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  • FIRST POST
    • MrsStepford
    • By MrsStepford 18th Aug 18, 4:00 PM
    • 161Posts
    • 361Thanks
    MrsStepford
    Hair Loss
    • #1
    • 18th Aug 18, 4:00 PM
    Hair Loss 18th Aug 18 at 4:00 PM
    I did a search and the last hair loss-specific thread in the Health & Beauty Moneysaving forum was back in 2016. Helen Porter showed off her new blonde wig on TV recently and there was a story in a tabloid last week about a primary school kid with alopecia, whose school wouldn't allow her to wear her wig at school.

    Just over a week ago, I was getting ready to go to the cinema with my husband. I caught sight of my parting in the mirror and it looked like an animal had torn ragged lumps of hair out, leaving bald patches.

    I was distraught. I knew that my hair had become thinner since taking Metformin, but I didn't think that I had bald patches. I have nagged my GP about my thinning hair and asked him to refer me to a trichologist and he refused. he also refused tp prescribe me minoxidil.

    So this thread is in two parts:
    (a) if you or anyone else female that you know is experiencing hair loss, what have you/they tried to help regrowth ?
    (b) in the meantime and in case regrowth doesn't happen what suggestions do you have please ?

    My first idea was to cut my hair as short as I dared. I figured that having less weight (it reached the tops of my shoulders) might help to alleviate damage and get more air to my scalp.

    I found an article online on hair treatments and the #1 for hair loss and thinning hair, wasn't Rogaine (Minoxidil) but a tube of stuff from an Italian company called Dewines, which Liberty sells for 20.00. Have ordered it because it should last ages. You just use a little on freshly shampooed hair twice a week and leave it in.

    My mother says argan oil will help and she's going to give me a bottle of it which she picked up in Lidl. I bought a travel size pump dispenser argan oil from Poundshop and hadn't used it, so am using that to start me off.
Page 1
    • MrsStepford
    • By MrsStepford 18th Aug 18, 4:21 PM
    • 161 Posts
    • 361 Thanks
    MrsStepford
    • #2
    • 18th Aug 18, 4:21 PM
    • #2
    • 18th Aug 18, 4:21 PM
    Part Two: Covering the bald bits

    I thought about wigs and dismissed them for now because life is too short to be washing two lots of hair. Also, it would be horrible if some (probably expensive) wig flew off my head in public. I'd be mortified.

    As a hat lover, I am looking out for caps and beanies in sales as well as cheap scarves in cotton, silk, viscose wool and rayon - breatheable stuff, because it will be on my head.

    Watched some YouTube tutorials on tieing turbans (variously African, Sikh, Muslim), tichels (Jewish) and hijabs (Muslim). I managed to recreate one style so far, but I wouldn't feel confident in public because it keeps sliding off.

    One of the hijab tutorials mentioned a hijab cap which the hijab scarf clings to and it's invisible under the scarf. I thought that might work for a tichel/turban creation so found a few websites and ordered some - really cheap, like one was 2.50.

    While I was looking on a website, I found shampoo for covered hair. Covering hair for most of the day can make it smell (eww), get oily (ditto) and fall out so I ordered some of the shampoo to try. I don't want to add to my hair problem.

    So I think I have a regime sorted to look after my hair which is making me feel a bit better, like i'm doing the best I can to coax it to grow. I can get plants to grow..

    Now i'm looking for cheap breatheable scarves and hats. Did I say I love hats ?

    I am hoping hoping hoping that my hair grows

    xxx
    • dboswell
    • By dboswell 18th Aug 18, 5:35 PM
    • 308 Posts
    • 68 Thanks
    dboswell
    • #3
    • 18th Aug 18, 5:35 PM
    • #3
    • 18th Aug 18, 5:35 PM
    Google hair systems. They seem quite popular with some communities for hair volume.
    • BucksLady
    • By BucksLady 18th Aug 18, 6:03 PM
    • 540 Posts
    • 1,770 Thanks
    BucksLady
    • #4
    • 18th Aug 18, 6:03 PM
    • #4
    • 18th Aug 18, 6:03 PM

    I was distraught. I knew that my hair had become thinner since taking Metformin, but I didn't think that I had bald patches. .
    Originally posted by MrsStepford

    Metformin can result in lower blood levels of Vitamin B12 which in turn can result in hair loss. Is your diet rich in this vitamin? If not, maybe a supplement might help?. Anyway, this is the route I would take initially and if it didn't help, I think I would visit my GP again and request further assistance. If he/she doesn't listen, please ask to see someone else because there is help out there . I wish you so much luck, it's a horrible problem to have to contend with x
    • MrsStepford
    • By MrsStepford 18th Aug 18, 6:20 PM
    • 161 Posts
    • 361 Thanks
    MrsStepford
    • #5
    • 18th Aug 18, 6:20 PM
    • #5
    • 18th Aug 18, 6:20 PM
    I eat eggs, salmon and other fish and seafood, beef, milk, butter, cheese, beef and use Engevita with added B12. I will check how much I get against reference intake, thanks for the suggestion.

    Only one GP in the practice so it's him or no-one.
    • steve_blake1490667
    • By steve_blake1490667 18th Aug 18, 6:34 PM
    • 25 Posts
    • 9 Thanks
    steve_blake1490667
    • #6
    • 18th Aug 18, 6:34 PM
    • #6
    • 18th Aug 18, 6:34 PM
    Perspective from a man.

    I've been taking Finasteride 1 mg (Propecia) for hair regrowth on my crown and its done a reasonably good job for the last 10 years or so. Finestaride is strictly off limits for women as it changes your hormones.

    However a few months ago i stopped using Propecia (due to the notorious side effects, mainly 'brain fog') and started using this after it was recommended in Men's Health magazine. Its still early very days but initial impressions are very good as its kept up my scalp hair regrowth and also increased my hair growth elsewhere (eg beard). I believe its suitable for both men and women so might be worth giving it a try.

    https://www.itreallyworksvitamins.com/products/it-really-works-vitamins-one-month-supply

    (Btw, i don't work for that company, only giving my feedback)
    Last edited by steve_blake1490667; 18-08-2018 at 6:44 PM.
    • fibonarchie
    • By fibonarchie 18th Aug 18, 7:26 PM
    • 900 Posts
    • 1,580 Thanks
    fibonarchie
    • #7
    • 18th Aug 18, 7:26 PM
    • #7
    • 18th Aug 18, 7:26 PM
    If you've only got one dr in the practice he's got a lot of hold over you. I'd try to change to another surgery where there's more to choose from, if possible, especially as this one's not helping you or taking your problem seriously.
    Signature Removed by Forum Team ..thanks to somebody reporting a witty and decades-old Kenny Everett quote as 'offensive'!!
    • esmy
    • By esmy 19th Aug 18, 2:31 PM
    • 1,274 Posts
    • 5,522 Thanks
    esmy
    • #8
    • 19th Aug 18, 2:31 PM
    • #8
    • 19th Aug 18, 2:31 PM
    My daughter had some bald patches through overuse of hair extensions. She used a caffeine shampoo, a good conditioner, and was very gentle with her hair - no hair colour,no hairdryers/straighteners, wide toothed comb, stopped tying up her hair. Changing her parting helped hide the loss as did a 'zig zag' parting. It took about a year to regain a healthy head of hair.

    I hope you find a solution.
    • evangeline
    • By evangeline 20th Aug 18, 7:24 AM
    • 138 Posts
    • 134 Thanks
    evangeline
    • #9
    • 20th Aug 18, 7:24 AM
    • #9
    • 20th Aug 18, 7:24 AM
    2 years ago GP referred me to dermatologist for hair loss who diagnosed "male pattern baldness" Prescribed Minoxidil 5%(for men) , also iron supplements. Treatment left red dry scalp , no obvious improvement in growth.Consulted trichologist. 5 sessions. Expensive.She gave a list of different supplements to take. Protein was essential esp at breakfast. Water. No hair colouring , drying , styling , no washing every day. Although I felt it was improving , microscopic examination showed otherwise. She tried reflexology. Stopped going .

    I am very slim , low weight , underactive thyroid , post menopausal and always going through some stress ( called "life"). However very fit and healthy. Gave up the supplements including iron. Do eat more protein. Have resumed highlights. Hair much better now.

    I love hats and am at an age where I have the confidence to enjoy wearing them. Thin hair is cold.

    Sorry for the long post , but happy to share , if it will help anyone else who cannot afford/access specialists. Wishing you an improvement soon Mrs Stepford.
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 20th Aug 18, 8:08 AM
    • 17,558 Posts
    • 49,255 Thanks
    moneyistooshorttomention
    A little thought - fwiw - and no-one else notices anything wrong with my hair (even when I mention it specifically) but I'm aware that it isn't what it was and want it back that way.

    Feeling a bit more "motivated" all round re my looks at the moment and so I'm trying a couple of things out. Now one thing I feel 90% sure is making a difference is an acupressure technique I read about. I've recently started doing this for 10 minutes daily. It's "buffing" the fingernails of one hand against the fingernails of the other hand (just fingernails - women shouldnt involve the thumbnails). So I sit there "buffing" away whilst watching tv for instance.

    Nowt for the first couple of weeks - but I've noticed for the last few weeks that I'm now seeing very few hairs on my hairbrush or comb when I use them. There seems to be a lot less coming out - my body seems to be "holding onto" its hair rather better than it did.

    Logic tells me that if it "holds onto" existing hair and new hair is also growing that it will thicken up.

    You've nowt to lose by experimenting with that - just 10 minutes a day and it's free.
    • MrsStepford
    • By MrsStepford 20th Aug 18, 6:32 PM
    • 161 Posts
    • 361 Thanks
    MrsStepford
    Wow, blown away by all the replies. Thank you so much. I really appreciate this.

    I think that I eat a reasonably healthy diet but no-one is perfect and there are supposed to be lots of herbs which are good for hair loss - wish I'd know this earlier in the year as we could have grown more. I will research that properly for next Spring.

    I admit that I would rather eat food than take supplements. My mother bought some expensive hyaluronic acid tablets and didn't use them. They were Solgar and in-date so I worked through the whole bottle - didn't see any improvement in my skin. Didn't feel any better. I've bookmarked the vitamin link though thank you.

    Caffeine shampoo sounds intriguing. At the moment I'm using a different one every day. Daniel Galvin organic (Ocado flash sale ), Head and Shoulders, and three shampoos for covered hair - one is anti-dandruff, one oil-balancing and one for hair repair. They all leave my hair very soft.

    The argan oil is certainly easy to use and I leave it in. My hair slurps it up. Used the Italian stuff and it certainly has a tingly effect on a wet scalp. Smells a bit like Vicks. You leave it in, which I did and it dried all hard and made me look like a punk rocker. Rather than wash my hair again, I brushed it which got rid of the flakes. Once the flakes had gone, it felt soft.
    • Prinzessilein
    • By Prinzessilein 20th Aug 18, 8:03 PM
    • 2,952 Posts
    • 13,877 Thanks
    Prinzessilein
    I have female pattern baldness.....for many years (decades!!!) I have had skin problems - and I regularly attend a skin clinic at hospital.

    I tried dietary supplements - and my diet is healthier than most.....I only use a prescription shampoo...I tried various prescribed lotions-and-potions for the scalp....and last year I was informed that my hair is never going to grow back, I needed to learn to live with it.

    I was covering my head EVERY time I left my flat. I had a variety of hats...knitted ones for winter...straw ones for summer...and scarves too....ANYTHING to cover up the bald patch that just seemed to be growing bigger every time I looked in the mirror....and only a woman knows the shame you can feel (apologies to any men out there...but it is so much more embarrassing for a woman!)- my lovely Mum knows how often I sat and wept.


    A few months ago I bit the bullet...I contacted a wig-supplier!...She came to visit me and brought a supply of wigs and hair-pieces with her...I was almost in tears when she left - I had a full head of hair for the first time in decades! A lovely choppy-bob in soft reddish brown that makes me feel FEMININE!!!!

    Tending for the wig is simplicity itself...The wig-lady provided me with a spray that you lightly spray on whilst the wig is on its plastic stand..and then brush through lightly....a matter of a couple of minutes!.

    I wish I had done it sooner...a week or so ago I asked for a second visit and bought a second wig...short crop dark brown with gold highlights.


    My own hair was always short...but last week I went for a REALLY short crop - so that my own hair isn't going to poke out from under the shorter wig. (Although it doesn't look too bad if it does because my own hair is a similar dark brown)

    As for the wig flying off in the wind...unlikely!...My variety of hats flew off on occasion - my wig has only been in danger once - and that was when I caught my glasses chain in the back and pulled the wig askew.

    I only wish I had braved-the-wig so many years earlier...I go out and about with no hat!....I have been asked if I have had my hair coloured or been to a new hairdresser....very few people make the initial assumption that it is a wig!

    I would recommend that - at least for the first wig - you actually see a wig-consultant - try on various styles and colours...and they will show you how to put them on correctly.
    • skint_chick
    • By skint_chick 20th Aug 18, 8:39 PM
    • 788 Posts
    • 5,655 Thanks
    skint_chick
    Have you changed your parting? That will at least cover the balder bits while they recover. You should get your thyroid and B12 checked - and make sure these are at the optimum level, not just in the normal range. If you can try washing your hair less than every day and avoid harsh chemicals like sulphates, petrochemicals, and drying alcohols. Also avoid silicones in any conditioner you use as they weigh your hair down and won't be removed by non SLS shampoos. I eat liver regularly (made into homemade burgers with beef mince to hide the taste), take liver capsules and biotin tablets and only comb my hair with a wide toothed comb. I don't blow dry, colour, or straighten my hair anymore (I've embraced the curly girl method) and do lots of yoga to destress. My huge bald patch that covers the whole of the front of my head has now reduced to a 10p size with a few fine hairs growing back in. It's been nearly 2 years but regrowth started after a couple of months.
    "I cannot make my days longer so I strive to make them better." Paul Theroux
    • MrsStepford
    • By MrsStepford 20th Aug 18, 10:38 PM
    • 161 Posts
    • 361 Thanks
    MrsStepford
    My mother called me this evening. Much wailing of "it's so sad" didn't make me feel better, just annoyed. It's MY hair.

    Because I've been losing my hair for years, I guess part of me tried to ignore that. It's not as tough to deal with as the diagnosis of diabetes was. It's more than likely that the hair loss is linked to metformin or diabetes so in some ways it's just one more thing on the diabetes list. It's annoying and sad but for me it's not the end of the world.

    Wigs may be great for others, but I'm not feeling it for wigs. My mother is the stereotypical Tory-voting animal-loving veggie Home Counties Telegraph reader and when she mentioned wigs and got a negative reaction from me, I could hear the anxiety in her voice. Always always she wants Conventional. A wig, her friends wouldn't notice if they met me. then afterwards, next time they spoke she would spill beans on the wig and get sympathy for herself as Concerned Mother. I would just get Awkward Silences thereafter.

    My husband on the other hand, has been great. Much more than I would have expected. Snuggling and hugs galore. He said if I didn't want a wig, I didn't have to have one and that I'd never been conventional and that I have to do what I'm happy with.

    My hair was always fine, but glossy as silk. I have never blow-dried it. My hair has been permed exactly once (practice session by friend) and dyed three times (black twice and red once). I stopped using conditioner, in favour of a bit of coconut oil or argan oil in my hair when needed. I've never used straighteners or hair tongs on it. It has been cut regularly either by hairdresser or by my mother or chopped about by me. I'm not too shabby at it either. Have had people compliment me on my new haircut.

    I don't feel that I've lost my femininity because I'm more than a bit of a tomboy and although I loved messing about with my hair, I love messing about with clothes and have a thing for hats. If I was girly, I would probably be taking this much harder.

    I did flip my parting that night but I was already feeling that I could no longer do what I wanted with my hair and that dead straight combover wasn't going to make me happy. That's why I took the scissors to it next morning.
    Last edited by MrsStepford; 20-08-2018 at 10:45 PM.
    • MrsStepford
    • By MrsStepford 20th Aug 18, 10:57 PM
    • 161 Posts
    • 361 Thanks
    MrsStepford
    So, I have lots of research to do, re: tweaking my diet, supplements, remedies, alternative therapies. I will get my mother involved in that as one of her friends is a herbalist.

    The Great Cover Up.. the chemo hats and hijab caps have started arriving.

    The chemo hat from Anna Bandana in Devon looked OK on the model but the shape does seem to scream cancer victim and since I'm not I don't want any awkward conversations in supermarkets. So will probably keep those in the hall in case someone turns up unexpectedly.

    The hijab caps from Inayah were cheap. They tie at the back, which feels a bit too The Handmaid's Tale to me. The pull on caps (bones) from Modanisa in Turkey arrived really quickly and much better quality and shaped although just pull ons.

    No scarves yet because still need to work out the right size.
    • MrsStepford
    • By MrsStepford 21st Aug 18, 2:09 PM
    • 161 Posts
    • 361 Thanks
    MrsStepford
    Just a quick update..

    Bought my first scarf ! Blue and red hearts on a white background, 7 in the Help for Heroes sale. Feel a bit wobbly, don't really know why.

    BIG HUGE thank you to everyone on this thread sharing their stories, here's hoping it helps support us and any lurkers. xx
    • downshifter
    • By downshifter 22nd Aug 18, 8:54 AM
    • 1,101 Posts
    • 1,919 Thanks
    downshifter
    Wigs, scarves hats - yes to all! I've recently been diagnosed with skin cancer patches on my crown, exactly where my hair is so horrendously thin. During my first examination for this, and before diagnosis, the dermatologist said I had male pattern baldness and recommended the mens minoxidil - the 5% one, even though I'm female (mid 60s). She said it was really the only thing that could stop the loss but couldn't make it grow back. I have very fair, fine and greying hair which looks even worse, especially from a distance! (I know, I'm far too over-sensitive about it!)

    I did think I'd try it until I got the diagnosis but obviously won't now. However while it was bad enough going out and about with such thin hair it's going to be worse with a whopping scar (well, it'll probably be about 2 inches long but whopping to me!!! And the hair won't grow back) - the biopsy scar is noticeable enough when you have so little hair to cover it.

    The cancer was caused by sun damage and while I wear a sun hat for sunbathing, beaches, walking etc, I certainly don't for 10 minutes weeding, popping to the shops, hanging washing etc.

    So I'm following this thread with great interest, I don't normally wear hats other than that, but will be looking around now. I'm also seriously going to consider a partial wig.

    Soooooo, the moral of this tale for those of us with thin hair is, wear a hat on every occasion, even a 30 second pop to the bin. I always thought I was invincible until this!

    DS
    • BucksLady
    • By BucksLady 22nd Aug 18, 5:33 PM
    • 540 Posts
    • 1,770 Thanks
    BucksLady

    My husband on the other hand, has been great. Much more than I would have expected. Snuggling and hugs galore. He said if I didn't want a wig, I didn't have to have one and that I'd never been conventional and that I have to do what I'm happy with.
    .
    Originally posted by MrsStepford

    That's really lovely and just how it should be
    • MrsStepford
    • By MrsStepford 23rd Aug 18, 5:25 PM
    • 161 Posts
    • 361 Thanks
    MrsStepford
    I have to say that it just never occurred to me to cover my head to avoid burning my scalp. I am always very particular about sunglasses in daylight March - September and wearing sunscreen on exposed skin. But looking back, I spent a lot of my childhood on ponies with a riding hat on and being a tomboy, often wore a baseball cap.

    More later..
    • Spider In The Bath
    • By Spider In The Bath 23rd Aug 18, 8:02 PM
    • 1,513 Posts
    • 5,385 Thanks
    Spider In The Bath
    I have to say that it just never occurred to me to cover my head to avoid burning my scalp. I am always very particular about sunglasses in daylight March - September and wearing sunscreen on exposed skin. But looking back, I spent a lot of my childhood on ponies with a riding hat on and being a tomboy, often wore a baseball cap.

    More later..
    Originally posted by MrsStepford
    My husband is bald so he has to protect his scalp from sun damage - he has lots of hats.

    You mentioned earlier on about breathable hats. He has a lightweight summer one made from woven paper (his is trilby-shaped). It is sturdy and will cope with a little bit of rain.

    Just asked him and he said his Tilley hat ( much more expensive) is also very breathable. It is a hat guaranteed for life - if it ever wears out they will replace it for you. It is a much more casual hat, but great for walking in etc. He has the Tilley Outback.
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