Thursday, September 20, 2012

Baldness Alchemy

Borrowing from ancient knowledge of alchemy, Holistic Hair is a beautiful stand alone hair care range. Nourishing both the hair and scalp is our focus and the healing properties of aromatherapy oils have been our inspiration [Holistic Hair Web Site]  

I am as they say ‘folically challenged’  

Would I like to have hair?

Sure yes, but I got over it and it doesn’t bother me being partly bald.  

One only needs to scan adverts to see 'going-bald' does bother others.

They are willing to spend a fortune on re-growing hair.

Bill Gates said recently ‘more money was being spent finding a cure for baldness than developing drugs to combat malaria.'

So this intro leads me into the murky world of New Zealand companies marketing products that claim to re-grow or save the hair of those with male pattern baldness ‘naturally’.  

There are of course medically proven products which do have some success in treating hereditary hair loss.   

Propecia and Rogaine are two of these.     

But what about the prevalent, in-your-face ‘natural remedies’ - say those ‘that borrow from ancient knowledge of alchemy’ etc?  

Yes that’s right alchemy, protoscience, a wishy-washy field of that became unfashionable around the same time we stopped treating the sick with leeches.  

This gets me to Nigel Russell’s Auckland company ‘Holistic Hair’ which I read about in an issue of ‘Sunday’ (insert to Sunday Star Times) last weekend (16th Sept 2012)

In the article by Sarah Murray entitled ‘Hair Today, More Tomorrow’ Russell is quoted as saying he believes [quote] hair loss is treatable.

What by Propecia?

Nope, don’t be silly.

Products like this are the spawn of some evil multi-national pharmaceutical company made in some factory using – shock horror- proper medicine.  

Damn their clinical trials that substantiate their claims for advocacy and the fact I don’t have the necessary authorisation to administer a medicine of this nature.    

He’s what Russell said via ‘Sunday’….

“There are many aromatherapy oils that have shown to support hair growth such as lavender, rosemary and nettle oil. When they are applied to the scalp regularly, the hair appears to be healthier and fuller’


Aromatherapy oils can treat Male Pattern Baldness?

Let's be honest, angst ridden bald men must be the base clientele of any such hair-studio.

Enter Google.   

There was one small study in 2000 (Cooke, Edzard) that stated aromatherapy may help those with scalp complaints and had some success with baldness - more in women than men from what I can deduce. Hardly conclusive stuff worth spending hard earned money on.    

There was no other independent-study wise I could locate on the net of any substance to say lavender, rosemary oils etc had any success with male pattern baldness, halting excess DHT.  DHT is the hormone that triggers hereditary hair loss.

There is little doubt a product like Nettle Oil will cure itchiness, a symptom of the shedding process, but it is drawing a long bow to say it will stop the genetic condition altogether.  

The less fashionable Castor Oil will do the same in terms of scalp itchiness if that’s what’s bothering you rather than baldness.    

Alpha Keri is what I use.

A free and easy way to stimulate short-term growth is to rub the scalp. This practice will also make hair appear fuller but any initial ‘baby’ growth won’t last though.

Russell continues to dig himself a ditch under the unquestioning eye of Murray.

“There is also herbal remedy known as saw palmetto. When it is combined with a zinc and B stress supplement, this may be a more natural way to deal with hair loss”    


There is not one shred of scientific, independent evidence to show saw palmetto can halt male pattern baldness. 

Sure SP can reduce the production of DHT, could be useful in prostrate treatments, but this doesn’t translate necessarily into stopping hair dropping out.

Zinc and B-Vitamins – give me a f#cking break!

With or without Saw Palmetto a diet consisting solely of greens, bananas and beef won’t stop pattern baldness.  

This is why most men appear at the doorstep of places like Holistic Hair – to stop male pattern baldness – get more hair.    

They are not after diet advice.

There’s the partners Woman’s Weekly on the lounge table for that.     

In short: don’t believe what you read about ‘natural’ herbal baldness cures for men who have the wrong set of genes.   

They don’t work in the same way as claiming you can magically manufacture gold from common metals.  

It’s all alchemy.

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