Bryn Mawr Dermatology

Villanova, PA | Collegeville, PA
Chesterbrook, PA

Hair & Scalp Health: 5 Dermatologist-Approved Products


Did you know that approximately 35 million men and 21 million women suffer from hair loss? Poor hair health is a common issue that affects men and women, and can be caused by a variety of physical, genetic, and environmental factors. In this article, we will explore the symptoms of poor hair health and provide solutions for your hair loss concerns to help you achieve beautiful, healthy hair.

While this article spells out some important information about scalp and hair health, we highly recommend you read the full article, here are the key points we will focus on:

Table of Contents

Why is Scalp Care Important for Hair Growth?

 It’s easy to take our scalp and hair health for granted when we aren’t having trouble with it. Being thankful for a full head of hair really doesn’t cross our minds until we start to see the density, luster, or length of our hair falter. But what many people don’t realize is that the condition of your hair and the health of your scalp has a direct impact on how fast, thick and healthy your hair will grow. Healthy hair begins with a healthy scalp. If you want to know how to take care of your scalp so that your hair will grow faster, thicker, and healthier, keep reading.

What Does a Healthy Scalp Look Like?

Healthy hair grows from a healthy scalp, which means that the health of your hair is directly connected to the state of your skin beneath it. The skin on our scalp is unique in that it’s one of the few areas on our bodies with a dense supply of sebaceous (oil-producing) glands. This leaves our scalps prone to oily build-up and irritation if not properly regulated. Healthy hair is smooth and soft, sprouting from a scalp without itching, flaking, redness or irritation. When your scalp’s moisture levels are well-balanced and its blood flow is well-maintained it leads to hair that is well-moisturized, strong and resistant to breakage, and shiny. Ensuring that your scalp stays healthy will help you keep those luscious locks for years to come.

Symptoms of Poor Scalp and Hair Health

Do you struggle with dry, itchy scalp or oily hair? Does your hair shed at an alarming rate, or do you find that the strands are brittle or breaking off? If so, then perhaps your scalp and hair aren’t in balance. An imbalanced scalp can result in various symptoms that can be concerning.

  • Shedding more than 100 strands of hair per day
  • Itching of the scalp
  • Tenderness of the scalp
  • Flaking of the skin
  • Redness and pimples on the scalp
  • Oily buildup on the scalp
  • Scaly build-up of unshed skin cells

There are a variety of dermatological concerns that can affect scalp health, all of which can be a detriment to hair health. Most are local concerns that do not indicate major medical issues, but just like any notable skin abnormality, if you have symptoms that are increasingly worse, do not resolve with time and over the counter treatments, or affect your daily living, it is best to seek the care of a doctor for treatment.

How Do I Maintain a Healthy Scalp and Hair?

What’s good for overall body health, is good for the scalp! Just like your heart and eyes need a balance of nutrients, vitamins, minerals and calories to thrive, your scalp health prerequisites are very similar. Focus on ensuring that you eat a balanced diet that includes a healthy dose of zinc, iron, omega-3 fatty acids, and Vitamin A, as these are essential to healthy hair follicles. You should also consume the recommended daily amount of protein since your body needs the building blocks of protein to assemble keratin – the bulk and strength of each of your hair strands.

Regular maintenance of the exterior scalp is an important factor in healthy hair growth as well. Since the scalp has an abundance of sebaceous glands, it tends to accumulate oils, dirt, and be a breeding ground for bacteria and fungus/yeast if not cleaned regularly. We recommend washing hair every 2-3 days with a mild shampoo that’s specifically designed for your hair type. You want to clean the scalp, but not damage the skin barrier with aggressive products. The same goes for styling your hair. Treating your hair and scalp with respect – minimizing the amount of styling, heat application, and traction on the root- will also lead to happier hair.

Finally, we recommend protecting your scalp and hair from UV exposure to prevent dry hair and breakage and also sunburn. It is particularly essential if you have light colored hair since it has less organic protection of its own (similar to skin that is fair). Overexposure to the sun can cause damage to the scalp leading to follicular damage, which in turn affects future hair growth. The sun can also directly contribute to the breakdown and deterioration of the hair you currently have.

1. Schedule a Medical Appointment

If you suffer from deteriorating hair health, consult a dermatologist to determine the causal factors and potential remedies. Hair loss, hair thinning and scalp health is often linked with other body systems such as your thyroid, nutrient levels, stress levels, and hormones. It can also be caused by scalp inflammation due to rashes like seborrheic dermatitis (dandruff), eczema, or psoriasis, which, when controlled, will lead to healthier hair growth.

At Bryn Mawr Dermatology, we like to rule out any internal factors or scalp issues before we dive headlong into hair revitalization treatments. Hair loss is not unique to men nor to the elderly, and we respect that this can be a very personal and emotional experience. Many types of alopecia (hair loss) have identifiable contributing health factors, and getting to the root of the issue is our #1 priority. More importantly, many skin cancers we diagnose occur on the scalp, which is a particularly hard place to keep track of. That’s one reason an annual skin exam is a good idea.

2. PRP Injections

Hair loss is a natural human life cycle process, affecting men and women equally. In fact, according to the American Hair Loss Association, 80 percent of men and women experience some degree of hair loss by age 50. A healthy scalp and hair are the result of a balanced ecosystem. Sometimes, the balance is disturbed due to changes in lifestyle, stress, age, or other factors, which can lead to diminished health and productivity within each hair follicle. In such situations, PRP injections for maintaining a healthy scalp can help improve your hair quality by stimulating the hair follicle itself and providing it with an abundance of growth factors and healing elements to encourage your hair growth cycle to return to normal. Because there are many underlying factors that contribute to hair health, we recommend ruling out any deleterious health conditions first, before you pursue direct hair growth treatments.

3. Laser Hair Reduction

On the other end of the spectrum, we have Laser Hair Reduction. It takes most patients a series of 5 treatments, each 4 weeks apart, to see impressive and permanent results in any one area. Yes, it is an investment up front, but calculate all the razors, shaving cream, and time you could save over the decades you will never have to shave again! Not to mention that it eliminates ingrown hairs, irritated follicles (a.k.a. razor burn), and that 5 o’clock shadow in places it doesn’t belong. We recommend you start your treatment when you know you can avoid an active tan for the full 5 months of treatment. If the hair follicle color does not contrast with the skin color enough, then the laser can cause a burn, and if you get sun too soon after a procedure, you may develop some hyperpigmentation at the site of the treatment.

5 Products for Improved Scalp & Hair Health

1. Nutrafol Men

For men who want to prevent hair thinning and have excessive shedding and reduced scalp coverage, a daily hair growth supplement is clinically beneficial. With drug-free, medical-grade substances that don’t impair sexual performance, this proprietary method clearly increases hair growth and thickness by targeting multiple root issues like hormonal imbalances, stress, and poor nutrition.

[wps_products title="Nutrafol Men (3 Pack)"]

2. Nutrafol Woman's Balance

Nutrafol uses medical-grade, natural substances to address the underlying causes of thinning, such as hormones, age, and metabolism. Their physician-formulated, award-winning solution for women before, during, and after menopause results in dramatically thicker, fuller, stronger hair. Get your Nutrafol Woman’s Balance for great hair health now.

[wps_products title="Nutrafol Women's Balance (3 pack)"]

3. CLn Shampoo

Do you have razor bumps, folliculitis, or an itchy scalp? Perhaps it’s time to give a new shampoo a shot. This shampoo removes extra oil and skin cells from the scalp and beards that are prone to itchiness, folliculitis, and dandruff. Washing up with this product 1-3 times a week is advised to improve the balance of natural skin flora. CLn Shampoo is a great choice for most hair types.

[wps_products title="CLn Shampoo (12 oz)"]

4. Coola Scalp & Hair Mist

Hair care with SPF is crucial. This organic SPF 30 scalp and hair sunscreen shields those frequently overlooked areas, and doesn’t weigh hair down or make it look greasy. It also protects hair from getting overly dried out and guards against UV-related color fading. Get your Coola Scalp & Hair Mist for great hair health now.

[wps_products title="Coola Scalp & Hair Mist Organic Sunscreen SPF 30"]

5. Latisse

Latisse is an FDA-approved treatment to improve the length and fullness of your eyelashes. It works by extending each follicle’s growth phase and delaying the shedding of eyelashes. It’s easy to apply and comes in a 5mL package with a 3-month supply. You see results as early as 8 weeks and full results at 16 weeks. Since it is a prescription, it is available only at pharmacies and doctors’ offices. Call us today (610) 525-7800 to start your journey towards natural lashes that outshine the falsies.

Why Choose Bryn Mawr Dermatology?

Did you know that Bryn Mawr Dermatology’s specialists are uniquely educated to handle hair issues? If you are concerned about hair loss, we advise scheduling a consultation with one of our specialists to determine your diagnosis and the best course of action. Hair loss affects people of all genders, ages, skin types, and ethnicities, but does not need to go unchecked. There are many options to prevent and treat declining scalp and hair health. The sooner you address the issue the better, since regrowing lost hair is much more difficult than stopping the process before it gets out of control.  

Schedule an Appointment with Bryn Mawr Dermatology Today

Schedule a consultation if you have a question about scalp and hair treatments. Our skilled dermatologists will evaluate your concerns during your consultation and determine an ideal treatment plan for your specific case. Our offices are beautifully equipped, so you’ll feel at home as soon as you walk in the door. So get started by calling our dermatology team at (610) 525-7800. We look forward to caring for you!

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