Why Do We Lose More Hair During Fall and Winter Months?


Nothing messes up a relaxing hot shower like the discovery of a clump of hair in your drain. More likely than not, you are dealing with seasonal hair loss.

Why Do We Lose More Hair During Fall and Winter Months?

According to research studies, your hair’s growth cycle follows a seasonal trend related to how your body reacts to the changes to the amount of sunlight it receives. The good news is that you can help slow shedding and boost hair and scalp health during the colder seasons. Keep reading to learn why we lose more hair during the fall and winter months and what we can do about it.

Why Seasonal Hair Loss Happens in the Fall and Winter

Men and women usually lose around 100 strands per day. As women age, estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone levels change, damaging our follicles and causing further hair loss. When summer ends and the cold weather begins, hair shedding increases because of something called seasonal hair loss.

Researchers believe melatonin, a hormone produced by your brain's pineal gland to regulate your body’s sleep cycles, could affect hair loss. Though the process is unclear, scientists believe seasonal hair loss could be your body's reaction to reduced daylight hours.

We are exposed to more sunshine during the summer and early fall. This is particularly true on the summer solstice, June 21st, the longest day of the year. When your body is exposed to more sunshine, it produces less melatonin. The less amount of melatonin you have, the more hair shedding you are likely to experience.

Your Hair Growth Cycle

You have about 100,000 microscopic skin pouches known as hair follicles. Your hair fibers develop inside the hair follicles; when one falls out, there is another to grow in its place. Hair growth occurs in three distinct phases:

  • Anagen — This phase of your hair growth cycle is the longest and lasts about two to seven years. The more hairs you have in this active period, the thicker and fuller your mane will be.
  • Catagen — When your hair stops growing, it will go into the brief catagen phase — where the root disconnects from its blood supply, pushes up toward your skin's surface and prepares to be shed.
  • Telogen —This resting phase lasts about three to four months. During the telogen phase, new hair forms beneath your scalp’s surface. When the old hair drops out, the cycle starts over with new hair growth in the anagen phase.

Melatonin and Hair Loss

When your body stops getting heavy doses of summertime melatonin, a larger percentage of your hairs leave the anagen phase and enter the resting phase. Research has demonstrated that an individual has the greatest number of hairs in the telogen phase in July.

Seasonal hair loss kicks in about three or four months after your hair growth cycle has entered the telogen phase. This is when you’ll likely find extra strands in your hairbrush or on your pillow. The good news is that if you take care of your scalp and eat well, you can maintain your follicles' health.

Tips for Managing Hair Loss During Fall and Winter Months

Though much of your lost hair will likely grow back, seasonal hair loss is disheartening. We want to look our best for the holiday gatherings that the fall and winter months bring. Thankfully, you can take actions to restore the appearance of volume and thickness to your hair and improve scalp health to increase the amount of time your hair is in the growth stage.

  • Consult with a dermatologist — When faced with increasing hair loss, many women aren’t sure where to turn to get help. The first thing you may want to do is make an appointment to consult with a board-certified dermatologist so he or she can rule out underlying health issues.
  • Wash your hair with Wake Up Call Volumizing Shampoo — Your aging hair is fragile and can be easily damaged, so you should avoid harsh shampoos. Better Not Younger’s Wake Up Call Volumizing Shampoo is formulated with gentle ingredients that wash away impurities without stripping away moisture from your hair or scalp. It contains:
    • Sage, a natural astringent that unclogs hair follicles.
    • Hops with antioxidants to thicken and smooth tired, thinning hair.
  • Nourish your hair with Wake Up Call Volumizing Conditioner — The last thing your hair needs while shedding in the fall and winter months is a heavy conditioner. Better Not Younger’s Wake Up Call Volumizing Conditioner coats your strands with a lightweight formula that reduces split ends and breakage. It contains ingredients to restore your scalp and follicles, creating a healthy environment for your hair to flourish. 
    • Supplement your diet with Significant Other Hair Fortifying Vitamins — Your hair and scalp's health relies on the nutritional resources they draw from. As you age, your body may lose the ability to synthesize vitamins and minerals the way it once did. Take Better Not Younger’s Significant Other Hair, Skin & Nails Supplement + Retinol Boost to nourish your hair follicles, giving them the building blocks they need to produce new hairs when seasonal shedding has ended. Significant Other contains:
      • Vitamin C increases collagen production and iron absorption, two nutrients vital for hair elasticity.
      • Biotin has been shown to enhance your body’s ability to produce keratin, one of the fundamental proteins essential for hair health.

    BNY Helps Reduce the Impact of Fall and Winter Month Shedding 

    Don’t worry if you find more and more stray hairs on your bathroom counter or on your clothes; it is likely seasonal hair loss. Stay active, eat well, and incorporate Better Not Younger products into your hair care routine. Over time you will restore the hair you lost during the fall and winter months and enjoy denser, thicker hair all year round.

    Please visit the Better Not Younger Shop page and explore how our holistic approach to aging hair can help you.