We usually don't think about the seasons and weather playing a role in thinning hair and hair loss. While it is considered normal to shed between 50 and 100 strands of hair every day, many men and women start to notice an increase in hair loss as the seasons begin to change.
While the weather may not always be directly responsible for thinning hair or hair loss, the weather may be a contributing factor. People typically protect their hair from the wind, rain, snow, and sun, but may not realize that changes in the weather can impact their hair's health.
How Cold Weather Affects Your Hair
While winter and freezing temperatures alone will not cause thinning hair or hair loss, they can affect your hair's health. Some aspects of cold weather and your habits during winter can increase the likelihood of thinning hair.
Research suggests that during the summer months, primarily in July, the resting or telogen phase, the stage in the hair growth cycle at which hair can fall out, increases. Typically, when hair enters the telogen phase, the affected hair begins to fall out in about 100 days. This increase corresponds with an increase in hair loss in the fall, usually around the middle of October.
If you spend a lot of time outdoors during the winter, you need protection from the cold. Since a significant source of heat loss is the head, most people wear hats to stay warm. Hats may help retain body heat, but tight-fitting hats can also tug and pull at the hair. This prolonged tugging of the hair can cause it to break and causes distress to the hair follicles.
Cold weather and central heating also cause lower humidity levels and drier air, which can lead to dry scalp. The low moisture level in the air can cause your hair to become brittle and break easily, and become visibly thinner over time.
How Hot Weather Affects Your Hair
The summer heat and intense sun can contribute to thinning hair and hair loss. Summer causes hair to remain in the telogen phase longer than usual. While this stage typically lasts for about 100 days, many people tend to shed hair more quickly during this period. This increase in the natural shedding process may cause hair to become thinner during the summer months.
Many people believe that as the temperature rises outside, stress to our bodies can cause telogen effluvium. This short term condition usually corrects itself in the months following the shedding. While this theory is not proven, the sun can irritate the scalp's skin and affect the hair follicles' ability to produce healthy hair.
It's essential to protect your scalp and hair during the summer months as well. Hair oil with SPF can protect your hair and scalp from UV rays, but like other hair products, they should be used carefully and sparingly. Wearing a hat is one of the best ways to protect your hair, keep your scalp cool, and prevent dryness.
We Can Help!
Many factors can cause thinning hair and hair loss for men and women. While hair shedding is normal, many people notice changes in their hair as the weather changes, and some research suggests that there is a connection between the seasons and hair loss.
At HRC – Hair Restoration of California, we are experts in all aspects of hair care. If you are noticing thinning hair or hair loss, our team of specialists can help identify the cause and any other contributing factors. After determining the reason for your hair loss, we will help you find the best solution for keeping your hair and scalp healthy. To learn more about how the weather can cause hair loss, contact us today, and schedule your FREE consultation.