Hair grows at a notoriously slow rate. On average, hair grows at a rate of about 15 cm or 6 inches every year. There are some that think that this rate is too slow and would opt to try looking for hair growth alternatives, such as supplements.
So how long does it take for hair supplements to work? There’s no magic supplement that can work overnight, and it actually depends on a number of factors. An underlying medical condition may slow down the effectiveness of the supplement. Supplements may further help promote hair growth, helping to avoid anything that might slow it down such as illnesses and nutritional deficiencies.
How Do Hair Supplements Work?
Hair health depends on the nutrients that come from the food that you consume. People who lack a balanced diet turn to dietary supplements for help. Not all supplements are specifically made to keep hair healthy, as stronger hair is often a side effect of your general intake of vitamins, nutrients, and minerals from the diet. That’s why supplements tend to be used mostly when someone is experiencing a vitamin deficiency.
In this sense, a singular “hair growth vitamin” or “hair supplement” may be a misnomer. The nutrients that your hair relies on to be strong are shared by the entire body to remain healthy.
Take the nutrient keratin for example, which is a protein. Hair is made up of almost 90% of keratin. Keratin is also essential for nail growth, and to avoid brittle nails. Your body needs protein to repair damaged tissues, such as your muscles after working out. For your body as a whole to function properly and be healthy, it needs sufficient amounts of amino acid, which is the building block of protein. This is why, although protein supplements may not directly be marketed for an improvement of hair growth, it could be one if its minor side effects.
To understand how supplements might work on hair growth, it would help to know how hair grows in the first place.
How Does Hair Grow?
Normal hair growth tends to take its time because it passes through different phases. There are 3 main phases that hair follicles pass through in their growth.
First there is the Anagen phase, where about 90% of the growth occurs. People will experience a growth of 1 cm or 0.39 inches of hair every 28 days during this phase. The hair tends to remain in this phase anywhere between 2-7 years.
Next there is the Catagen phase. This is where the hair stops growing, and the hair follicle remains in place for about 2-3 weeks. These hairs that have stopped growing are called “club hairs.’
Finally, there is the Telogen phase, or what the hair follicle experiences as its resting phase. Anywhere from 50-100 natural hair strands are shed daily.
Supplements thus play significant roles in the hair growth process.
How Effective Are Supplements?
There are no magic supplements that take effect overnight. Even popular supplements take weeks, months, or years to show its effectiveness. Additionally, supplements alone cannot provide an improvement in hair growth. It always depends on the exact cause of your hair problems. If the cause is a lack of nutrients, supplements may suffice. It may not be effective against underlying health complications.Medical conditions such as thyroid dysfunctions or autoimmune diseases such as alopecia or vitiligo need to be treated prior to taking the hair supplements.
It’s always advisable to visit your dermatologist before taking any supplement. What may work for one person may not work for you.
When to Expect Results
An improvement in hair growth from supplements may not be seen for weeks, months, or even years. One must also consider the speed of normal hair growth, which is about 6 inches of 15 cm per year. Supplements provide marginal speed differences in hair growth, but can help in maintaining healthier and shinier hair over a longer period of time.
Changes in hair quality tend to be visible within a year of consistently using supplements. If the supplement promotes sebum generation — an essential nutrient for hair growth — then the hair that grows every month will at least be stronger and appear shinier.
Best Practices To Avoid More Hair Problems
Keep in mind that supplements supplement your lifestyle; if your habits continue causing hair problems, the supplements may take longer to take visible effect. Below are some supplemental tips that might help you reach your hair goals:
1. Improve Your Diet
Nutritional deficiencies are one of the causes of hair damage. Having a healthy diet definitely helps the supplements that you take be more effective.
Zinc is an example of an important nutrient that you should be consuming to promote hair growth. It helps your body produce protein, which strengthens hair. Not only will your hair become better, but it will also improve your overall immune system too, protecting you from things such as the common cold. Some zinc-rich foods are sesame seeds, nuts, eggs, fish, and oysters.
Another important key hair strengthening nutrient to watch out for is biotin, which also goes by the name of vitamin H or vitamin B7. It’s a water-soluble vitamin that helps not only your hair grow faster but your nails too. Biotin can be found in egg yolks, soybeans, lentils, nuts, and whole grains. There are also biotin supplements that you can take that help with hair health.
Other nutrients that affect hair growth are vitamin D, iron, vitamin A, vitamin B, and vitamin C.
2. Proper Hair Care
How do you take care of your hair? How you care for your hair in the shower affects the quality of your hair. Shampoo tends to work best on your scalp when you first wash your head with warm water. It’s a common misconception for people to think that shampoo works for the hair, when in fact, it’s for the scalp. Focusing the shampoo too much on the hair will cause it to break rather than keep it healthy, increasing the odds of potential hair loss. For that reason, ensure that you’re massaging your scalp instead.
3. Be Consistent
Supplements will only work if you have a consistent routine for it. Without your body constantly getting the nutrients that it needs to grow healthy hair, it never will. Remember that hair growth will take months and years. Don’t be discouraged and give up the supplements when nothing seems to happen after a few weeks.
Consult with your dermatologist for the supplement plan that’s right for you to achieve healthy hair growth in the long term.
4. Try Treatments
There are multiple hair treatments out there that help people struggling with their hair problems. There’s the PRP, or platelet-rich treatment, that reinjects the plasma from your own blood into your scalp to give it a hair growing boost.
PEP Factor: The Benefits of an Alternative to Hair Treatments and Supplements
Some downsides to hair treatments is that they may be costly and have lingering side effects. There’s an alternative to such hair treatments, which is PEP Factor from FACE Med Store.
PEP Factor is the market’s only bio-identical protein that encourages hair growth. Collagen and elastin are essential nutrients that make hair grow richer and stronger. They both require fibroblasts to function effectively. That’s where the PEP Factor comes in.
PEP Factor stimulates the fibroblasts in the scalp, encouraging the growth of stronger hair, faster. PEP Factor may also be used alongside other therapies to further promote hair growth in the body. It would be advisable to consult with your dermatologist prior to this.
Buy Your Hair Supplements at FACE Med Store
At FACE Med Store, we supply our customers with high-quality products for your hair growth journey — all at affordable prices. With regularly updated products and a wide range of options for skin and hair care, FACE Med Store continues to be the top supplier of medical and beauty needs for cosmetic practices and everyday users alike. Click here to visit our store.
Read More: Will Supplements Strengthen My Kid’s Hair?