I will start by saying I totally blame Disney for giving me unrealistic hair expectations. Every single Disney princess has this gorgeous, lush, thick hair and when she stood in front of an open window, birds descend onto her to tie her hair up with ribbons. That was never my reality, sadly I was not blessed that way. I have a lot of hair but its super, super fine so my pony tail was always a little sad looking and I have to use a lot of product for volume.
Until I had Porter.
During your pregnancy, and especially right before you give birth, your body is literally hanging on to every single nutrient you have. Part of that holding on process reduces the normal cycle of hair loss so you wind up with thick, lustrous, shiny pregnancy locks. Y’all… I finally had some Disney princess hair. I felt SO fly. But once you give birth your hormone levels begin to drop and that whole hair loss process kicks back in to make up for lost time. So instead of the few spare strands you see at the bottom of the shower… its clumps. It may seem horrifying but there is nothing to be alarmed at; you are just making up for all that delayed hair loss at once.
This process can kick in any time between birth and a year after birth. For me it happened right around 6 months. Unfortunately, there is nothing that has been proven to prevent it. Sorry! I know there are a lot of marketing campaigns out there that claim otherwise but it is a natural process and it will happen. That being said, there are some things you can do to help with breakage and make your hair appear fuller and healthier during this time.
Be Kind To Your Hair || Avoid harsh and fancy styling. Skip the daily hair drying or curling iron routine for a while and try to let your hair air-dry at least until the thinning tapers out. Since I have to blow dry post shower to get longevity out of my washes (I only wash 1-2 times a week) and so that I can keep my volume, I rely heavily on dry shampoo. I have tried them all, so believe me when I say nothing works as good as this one.
Use Quality Products || The last thing recovering hair needs is chemical filled shampoos, conditioners, or styling products so you want to choose products that are free of unnecessary colors, parabens and harmful fragrances. It is no surprise happy and healthy hair grows faster! I have been using this brand of shampoo and conditioner for years and this particular line stimulates the scalp and promotes hair regrowth. I also like to this shampoo and conditioner that gives me extra volume to make my hair look fuller, which will helps while it is growing back.
Give Your Pony a Break || Keeping your hair constantly in a ponytail or bun puts mega strain on your strands. The more you keep it up without resting it, the more prone you are to breakage. However, having your hair out of your and baby’s face is kind of a necessity so I encourage you to try different styles to achieve the same thing. I linked the best hair ties in the picture above but I also love these sturdy hair clips which are a cute way to tame your hair without stressing out your scalp.
Take your Vitamins || This one is a no brainer and for any mamas out there who chose to breastfeed, make sure you are still taking your vitamins for the time you continue to do so. Vitamins are not a substitute for a highly varied diet but they do help supplement when your diet is not well balanced – which let’s be real is probably how it winds up when you are focused on keeping little humans alive. There is no direct link between any specific vitamin and hair loss but they are still important for your overall health.
Focus On The Positive || Look, there is a lot happening during the postpartum period. Our bodies may feel a little foreign to us, our hormones are still adjusting, and lots of things are just out of your control in general. How you look isn’t the most important aspect of life at the moment but anything you can do to make yourself feel more like you should be prioritized. If you don’t have anything nice to say about your hair right now – that is okay! You still have killer legs, beautiful eyes, or whatever it is that you feel good about. In the first few months after giving birth to Porter it was really important for me to get a mani-pedi to help myself feel put together. Even if i was covered in spit up and exhausted, I had my dang nails done! This helped me focus my mind on the positive things going on instead of getting caught up in a cycle of negative thoughts about my body. Anything you can do to give yourself a little self confidence is so important in this crazy season of life.
I know from experience that hair loss and weird unwanted new bangs can be just another wrench thrown into the postpartum period that may have you feeling a little overwhelmed. I think it is less about how we look and more about trying to figure out another strange, maybe uncomfortable layer of our lives we have no control over. Therefore, it is important to build up and nurture other layers of acceptance, patience and self love while all of these other crazy changes are still going on! Take care of yourself mama and don’t forget to do things that also nurture you. I hope this post helps you to know you are not alone and it provides you with some support and normalization to all the weird things that moms go through.
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