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How to Care for Your Hair in Your 40s

There's something about that magical age of 40, isn't there? It's often a time of renewed respect for your appearance. It can also be a turning point when you realize your old hair care routines simply aren't working as well as they once did, prompting you to make a change.

VEGAMOUR spoke with the experts about how you can best care for your locks during this fourth decade of life — plus, find out what products you should use to have fabulous hair at any age.

Your Hair in Your 40s

Your hair in your 40s is likely going through some changes. This is due, in part, to aging and genetics, but other factors do play a role, such as your diet, hormone levels and hair care routine.

At this time in your life, you might notice your hair lacks luster, it's thinning or you have a dry scalp. You might find yourself shopping for hair products for fuller hair. More gray hairs might be appearing in your part and around your hairline. You might also begin to wonder if maybe it's time to update your look.

Shop: GRO Collection for Thicker, Fuller Looking Hair

The Aging Process and How Hair Changes

It's true, as you age, so does your hair. But if you are aware of what's going on at the scalp level and within your body and make some adjustments to address it, your hair can still be the radiant crown of glory you want it to be.

Some of the hair changes you'll see in your 40s include:

  • Hair color changes due to decreased melanin production.
  • Dry scalp or dry hair due to decreased oil production.
  • Split ends from wear on the hair or overshampooing.
  • Genetics and environmental factors have more impact on hair follicle stem cells.
  • More challenging hair color services as the contrast deepens between natural hair color and increasing gray hairs.
  • Increased need for scalp health measures and follicle nutrition.
  • Greater hair loss from a stressful event, and it can take longer for hairs to return to the normal hair growth phase.

    To keep your hair healthy in your 40s, you have to protect the natural oils and feed each hair follicle with abundant nutrition. You'll also want to see your doctor to discuss your hormone levels, as menopause can cause more hair shed and hair thinning.

    The good news is that aging hair (yes, even gray hair) can be both stylish and beautiful. But now that you're in your 40s, you might agree that it's time to update your hair care routine to maintain hair health and optimum shine.

    Related: Let's Talk About Hair Loss During Menopause

    Adopt a Proactive Hair Health Routine

    For healthier hair in your 40s, use products that target your aging hair's needs while delivering extra nourishment to your scalp to encourage thicker, fuller looking hair.

    Swap Out Your Shampoo and Conditioner

    VEGAMOUR spoke with registered nurse Nancy Mitchell to get some tips on caring for your hair in your 40s. Mitchell shared that in your 40s, you might experience changes in the color, curl, wave pattern and strength of your hair but that "the right treatment can slow the process."

    Mitchell recommends shampooing about twice weekly to avoid overdrying your hair and to be careful what types of hair products you are using on your aging hair. Mitchell said, "Products with sulfates and parabens not only dry your hair, but they also contribute to fading color, scalp inflammation and hair loss in some cases. The best option is to replace these with options that are free of harsh chemicals that might cause premature hair aging.

    Shampoo and condition with sulfate-free, paraben-free GRO Revitalizing Shampoo and Conditioner Kit. The best-selling, color-safe duo utilizes our proprietary microencapsulated vegan b-SILK™ protein and powerful plant actives to reduce shedding and encourage visibly thicker, fuller, longer-looking hair. Plus, the lovely bergamot smell will lift your spirits.

    Shop: GRO+ Advanced AGELESS Daily Duo

    Avoid Excess Heat When Styling

    Skip the heated styling tools whenever possible. Instead, opt for a silicone-free styling cream or gel. Use a dime-size amount for the most natural look (more for thicker hair or longer hair) and allow your hair to air dry. Give your hair a gentle scrunch to activate any natural wave or curl, or brush straight hair with an ionized brush for maximum shine. If your hair is coarse or frizzy at the ends, apply a small amount of hair oil to the tips of your hair to keep them well-hydrated and soft.

    Bonus tip: For a quick pick-me-up between shampoos, use a plant-based dry shampoo to balance your scalp and volumize your hair without leaving white streaks or gritty buildup. This is a great trick for gray hair, which can look dull when it is not clean.

    Change Up Your Style

    The same hairstyle you wore in your 20s or 30s might now look outdated. Visit your stylist and get an updated look that shows off your best features. Be bold. Be authentic. And yes, consider going gray. Gray hair is trending for 2022!

    Adjust Your Hair Appointments

    Your hair in your 40s might also grow a little slower than it has in the past. Ask your stylist to add another week or two between visits. Visit frequently enough to trim and avoid split ends, but not so often that you feel your hair becoming shorter than you'd like.

    Consider Your Diet

    Diet is also very important in your 40s. Biotin supplements can help support your best hair growth and add the following foods to your diet for a boost of beneficial nutrients for your scalp and hair:

    • Beans: provide protein and zinc for healthy hair.
    • Spinach and other dark leafy greens: These are great sources of iron, folate and a variety of vitamins to keep your body and your hair healthy.
    • Sweet potatoes: These tasty tubers are rich sources of vitamin A (beta-carotene), which all cells need for growth. Vitamin A can also help with sebum production if your scalp and hair are getting drier with age.
    • Chia seeds: These healthy sprinkles can add some beneficial Omega 3s to your diet.

      Related: 12 Foods to Grow Your Healthiest Hair Ever

      Embracing Your 40s in Style

      While hair care in your 40s might present some challenges, you can adjust your routine to balance these changes. And don't be afraid to go bold with your look. Try new haircutting trends or wear your gray hair proudly. (You've earned every single one of them, right?)

      Embracing your 40s decade can look a whole lot more lovely when you step up your hair care routine to include products that will pamper your aging hair a little more. And when you take excellent care of yourself — inside and out — your radiance will shine at any age.


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      Photo credit: Maria Lupan/Unsplash

      Disclaimer: Information in this article is intended for general informational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended to constitute medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek professional medical advice from your physician.