Take Years Off Your Body
Hair WoesAge Betrayer #2: Thinning Hair
About 30 to 40 percent of women will experience this beauty bummer during their lifetime, says Robert M. Bernstein, MD, clinical professor of dermatology at Columbia University. It's usually genetic and can start as early as the late teens. Pregnancy is also a culprit: When estrogen levels drop postpartum, many women experience shedding, and the regrowth may be thinner. Declining estrogen levels can play a role during perimenopause in the 30s and 40s as well, making the hair finer. Be sure to see your doctor before you try the treatments below, since thinning hair can also be a symptom of thyroid disorders, anemia, and other medical problems.Stay-Young Solutions
Easy on the wallet
- Hair-loss concealers such as Toppik contain tiny keratin protein microfibers that coat your hair shaft and add color to your scalp, temporarily camouflaging thin spots, says Amy McMichael, MD, professor of dermatology at Wake Forest University School of Medicine. The product washes out, so you generally use it daily or between shampoos. Cost? About $21 for a month's supply.
Not too spendy
- Minoxidil -- you know it as Rogaine -- is thought to prolong hair's growth phase cycle. It's available over the counter in a 2 percent concentration for women and a 5 percent concentration for men. Ask your dermatologist if she'd recommend the more effective 5 percent version, suggests Dr. McMichael. (You should know that it's more likely to cause scalp irritation and the development of unwanted facial hair.) You'll shell out about $30 for a one-month supply of 2 percent concentration.
- High levels of testosterone have been linked to hair loss. The blood pressure drug Aldactone lowers your body's testosterone levels, explains Dr. McMichael. It can raise potassium levels and increase liver enzymes, however, so you need to be monitored by a doctor while you're on it. Cost? About $30 per month, usually covered by insurance.
- Some hair clinics use laser therapy to thicken slim strands, but it can cost $2,500 or more. First try the HairMax LaserComb, an at-home version that costs about $500. Buy it at dermatologists' offices and hair clinics.
- Most women shed hair evenly across their scalp, but if you have a receding hairline and thinning around the crown, you may be a candidate for a hair transplant, says Dr. Bernstein. Cost? From $5,000 to $15,000.
SAVE EVEN MORE! Say “Yes” to Ladies' Home Journal® Magazine today and get a second year for HALF PRICE - 2 full years (22 issues) for just $15. You also get our new Ladies' Home Journal® Family Favorites Cookbook ABSOLUTELY FREE!