The human body undergoes extraordinary changes during pregnancy and after delivery. Many new moms anticipate and even appreciate these developments, but they’re often surprised to discover that even the hair on their head can be impacted.
Postpartum hair loss is especially common, with moms often seeing huge clumps of hair in the shower drain a few months after giving birth. This is followed by sometimes awkward regrowth, in which wispy, short strands of hair refuse to stay put. Sometimes, the change is even greater, with moms seeing the sudden emergence of gray hairs or completely new textures.
With so much to handle during the postpartum period, hair might not seem like a huge priority. In reality, however, this can have a significant impact on self-perception. To keep your hair looking fabulous, we’ve outlined a few best practices that will be easy to maintain with your busy mom schedule:
Keep Taking Prenatal Vitamins
While pregnancy itself deserves credit for your previously magnificent head of hair, your prenatal vitamin may have also proven impactful. The folic acid in these vitamins promotes healthy cell growth. Some even contain biotin, which is commonly found in supplements meant primarily for hair and nails.
Doctors typically recommend that mothers continue to take prenatal vitamins while breastfeeding, but the desire for gorgeous hair could be an extra incentive. Otherwise, multivitamins can also provide a boost; they’re included in standard health magazine advice for a reason.
Limit Heat Styling
Many moms simply don’t have enough time to use heat tools regularly, so this suggestion might not apply to all or even most. Those who swear by their straighteners and curling irons, however, may want to think twice; heat damage can make already struggling hair look that much worse. Instead, make the most of your hair’s natural texture and save the heat tools for special occasions.
Try Anti-Frizz Spray
Rather than relying on a flat iron, consider taming frizz (especially the flyways around the forehead known as ‘baby bangs’) with a specially designed spray. Combined with a boar bristle comb, this can make wild hairs less noticeable.
Detangle With a Wet Brush
How you comb and brush your hair matters, but in your struggle to set aside time for self-care, you may have adopted some problematic habits. If you find yourself dealing with major snarls each time you drag a conventional comb through your hair, try swapping with a wet brush. This will ensure gentle smoothing.
Get a Haircut
The last thing you want right now is to lose several inches of hair, but a trim or a full-on hairstyle change can be helpful when you’re feeling discouraged. Your stylist may have excellent ideas to help you embrace your hair while accounting for its postpartum realities. Otherwise, a simple change in part placement may transform your look.
Wait it Out
While the suggestions highlighted above can help you achieve a better head of hair, some issues are simply a function of being newly postpartum. Changing hormones, in particular, will make it difficult to control how your hair responds to your new status as a mom.
If you’ve tried to get your hair to cooperate and keep falling short, keep in mind that it may simply take a few more months for your hormone levels to regulate. When they do, it’s possible that your beautiful head of hair will return. Until then, hats and headbands may be your new best friends. Find other ways to accentuate your appearance — and you may discover that you’re not as bothered by postpartum hair loss (and regrowth) as you anticipated.