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How your hair affects your period

How your hair affects your period

As women, we generally know what to expect during 'that time of month'; headaches, stomach pains and an overall just feeling a bit icky. Did you know your monthly period can impact your hair too, though? To keep your tresses looking and feeling fresh and clean while the rest of you may not, we've gathered some expert tips on the topic.

Emma Leslie, editor for, explains to Cover Media that hormones tend to fluctuate a lot more than normal when you're on, meaning your skin and hair can over-produce oil. Kala Laing, director of EGO Professional, echoes this problem, and both women have suggestions up their sleeves on how to deal with it.

"You can try using a more clarifying shampoo, to deeply cleanse your scalp," Emma said. "Invest in a good dry shampoo, that you can use to absorb any excess oil and make your hair feel fresher between washes."

Kala points out that while this is an issue for those who already have flat, lifeless locks, for women with dry, frizzy hair it could be a pleasant surprise they hadn't taken advantage of before. She recommends a dry shampoo too, along with other useful titbits.

"My suggestion is if you need it and you can, track your cycle," she says, adding that shampooing less that particular week and using a bristle brush to maximise the distribution of natural moisture.

"If you really don’t need the extra oil use a deep cleansing shampoo that week, leave 30 seconds before rinsing and be sure to massage a light conditioner through the mid lengths and ends of your hair only. Still comb through before rinsing thoroughly but not all the way through to the roots."

To prevent excess grease from building up, Emma suggests changing your pillow cases more frequently. Her top tip is to use one pillow case four times - one on each side, then inside out and on each side again - to prevent additional oil.

Expert Trichologist Sally-Ann Tarver made sure to warn of some of the more serious issues caused by periods, with heavy bleeding sometimes triggering hair loss. This is because of the drop of iron in their bodies, and she suggests taking a daily dose of iron in tablet or liquid form if this is the case.

"For some women it is a battle to keep their stores at a reasonable level even with a daily high strength iron supplement and in turn this can cause hair loss and hair thinning," she added. "It often starts gradually and over a period of years results in a general thinning all over the scalp and hair that does not appear to grow or reach any reasonable length."

A last piece of counsel - don't over-touch your hair during your period! Running your hands through your strands is already known to make your hair greasy, so best to avoid during this time.

Cover Media