telogen effluvium and hair loss

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So I'm thinking that what might have happened is that my follicles got overconditioned over time, making the hair easy to rip out. Besides the lighter conditioner I used to co-wash, I also started adding my heavier RO higher up on my canopy to combat canopy frizz. I would also plop, which means that the well-conditioned hair would be smushed near my scalp until set. Before I started cowashing, I would only put my RO on my hair starting at the ears... so I can see how it is possible that my scalp could have been getting overconditioned.

Excessive Shedding: Could Co-Washing Be the Culprit? | hairscapades This poster believes she had a similar experience. My hair is also fine like the poster.

I've also been researching pre-waxing techniques, and many sites suggest that softened follicles let up hair more easily.

"Softer hair follicles release hair more easily; to make your waxing experience both pleasant and productive try exfoliating and then moisturizing prior to the event. First, exfoliate the area you want to remove hair from, then smooth on some type of non-comedogenic (non-clogging) moisturizer to soften hair follicles and the surrounding skin." Discovery Health "What's the best way to prepare skin for waxing?"


When I was reading about co-washing before I started I read that you had to be very thorough and massage the scalp very well in order to cleanse effectively. Being very paranoid about the possibility of buildup, I massaged vigorously. Maybe too well.

I never experienced buildup on the scalp. It was always clean, never oily, gunky, smelly or anything unpleasant. This supports the possibility that I was over-massaging as opposed to under-massaging.

Since I've been scrunching and styling my hair curly, I've also been experiencing more tangles, which means showers meant more time detangling. Generally I was gentle in detangling, but I wasn't always perfect, and yes more hair came out as a result of the detangling. Definitely hair that didn't really come out before when I wasn't styling curly and didn't have as many (or any!) tangles.


So basically I'm thinking:

softened follicles (from overconditioned scalp) + vigorous massaging + detangling in the shower = excess shedding = hair loss over time

Definite possibility here.
Another possibility:

My skin is acne-prone, on my face and chest. I have to be careful about the moisturizers that I use. Though I've never gotten pimples on my scalp (lol), it is very possible that my scalp didn't respond well to comedogenic ingredients. I'm pretty positive that at least some of the ingredients in my co-wash were comedogenic. I'm pretty sure this would rule out cowashing for me in general. And again I hope I didn't do any irreparable damage to the follicles.
Another possibility:

My skin is acne-prone, on my face and chest. I have to be careful about the moisturizers that I use. Though I've never gotten pimples on my scalp (lol), it is very possible that my scalp didn't respond well to comedogenic ingredients. I'm pretty positive that at least some of the ingredients in my co-wash were comedogenic. I'm pretty sure this would rule out cowashing for me in general. And again I hope I didn't do any irreparable damage to the follicles.
Originally Posted by PomegranateCurl
Potential bingo: acne is actually as much inflammatory condition as it is an infective one. You definitely should be checking ingredients and again review your diet - plenty can be done to balance hormones, moderate the immune response and reduce systemic inflammation.

No, acne does not necessarily preclude co-washing with any product for anyone with acne, plenty of people successfully use the Oil Cleansing Method, but using a decent emulsifier and not over stimulating works best. I definitely would not choose products which are highly moisturising or contain lots of plant extracts, simple and gentle, acidic pH and rinses clean.

Comedogenicity is far from the only issue, known irritants and ingredients that damage the skin barrier/ acid mantle (keeps bacteria out) are just as much of a risk. Some with acne respond really well to dropping sulphates and other anionic surfactants, some worsen before they improve as the skin flora recovers and the skin becomes better hydrated.
2a-2c, medium texture, porous/ colour treated. Three years CG. Past bra strap length heading for waist.

CO-wash: Inecto coconut/ Elvive Volume Collagen
Treatments: Komaza Care Matani, coconut/ sweet almond/ fractionated coconut oils, Hairveda Sitrinillah
Leave in: Fructis Sleek & Shine (old), Gliss Ultimate Volume, various Elvive
Styler: Umberto Giannini jelly, Au Naturale styling gelee
Flour sack towel, pixie diffuse or air dry.
Experimenting with: benign neglect
So I'm thinking that what might have happened is that my follicles got overconditioned over time, making the hair easy to rip out. Besides the lighter conditioner I used to co-wash, I also started adding my heavier RO higher up on my canopy to combat canopy frizz. I would also plop, which means that the well-conditioned hair would be smushed near my scalp until set. Before I started cowashing, I would only put my RO on my hair starting at the ears... so I can see how it is possible that my scalp could have been getting overconditioned.

Excessive Shedding: Could Co-Washing Be the Culprit? | hairscapades This poster believes she had a similar experience. My hair is also fine like the poster.

I've also been researching pre-waxing techniques, and many sites suggest that softened follicles let up hair more easily.

"Softer hair follicles release hair more easily; to make your waxing experience both pleasant and productive try exfoliating and then moisturizing prior to the event. First, exfoliate the area you want to remove hair from, then smooth on some type of non-comedogenic (non-clogging) moisturizer to soften hair follicles and the surrounding skin." Discovery Health "What's the best way to prepare skin for waxing?"


When I was reading about co-washing before I started I read that you had to be very thorough and massage the scalp very well in order to cleanse effectively. Being very paranoid about the possibility of buildup, I massaged vigorously. Maybe too well.

I never experienced buildup on the scalp. It was always clean, never oily, gunky, smelly or anything unpleasant. This supports the possibility that I was over-massaging as opposed to under-massaging.

Since I've been scrunching and styling my hair curly, I've also been experiencing more tangles, which means showers meant more time detangling. Generally I was gentle in detangling, but I wasn't always perfect, and yes more hair came out as a result of the detangling. Definitely hair that didn't really come out before when I wasn't styling curly and didn't have as many (or any!) tangles.


So basically I'm thinking:

softened follicles (from overconditioned scalp) + vigorous massaging + detangling in the shower = excess shedding = hair loss over time

Definite possibility here.
Originally Posted by PomegranateCurl
OMG the way you describe it all: it's me!

I was reading the same articles today and was thinking the same thing: I have over-conditioned hair follicles! All the things you mentioned apply to me.
So I'm going to make sure that no conditioner touches my scalp for a while and see what that will do for my hair and scalp. I recently tried a conditioner treatment with a lot of oil, and my hair seems thinner than ever!
LeanneM and PomegranateCurl like this.
2B/C-3A) fine - low porosity
Routine:
Wash: Daily Fix,SMT, Kesham, Urtekram
RO: Motions CPR Li, Inecto Cocos co, AO GPB, KCTT
acv-rinse, sometimes honey-rinse
LI: coconut oil (winter), CJBC-LI
Styling: AVG, Etos Solid Power Gel, Taft gel, CJPP
, JCCC, BRHG
Plopping~Pixiecurl diffuse~clipping
KrullenWijzer.blogspot.nl
OMG the way you describe it all: it's me!

I was reading the same articles today and was thinking the same thing: I have over-conditioned hair follicles! All the things you mentioned apply to me.
So I'm going to make sure that no conditioner touches my scalp for a while and see what that will do for my hair and scalp. I recently tried a conditioner treatment with a lot of oil, and my hair seems thinner than ever!
Originally Posted by rapunzel4ever
We all have fine hair! Interesting. I know a lot of fine-haired curlies cowash w/ no problems, but I could see how our follicles would be much smaller than that of medium or coarse haired curlies and therefore the hair in overconditioned follicles would be sliding out much more easily instead of being strongly rooted in the scalp.

It's a good idea to give your scalp a break from conditioner for a little while and see if the thinning stabilizes. And measure and log your ponytail size!
This post has frightened me. I feel like my hair is thinning and I think my scalp is over conditioned... What kind of low poo do you use? I've been thinking of getting some but not anything too expensive... Suggestions?

This post has frightened me. I feel like my hair is thinning and I think my scalp is over conditioned... What kind of low poo do you use? I've been thinking of getting some but not anything too expensive... Suggestions?
Originally Posted by OhSunshinex3
The best way to tell if your hair is thinning is to keep measuring your ponytail. Also start taking pictures of your hair and scalp, parting it in different areas. I would also suggest taking pictures of the shower drain (I know gross) to see how much you're losing in the shower. You basically have to keep a good hair journal and log everything.

From the products you are using I suspect you are US-based? I am now in Asia, so I'm using Renew Skincare Australia Everyday Purifying Shampoo. These are the ingredients:

Aqua, Cocoamidopropyl Betaine, Decyl Glucoside, PEG-150 Pentaerythrityl Tetrastearate, Polysorbate 20, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil (Rosehip), Hydrolized Wheat Protein, Lawsonia inermis (henna) extract, Arctium Lappa Extract (Burdock), Naturtinum oficinale (watercress) extract, Equisetum Arvense Extract (Horsetail), Urtica Dioica Extract (Nettle), Syzygium paniculata (lilly pilly) extract, Yucca Schidigera (yucca) extract, Santalum Spicatum (Australian Sandalwood) oil, Citrus Reticulata (Tangerine) Essential Oil, Vanilla Planifolia Extract, Macadamia Ternifolia (Macadamia) Oil, Simmondsia Chinesis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Lecithin (soy), Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Sodium Hydroxymethylglycinate (vegetable), Citric Acid (pH balance) Citrus grandis (grapefruit seed) extract, Phenoxyethanol.

I've had no problems w/ this low-poo, other then that I find it a bit drying, which is why I switched to cowashing in the first place.

If you're US based, a very popular low-poo is SheaMoisture Moisture Retention Shampoo. I've never tried it, but when I go back (in about a month) I'll be sure to buy a bottle. It has good reviews.

You can also go to the "products" section of nc.com and search for low-poos and read reviews. I believe there are many low-poos now on the market.
My hair is not long enough for me to measure my ponytail but the sides of my head seem to feel thinner than before and I suspect it's because my hair is less porous there and I use a lot of conditioner. I'll keep an eye on it and check out Shea Moisture. Thanks!

When I started cowashing 4 years ago, I noticed a definite increase in hair loss. I figured it was just shed hair that wasn't coming out due to products in my hair. When I stopped cowashing a couple of years ago, I lost much less hair even though I was still using products. A few weeks ago a tried cowashing again for about a week. I lost a LOT of hair. No more cowashing for me.
2C/3A, fine, higher porosity.
When I started cowashing 4 years ago, I noticed a definite increase in hair loss. I figured it was just shed hair that wasn't coming out due to products in my hair. When I stopped cowashing a couple of years ago, I lost much less hair even though I was still using products. A few weeks ago a tried cowashing again for about a week. I lost a LOT of hair. No more cowashing for me.
Originally Posted by JLeighs
Thank you for sharing. Interesting that your hair is also fine.

Did the hair that you lost grow back normally?
I have the same problem. My hair is definitely thinner. Especially at the temples and behind the ears. I had very thick hair before and it still looks fine when I wear a wash & go but when I put my hair in a ponytail you can see my scalp through the hair at the sides!!
Scary...
I should stop cowashing for a while. My problem is that I have VERY dry hair and it starts breaking when I don't condition enough. So I don't know what the best solution would be.
I have the same problem. My hair is definitely thinner. Especially at the temples and behind the ears. I had very thick hair before and it still looks fine when I wear a wash & go but when I put my hair in a ponytail you can see my scalp through the hair at the sides!!
Scary...
I should stop cowashing for a while. My problem is that I have VERY dry hair and it starts breaking when I don't condition enough. So I don't know what the best solution would be.
Originally Posted by AnnieRose
I'm sorry to hear this. Have you tried the mod-CG method... conditioning up the lengths and then only using poo on the scalp?
Last night I washed my hair with Kesham (for strengthening the roots) after that I did a mild ACV-rinse and RO only on the lengths.
I suddenly realized that I usually comb my hair for a really long time in the shower. Not just to get the knots out, I don't have that many knots, but just because I like the feeling of the comb through my hair. So that could attribute to hair loss as well, since follicles are weak when wet, especially conditioned follicles!
While styling my hair I avoided my scalp again. No products on the scalp! Also I tried to touch my hair as less as possible, so not over-raking or over-scrunching products in.

I really hope this will work out.
The strange thing is, I've tried all different things and stylers to get more root volume and now without it I have more volume and beautiful defined curls!?!

_____
2b-c/3a med/fine- low porosity- normal elasticity, BSL
PomegranateCurl likes this.
2B/C-3A) fine - low porosity
Routine:
Wash: Daily Fix,SMT, Kesham, Urtekram
RO: Motions CPR Li, Inecto Cocos co, AO GPB, KCTT
acv-rinse, sometimes honey-rinse
LI: coconut oil (winter), CJBC-LI
Styling: AVG, Etos Solid Power Gel, Taft gel, CJPP
, JCCC, BRHG
Plopping~Pixiecurl diffuse~clipping
KrullenWijzer.blogspot.nl
When I started cowashing 4 years ago, I noticed a definite increase in hair loss. I figured it was just shed hair that wasn't coming out due to products in my hair. When I stopped cowashing a couple of years ago, I lost much less hair even though I was still using products. A few weeks ago a tried cowashing again for about a week. I lost a LOT of hair. No more cowashing for me.
Originally Posted by JLeighs
Thank you for sharing. Interesting that your hair is also fine.

Did the hair that you lost grow back normally?
Originally Posted by PomegranateCurl
My hair grew back fine. I didn't let this recent cowashing experiment continue on long enough for my hair to be noticeably thinner. I think in my case the extra manipulation required to get my hair clean is the culprit. When I use shampoo, I gently massage it for only a few seconds into the scalp area. I don't massage the length. The suds travel down my length as I'm rinsing it out and that gets my length very clean without any dryness. It works for me.
2C/3A, fine, higher porosity.
My hair grew back fine. I didn't let this recent cowashing experiment continue on long enough for my hair to be noticeably thinner. I think in my case the extra manipulation required to get my hair clean is the culprit. When I use shampoo, I gently massage it for only a few seconds into the scalp area. I don't massage the length. The suds travel down my length as I'm rinsing it out and that gets my length very clean without any dryness. It works for me.
Originally Posted by JLeighs
Out of curiosity, what poo do you use?

And same here, I'm leaning toward it being mechanical hair loss.
i no longer co wash either. this is one of the reasons. i have very thick coarse hair so mine is
definately not fine. i noticed i lost a TON of hair
when cowashing. while i wouldn't scrub HARDER when cowashing compared to shampooing i would
scrub LONGER as i was told i should do it for 3 minutes or so. my scalp didn't like cowashing,it would immediately get a white build up. i noticed
it immediately in my part by my forehead..got a little panicky!..switched back to what i was using and now i have a lot of "new" hair growing in which at first i thought was frizz(heh..)but when i looked closer its all about one or two inch long new hairs all growing in at one time. so i think you will see your hair grow back you just might look like a lil baby bird for a while!lol! i believe that it was a combo of the increased time spent scrubbing(all though gentle) with the conditioner that loosened the hairs? idk,i'm just done with cowashing and am using lowpoos!
PomegranateCurl likes this.
I was about to post about my own journey with co-washing. How when I first started CG I was using As I Am Co-Wash and how my hair loved it but my scalp hated it. (Caused buildup and itching. Through research I narrowed down the culprit to be a certain preservative.) Then I went a few weeks where I'd low poo once a week with Shea Moisture, and the other days I'd water wash the scalp or do a tea tree oil massage treatment. Then I found Trader Joe's Tea Tree Tingle, my holy grail co-wash, and went back to co-washing. All this in almost 6 months' time of going CG and I've noticed no discernible hair loss. Indeed, I feel like I'm losing less hair since going CG. But then it hit me! Before going CG I used Wen. And what is Wen other than a conditioner/cleanser? (I guess I just used to think of it as shampoo and conditioner in one.) So I've been co-washing for 5 and 1/2 years. No hair loss. Nevertheless, this thread has rattled me a little. After reading it I low-poo'd to see if I lost a little less hair but my hair ball was normal sized. I'm gonna try low-pooing all week with SM and seeing if that makes any difference in my hair ball's size. I think I could switch to just low-pooing so long as it was SM (a very gentle low-poo). Seeing as how I prepoo every time I wash now anyways, whether it be a co-wash or a low-poo. . . that oughtta protect my hair from drying out.

One note though, low-pooing is not mod-CG. The technique of low-pooing the scalp and conditioning the rest of your hair is in the CG handbook. Even Deva sells a low poo. All CG really means is no sulfates, no silicones. (And no heat styling, I guess.) So I think so long as the poo is sulfate and harsh surfactant free, most curly girls' hair should be fine, right?
3A - C, HP, ME, HD. (Coarse, High Porosity, Medium Elasticity, High Density.)

CG since Nov. 2012

Poos: SM Moisture Retention + Yucca Baobab, TJ's Tea Tree Tingle
Condish: TJ 'sTea Tree Tingle*, SM Moisture Retention* + Curl & Shine + Yucca Baobab, Yes to Blueberries
Stylers: KCKT*, SM Curl Enhancing Smoothie* + Curl & Style Milk*, KCCC*, FSG*, CJ Pattern Pusha, Curl Keeper
Sealers: Jojoba* or Grapeseed* oil

* = HG

I have the same problem. My hair is definitely thinner. Especially at the temples and behind the ears. I had very thick hair before and it still looks fine when I wear a wash & go but when I put my hair in a ponytail you can see my scalp through the hair at the sides!!
Scary...
I should stop cowashing for a while. My problem is that I have VERY dry hair and it starts breaking when I don't condition enough. So I don't know what the best solution would be.
Originally Posted by AnnieRose
AnnieRose, do you prepoo every time? (Even 30 minutes before a wash makes a difference.) My hair isn't especially delicate or prone to breakage (probably because my curls aren't as tight as yours) but it is highly porous and it does get very, very dry. Especially with the sun now that summer's here. I've recently gone from prepooing once a week to twice a week to prepooing before every wash. My hair just feels more supple, soft, and responds better this way. (Detangles so much faster!) Maybe if you did this you could switch to a low poo. . . ? Also try castor oil on those areas where you see the scalp. I told my mother to do this and she's growing baby hairs at the temples. It's really filling out fast.
3A - C, HP, ME, HD. (Coarse, High Porosity, Medium Elasticity, High Density.)

CG since Nov. 2012

Poos: SM Moisture Retention + Yucca Baobab, TJ's Tea Tree Tingle
Condish: TJ 'sTea Tree Tingle*, SM Moisture Retention* + Curl & Shine + Yucca Baobab, Yes to Blueberries
Stylers: KCKT*, SM Curl Enhancing Smoothie* + Curl & Style Milk*, KCCC*, FSG*, CJ Pattern Pusha, Curl Keeper
Sealers: Jojoba* or Grapeseed* oil

* = HG

My hair grew back fine. I didn't let this recent cowashing experiment continue on long enough for my hair to be noticeably thinner. I think in my case the extra manipulation required to get my hair clean is the culprit. When I use shampoo, I gently massage it for only a few seconds into the scalp area. I don't massage the length. The suds travel down my length as I'm rinsing it out and that gets my length very clean without any dryness. It works for me.
Originally Posted by JLeighs
Out of curiosity, what poo do you use?

And same here, I'm leaning toward it being mechanical hair loss.
Originally Posted by PomegranateCurl
I use Giovanni 50/50. It's my HG shampoo.
2C/3A, fine, higher porosity.
@JLeighs: good to know your hair grew back. I hope it will happen to me as well. How often do you shampoo and do you use sulfates or mild surfactants like coco betaine?

_____
2b-c/3a med/fine- low porosity- normal elasticity, BSL
2B/C-3A) fine - low porosity
Routine:
Wash: Daily Fix,SMT, Kesham, Urtekram
RO: Motions CPR Li, Inecto Cocos co, AO GPB, KCTT
acv-rinse, sometimes honey-rinse
LI: coconut oil (winter), CJBC-LI
Styling: AVG, Etos Solid Power Gel, Taft gel, CJPP
, JCCC, BRHG
Plopping~Pixiecurl diffuse~clipping
KrullenWijzer.blogspot.nl

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