I’m going to admit something here I don’t normally like to discuss. And I’m doing it because I often feel that my feminism is about normalizing taboos, and about making sure my voice reaches other women and gender non-conforming folks who might feel alone and are going through something similar.
For the past decade, my hair has gotten increasingly thin. It’s been a gradual loss for sure, but certainly evident. As a child, I always had a thick mane of hair. By the time I reached college, I would cut my own hair but it would grow out quickly. But around the time I turned 22, my hair began to thin out. While I’m not 100% sure of the cause, my current suspicion lies with the birth control pills I first began taking around then, and I am not the first person to write about birth control-related hair loss.
By the time I was 24, my hair was noticeably thinner. I hated going to get my hair cut because the stylists would always make comments about it. I don’t care who you are but when you start to see bald spots on your scalp, even the most confident person begins to feel a bit shaky. And more so when there’s no direct explanation.
Over the years, my hair has fluctuated, especially in relation to birth control pills and pregnancies. I now believe there must be some hormonal connection, so I’ve given up on hormonal birth control for good in order to save what’s left of my hair.
This past summer, I decided to start taking charge of my hair loss. I couldn’t very well say nothing works if I didn’t give anything a shot. So for the past few months, I added the following to my daily regimen: Viviscal Hair Supplements, a B-complex pill, a Vitamin D supplement, and used a new topical product called Reviv Hair Serum. This review mostly deals with the serum.
On To The Review…
Reviv Hair Serum uses a fairly new product called Redensyl. This new hair-growth product “combines two patented molecules – DHQG and EGCG2 – to help reactivate hair growth by targeting OCRs hair follicle stems cells, protecting them from apoptosis, and activating the metabolism of dermal papillary fibroblasts.”
Basically, it helps prevent cell death (and therefore hair loss) and gives the root of the hair a kick in the pants to start growing again. Many folks have had good results from this interesting product, so when I saw an opportunity to test it out, I figured why the hell not?
Other ingredients in Reviv Hair Stimulating Serum are keratinocyte grwoth factor, nettle root extract and saw palmetto (known DHT-blockers), horse chestnut seed extract (which has been used to improve circulation and reduce inflammation), camellia sinesis (an antioxidant), and other potentially good for your hair stuff.
It’s now early August, and while I have not seen the type of loss prevention and regrowth I’d love, there are definitely some changes to my hair’s overall thickness. Here’s a side-by-side comparison about 2.5 months apart:
Because I’ve been using a number of methods to control the hair loss, I can’t say with 100% certainty that the Reviv Hair Serum alone is to thank for some of this regrowth. I also need to report that in recent months I had to stop using the product (I was in the middle of a cross-country move and did not have the extra money to spare for additional products), and I simultaneously ceased my vitamins and supplements. As a result, I’ve seen more loss again, meaning that either Reviv and/or my vitamins need to be taken consistently without stopping else the loss returns.
This is, of course, disappointing since both Reviv and Viviscal are costly products. Still, I’d say over all, I could recommend this product in good consciousness as part of ones’ hair regrowth regimen. Perhaps over time, once the loss gets to a more manageable point, one would be able to slowly cease use of said products.
Some Final Thoughts…
Over the past few months, I’ve met countless other women who have been struggling with hair loss, many of which are in their 20s and 30s like myself. It is not easy to deal with this, especially at such a young age. There seems to be a lot of focus on male pattern baldness and men’s hair loss and hair regrowth, but I feel like there’s an added stigma when you’re a woman. Technically for men, a bald head signifies having a large amount of testosterone in the body, which many men will pride themselves on. But in general, high testosterone isn’t frequently seen as a positive in femme women.
Additionally, in hair loss support groups, I’ve read about a number of women who have had significant trouble in being taken seriously by their doctors. Many articles have been written about the fact that women’s pain is not taken as seriously by doctors as that of their male patients. The same holds true when it comes to situations like these. Doctors often do not want to order additional tests and do the extra work to diagnose potential underlying reasons for women’s hair loss, which is incredibly problematic.
In the coming months, I plan to see about getting my hormone levels checked more thoroughly. There is always the possibility of having PCOS or some other hormone-related issue. I also plan to get back on track with my treatments (Reviv Hair Serum, Viviscal, additional vitamins, and daily protein shakes), including adding Jamaican black castor oil to the mix, as I’ve heard some promising results from others with thinning hair. I’ll also be working hard toward following a PCOS-friendly diet (which is to say, a healthier diet than the one I’ve been following) and following PCOS management tips (such as adding cardio workouts, yoga and meditation for stress management, etc.) Even if it turns out that I don’t have PCOS, it certainly can’t hurt to make these positive lifestyle changes!
For those out there who found this page while searching for some answers or some support on hair loss, you are not alone. Many of us are currently dealing with this in silence. The Women’s Hair Loss Project is a great source for reading the stories of others and connecting with folks who have or are going through similar situations. Check back in future months to see how my hair loss management continues or to read more feminist product reviews or other posts about my life as a writer and feminist.
Note: This is a sponsored post. Reviv Hair Serum sent me two free samples of their product for this honest review (I purchased a third vial afterward), but have received no further compensation.