How Alpha Hydroxy Acids Can Aid In A Healthier Scalp

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Since it’s August and that happens to also be National Hair Loss Awareness month, let’s talk about hair loss, scalp care, and exfoliation.

The foundation of healthy hair is the scalp and part of the scalp is…you guessed it, skin. Your scalp is home to roughly 100,000 hairs. Like the skin on your face, the scalp’s skin needs to be healthy in order to promote healthy hair.

40% of American women suffer from thinning hair, and unfortunately, we lose hair the same way men do, minus a receding hairline.  While there are many causes to thinning hair, poor microcirculation is a significant factor. Microcirculation refers to blood flow in the smallest blood vessels in the body, and they are normally found in the organs, like the skin for instance.

If you read my guide on hyperpigmentation, then you know how essential Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) is to getting rid of dark spots and revealing more youthful skin. These benefits also apply to the scalp. AHA’s like glycolic acid and lactic acid exfoliate, remove sebum and dead skin cells, promoting and increasing microcirculation. Exfoliation using AHA’s will also deeply cleanse the scalp and increase cell turnover. AHA also does a good job stripping the scalp without stripping the hair.

Most people assume that shampooing is a method of exfoliation, and while that is true, it’s usually not enough. Massaging the scalp activates microcirculation as well, but nothing breaks up build-up like an AHA.

Think about the last time you had dandruff- it was not your magic fingers that removed the flakes, it was the active ingredients in the shampoo or conditioner (hello Head & Shoulders and Neutrogena T-Gel) that eliminated the flakes.

Chemicals are awesome. Now, meet a few of my favorite exfoliants:

The GOAT: Keranique Micro-Exfoliating Follicle Revitalizing Mask, $45 (poly lactic acid and citric acid) 

Keranique Micro-Exfoliating Follicle Revitalizing Mask

The nourishing leave-in: Oyin Handmade Frank Juice, $13.99 (citric acid)

A few good shampoos:

Do you exfoliate your scalp? Let’s chat!

Additional sources: FDA, Dupont, Howard Murad



More about Aprill

Aprill Coleman is an award-winning beauty, lifestyle and wellness blogger and freelance writer based in Jackson, Mississippi.

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