Hair loss in Women: The Causes and Treatment

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No one likes losing their hair, especially when you don’t understand the reason for your hair loss. Discover more about hair loss in women with MyVybe here.

Finding bald spots on your head, or noticing a chunk of hair in your hairbrush after brushing can be concerning. On average the body sheds around 125 hairs a day. There are numerous reasons that trigger hair loss in women, and these can range from stresses and hormonal changes, to medical conditions. However, it isn’t always easy to uncover the root of the problem, but there are a few reasons for hair loss in women, as our expert Charlotte Lucas points out, carry on reading to find out what those are.

What is hair loss in women?hair on hairbrush

Hair loss in women is when women experience a heavy loss of hair. The shedding of hair is all part of the natural balance of hormones in the body. When that balance of hormones is interrupted, the hair then falls out and less hair grows back, and this is what causes hair loss in women. However, it is important to remember that hair loss is different to hair shedding. Excessive hair loss and little, not no re-growth is known as “alopecia”.

Causes of hair loss in women

There are many stresses that the body goes through that can affect and do affect hair growth. Causes that may provoke the start of hair loss in women are some of the followings:

Menopause and Hormone imbalances

The reduction of oestrogen and progesterone production can be connected to the loss of hair in women. The added stress of hormone imbalances and changes to the menstrual cycle can worsen hair loss in women.


When the body undergoes emotional or physical stress, the strain of this can cause hair loss in women. The reason for this is due to the body shutting down certain bodily processes which include the production of hair. This means that the body essentially forces the hair follicles into a ‘resting’ state, which means the production of new hair strands is limited.

Lack of vitamins

Lacking any vitamins can affect the body in many ways. Thus, lacking vital vitamins, such as riboflavin, biotin, folate, and vitamin B12,  which help the function of the body can cause hair loss. Red meat and other animal foods are rich in iron, which is a mineral that supports and helps to maintain the function of hair and body growth.

Signs of hair loss in womenwoman pulling hair apart

There are various symptoms that are associated with hair loss in women and will present themselves in different ways, depending on the cause. Hair loss in women may be noticed suddenly, or gradually over time. The symptoms of hair loss are:

Bald Spots

Bald spots may appear in all sorts of shapes, they can affect both men and women, however, they tend to affect men more. Bald spots may appear as patchy circular spots on the head, that may be as small as a coin in size. The skin can also feel itchy, or painful immediately before or after the hair falls out.

Handfuls of hair

This is a very common symptom of hair loss in women and can be triggered by enormous stress on the body. This can be caused by emotional or physical trauma. You may notice that the hair falls out quickly, whilst washing it or even when brushing through it. This can lead to overall thinning of the hair.

Full hair loss

In most medical situations, the strain some medical treatments take on the body, such as chemotherapy, can cause hair loss.

Overall hair thinning

The hair may gradually thin over time. This is the most common symptom of hair loss in women. This can affect both men and women. Men with thinning hair are able to notice a receding hairline, whereas women, will notice their partings widening.

How common is hair loss in women?

The misconception about hair loss is that it only affects men, this is far from the truth. More than 50% of women will experience some form of hair loss in their lifetime. The most common name for this is FPHL (female-pattern hair loss).

How to treat hair loss in women?

There are a few types of hair loss treatments that are available for women that are suffering from thinning hair, or excessive hair loss. The most effective treatment for women with excessive hair loss is the use of minoxidil. This is a lotion that can be applied directly to the scalp or bald spot. It is a science-backed lotion for use in women that are suffering from FPHL.

There are other natural remedies that you can try at home to thicken the hair and to also slow the process of hair loss.

Massage the scalpwoman massaging scalp

There have been studies that show that massaging the scalp with oils and masks, helps to stimulate the scalp and thus improve hair thickness. It is said that the massage motion encourages the growth and thickness of the hair in the dermal papilla cells, which are found at the base of the hair follicle. The dermal papilla cell plays a vital role in the formation of the hair, hair growth and the process of re-growth after shedding.

Rosemary oil

Rosemary is noted as a common essential oil that promotes hair growth and helps to reduce hair loss. It is said to stimulate new hair to grow, and can also be used to treat androgenetic alopecia. Mix a few drops of the oil into argan oil or jojoba oil and massage into the scalp. This can be done a few times per week.


Diets that are low in protein, fats and calories can cause hair loss. So, making sure to increase your intake of such nutrients can help your body’s production of hair strands. Along with improving your diet, hair supplements can be taken to help the production of hair follicles. Hair supplements are created to help improve the hair’s thickness, strength and shine. They contain ingredients such as biotin, vitamins C and vitamin E, folic acid, omega-3 fatty acids, and collagen. On top of making sure to look after your hair with the right products and taking enough vitamins, always stay hydrated and maintain a healthy diet.

Brush the hair gently

Brushing hair is usually done with speed and is a task many don’t like to spend time on. But, when tugging at the hair during brushing, it can cause the hair follicles to break and snap, which triggers hair loss. Brush the hair gently, starting from the base of the hair and moving up towards the roots. Try and brush the hair when it is wet, rather than tugging at dry hair. When using any heat on your hair, make sure to also use a heat-protective spray, so that you aren’t breaking your hair’s protective oil layer.

Now, that you know all about hair loss in women, and how to treat it, why not take a look at our article about how to get thicker hair, next?





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