By Susan "Honey" Good
Keeping hair healthy and vibrant after 50 can be challenging but yes, it can be done. So, if it's healthy hair you're after, darlings, there are things you can do, and mistakes not to be made, on the road to growing and maintaining lush locks.
Myth: Haircuts speed up growth
Not true, say experts, although cutting hair may give the appearance of longer locks, thanks to the removal of dry, brittle ends prone to splitting. On average, hair grows 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch per month, so if you snip less length than that on a monthly basis, you can maintain hair health without affecting the length of hair.
Must: Sleep like a Queen
Surround yourself in silk, or at least switch your pillow case from cotton to silk, and you'll reap the benefits of longer, healthier hair. A cotton pillowcase can tug on hair (and skin) without offering any forgiving "slip" because of loosely knit cotton fibers. Silk, on the other hand, does not tug on hair, skin or lashes allowing for less hair loss as you sleep... and less wrinkles to boot.
Must: Care for your scalp
Hair growth begins at the follicle and that's why scalp care, and treatment, are the cornerstones of a solid hair care routine. Nioxin, a company known for their award winning thinning hair products, offers "Scalp Renew," known as a scalp microdermabrasion treatment. Scalp Renew not only promises to unplug clogged hair follicles but also increases blood circulation to the scalp, via scalp massage. Some experts say that by increasing blood circulation at the scalp, hair growth is encouraged. Find a salon that offers Nioxin products and services near you at Nioxin.com.
Must: Pop a pill
The word on the street is that the supplement Viviscal really works for thickening hair and promoting hair growth. True, you'll have to pop the pill daily for at last three months to begin seeing results, and at the price of $50 for 60 tablets at Folica.com, healthy locks don't come cheaply. None the less, a host of industry hair care experts -- think Orlando Pitta and Garren -- and celebrity users, such as Reese Witherspoon, have gone on the record to say that Viviscal is actually effective at promoting hair growth.
Myth: Brush, brush, brush
Brush hair at least 100 strokes a day to maintain its health. Or don't, because the fact is, according to hair care experts, that this long shared hair care "must" is actually a myth. So while 100 brush strokes may have worked for Rapunzel, in the real world, brushing hair minimally with the proper tools is the best way to maintain long locks. Brushing causes friction which potentially damages the hair follicle leading to frizz and breakage, and that's no happy hair ending, darlings!