A recent survey* carried out by NIOXIN showed that when it comes to female hair loss, there’s a lot we need to talk about as a nation – and it could explain the rise in hairdressers training in trichology.
Although the survey focused purely on women who have experienced hair loss or thinning hair, it revealed some interesting findings. It found that not only do women feel that the stigma needs to be lifted, but the vast majority said their mental health has been impacted by their hair loss.
It also found...
- 81% of women think there is a stigma around women’s hair loss
- 91% of women say that hair loss/ thinning hair has impacted on their mental health in some capacity
- 90% of women would like to see more support, advice & products to help with hair loss/hair thinning
All of this stats show the need there is for trichologists to work closely with the hairdressing community, as often stylists are the first port of call for those affected by hair loss.
We spoke to Wil Fleeson and Krsyia, who are both qualified trichologists and hairdressers – and they shared their story on how they got into the field.
Wil said: “The turning point in my hairdressing career where I thought about training as a trichologist was when I started to age as a hairstylist – my clients were ageing with me and their questions in regard to their hair began to change too. Clients would ask ‘do you think my hair is getting thinner’, ‘what can I do about my thinning hair’ etc. And I realised that a lot of cosmetic products were not the solution. I started to research trichology and realised I could qualify as a registered trichologist. However, I initially wanted to have the answers first for my clients, then wanting to become a trichologist came later.
When I did do the training and became a qualified trichologist, and once people understood what a trichologist was, they started to recommend their friends and family members who had hair loss/thinning/scalp concerns to me for trichology services, rather than hairdressing services. I realised there was a gap in the market for qualified trichologists and there were not a great number of trichologists out there and this is where I formed Trichology Scotland. It started off as a simple consultation clinic with a Facebook page and website and grew from there. Now, I do around 500-1000 consultations each year. People of all ages and genders suffer with scalp concerns, hair thinning and hair loss, and ensuring they visit a reputable trichologist for proper treatment is essential.
When it comes to what hairdressers should ask themselves before training as a trichologist, I would say that it’s important that they bear in mind that it’s not an easy qualification. It starts easy but is hard to complete, not because people aren’t intelligent enough, but because it’s quite a lonely process to go through. You need to really want to do it. With that in mind, I would always suggest that hairdressers complete an introductory course first before signing up for the full qualification, where they can get a taster into the course. This is also great for hairdressers who don’t want to become a full trichologist but want to understand more regarding scalp issues and hair loss.”
Krysia said: "My career was prompted by my own hair loss journey which started at the age of 18, following the tragic experience of a stillborn child. The profound stress I endured during that period triggered a fluctuating pattern of hair shedding that persisted for several years, eventually identified as telogen effluvium.
Approximately a year after the loss of my first child, I began grappling with the emotional toll it had taken on my mental well-being. At the time, I didn't grasp the underlying cause of my hair issues, attributing them to a natural thinning process. I failed to notice any drastic hair loss all at once. It was an arduous chapter in my life, yet I never connected it to the trauma I had endured.
What I did observe was the ebb and flow of my hair thickness, with some months being thinner than others, followed by periods of new hair growth. Astonishingly, even as a hairdresser, I had never drawn the connection between the stillborn experience, the resulting stress, and my hair loss. It was later revealed that these were the repercussions of the emotional trauma on my mental health, coupled with a form of postpartum hair loss.
This discovery left me devastated.
Over the ensuing years, I experimented with various types of hair extensions. However, I was well aware that these extensions, while not necessarily poorly placed, could exacerbate hair loss due to their constant use and my hair's weakened state. Essentially, they added extra weight to my fragile strands.
It wasn't until around 2009 that I developed a genuine interest in hair loss, although it remained a somewhat taboo subject. Despite this, I continued to navigate the world of hair extensions, using them to bolster both my clients' hair and my own in terms of thickness.
Fast forward to 2019, when I embarked on a new phase of my hair loss journey within the confines of my salon. I decided to train as a trichologist out of sheer frustration with the lack of knowledge and comprehension surrounding the causes of this type of hair loss and how to address it, not only for myself but also for my clients.
As I delved into trichology, I also made it my mission to enlighten fellow stylists and industry peers about the intricacies of hair loss and its underlying causes. This journey led me to establish Postiche Academy, one of my companies.
In 2021, as I entered the peri-menopausal stage of life, my hair loss resurfaced once more. However, this time, it manifested differently and in a new area. This age-related hair loss significantly impacted my confidence, as my training led me to worry about the possibility of developing female pattern hair loss. Sometimes, possessing extensive knowledge can be both a curse and a blessing.
Since then, my primary goal has been to find a product range that can address both the external and internal aspects of hair health for myself - and my clients. With this objective in mind, I discovered Roots Professional, a cutting-edge hair care range designed to promote hair growth and strengthen hair strands, and GLOWWA, a dietary supplement that supports hair health at a cellular level.
I've experienced a remarkable transformation in my hair over the past year, without taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT) or medicated treatments. I'm pleased to say my hair has been making a remarkable comeback."