebum, the natural oil that moisturizes your skin and gives your hair its lustrous shine. After 50, these glands become less productive, and as a result, your hair and scalp are prone to dryness.
Aging directly impacts the condition of our hair. After 50, most of us experience changes to its tensile strength, texture, growth rate, volume, color, and moisture levels. Yet for each of these issues, Better Not Younger has the answer.