Beauty

Scalp care is the new skin care! Scalp doctor reveals the secret to healthy hair

Does rosemary oil really work for hair growth? An expert decides.
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You heard it right here: scalp care is the new skin care.

Well… Maybe not the new skin care. But it’s just as important! While many of us are (hopefully) shampooing and conditioning our hair on a semi-regular basis, the scalp can often be neglected in the hair care routine itself.

While, yes, shampoo is applied to the scalp – the product itself is not always the most ‘caring’ to our heads. It’s the routine itself that makes a difference.

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In the world of beauty, while every sub-category has its focus – e.g. nails, brows, skin – it’s also important to look at your regime holistically. When we focus on our hair health, one must also look at scalp health which, in turn, is affected by our internal health. 

As we see more scalp-related content pop-up across the Internet (we’re looking at you, rosemary oil), it’s important to know whether what we’re doing is actually helping.

This is where the experts come in. For those who may not know, there’s actually an entire profession dedicated to hair and scalp health – and we’re not referring to hairdressing.

Trichology is the science of the hair and scalp. And trichologists are the specialists.

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Everything you need to know about you scalp health…revealed. (Credit: Getty)

In a mainstream context, we may be more familiar with the profession in relation to hair loss. 

However, for women in particular, the profession itself can seem somewhat inaccessible. While post-partum hair loss is a prevalent issue amongst women worldwide, most hair loss treatments are targeted to men.

Times are changing though! Trichology can not only help with hair loss but the maintenance of healthy hair. And, as scalp health becomes a more prominent topic in the media, so too has women’s relationships with it.

To help us in the mission of attaining healthy hair and scalps, we’ve enlisted the help of Anthony Pearce, the Consulting Trichologist for Nioxin

So, to uncover the true secret to healthy hair and find out whether the TikTok famous rosemary oil really works, keep on reading.

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Embrace your hair health. (Credit: Getty)

Can you explain what you do as a trichologist?

I treat all conditions of the head and scalp through client history and investigative pathology. Trichology devolved as a sub-specialty from Dermatology in the UK in 1902.

Why is scalp care important, or as important, as hair care?

Without caring for the scalp, one can’t have ‘hair care’ (i.e. quality hair growth). Hair is only ‘alive’ within the follicle, after which it is dead, hard-packed keratin cells (the same as fingernails and toenails). Maintaining proper care for the scalp can ensure that the hair is adequately cared for.

Rosemary oil seems to have taken the internet by storm. Does it, indeed, help your hair grow?

Rosemary oil is an ‘essential oil’ rich in antioxidants with certain anti-inflammatory properties. Supporters suggest it helps to stimulate hair growth and decrease scalp hair loss.

In my opinion hair loss is much more complex to treat than dousing it with an oil. I did have my clients try it for alopecia areata some 20 years ago, but it didn’t show any promising signs of helping.

Hair ‘oiling’ is a sub-continent custom termed ‘Champi’. Those living in Australia should not need to oil’ their hair. However, you can apply an aromatherapy oil such as Argan or Rosemary to the mid and or end lengths of the hair and leave for an hour or even leave it in overnight. The benefits of oiling include adding shine to the hair shaft and reduce any potential dryness between washes.

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“Hair loss is much more complex to treat than dousing it with an oil.” (Credit: Getty)

How about scalp micro needling? Is this effective at all?

Micro-needling is – or should be used to stimulate the immune system to initiate skin repair. It achieves this by making micro-lacerations in the scalp. Both cortisone and treatments such as micro-needling each have an approximate 50% success rate. Precautions are increased risk of scalp irritation and infection. Regrettably micro-needling is often a sales tool rather than a clinical procedure. Derma-stamping is a better option than using micro-needling rollers as the former doesn’t entangle the hair.

For those struggling with general hair loss or hair thinning, can you share any advice on how to treat it? What is the best plan of action?

Consult an experienced and qualified general practitioner or trichologist. Establishing the causes behind your scalp hair loss concerns through targeted pathology should be the first point of action. A detailed history of the client’s individual concerns, supported by pathology allows the practitioner to personalise any treatment to the problem, their pathology results, gender and age. A combined treatment approach using topical treatments such as the Nioxin range can help recover hair density whilst underlying disturbances are addressed.

Pathology is extremely important to understand the underlying issues behind hair loss, in addition to optimising one’s nutrient, metabolic and (where appropriate) hormonal and gut function status

What are your top product recommendations for a healthy scalp?

To help accelerate hair regrowth whilst treating underlying causes, products like the Nioxin System Kits, can aid in achieving that through cleansing, conditioning, and treating the scalp.

Additionally, as a non-essential tissue in nutrient, metabolic or hormonal terms, a change in hair quality, growth etc are often the initial signs of internal disturbance.

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Nioxin System 2 Trio Bundle (Credit: Oz Hair & Beauty)

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