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As women age, various factors such as nutritional deficiencies, hormonal imbalances, medications, lifestyle, and environmental factors can affect the quality of the hair.  Some noticeable effects that women may experience with their hair are thinning, reduced density, greying, changes in hair texture, dryness and brittleness, slower growth, and increased sensitivity to heat.

Having healthy hair is necessary at any age, including for women over 50. It can help women feel more confident about their appearance, leading to overall well-being and self-assurance. Here are fifteen ways to promote healthier-looking hair.

Nourish Your Body

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The most important step is to maintain a balanced diet high in nutrients (protein), minerals (iron), and vitamins (especially A, C, and E), which can support healthy hair growth and appearance. No matter how many products we apply from the outside, staying healthy from the inside is the basic prerequisite. 

Eating foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, like salmon, walnuts, and avocados, can also nourish hair follicles and promote shine. Focusing on getting sufficient protein, iron, zinc, and vitamin D is especially important for maintaining strong, healthy hair as we age.


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Hydration is an important element in our daily routine for the overall health of hair. Dehydration is known to result in dryness and brittle hair, which are more prone to damage and tangling. Drinking lots of water is recommended to keep your hair hydrated and maintain its natural shine. 

Herbal teas are another great way to hydrate while providing antioxidant benefits. Drinking at least eight 8-oz glasses of water daily is a good goal for most women over 50.

Gentle Cleansing

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Mild shampoos help store the natural oils on your scalp, which are crucial for hair health. Harsh shampoos high in sulfates can strip away the natural oils from our hair, leading to frizz, dryness, and potential breakage. 

Mild shampoos cleanse the hair effectively while being gentle enough to prevent excessive dryness. Look for formulas with botanical ingredients and without sulfates or parabens. Cleansing once or twice a week is often sufficient for women with aging hair.

Moisturize with Conditioner Regularly

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Aging hair tends to have reduced moisture levels, leading to dryness and increased susceptibility to tangling and breakage. Conditioner helps replenish moisture, hydration, and essential oils in the hair strands, especially the ends, keeping them nourished, soft, and manageable. 

Apply a good-quality conditioner after shampooing to keep your hair moisturized, smooth, and manageable. Focus on the ends, as they tend to be drier. Leave-in conditioners can provide added moisture between washes.

Protect From Heat Styling Tools

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With age, the scalp can become more sensitive and prone to irritation. Excessive heat from styling tools can exacerbate scalp sensitivity, leading to discomfort, redness, or itchiness. Minimizing the use of heat-styling tools like flat irons and curling irons reduces the likelihood of scalp irritation.

If you do use them, apply a heat protectant spray beforehand. Letting hair air dry rather than blow-drying can help minimize heat exposure.

Embrace Air-drying

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To minimize heat damage, it is always a better alternative to allow your hair to air dry whenever possible. If you must use a hairdryer, choose the lowest heat setting and hold it at a safe distance from your hair.

Diffusing wet hair on a low, cool setting can cut down on drying time while minimizing heat damage. You could also try wrapping your hair in a soft cotton t-shirt or microfiber towel to gently soak up excess moisture.

Oil Frequently

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As we talked about avoiding harsh shampoos, which can take away the natural oils from our hair, it is equally important to regularly oil our hair before washing it. Hair oiling helps to restore moisture, hydration, and essential oils to the hair strands, promoting softness, manageability, and reducing dryness.

Oil massages also help reduce stress and promote shiny hair. Coconut, olive, and argan oil are great natural options. Focus the oil on the ends and avoid applying it to the scalp if you have oily hair.

Protect From Environmental Damage

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Excessive sun exposure (ultraviolet (UV) radiation) can damage the hair and cause color fading. We should protect our hair from the sun’s harmful UV rays by wearing a hat or using hair products that offer UV protection. 

Also, we should protect our hair from chlorine and saltwater when swimming by wearing a swim cap or rinsing our hair with clean water afterward. Using a leave-in conditioner before swimming can help protect hair from chlorine and saltwater damage.

Avoid Harsh Chemical Treatments

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One should minimize or avoid chemical treatments like perming, relaxing, or excessive dyeing, especially with age, as they can weaken and damage your hair. Opt for gentle, ammonia-free dyes if you wish to color your hair. 

Make sure to use extra conditioning after a chemical treatment. Temporary and semi-permanent dyes tend to be less damaging than permanent options. Embracing your natural color is also an option!

Incorporate Healthy Hair Habits

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Brush your hair gently with a wide-toothed comb to prevent breakage and avoid tight hairstyles that pull on your hair. 

It is recommended to use a satin or silk pillowcase to reduce friction and prevent hair damage. Trimming split ends regularly can also help prevent further damage and breakage.

Use Topical Treatments

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There are many products that can help aging hair—serums with silicones like dimethicone smooth damaged cuticles. Antioxidants like vitamin E protect hair, too. Some research shows topical melatonin might have anti-aging effects.

After shampooing, apply treatments to damp hair, focusing mostly on the ends where the hair tends to be driest. For an added boost, add a good conditioner, too.

Trim Regularly

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Get a trim every 6-8 weeks to snip off split ends before they can cause breakage further up the hair shaft. It’s a great way to maintain healthy hair as you get older! Ask your stylist to take off as little as possible after checking out the condition of your hair. 

And think twice before trimming your own hair – it’s easy to get scissor-happy and take off more than you need to! Schedule trims right after removing extensions to get your hair looking its best.

Consider Extensions

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If your hair is thinning out or losing fullness with age, extensions can totally help add body and length. High-quality extensions properly applied by a stylist blend right in with your real hair. 

Go for removable kinds like clip-ins or tapes rather than permanent bonding, which can damage your hair over time. Take care of them properly, and extensions won’t speed up hair loss! Get them adjusted or moved up as your hair grows to prevent unnecessary stress.

Look Into Volumizing Products

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There are specialized products like volumizing shampoos, mousses, and sprays designed to make hair appear fuller and more youthful. Formulas with proteins or caffeine can strengthen fine or thinning hair. 

Silicones coat hair strands temporarily, making it look thicker while keeping it moisturized. Remember, nourishing masks—use them weekly! As humidity and conditions change, switch up your product lineup with the seasons.

Add Proper Vitamins to Your Diet

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Getting enough vitamins and minerals, such as iron, zinc, folate, vitamins D, and B12, helps support healthy hair growth and maintenance as you age. A multivitamin can help fill in any nutritional gaps or deficiencies. Specific supplements like biotin, saw palmetto, ginseng, and antioxidants may also give your hair a boost. 

But of course, check with your doctor before taking anything new, especially if you already take medications. Ask for a blood test to pinpoint any deficiencies impacting your hair.

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Author: Iva Ursano

Title: Writer

Expertise: Anti-Aging, Mental Health

Iva is a 60-something woman, originally from Northern Ontario, Canada, who now resides in sunny Guatemala. She helps women over 50 love the skin they're in and empowers them to live their best lives ever. When she's not blogging, she's out on her scooter feeding and rescuing street dogs.  

You can also check out her amazing eStore here. It is full of powerful self-help eBooks, personal development courses, and so much more—ALL at affordable prices!

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