How Seasonal Allergies Affect Your Hair and Scalp
Spring is in full swing! We love the longer days and warmer weather, but with the seasonal shift comes the seasonal allergies we don't love.
We know that the uptick in pollen, mold and ragweed in the spring can cause sneezing and itchy, watery eyes. But did you know that seasonal allergies can also affect your scalp and hair, causing itchiness, flakiness and even hair loss? Yikes!
Keep reading as we answer your biggest questions about seasonal allergies and hair loss, scalp allergies and even how your hair itself can have an impact on your seasonal allergies.
What Are the Symptoms of Seasonal Scalp Allergies?
Seasonal scalp allergies mimic the usual symptoms we associate with allergies, like irritated, watery eyes, sneezing and itchiness. The symptoms on our scalp tend to also center on irritation and inflammatory responses:
- Redness of the scalp
- Slight soreness
- Hair loss (in severe cases)
Can Seasonal Allergies Cause an Itchy Scalp?
Yes. If it seems like you deal with the symptoms of an itchy scalp due to allergies more in the spring, you're not imagining things!
When we encounter airborne allergens, our bodies release histamine to fight these allergens. (That's why we often take over-the-counter antihistamine medicines to fight the symptoms that come when we have too much histamine!) When our bodies overdo it on the histamine, it can cause rashes and itchy eyes and skin, even on "hidden" skin, like our scalps.
To help calm an itchy scalp due to allergies, you want to find a product that soothes the skin, similar to how we use calamine lotion or colloidal oatmeal baths to reduce itching elsewhere on the body.
For the scalp, we recommend incorporating a scalp soothing product like our New Dawn Activated Charcoal Scalp Cleanser to prep your scalp on wash days! Packed with scalp-invigorating ingredients like lactic acid, activated charcoal and menthyl lactate, it deep cleans the scalp to wash away allergy-causing buildup and topically cool and soothe irritated, itchy scalps due to allergies.
Can Hair Loss Result from Allergies?
Yes and no. Hair loss from allergies is possible, but this requires a severe reaction across a long period of exposure. If you have only a brief period of annoying seasonal allergies each spring, then hair loss from allergies is unlikely.
But if you find yourself constantly fighting symptoms of a scalp or hair follicle allergy, then you might have allergy-induced hair loss. To combat scalp irritation due to allergies, try a two-pronged approach. First, speak with your doctor about medical interventions for severe seasonal allergies resulting in hair loss.
Second, to target your scalp specifically, try adding a nourishing scalp serum to your hair-care routine. Our Superpower Fortifying Hair & Scalp Serum helps rebalance scalp oils and support healthy follicular activity without weighing your hair down!
Pro tip: For maximum scalp pampering, try pairing your Superpower serum with our Superpower Liquid Comb Massaging Serum Applicator to give your scalp an invigorating massage whenever you use your serum!
Did You Know That Your Hair Can Affect Your Allergies?
It's true! Our hair picks up microscopic bits of our environment as we go about our day, and this includes pollen, ragweed and other allergens. When these allergens become trapped in our hair, they can worsen our allergies because of the close proximity to our nose, eyes and the sensitive skin on our scalps.
To put a physical barrier between your hair and environmental allergens, try wearing a wide-brimmed sun hat or even a baseball cap. Plus, wearing a hat during outdoor activity comes with an added bonus: Your skin and eyes will also thank you for the extra protection from the sun's harmful UV rays!
Another way to keep the allergens out of your hair—figuratively and literally!—is to switch to lightweight, non-sticky styling products. Lighter options help prevent allergens from readily attaching to your hair, unlike sticky products like gels or mousses that make it easy to trap allergens.
Instead, opt for a lightweight styling spray that does double duty like our No Remorse Heat Protection & Taming Spray! It protects your hair against heat damage up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and smooths frizz, leaving you with silky, manageable tresses and no signs of stickiness!
What About Scalp Allergies Caused by Product Ingredient Sensitivity?
An itchy scalp due to allergies to a hair product is known as "allergic contact dermatitis." If you are dealing with the symptoms of scalp and hair follicle allergies, it's important to narrow down the culprit so you can remove the bothersome product from your hair-care routine. Sometimes an ingredient that has never bothered us can start irritating our scalp, especially as we age.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, dark hair dyes that contain para-phenylenediamine (PPD) are known to cause itchiness, and sometimes ingredients in our shampoo and conditioner—like fragrances, parabens or sulfates—can irritate or dry out our scalps.
If you find that products containing these ingredients might be causing your scalp issues, look for replacements that are labeled "hypoallergenic" and "fragrance-free."
We developed our new Full Transparency Pure Revitalizing Shampoo and Full Transparency Shine Revitalizing Conditioner with both allergy prevention and mature hair in mind. Our Full Transparency line is hypoallergenic, fragrance-free and dermatologist-tested to be gentle on even the most sensitive scalps. It cleanses the scalp and mature locks without stripping hair of its natural oils while ingredients like chia seed and yuzu help to nourish, strengthen and add luster and liveliness to lackluster strands.
This shampoo and condition also contain a blend of plant-based conditioning compounds that forms a flexible yet protective layer around hair strands to help reduce the adherence of environmental pollutants, which just might help cut down on all those pesky allergens that can get trapped in our hair while we’re out enjoying the beautiful spring weather!
Tell Us: Do you deal with seasonal allergies and hair loss? How about an itchy scalp due to allergies? Share your hair-care tips for beating the effects of seasonal allergies in the comments below!
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Better Not Younger knows that when your scalp feels its best, your hair looks its best. Our scalp and hair-care products are specifically designed to support mature tresses without harsh ingredients, and our new Full Transparency line is specifically formulated for sensitive scalps. Let us help you find the right products to combat the symptoms of seasonal allergies for your hair!