What Vitamins to Stock Up on Based on Your Hair Goals
Chances are, you pop vitamins to keep your body healthy, but experts say you should be taking them to keep your hair in tip-top shape, too. Vitamins promote hair growth, strength, thickness and shine, “The best way to get these results is to take a balanced combination of vitamins, and not take them individually,” says Faith Huffnagle, Prose Director of Education and veteran stylist. So, choose a daily supplement that contains some or all of the vitamins listed below (depending on your hair needs and concerns), and also apply them topically, via the ingredients in your hair care products.
At Prose, we pack our products with vitamins and ingredients that contain vitamins, like grape seed extract, cucumber oil, raspberry oil, and Siberian pine nut oil, which contains vitamin E; kale extract, which contains vitamins A, B, C, and K; shea oil, which has vitamins A, E, and F; and sweet almond oil, which is rich in vitamins A, B, D, E and zinc. To further boost hair health, “These vitamins are combined with other important ingredients like maca root, which stimulates blood circulation in the scalp, and watercress extract, which is rich in sulfur to strengthen hair,” says Huffnagle.
Vitamin A: hair growth and repair
Vitamin A helps repair hair, keeps the scalp moist and stimulates hair growth. However, over-supplementing with vitamin A has been associated with hair loss, shows research from the journal Dermatology and Therapy.
Vitamin B6: sebum control
When your scalp is greasy, the result is flat, limp hair. Vitamin B6, which is found in our pre-shampoo mask and shampoo, can balance the production of sebum (oil produced by the scalp) and prevent clogged pores. A study published in the journal Wiadomosci Lekarskie shows that vitamin B5 administered for a period of several weeks improved hair condition in women and reduced hair loss.
Biotin (vitamin B7): hair strength and growth
Biotin’s main job is converting carbs, fats and protein into energy—and as a side gig, it helps keep nails, skin and hair strong and healthy. While it’s considered the best way to treat hair shedding, most of the evidence appears to be anecdotal; there is little research to support the widely held claim that biotin alone has a dramatic effect on hair growth.
Vitamin C: protection and growth
This vitamin is a potent antioxidant that protects hair from free radical damage. Additionally, it promotes collagen production, which improves scalp health and helps your body build hair proteins. Vitamin C also enables hair to better absorb minerals like iron, which is associated with hair growth.
Vitamin D: growth and thickness
Vitamin D stimulates hair follicles, and thus a deficiency can lead to hair loss. In fact, research shows a direct link between alopecia (a condition in which the autoimmune system attacks hair follicles, resulting in hair loss) and low levels of Vitamin D, according to the aforementioned study published in Dermatology and Therapy.
Vitamin E: color protection and growth
This popular hair care vitamin, which is used throughout the entire range of Prose products, is a powerful antioxidant that protects cells from harmful free radicals, which damage the hair cuticle. It also inhibits the oxidation (break down) of color molecules, which prevents color-treated hair from fading. Research indicates that its antioxidant properties can promote hair growth, too. In a study, supplementing with tocotrienol (a chemical in the Vitamin E family) increased the number of hair follicles in people suffering from hair loss.
Vitamin F: hydration
The “F” in Vitamin F actually stands for fat because it’s a combination of two important essential fatty acids—omega 3 and omega 6. This vitamin, which is found in the Prose pre-shampoo mask and shampoo , minimizes water loss, keeping hair hydrated, healthy and shiny.
Zinc: overall hair health
Zinc is technically a mineral, not a vitamin, but it’s so important for hair health that Huffnagle says it deserves a place on this list. It’s involved in hair growth and repair, and it helps keep the oil glands surrounding hair follicles working effectively. What’s more, research from the journal American Family Physician reveals a link between zinc deficiency and hair loss, which indicates it’s important for hair growth.
Pair your newly found knowledge on vitamins with custom hair care that’s designed to help you meet your specific hair goals. Get started with your Prose consultation here.