I put my hair up into a ponytail this morning and I saw what I'm convinced will give me nightmares for weeks on end: a bald spot.
OK, so it's not a bald spot, exactly. It's just a small spot close to my hairline that has a particularly thin crop of hair, thus making it appear “balder” than the rest of my head. Needless to say, I panicked.
I immediately took out my hair tie and tried to fluff up my locks, making sure they were as "Real Housewives"-worthy as possible. By the end, I had so much mousse in my hair I looked like Marge Simpson's evil, short-haired twin.
I'm not alone in my misery. According to the American Hair Loss Association, 40 percent of hair loss sufferers are women. Female Pattern Hair Loss, also called androgenetic alopecia, affects 30 million American women. Clearly I have some sisters in my quest to de-baldify.
On top of that, my hairline is weird. It's lower on the sides of my face and higher in the center, so it comes off as a very chic receding hair line. Basically, my micro-bald spot, coupled with a forehead so large it'll make Tyra Banks cry, is the bane of my existence.
Seeing as I'm not on the market for wigs, nor do I particularly feel the need to shave all my hair off and be a fab baldie, I needed insight on how to make my hair look full and fabulous. To help me out, I got in touch with Jonathan De Paca, Stylist at Fekkai Palm Beach.
Here's how to get your scalp in check.
Thinning hair can stem from a myriad of reasons.
Believe it or not, your hair isn't thinning because you're getting old and bald. In fact, it's probably thinning because you're stressed about being old and bald.
“The most common factors are stress, hormone, vitamin deficiency, medication and heredity,” De Paca explains.
Stress, specifically, can cause excessive shedding. Stress can manifest itself in many forms, such as a breakup, new job, family drama, dramatic weight loss or surgery. It is, however, usually only temporary.
The heredity factor can come into play, too. If your mama had thinning hair around your age, that could be the reason your hair doesn't flow like Chrissy Teigen's mane.
If you're seriously concerned, hit up a doc. But, it's usually just a temporary nuisance.
Layers will help.
If you're thinking about just chopping all your hair off because you're convinced it's past the point of saving, drop the scissors. All your hair needs is a bit of movement and body. The best cut for thinning hair is one with considerable layers.
“The hair has to be able to move and reach a natural volume to cover the flatness,” he suggests.
If you're not down with layers, try teasing your hair over the bald patch to give it more texture and the illusion of thickness.
Personally, I love parting my hair on the opposite side of my weird bald patch, and flip my bangs and hair over to cover it. Be sure to play with volumizing products. I personally like Verb Volumizing Spray because it's super lightweight. I also avoid pulling my hair back so that my hair isn't flat against the bald spot.
Bangs only make things worse.
As the owner of a proudly large forehead and what I'm convinced is a receding hair line, I'm always looking for ways to hide that sh*t. Two weeks ago, I got a heavy fringe in hopes to detract attention from my five-finger situation. Obviously, that dream lasted about three days before I got too lazy to bother styling them.
I needn't have bothered. De Paca warns a blunt bang actually attracts the eyes even more to a forehead, which kind of defeats the purpose of getting bangs in the first place.
Instead, opt to soften the forehead with wispy layers around the face. De Paca recommends a long side bang to draw the focus to the cheekbones as opposed to the forehead. Layers and angles around your face also create movement, which helps with detracting attention from that forehead.
Dry shampoo will save your soul.
Looks like your good 'ol dry shampoo isn't just for hiding that gigantic oil slick on your head.
“A great trick for thinning hair is to use dry shampoo on clean and freshly styled hair,” explains De Paca. “The dry shampoo will give the roots more texture and volume."
At the end of the day, your seemingly scary shedding situation is most likely a temporary side effect from a change in lifestyle. If it's really freaking you out, ask a professional. Chances are, it's nothing to worry your perfectly wonderful head of hair over.