Do you feel like protective hairstyles are making your hair fall out? Is your hair thinning and you don’t know why? We interviewed Samaria, a Registered Dietitian, Certified Trichologist and Licensed Natural Hair Stylist to get down to the nitty gritty details and get YOU answers. We talk about how often you should wash your hair, if collagen supplements actually work, and more! If you have special hair concerns or want to brush up on your routine, this episode is for you.
In This Episode We’ll Cover:
- What is trichology?
- Samaria’s top hair products + the only hair care routine you need
- Do conditioners actually do anything?
- How to choose the best conditioner for your hair type
- Should you use oils in your curly hair routine?
- How often should you wash your hair?
- Are protective styles actually protective? + How long to leave them in
- How fast does hair grow?
- How changes in hormones impact hair loss
- Do collagen supplements, biotin supplements or rosemary oil help for hair growth?
- Dandruff solutions that work
Resources mentioned in this episode:
- Instagram: @yourhairnutritionist
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Wendy: So Samaria, you're a trichologist and this entire time I thought it was Tri and then I was on your Instagram and I was like, wait a minute. It's try . And I like, I always, when thinking about Tri, you know, my mind went to Trix, like, you know, Turning tricks.
But anyways, um, what is a psychologist? Because I, I don't know that I understand still what it is. And what does your day-to-day look like?
Samaria: Yeah, so actually the word tr uh, trick, I guess T R I C H is Greek for hair. So a tri is one who studies hair. Um, we're typically seen as like a paramedical professional, so we're not medical doctors, but we're really working in the middle between dermatologists and cosmetologists to help assess and support clients through hair and scalp disorder.
Oh wow. Yeah,
Jess: it's such an interesting intersection. The RD registered dietician meets hair care. Mm-hmm. , how did you get into this line of work?
Samaria: So I think, you know, for a lot of people like the journey of like how we got to where we are today and like what we're doing, a lot of it involved a lot of personal story, and that's really my case as well.
So it really goes back to when. 15 years old. I was like one of those YouTube obsessed natural hair like product junkies. Um, so I like had my own YouTube channel. Um, I was trying all the DIY at home, um, product recipes, um, on YouTube. I did the big chop, right? I did all of these things. I was very. Very fascinated with this new texture of hair that was growing outta my head that I've never seen before.
Um, cause I got a relaxer at a very, very young age. Um, and so, This entire time I was, uh, I grew up on a farm, so I was going to school to be a dietician. I knew I wanted to be a dietician since I was in high school. So I was studying nutrition Wow. In high school. So all the time I was thinking about food nutrition, food nutrition.
I was experimenting with what I was learning in high school with my own diet. I was trying vegan diets, plant-based diets, all these different types of diets, um, while still on the side, you know, really enjoying, like creating my YouTube content. I had like a natural. In high school. Um, and it really wasn't up until like a few years ago, maybe four, four-ish years ago when I started to really see the connection between hair and nutrition.
And honestly, looking back, I see how all the different things that I was doing with my diet, Were like back in high school, were impacting like my, uh, was impacting my health and my hair. Right? Wasn't reaching like the hair goals that I wanted, you know? Um, and so about, yeah, like I said, about four ish years ago, I started to study.
I, I learned about triology. Um, I knew I didn't wanna go to school to be a dermatologist. Like I wasn't trying to go to school for like 15 years to become a dermatologist again. Um, but so I learned about psychology and I didn't know what it was. I didn't know that there was like this in the middle, uh, profession that I could study.
And so I studied it and coupled it with my nutrition. Um, My profession as a dietician, and honestly, I just haven't looked back from there. And when you think about it, like it, it makes perfect sense. There's not a, as far as I know, I've never met a dietician who also studies triology. Um, it's really not something I really presented with, you know, in school it's like, go be in clinical, you know, not really.
Um, work in the beauty and like hair loss space. But like I said, when you think about it, it makes perfect sense, right? Because what we eat is what our hair has to, um, grow off of. And so yeah, that's kind of like how I got to where I am, um, today. And I guess like on a day-to-day basis, like I do. Very similar work to what, you know, other dieticians do that are in private practice.
I am, um, you know, doing virtual consultations, in-person consultations. Um, Kind of similar, I guess, to what we might do as like the N F P E, like the nutrition focused physical exam, but more focused on the hair and scalp. So I'm looking at the hair and the scalp under a microscope. Um, I'm assessing the hair strand.
Um, and a little bit more in depth in the consultation around, uh, conditions and health symptoms that, that are maybe pointing back to the root causes of the hair loss condition. Um, and like I said, most recently, I. went to hair school and became a licensed natural hair stylist. So, uh, in addition to the assessments and the consultations, I also, um, do hair and scalp treatments as well.
So for my clients that I'm working with long-term, helping support them internally with the nutrition interventions, but also, um, Helping relieve them from them, their symptoms, um, temporarily with hair and scalp conditions, uh, with, with hair and scalp treatments, helping support them, you know, so they feel good when they leave the chair with like different hair styling options, um, and things like that.
So I do a little bit of, uh, kind of, uh, everything. My, my day-to-day looks different on, um, throughout the week, but I really like it that way. Um, not so I'm not doing the same thing, you know, every single day. That is so cool. Right? I
Wendy: mean, , I think it's like, it's such an interesting merge, but I do think that it makes a lot of sense because we have so many people that ask us, sorry, there's like a truck honking.
Hold on. Wait passes, . Do you guys hear that? Mm-hmm. . Yeah, I
Samaria: do. It's not loud, but yeah. Oh, I can hear it now. Okay. I think
Wendy: about, because we have so many people that ask us about nutrition as it relates to hair care, whether it's about supplements or like what foods you should take and like, We always just look at people with blank stares because we're completely clueless about this stuff, and that's why we're so excited about this interview because we have so many questions and our listeners have so many questions.
So I wanted to start by talking about. Just like basic hair care and what that should look like. Like mm-hmm. , I know there's a lot of information about how often people should be shampooing. Um, I've heard, especially for people that have like very coarse textures that, you know, maybe you shouldn't be shampooing, maybe you should, um, mostly just be conditioning so that your hair doesn't dry out.
So what does that look like? Um, at its core, just like basic heritage,
Samaria: Yeah, there's so many. There's so much, like I said, I was, I was one of those people on YouTube university, you know, learning from all of the, the influencer of what we should do. Like remember co washing, everyone was co washing. Uh, so I totally like, understand that there's a lot of.
Noise. It's similarly in the nutrition field. A lot of noise right around like what we should do. Um, but really for a, a solid hair regimen, I really think that less is more. So really kind of getting back to the basics of, uh, cleansing. So making sure we're having a cleansing shampoo. I. Like co washing sometimes.
Um, but I think when we co-wash too often, we're not cleansing. It's kind of like washing your dishes without using soap. Like we would do that. Um, and so in the same way, we need to clarify and really cleanse the scalp, but I do also understand how it's using some of those like, um, harsher shampoos can dry out the, the kinky, curly hair.
So that's why I always recommend my clients to use an applicator. Right. Um, you know the color applicator bottles with Oh, okay. Yeah, yeah, yeah. So use something like that. So, cuz if you think about like, you know, big Afro curly hair when we're putting shampoo in our hands, rubbing it in our hands and then rubbing it on our hair, it's not really getting to the scalp.
It's really more so, you know, we're putting it onto the hair. And so, Using applic applicator bottle can really get the shampoo to the scalp where it needs, um, to be so that you can really clarify and cleanse it. So I love a, um, I, I think a clarify, clarifying shampoo should definitely be in a regimen at least once a month, especially if you're using butters, creams, oils, things like that.
You wanna get that up off of the scalp, um, on, on a regular basis. Um, a good exfoliant can be a part of a, um, a healthy routine, um, to exfoliate the scalp, give up, get up some of those dead skin cells. Hydration. So water, um, any products that contain like hyaluronic acid, um, like alovera juice, I love that.
For hydrating, we wanna make sure that scalp and the hair stay hydrated. Um, and then as far as hair care, Um, products that contain proteins can be helpful for repair. So if you're having colored hair, if you have hair that you're straightening often, um, or even hair that you are manipulating often, um, sometimes that outer layer of the hair can become damaged.
And so using protein, uh, uh, products that have proteins added back into it can, can be helpful to repair, um, that barrier. Um, so I think those are probably the, some of the basics that you really wanna make sure you're covering, um, in a, in a regimen. So, Okay.
Jess: That's very helpful. And I'm wondering, there's so many products to choose from.
Yeah. A couple things. So first you mentioned exfoliator. Mm-hmm. , how does that work
Samaria: with your hair? Like, what is that? Mm-hmm. . So, um, again, this like you're gonna want to use a app. Some type of applicator bottle and, and honestly, most exfoliating products for the scalp come in the applicator bottle cuz we're not exfoliating the hair.
We, we really want to treat the scalp and. I really like to focus on scalp care because healthy hair grows from a healthy scalp. Um, and I think sometimes we just kind of forget about it cuz it's just covered up with our, with our hair. But we really do need to focus on improving, um, our scalp. So an exfoliant would look like, um, it might have like salt.
in it, or sugar scrub or um, any type of physical, any type of physical exfoliant. Um, or it might be a chemical exfoliant like salicylic acid or glycolic acid, um, or things like that. So I'm taking notes for myself cause I'm sending all this,
Jess: um, . Okay. So, and how often should you do that? Um,
Samaria: that will depend on the scalp condition.
So if someone has like a, you know, a RIC dermatitis or like, um, excessive flaky flakiness on the scalp, they might need to do it more often. That may be on average, maybe like once a month, you can, you know, okay. Incorporate that into your hair care regimen. Okay? Mm-hmm. ,
Jess: let's talk about conditioner, because sometimes I wonder, do as much as it says that it does.
Mm-hmm. and also. How many do you need? Because it's like the leave in and then the pre leave and then the treatment, and then the mask. Like what are your thoughts on
Samaria: all that? Mm-hmm. . Um, I, I definitely think that conditioners. Our important part of a regimen, especially when we're using shampoos to cleanse the scalp back so they can be really drying.
So you do need those conditioners to add back moisture, like I said, if it's a cosmetic conditioner, um, add back proteins and things like that to the hair. So, um, It's important to look at the label to see, okay, what, what's in this product? Is it mostly water or does it have shea butter in it, or does it have, you know, different creams in it that are going to moisturize and rehydrate the hair?
Do you need like, so many of them, um, All at once. Probably not. But it is helpful to have different types of conditioners in it for different times of the year. Mm-hmm. , um, if you like, say for example, if you just took out like a, a style that you had in for two months, you might need a more hydrating conditioner.
A. Thicker conditioner, you know, during the summer you might want a thinner conditioner. Right. So it, it is helpful to have different ones to choose from, you know, in your product cabinet. But I wouldn't say it'd probably be all of those at one time. Especially, I mean, especially with certain types of texture, it could be really weigh your hair down.
Jess: Mm-hmm. one really, um, quick follow up question on that. So you mentioned shea butter and certain products. Are those products you want in your hair? Conditioner. I'm gonna go back to the Diva Chan thing, or Diva Sean. Help me say it cuz I've been, when I used to live in New York and even before 22,000, I don't know, six.
Like I wrote an article and I, um, interviewed the founder of Diva Chan and she talked about like her thoughts on curly hair and how you don't want oils for, if I remember correctly, it's so long ago, you don't want oils. Your hair care, because then you're actually not moisturizing, if anything, you want the oils to coat at the end.
What are your thoughts on that? Because I know a lot of black people use all the shea butters and the oils, but is that actually getting into the strands?
Samaria: Mm-hmm. ? Yeah, so I do, I I've heard of that a lot. Like you don't want to use oils because that, it does make sense, right? If we're using. Oils that are, have large particles, then they're just coating the strand of the hair.
And then the hydration that you're putting on top of it is not being able to penetrate. So it does, that does make sense. So I think that's when it, we need to think about like the order in which we're doing things. Mm-hmm. And then how much you're putting on there, how often you're putting it on there. Um, so you would, we would wanna hydrate and then seal.
Mm-hmm. . Um, you might not wanna use shea butter. It might be too heavy for your, for your hair strand. Uh, you might want to use it as like a treatment and then, you know, wash it out. Um, but I do know, you know, quite a few people use shea butter and it's been a, you know, a tradition in African cultures for years, you know, centuries so, I personally don't use a bunch of Shea butter, but some of the products that I, that I do have, she butter like whipped into it.
Um, and I'll usually use a small amount of it, like indefinitely towards like the ends of my hair. Like that's not something you really want on your scalp. Okay.
Wendy: Sorry, we're taking notes. Yeah. Josh, did you, I don't know if I missed this. Oh, okay. Yeah, I did. I don't think I hear. Okay. So Josh, we can edit that small part out.
So how often should you wash your hair? Because I've heard everything from every other day, which is what my mom does to, uh, every month . So does it depend on the texture?
Samaria: Yes. It depends on, um, you know, I know people always hate it when you say it depends, but it really does, like, you know, we're just so individual.
But I would say probably. every seven to 10 days, max once a month is, is not, uh, I mean, that's not a lot at all. And I think that's when we really can get into a lot of like scout issues, things like that. Like build up. Um, I like anywhere between like seven to 10 days, like cip. If it's someone who has like a lot of, you know, scout buildup or they're using a lot of products on their scout, um, or someone who's like sweating a lot.
Um, Or work in environments where there's, they're exposed to lots of debris on their scalp, probably need to, you know, shampoo it a little bit more often. But for the average person, I think every seven to to 10 days is a pretty good, um, regimen. . Okay.
Wendy: That leads me to another question because with these protective styles, and I'm gonna use air quotes, I feel like they're not very protective for me.
Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm. . And actually, like a lot of my hair falls out when I do these braids. Even when I get like, , just corn rolls with my own hair. It's like a lot of my hair falls out and I know that, like I've spoken to hair stylists and stuff and they're like, oh, well that's what would normally come out.
Mm-hmm. , if you, you know, like it's the accumulation basically over several weeks and mm-hmm. , you know, but it's not for B it's like chunks of hair. Mm-hmm. . Um, and I don't know, now that you're saying all this stuff about, wait, there's like an echo. Are you hearing that Jess? No. Hmm. Okay. So now that you're saying, you know, this information about the buildup on the scalp and like, you know, I think for most people they're, they're probably not gonna be washing their hair if they have braids in there, so.
Mm-hmm. , what are your thoughts on this? Like, is our protective styles actually protective? Especially like, you know, the braze, the corn rolls, like things like, Even the weaves, because the weaves, you're just, you just have your hair, you know, um, like braided up and then, but you're not washing it, uh, you know, every seven days like you said.
Samaria: Mm-hmm. . I don't even know where that term came from, protective style, because I mean, I don't even know if they're even as protective, you know? Yeah. As in. , you know, some of the stuff we've seen on social media with the wigs and the wig, lou and the braids, I'm like, there, there's no way you know that these guys could believe that these things are really helping, helping your hair.
Um, so. I would say there's like a scale, right? Some of them are more protective than the others. And then it also comes down to technique. Who's doing it, how are they doing it? Um, in your specific case, when you're talking about the cornrows e you're just getting it braided with your hair. Um, I think, I think there is some truth to, you know what some of the Silas you were speaking to said, because typically hair you shed about 50 to a hundred hairs a.
So if we are going seven days without, um, you know, detangling the hair, you would expect somewhere around like 700 hairs to come out at one time, which can look like, you know, clo chunks of hair. I would say if you are noticing like, like a lot, like decreased density, is that what you're noticing? Like after you take out your, your hair or are you noticing like bald spots.
Wendy: I, I noticed definitely some thinning, like around mm-hmm. the edges. Yeah. Um, and then there's also like, you know, my toilet looks like there's an animal in there because there's so much there. , , it's like, it's a lot, you know? And I know because like when I wash my hair every week, I have some hair. comes out.
Mm-hmm. , but it's, it's a little bit, it's, you know mm-hmm. , it's maybe like a little, like a little ball of hair, but I'm telling you it's like a lot. Yeah. Like it's a little scary.
Samaria: Yeah. Well, yeah, if you're definitely, if, if you're noticing like just decreased density, like if you're noticing like that much hair, then it probably is like that style, it wasn't the best for you, you know, even with like the small braids, like we think that it, like, to us, it doesn't seem like it's pulling, but for a tiny hair strand like that can be really, really heavy, especially over long periods of time if we're not ha you know, having breaks.
And then also with. Hair textures, some hair textures are a lot finer. Um, and they really can't take that much, um, of the extra weave and, or even the pulling, um, from the different protective styles. Most definitely protective styles where, you know, the hair is covered for, uh, you know, two and three months.
I've even seen like some people off like braiders, like offer. Touchups like after, oh yeah. After three months. And it's like, no, we should be, we should be offering to take them down. Like three months is a really long time to not have your hair shampooed and detangled. Um, and so when you start to take those braids down, you've had them in for three and a half months, there's gonna be a lot of shed hairs, which can lead to those shed hairs.
you know, causing really lots of knots and tangles. Um, cuz we really do want to be detangling our hair and getting out those shed hairs on a regular basis. So I, I don't know. I have a love-hate relationship with Protective South. I know they're super easy, you know, we love, we love them, but, um, when we start to neglect the health of our hair, uh, you know, over these protective styles, then you know, we really are doing more harm than.
Yeah. Yeah. And then
Jess: people are so tight with the, with the braids. I go in and I'm like, I want the braid falling off. The strand loose. Yes. Like, I want it just slipping down. It looks like I've had it in for six months. And they're like, oh yeah, I got you. And it's like, my forehead is like, face facelift pulled back,
I'm like, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. I need to be able to bend my head over and not
Samaria: feel anything.
Jess: But, um, yeah, I'm one of those with this very fine hair and I made the mistake of thinking I could get my hair braided this summer and pretty much all my hair fell out and it was a density thing and people were like, no, your hair is full.
It's not, it just is an optical illusion. Mm-hmm. , it's like this, it's like a straw thin if it's wet, so. Mm-hmm. , I'm still trying to figure out like, can I get my hair
Samaria: back or is it just over? Yeah. Yeah, it's definitely a journey. Like I, I experienced that after like this very traumatic styling experience, um, last year.
And I mean, I feel like I'm still getting back on track, you know, in getting my hair back because it's, the hair cycle takes about three months. So like, it, it really is a long-term journey of restoring your hair after, you know, experiences like, Okay, because
Jess: it's been more than three months and it's still not back.
Oh, . No, it's been like
Samaria: six plus months. Right? So, so three months. Your hair, your hair grows about, um, about an half of an inch to an inch per month. Okay. So if it's been six months, say your hair maybe has grown back like three inches. But even
Jess: much, what's growing? Right? Even what's growing back, and, sorry, not to make this like about me.
it's okay, but even what's growing back is thin. Mm. It's almost like it took everything out and damaged the molecules too. Mm. Because it's not actually. , I think I might have to just shave my head and start over. Do you ever recommend that to people? Like you just need to start over, girl, or do you think it can be a slow process and like transition with, um, with trimming and things like that?
Samaria: I have not recommended that. To both people. I mean, because I don't know a whole bunch of people who would actually do that. Um, but I think that like, then we'd probably need to look at your, the scalp. Like is it inflamed? Like are the follicles inflamed? Is that why the hair that's growing back not healthy?
And if so, work on some anti-inflammatory, you know, topicals in in internal as well. .
Wendy: Mm. Okay. And like with these styles, how long do you recommend keeping them in? Because like you said, um, you know, oftentimes the goal is like a few months mm-hmm. and that's almost like a marker of like how good the braider is.
It's like how long you're able to keep them in. Yes. yes. And, um, you know, should it actually. Maybe like three weeks. Uh, yeah. Like how long should you be keeping in
Samaria: these styles for Yeah. This is such a difficult conversation because like these styles, I mean, they take y you're there all day long. Right.
You know, and it, and they cost a lot of money, right. It's, it took a whole check to pay for it, , you know? And so it's like to say four weeks is like, oh, absolutely not. Like I'm not gonna take this down after Yeah. You know, after just four weeks. But I really think about. three to four weeks is probably, you know, as long as we need to be keeping in, um, some of these styles, especially again, if they're styles that we can't get to our scalp, we can't, um, you know, massage our scalp and cleanse our scalp.
Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm. and, and then, you know, like the knotless sprays are something that's really popular these days. The knowledge phrase, it's really hard to shampoo them and still keep them looking good, you know, because they, they slide and so a lot of people don't wanna shampoo their hair with them because they makes them look frizzy.
Um, so yeah, that makes it difficult too, so, yeah. Yeah, yeah, that
Wendy: makes complete sense. Um, Yeah. I mean, I'm ready to take 'em off after two weeks if I'm being honest. Yeah. But then I'm like, damn, like you said, I'm like, I just spent all this money. Mm-hmm. like all this time. It's an investment. Yeah.
Jess: Yeah. And nowadays the prices,
Wendy: they're outta control.
Yeah. Well, and
Jess: I get it because people are, they're spending their whole day Yeah. Braiding your hair essentially. So I understand, yeah. That they have to make a fair wage. It's just tricky when you can only. in a healthy way. Keep the mm-hmm. , whatever style in. Two weeks, and it's like, well, is it really worth it?
For me, the only protective style is like the bi Felicia braids. , where you're just like braiding your own hair. Mm-hmm. , um, and just look, letting it, you know, do its own thing. Yeah. And have that in for. Yeah. I don't even know how long. Like maybe
Samaria: a week.
Jess: Yeah. And that feels actually protective. Mm-hmm. ,
Samaria: any thoughts on that?
Yeah, I, and that's what I was gonna say, like it's, again, the whole conversation is hard because like, we live in America and there's a beauty standard. Yeah. And you know, we wanna look a certain way. Um, But it's also like, we also want our hair to be healthy, you know? And I think, I really do think those are some of the most, most protective styles when we put our hair in two strand twists.
Mm-hmm. wear, wear those down or wear them in a bun, or you know, do some flat twists or some, you know, things like that. Um, cuz our, we're not pulling at our own, at our hair. Our hair is able to do its thing we didn't take all day. We have to spend a whole bunch of money doing it, so we can take it down comfort comfortably, you know, in seven to 10 days.
Um, I think some, those are really some of the best, but like I said, it is hard when we also have to, uh, We live in this space where mm-hmm. , sometimes those styles aren't seen as professional, you know, and so, yeah, it's, it's kind of hard to navigate. So I really just try to help people figure out like the best way possible to, um, kind of marry both, so, yeah.
Wendy: Yeah, that makes sense. That's a great point. Yeah. Cuz my favorite protective style are like the doodle twist. Mm-hmm. . But like I be looking crazy when I go outside with them . I'm like, oh my God. I try to like make 'em look a little better. Mm-hmm. like put on a headband or something. But it's just, you know.
But that's ideal for me cuz it's like there's not all this pressure pulling, you know, on the hair it's able to breathe. Mm-hmm. , you know, that's another thing too, I feel like with a lot of these styles, like your hair's not. Fully drying properly or like mm-hmm. getting, I don't even know if that's a thing, like if your hair needs oxygen, but for some of this stuff I'm like, there's literally no air going into the hair strand.
Is that even important? Mm-hmm. .
Samaria: Well, I will say for the, for the hair, no, because actually the hair is a dead tissue. So the minute it comes outta the scalp, it's a dead tissue. But it is important for your scalp. Your scalp is a part of your skin, right? So it definitely is important. So the styles where, you know, like you are, it's like dark and wet, and.
That's like breeding ground for bacteria interest. Um, and there's no, you know, oxygen there. So, absolutely. Like we d your scalp definitely needs it, but for your hair, no, your, your hair doesn't need oxygen.
Jess: Great point. That's so interesting cuz I'm, you know, thinking of the wigs too. Mm-hmm. , it's like, oh, maybe that'll be a transition.
but I, yeah, I feel like the best protective is just your own hair.
Samaria: Mm-hmm. ,
Wendy: kinda .
Samaria: And maybe
Jess: it's a marketing scheme, who knows at all. Its so, okay. Medical conditions. Cause I know that is your area of expertise. And I think also, I will say full disclosure, one reason probably why my hair feels thinner too is because I'm going through, um, primary ovarian insufficiency, which is basically like early menopause.
And so I think that that definitely, uh, and, and thyroid, uh, disease as well. So I'm sure those have an impact that I'm just now seeing. But, um, can you talk about that and any other medical conditions that might
Samaria: affect your hair? Mm-hmm. . Yeah. So, um, hormones, . Absolutely. So your our, our hair is very, very sensitive to any change.
I don't preface this by saying that our hair is a non-essential tissue, which means that our body doesn't require it to live. And I always say like, like we feel like we would die if we didn't have our hair. You know, we like, that would be the end, the end of it. But we, our body doesn't really need our hair to survive.
Right? So it's going to prioritize. , all of our other, you know, functions overgrowing hair. Although the hair requires a lot of energy, it's one of the fastest growing tissues in our body. It requires a lot of energy. It's very low on the totem pole when it comes to the, uh, priorities. So any, any types of changes in hormones are, are definitely going to impact the.
The hair strand. So menopause, um, that transition, right, because there's a decrease in estrogen. Um, a decrease in progesterone, and those are, can be very protective of, um, the hair follicle estrogen can help extend the antigen phase. The antigen phase is the growth phase. Uh, so estrogen can help extend that phase Progesterone.
Balance out the effects of, um, D H T. So, d h t is a hormone that attacks the hair follicle and, and causes the process of a miniaturization. So, you know, with, um, you may have seen it in like, uh, like women who are going through menopause, they start to like lose hair straight down the. That's typically seen as like female pattern hair loss.
And it's not like a drastic, like a drastic hair loss, it's a progressive hair loss. That's the process of miniaturization. So the hair underneath the surface, the hair follicle is being attacked by D H T. Um, and so each. Hair cycle, the hair grows back thinner and thinner and thinner. Mm. Um, so menopause, um, that hormonal hair, hair loss, female pattern, hair loss can, can, um, happen in conditions like P C O S because there is an excess amount of androgens.
Um, and so those androgens are converted to D H T, which then impact the hair follicle, um, thyroid issue. Most definitely because, um, thyroid is responsible for setting the pace, um, of all the cells in our body and. Thyroid, um, condition can definitely impact hair loss. Also, another, um, thing that we see a lot with thyroid issues is, um, like super dry, brittle hair as well.
Yep. Um, hypertension. Hypertension, um, it hypertension also hyper. Hypertension medications. Mm-hmm. can impact the hair loss. Um, we usually see it like right at the, the, the vertex, the crown of the head, um, postpartum for sure, because postpartum is a lot of things going on there. So there's like the stress of going through childbirth.
There is, uh, the changes in hormones. So during. While you're pre, uh, while you're pregnant, the, um, proje, the progesterone and estrogen that's sustaining the pregnancy are elevated. And like I mentioned, those hormones are, um, supporting the hair growth cycle. And so, I mean the, the, um, Yeah, the hair growth cycle, the antigen phase.
And so when, you know, after childbirth, those hormone, those hormones go back into its normal state. And so all the hairs that were kind of spared, that would've come out during the previous nine months. They then all come out all at one time. So then there's a postpartum hair loss due to the hormones.
There's like the, the loss due to the stress of you. Childbirth. And then there's also the changes in Nu nutri, nutri, uh, nutrition. So, you know, potential under nutrition there, um, that are kind of causing the, the hair loss as well. So there's usually a lot of things happening with postpartum hair loss. And then, um, gut issues can impact the hair as well.
Um, there is a link actually between, um, Um, I b s and, uh, alopecia Ariana. Mm-hmm. . Um, so there's definitely like some gut issues. Even if, you know, someone doesn't have ib s like just not properly digesting and absorbing nutrients that the hair needs can Yeah. Negatively, like, impact the hair, um, because the, the hair isn't able to get those nutrients.
So yeah, a lot of things that can kind of go on that can impact the hair. Fascinating.
Jess: Is there anything you can do to help, or is it just kind of like, eh, yeah, it is what it is.
Samaria: Yeah, absolutely. So that's, I mean, pretty much what I do in my practice is help people through these conditions to help them support their hair.
So what do you do, ?
Jess: Yeah. What's like, like whether it's nutrition, what are like maybe three key things people. Can leave with, that's like, either you're going through these things or you're just like, I want my hair to be strong and healthy.
Samaria: Mm-hmm. , um, gosh, there's so many different things, uh, depending on, you know, the specific condition, right.
Um, but I would say just like the basics of nutrition. So like, making sure people are eating enough food, uh, eating optimally. Um, You know, we live in a world where diet culture is running rampant, you know, and everyone is, lot, lots of people are undereating. Um, especially, you know, like women, like we're, you know, typically undereating and definitely undereating and protein.
Um, which the hair is made up of 75% protein. And so just making sure we're eating enough, like we're eating regularly, our body is not like going through, uh, phases of like starvation again. Sending signal to the body to not really optimize hair growth if we're, you know, starved for half of the day. Um, so make sure we're eating enough food.
And then usually, um, a lot of people ask like, you know, is there certain foods I need to eat for, you know, hair growth? Um, I mean, we can start to get into the, some of the spec specifics. Um, but usually eating a pretty solid like balanced diet with, you know, proteins, fats, carbohydrates, focusing on your micronutrients and color will usually do the trick.
Um, Taking excess of vitamins usually isn't necessary. There's not a bunch of research to support, like taking extra biotin will help your hair grow faster. It's usually, it's usually when there's a deficiency. Correcting that deficiency is when we, we see an improvement in hair growth. Um, so eating, like, make sure we're eating enough, like eating your, your nutrient needs, um, focusing on your macronutrients.
Your micronutrients, you know, color, all of those. And then, um, I would say probably just supporting your, um, your hair topically. So improving scalp health. Um, so paying attention to your scalp, giving yourself, you know, your scalp, a good massage, um, avoiding putting heavy products and oils and things like that on your scalp.
Um, and then, you know, after that, like seeing like a professional for for sure who can help get you like on the right track. So Love that.
Wendy: All right. Well we, we have so many questions that listeners submitted. Mm-hmm. So we were thinking about doing a fire round. Okay. Where we just shoot them at you and you try your best to answer them quickly.
We're gonna keep it snappy. You don't have to elaborate, . Um, alright. So I'll ask the first one. Does Rosemary oil work for hair growth? And what about other growth oils?
Samaria: Rosemary, yes. Other growth oils, diversity is still still out. Okay, so,
Jess: so you put it in your hair like once
Samaria: a month or so. Rose, rosemary oil.
Remember the scalp? We wanna put it on the scalp, not the hair, the scalp. So, um, Rose oil was actually researched, uh, against a, uh, very popular minoxidil air growth oil, and it actually performed. Pretty similarly. So like Rosemary Oil for this gap, all the other ones, I don't really, I mean, I dunno, there's not, there's not really a way to figure out like the potency of all the different herbs, especially the ones that just like, people just kind of throw all these dried herbs into oil and it looks cool like it.
Is that working? I don't know, potentially, but I know that Rosemary 2% has evidence that it works for him. Supports it? Mm-hmm. . Ooh. Okay. Hi.
Jess: Does hair porosity, am I saying it right? Porosity.
Samaria: Porosity. Mm-hmm. ? Mm-hmm. . Okay. Does hair porosity matter? Yes, to an extent. Um, yes to an extent, but it can change depending on like what you do to your hair.
So veracity is really just like the, the outer layer, the cuticle of your hair, like how porous it is. And it can change, you know, if you are, if your hair's really damaged, it can be more porous. Um, cuz there's more gap gaps in holes. Um, you know, if your hair gets colored, things like that, like it can change.
Wendy: Okay. Dandruff. There were a lot of questions about dandruff and what can help
Samaria: with it. Um, I like zinc, salic, salicylic acid. Um, changes in diet for sure can impact your sebaceous gland. Um, changes in regimen like we talked about. Are you even shampooing your hair enough or like, um, are you. The way that you're shampooing it, like so your technique, uh, tea tree oil can help.
Um, so yeah, those are some of my top ones. Okay. Does
Jess: collagen actually help with hair?
Samaria: So the hair is made up of collagen, however, is your body using the collagen that you're eating to support the hair growth specifically? We don't necessarily know because again, the hair is a non-essential tissue. So if your body needs collagen for your joints, it's going to take the, use the collagen there, or your gut versus, you know, putting it to your hair.
So, So is it good to
Jess: take collagen supplements or do you feel like there's not enough
Samaria: research to support yet? I think there's not a whole bunch of research to support it yet. There is one specific brand that, um, that makes a collagen product that they claim also has like, Receptors. Hmm. Or in it that is, that goes directly to your skin and your scalp.
So potentially more research and more products like that, that have, that are specifically targeted, um, with ingredients that will go to that area that's needed, um, might help. But just taking collagen supplements. I mean, if it doesn't hurt and you wanna do it, maybe, but is it necessarily the thing that's gonna support your hair growth?
I'm not sure.
Jess: Yeah, great answer. And I feel like it's all personal. I like the taste of the collagen. Mm-hmm. , well it doesn't have a taste. . Mm-hmm. . Um, so that's nice for getting some amino
Samaria: acids I guess. But yeah. For sure. Yeah. Yeah. Especially if you're already, if your diet is pretty low in protein, um, adding it is a really easy way, so, right.
Yeah. What about, oh,
Wendy: go ahead, Wendy. No, go ahead. Go ahead.
Jess: I was gonna say, what about parabens? What are your, and again, feel free off record, Josh, if we can edit, but what if you don't feel comfortable, but, um, that comes up a lot, like mm-hmm. , um, what are your thoughts on Parabins in. Hair products?
Samaria: Um, yeah, I don't know if I really have like a very thought through answer on it.
Okay, no worries. Um, yeah, I know it does have some research about like potentially, uh, being like endocrine disruptor, but I don't really know a whole bunch, so, yeah.
Jess: Okay. Don't worry about it. I'm gonna ask another one. What are your favorite go-to products for all the things that you. Mentioned because I think a lot of folks like me are like, I wanna buy, you know?
Mm-hmm. stuff that has these things that are studied.
Samaria: Mm-hmm. , are there brands you like mm-hmm. ? Yeah. So, um, a lot of people ask you this question. So I actually started like this thing on my Instagram where I'm doing like a main pick. , um, each week. So, um, I'll like be talking about like the products and I'll just like save them, um, on my highlights.
But I usually am looking for, like, I'm looking at the ingredient label versus like looking at the products specific, the product brands specifically. So, but I do have a few that I like. So like Taraji p Henson, she came out with the brand. Um, and I like her exfoliant. Um, it. Comb tooths on it so you're able to apply it directly to the scalp.
Um, Let's see. Um, girl and Hair is a brand. It was formulated by a dermatologist and it really, um, focuses on scalp health, especially when you are you, uh, doing different types of styles where you can't really get to your hair. Um, so I like girl and hair. Um, melanin hair care is, um, I really like their brand.
They have a really nice leaving conditioner. Um, and also shampoo that already comes with an applicator bottle, so you're able to apply it directly to the scalp. Um, it is a very like detoxifying shampoo. Um, this is gonna sound kinda weird, but I actually like teach, uh, trader Joe's. They have a really good conditioner.
Wendy: that. . Yes. It's so hydrating.
Samaria: Yes. I love their conditioner and it's super, like the ingredients, they're just like a bunch of herbs and plants. Um, has a lot of like, really good slips. So, um, I like their conditioner as well.
Wendy: Yes. Their nourish spot. Yeah. And their tea tree one is also mm-hmm. too. Yes.
Samaria: Their tea tree one. Yes, yes, yes. And it's so cheap for such a big bottle, so Yeah, yeah, yeah. I
Wendy: know where I'm going this weekend, . Right. I know. I have to go there for so many things, including my conditioner. That's the only conditioner I use. And it's so cheap. So cheap. Mm-hmm. . Um, okay. I have one last question, and this is my question.
submitted by Wendy , um, because there's like, , I feel like there's so much pressure to have long hair. Mm-hmm. , especially for black women, like mm-hmm. , you know, you have to ha and it's hard because there's so many different types of textures amongst black hair and like personally speaking, my hair has never grown past a certain length.
It just doesn't. Mm-hmm. for whatever reason, and I feel like we need to. Talk about that and just, you know, have some honest conversation. Cuz I think there's a lot of these hair goals that might be unrealistic for many people because it's just like, you know, you have your own unique hair Yeah. Mm-hmm. and, you know, and your genetics.
So what are your thoughts on that? Because, you know, I'm sure you've had people come to you who are like, I want, you know, hair that's, uh, I don't know, like up to my butt or like whatever. And it's like, is that actually gonna happen? I don't know. ? Mm-hmm. .
Samaria: Mm. Or like the black girl, long hair type
Wendy: of, yeah.
It's like, oh, I don't know. That hasn't been my experience. Yeah.
Samaria: Yeah. And and I think with that we have to have like very similar conversations like that we have like as dieticians when we're talking to people like around like body. Uh, body expectations, you know, like what their body can do because like your hair, again, is a part of your body and your genetics definitely play a role in, you know, how long your hair grows, the texture of your hair, the, even the luster, the shine of your hair, right?
A all of that plays a role. Um, genetics play a role in all of that, and. I would just say like, good hair is really like the best that your hair can do when you give it all that it needs. And I think we, again, we live in world, especially with social media and things like that, like we're looking at everyone else and we're u like, we're, we're kind of using them as like the standard.
Like, Ooh, they have that, I want that, you know, or, oh, they're hair grow like that, so let me, let me buy what they, what they're selling, you know? Yeah. Let me eat what they're eating. Um, so that, or lemme take that supplement that they're selling because their hair looks like that and it look, it really could just be, because those are their genetics, right.
You know? Mm-hmm. , um, it really could, you know, it is not because of, you know, the biotin that they're taking or whatever. So, um, yeah, it, it really is kind of, A hard to a hard conversation because again, like we can't be ignorant to the world that we live in and what our clients are, um, exposed to. But at the same time, I really like have to help support them and, um, kind of counsel them through those feelings, um, to help them like see that.
Your hair is good just as it is. Like we're, we're, you know, there might be some things kind of going on internally, but we're supporting them and once we are able to like, um, get you through those things, like you have to truly believe that your hair is good hair regardless of what anyone else's hair looks like.
Wendy: I love that.
Jess: Love it. Well, in wrapping, can you let our listeners know, our listeners know how they can learn more about you, the work that you're doing, where to find you on social, or if they wanna work
Samaria: with you. . Yeah, so, uh, my website is feeding the root.com. Um, I'm on Instagram at your hair nutritionist.
So I, um, post just, you know, fun educational content on there. Like I said, I do, um, main picks on Monday, so I share like my favorite product and why, uh, whether it's a hair product or like a supplement or you know, food, things like that. So, um, you guys can follow me there. and, um, I am licensed as a dietician in the state of Tennessee, so I can work virtually.
Um, but as a tri, I can work anywhere in the states. Um, so, um, if anyone needs support, you can find me at my website at www.feedingtheroute.com. So thank you. That was
Wendy: amazing. I learned so
Wendy: That's, that was fun. Thank you so much. Yeah, that was perfect. And they gotta figure.
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