Missing Trims & Salon Visits? A Supplement To Keep Hair Healthy In The Meantime
For so long, "effortless beauty" has been some sort of ideal standard we've been conditioned and encouraged to strive for. The ironic thing, of course, is that many parts of an easy-breezy aesthetic require work. No-makeup makeup looks need a skilled hand; soft subtle hair color takes an expert colorist; fresh dewy skin involves a multistep skin care routine—and if you're lucky, regular visits to a facialist.
Well, in light of our new normal that's come as the result of COVID-19, temporary business closures, and quarantine mandates, "effortless beauty" has taken on a new meaning. Many of us are putting less effort into our looks because, well, we have fewer outlets in which we can invest time and work into. It's become a time of pause in our beauty routines (hence, the resurgence of slow beauty), as well as fewer visits to specialists, like colorists, derms, and, notably—hairstylists.
Perhaps it's not effortless beauty, but it's certainly less-effort beauty.
The rise of the less-effort hairstyle.
Given that, for many of us, access to stylists is more limited—be it because of stay-at-home orders, reduced salon hours, new regulations on salon visits, or lack of means to visit a professional—many of us have started to embrace low-maintenance styles and cuts. Gone are days of "trendy" hairstyles that require immaculate maintenance (for now at least). It just isn't reasonable to continue getting a blunt bob that needs to be trimmed frequently or intricate braids that need to be redone regularly. Instead, many women have started to embrace hairstyles that grow out with ease and account for their natural hair texture.
However, this does come with a caveat: If you're not visiting a professional as regularly, then you have to take better care of the strands you do have. And the mechanics of this will look different for everyone based on your hair type. Kinks and coils will require a much different routine from waves or straight hair. There is one thing you can do that's fairly universal: care for your strands from within with a hair-healthy supplement.
How a collagen & biotin supplement can help.
As far as healthy-hair supplements go, two ingredients get all the (deserved) attention: collagen and biotin. To understand why, a lesson in hair structure: Hair is made of the protein keratin. Keratin is made of several kinds of amino acids, like proline, treoline, and arginine. So to build healthy hair, our body needs a regular supply of these building blocks. That's where collagen supplements come in: hydrolyzed collagen peptides are simply short chains of amino acids. So when you ingest them, your body is able to utilize said peptides throughout the body.* They also help stimulate your skin cells' fibroblasts, which create more collagen and elastin to help keep your scalp healthy.*
Biotin is a type of B vitamin—one closely tied with hair health. In fact, thinning hair and hair loss are very common symptoms of biotin deficiency.* Additionally, biotin is believed to naturally promote healthy hair growth because it is involved in the production of keratin, as well.* In one small study, women with thinning hair reported significant regrowth when supplementing with biotin as compared to those given a placebo.*
mindbodygreen's grass-fed collagen+ has both, along with a few other nutrients that support hair health. Most notably, there's vitamin C and vitamin E, two potent antioxidants that help your body fight off free-radical damage and temper inflammation.* Why is this important? Well, it may not encourage growth per se, but it absolutely helps the hair you already have. See, inflammation and free radicals contribute to a host of hair and scalp issues, which can cause premature graying, thinning, and even hair loss. So if you protect your hair from these potentially dangerous conditions, theoretically you'll keep the hair you do have full and healthy. Sounds good, no?
There's good reason we're all laxing up a bit on our hairstyles—and while this may seem intimidating and perhaps unwanted for many, it does seem to provide us ample opportunity to embrace styles that are easier for us to tend to on our own. And while we're doing this, let's be mindful of how we are caring for that hair internally.
Alexandra Engler is the Beauty Director at mindbodygreen. She received her journalism degree from Marquette University, graduating first in the department. She has worked at many top publications and brands including Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, SELF, and Cosmopolitan; her byline has appeared in Esquire, Sports Illustrated, and Allure.com. In her current role, she covers all the latest trends and updates in the clean and natural beauty space, as well as travel, financial wellness, and parenting. She has reported on the intricacies of product formulations, the diversification of the beauty industry, and and in-depth look on how to treat acne from the inside, out (after a decade-long struggle with the skin condition herself). She lives in Brooklyn, New York.