I cannot start my day off right without a hot cup of coffee. It wakes me up and gets me ready for the world. I am well aware that my morning ritual has everything to do with my addiction to caffeine than to the flavor and I am far from alone. I am one of the many millions who need it to wake up in the morning. Some may need that tea or even a soft drink, but they are all means for that crazy thing called caffeine. What is it anyway?
Caffeine in its purest form is a white crystalline powder that is extremely bitter and stimulates the central nervous system. How Stuff Works says caffeine is present in over 60 plants and it can be found in coffee beans, tea leaves, and kola nuts, and 90% of adults use caffeine in one form or another. According to News-Medical, the FDA classifies caffeine as both a drug and a food additive and you can find scores of information on just how bad it is. Despite all of the bad press caffeine gets, it has some amazing qualities too.
For one, Authority Nutrition says caffeine improves various aspects of brain function including memory, energy levels, and general cognitive functions. It also encourages hair growth. I can go on but I think we are ready to hear a tad more about that! The International Journal of Dermatology found that caffeine stimulates the hair shaft and helps the hair grow faster by blocking the effect of a chemical known to damage hair follicles called DHT. This study just reiterated a finding in 2007 that found that caffeine increased the length of hairs between 33% and 40%. Dr. Tobias Fischer, the leader of the study found that “’Hair follicles that were treated with caffeine showed a highly significant growth rate at 24 hours, and still showed further significant growth at eight days.” This is great news, as it signifies caffeine may help restore hair growth or at the very least prevent abnormal hair loss.
So, this makes you want to up your caffeine intake by just downing a few glasses of iced tea or a couple of cups of coffee, right? Unfortunately, to obtain an adequate dose for those types of results requires around 50 to 60 cups a day and that is not an option, but applying it topically through hair products is. There are two reasons topical applications may be the more beneficial route.
Topical application would allow you to obtain a higher dosage than waiting for it to enter your bloodstream through eating and drinking. Topical applications allow for the higher dosage without the side effects that can occur from high-dose caffeine ingestion. Here are three popular shampoos with caffeine because simply cleansing your hair with them is not enough. The shampoo must stay on your scalp for at least a couple of minutes because it takes a while for the caffeine to penetrate to the hair roots and produce an effect.
- Thicker Fuller Hair Revitalizing Shampoo
- PROGANIX Volume Root Boost Finish + Body Builder
- Garnier Fructis Fall Fight Fortifying Shampoo For Falling, Breaking Hair
If this is not the route you choose to take then you can add some liquid caffeine to your own shampoo as an alternative. Caffeine Informer says another way to gain the benefits is very similar to what I do with my hair tea. Pour cold brewed coffee over your freshly washed hair and allow it to sit on hair for at least five minutes and then continue with your conditioning. When it comes to hair growth, it appears that the benefits of topical applications far any benefit from ingesting caffeine. Drink your morning cup and know it is helping you in other ways than hair growth, and if you want a more concentrated effect then the topical route is the one to take.
Do you use products with caffeine in them?