The Curly Girl's Guide to Pregnancy Hair Changes
Posted on 03 June 2022
It’s no secret that pregnancy is a nine-month-long hormonal roller coaster. For this very reason, it can also be a roller coaster of physical changes (could anything have possibly prepared you for the back pain or the sudden onset of insomnia?). But along with these less-than-ideal physical changes, something that’s often welcomed with open arms is pregnancy hair growth. You may have heard that many soon-to-be moms find themselves with thicker, shinier hair during pregnancy. Or perhaps you even noticed that your own curl type suddenly changed during pregnancy. Like you, your curls can go through a few wild and unpredictable changes while you’re pregnant.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by it all, don’t be! We’ve covered everything you need to know about pregnancy hair changes (from pregnancy hair growth to pregnancy-safe hair products and even experiencing dry hair during pregnancy) below, with the help of expert insights from our Director of R&D.
First and foremost: can pregnancy really change your hair?
It sure can! Hair changes are one of the many results of the hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy. “These hormones can affect the hair by reducing or increasing oil production at the scalp, changing the shape of your follicles, changing the growth cycle of your hair and more,” says LUS Director of R&D, Michael Ajayi. “The combination of these can change the condition of your hair and your curl pattern.”
Are hormonal changes the reason why many people experience hair growth during pregnancy?
You got it. The phases of hair growth can be split into four different stages, explains Michael. These are: Anagen (the growing phase), Catagen (the wind-down phase), Telogen (the resting phase) and Exogen (the shedding phase). “Studies show that during pregnancy, the conversion of hair from anagen to telogen slows down.”
Wait—so during pregnancy, you don’t really grow more hair?
It depends. Due to all of the hormonal changes that occur when you’re pregnant (perhaps you noticed some mild mood swings?) the growing—or anagen—phase of your hair cycle is prolonged, so not only is it possible that you may lose less hair than you normally would (we bet your shower drain would agree), but you might also experience slightly faster hair growth. In fact, some studies show that during pregnancy, people can experience increases in hair growth and hair diameter. “This is due to an increase in the number of anagen hairs on the scalp, which is why you may experience thicker, healthier hair during pregnancy,” says Michael. Some people also find that they experience dry hair during pregnancy (more on that below!) while others notice their hair gets oily more quickly. Either way, it’s important to use a gentle, sulfate-free shampoo on your curls to ensure your hair and scalp are clean and free of buildup, so you’re giving your curls the best chance to thrive in a healthy, balanced environment.
Are all LUS products safe to use during pregnancy?
Yes! You’ve probably heard that you might want to avoid certain skincare products while pregnant, like retinoids, acne-fighting ingredients like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid, and even chemical sunscreens due to filters like oxybenzone and avobenzone, since these ingredients are possible hormone disruptors and more research is needed regarding how much is being absorbed into your bloodstream.
But when it comes to LUS, you can rest assured that our products are totally pregnancy-safe, so there’s no need to switch up your tried-and-true curl routine when you’re pregnant. All of our products have been dermatologist-tested and approved and are hypoallergenic, non-irritating and safe for sensitive skin. They’re also formulated without parabens, silicones, sulfates, phthalates, synthetic dyes and much more!
What about changes in curl texture?
While many find that pregnancy is just nine months of good hair days, others experience dry hair during pregnancy due to the hormonal imbalance (though it can also be a sign of a nutrient deficiency, so definitely speak to your doctor if you’re concerned). “If you need some extra hydration due to dry hair during pregnancy, our Deep Condition & Repair can give you that boost while helping you maintain the health of your curls during this period of change,” suggests Michael.
LUS products are suitable for all curl types, so if you’re finding your hair is suddenly more or less curly than before, try one of our All-In-Ones that’s more suitable for your new curl pattern. Not sure what your new curl type is? Take our quiz! Use this time to experiment and figure out what works for you and your curls.
Now that we’ve covered pregnancy hair growth, pregnancy-safe hair products and more, ready to delve into the world of postpartum hair changes?