Have your locks lost their luster? Truth is, after 30, hormonal ups and downs and every day wear-and-tear can do a number on your tresses, leaving them coarser or thinner. Always look for products geared towards healthy hair aging. To protect what you’ve got and deal with what you don’t want, try this age-specific advice.

To keep your hair looking young and healthy, be sure to eat a well-balanced diet. Also, use products that contain antioxidants and high levels of protein, like Nutress Hair’s Protein Pack Conditioner and Stop Break Healthy Hair Enhancer. These products will give your hair the nutrients it needs to stave off breakage and hair loss.

Skimp on styling. In your 40s, you may find that years of exposure to curling irons, hot blow dryers, and other gadgets have left your hair dried-out and brittle. Relaxers and hair extensions can cause even more long term damage. The follicles at the front of your scalp can actually stop growing new hair from all the punishment, says noted Dallas dermatologist Dr. Raymond C. Blackburn. The good news: The damage is reversible. Simply limit the use of any hair-styling tool that puts off a lot of heat to special occasions or a few days a week. If you use a hair dryer, switch to a cooler or no-heat setting. And avoid excess brushing and washing, too, experts say. Another option is to wrap your hair more often. Nutress Wrap Guard Foam Wrap Lotion is the perfect styling aid for healthier no-heat styling.

Take your vitamins. It’s normal to experience major fluctuations in hormone levels as you enter perimenopause, the 6 to 10 years before menopause. During this time, your hair may become finer and thinner. To counteract such changes, it can’t hurt to ramp up your daily vitamin regimen. Start by adding 2,500 micrograms of biotin (some multivitamins contain this amount; check the label), a B vitamin that may strengthen the integrity of hair follicles and make strands less prone to breakage. In addition, omega-3 fatty acids, abundant in fish like salmon and tuna, may help stimulate hair growth; aim for two servings per week. Not a huge fish fan? Fish or flaxseed-oil capsules also work well, says Heather Wickless, a dermatologist specializing in hair disorders. And if you’re not already popping a women’s multi, most docs say you should. The essential nutrients—like vitamins C, D, and E, and folic acid—will help keep your body and hair in good shape.

Talk about hair loss. Typically each strand of hair grows about a half inch to an inch every two months for four years, and then it falls out and is replaced by a new one. But in female pattern baldness, which affects up to 40% of women, hair begins to thin on the top of the scalp and sometimes all over the head. The problem is often inherited, but a hormone imbalance can also be a culprit. Fortunately, your doctor can recommend Women’s Rogaine ($50 for a three-month supply), a topical solution that’s applied directly to the area where thinning is occurring, or she can suggest other treatments to help stimulate new growth, says noted Washington DC dermatologist Dr. Diane Ford.

Pack in protein. While you’re making smart moves to protect your skin and bones from the natural affects of aging, keep your tresses in mind, too. Protein goes a long way toward maintaining hair’s strength and pliability—and most women don’t get the recommended 37-50 grams per day. Get more protein from foods like tofu, lean meat, and eggs. Also, use Nutress Hair’s Protein Pack Treatment Shampoo to replenish lost protein in the hair.

Deep-condition gray or permanently colored hair.
Gray or silver hair, although beautiful, may be drier and more prone to breakage and sun damage than pigmented hair. Protect it by getting a deep-conditioning treatment such as Nutress Hair’s Protein Pack. If you color your Hair, our Protein Pack for Color-Treated Hair contains extra moisturizers, vitamins and a sun block to fight damaging UV rays that can cause color to fade and strands to break.

Eat orange foods. In your 50s, antioxidants can help your hair cope with hormonal changes. And a good way to get them is by eating orange foods—like sweet potatoes and carrots—says Ranella Hirsch, MD, a Boston-based dermatologist and president of the American Society of Cosmetic Dermatology and Aesthetic Surgery. These foods also help protect your body from the sun and maintain the natural oils in your scalp which helps seal moisture into hair. While your locks may not look and feel exactly like they did in your 20s, “you can move things back in a favorable direction,” Dr. Hirsch says.

Get your thyroid checked. Hypothyroidism, which affects 1 in 50 women and is most common in women over 50, occurs when your body does not produce enough thyroid hormone. Symptoms of this disorder include obesity and heart disease, but it can also result in a thinner head of hair, says Heather Wickless, MD, MPH, professor of dermatology at Northwestern University and a dermatologist specializing in hair disorders at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. If you notice that your hair is thinning, ask your doctor for a thyroid-function test, an accurate and easy way to figure out if you’re in danger. Hypothyroidism is easily treated with synthetic thyroid supplements prescribed by your doctor.

Healthy Hair goes with health living. Nutress is committed to helping you prolong the beauty of your hair with products that are less toxic, more effective and more affordable. Follow the Truth About your Tresses and learn more about how you can improve the health of your hair- and your body – for years to come.