You may have heard the saying Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus. For the most part, I believe that is a very true statement.
However, I also know there are more than a few ladies who would enjoy hearing me say you can learn a lot from women… When it comes to hair loss.
I always knew the biological similarities between men’s hair loss and women’s hair loss. One day I had the good fortune of hearing several women complaining about their own male pattern baldness. Their complaints were identical to every other man’s complaints I have ever heard.
There was only one difference. While most men experience these changes over many years or even a decade, one of these women’s primary complaints was that the change happened so quickly and so dramatically.
In one case, the woman went from no signs of DHT to full-out hair loss within a period of 24 months! That’s when it hit me… the primary difference between women’s hair loss and men’s hair loss is that the process happens more quickly.
If it happens more quickly, then the effects of DHT are more easily observed. In other words, we men can use a women’s experience to prepare us for our own battle with DHT. With that in mind, I came up with these 7 lessons women can teach us about our hair loss.
#1- If A Woman Can Get MPB, It Is Not A Simple Case Of Genetics
Women, as you may have noticed, are not men. So, how is it that a woman can get male pattern baldness?
To lessen the blow for women, it is often called Androgenetic alopecia or female pattern baldness. But the problem is the same. DHT has overloaded a woman’s hair follicles and is causing her hair to fall out.
Here’s the important lesson for men: women are not supposed to have any DHT in their system. Women’s bodies can produce testosterone, almost as much testosterone as a man.
Women have the same organs as men capable of creating the 5AR enzyme, the enzyme which converts testosterone into the toxic DHT. However, a healthy woman’s body is typically producing a flood of enzymes which use the testosterone for other purposes.
A healthy woman typically produces a lot of aromatase. Aromatase is the enzyme which converts testosterone into estrogen. Estrogen, as you may remember from your health classes in grade school, is a woman’s primary reproductive enzyme.
It prompts ovulation each month, but it also helps maintain most of the other endocrine functions within a woman’s body. Estrogen is also responsible for those feminine features we guys all love such as soft skin, a gentle voice, and a huge mane of hair.
With so much aromatase in their systems, healthy women hardly have enough testosterone left over. Any testosterone which remains is typically converted into progesterone, another hormone necessary for child bearing and ovulation.
At the end of any given cycle, a healthy woman’s body has all but eradicated testosterone from their systems. There is no opportunity for DHT to be created.
Of course, that is how it goes for a healthy woman. However, once a woman‘s health changes so does her story.
Once a woman gains too much body fat, loses too much body fat, develops an endocrine condition like low thyroid, starts eating nutritionally absent food, or has any number of related issues which qualify her as being unhealthy-then DHT comes lurking in.
Just as in a man, these conditions increase testosterone production and increase 5AR enzyme production. Unfortunately these conditions also decrease aromatase production.
The end result is a woman with barely any to no estrogen in her system and ever increasing levels of testosterone waiting to be converted to DHT and stored in her scalp.
Once DHT gets on the scalp, it makes no difference if it is a woman’s or a man’s. Hair follicles are hair follicles and none of them can withstand an attack from DHT. An unhealthy woman’s hair will begin to fall out just like an unhealthy man’s.
Unfortunately for a woman, a man’s body can use some DHT for other purposes but a woman’s body is completely unprepared for DHT. Therefore, the hair loss is often more sudden and severe in a woman than a man.
As you can see, male pattern baldness doesn’t just happen to you because your father’s father was bald. If that were true, no woman would ever lose their hair from a “man’s” disease.
It is the result of how you have either consciously or subconsciously neglected your body and let it fall out of health.
#2 If A Woman’s Cure To MPB Is To Control Hormones, So Is Yours.
That’s it in a nutshell. If a woman isn’t supposed to get MPB and does, it is because her hormones have been thrown out of balance.
Likewise, if a woman gets her hormones under control, the MPB stops. Why would you assume it would be any different for a man?
If you remember from The Hair Loss Black Book, your goal should be to get your body in an ideal state of health. This isn’t a set weight or BMI. It is a unique formula of weight and body fat depending on your age, gender, height, and build.
The further you are from your ideal health, the faster you will lose your hair.
As a woman gets further away from her ideal state, a variety of things begin to change in her body. As she gets too thin or too obese, the results are the same. Typically, ovulation will become sporadic and then eventually stop altogether.
She will become moodier and more hostile (a classic man’s DHT trait). Her skin will begin to break out (another man’s DHT trait). Sooner or later, the hair will start falling out.
The National OB/GYN Board, as you may imagine, is a group of doctor’s who focus on women’s health and a major part of their role is to research hormone issues. On their website, there are literally hundreds of articles regarding hair loss.
In practically every article, they reaffirm that women are suffering from male pattern baldness because their body has stopped producing enough estrogen and has started converting testosterone to DHT.
These articles predominately made the assumption or studied women who were obese. However, there were also articles emphasizing women who were underweight or had too little body fat, like athletes.
The result was the same, they had the same symptoms because they had too much DHT.
The solution was simple. As one article stated, “By simply losing 5% of her body fat or 10% or her bodyweight, a woman of reproductive age should be able to restart her ovulation.
As her cycle becomes regular, the affects of DHT should become less noticeable.” The article pointed out that signs like acne and moodiness would be corrected before hair loss, but that even hair loss should be reversible the closer a woman got to healthy.
If a woman getting just 5% closer to her ideal state of health can help save her hair, why would you think you’d have different results? Your hair is falling out because your hormones are out of balance.
It is very likely you are out of shape, be it too much body fat or too little. If you can get just 5% closer to your ideal state, chances are you are going to see some of your DHT signs, like acne and hostility, abate.
If you can get closer than 5%, you’re going to start seeing changes for the better on your scalp.
#3 When A Woman Purposefully Blocks Estrogen, MPB Is Often A Result
You can inadvertently learn a lot about androgenic hair loss at a breast cancer support group. Although I hope you never have reason to attend one, I recently accompanied a friend to a survivor’s group and the topic of this session was hair.
I know what you’re thinking, people with cancer lose hair. While that’s true, these women were discussing how their hair fell out 1, 2, and 5 years AFTER they were declared cancer free.
Most of these women had lost their hair completely during their chemotherapy, although a few had not. Within 6 weeks of finishing their chemotherapy, each woman had begun to regrow a full head of hair.
They thought their problems were over, until one day they looked in the mirror and saw their hair was thinning at their temples and on top of their head.
In some cases, this happened within a year of their cancer so they easily drew a correlation between the two. In many other cases, these women had been living cancer free so long it didn’t initially occur to them that the two were related.
However, in each case the hair loss was a result of a drug called Tamoxifen.
Tamoxifen is a drug designed for use during breast cancer treatment and to prevent recurrence in the 5 years post treatment. Tamoxifen essentially enters androgen receptors and blocks estrogen from binding to them.
The drug is used to block the androgen receptors within cancer cells and in reproductive tissue, but it ends up working on every androgen receptor within the body including those on the scalp.
After chemotherapy, a woman’s estrogen production begins to decrease but Tamoxifen works to ensure that any estrogen created cannot be used.
This means the woman ends up with a lot more testosterone in her system than her body is accustomed to. While estrogen may not be able to enter the androgen receptors in the scalp, the testosterone-especially DHT-has no problem filling the vacancy.
The balance will continue to shift until eventually the scalp has lost the battle. Just as it does in a man, the signs of male pattern baldness will appear. The woman’s part will get wider and her “bangs” area thinner until it is highly noticeable.
This is a widely recognized side affect of Tamoxifen, but if you are taking Tamoxifen DO NOT STOP TAKING IT just because you are losing your hair. I want to be very clear, the benefits of Tamoxifen greatly outweigh the cons.
Breast cancer survivors who take Tamoxifen are substantially LESS likely to have a recurrence than women who do not take it.
The lesson men can learn from this is that unnaturally manipulating hormones can increase DHT and cause hair loss. It doesn’t matter how the unnatural manipulation occurs.
It can be a pill, but you can also get the same result by overloading your system with body fat and toxic foods which hijack your body’s natural hormone regulation.
You may not be taking a hormone blocking pill, but by not nurturing your body you stopped it from using testosterone correctly and forced it to store it as DHT on your scalp.
#4 Hair Loss Is A Red Flag For Cancer
There is no situation where having imbalanced hormones is a good thing. A woman’s hormones get a little imbalanced when she is pregnant, but that is intended by nature to be a temporary thing.
If her hormones do not return to a balanced state, something is wrong in her body.
Pregnancy is the only exception and even that can lead to a dangerous situation if the hormones are not eventually restored.
The same goes for a man. There is absolutely no healthy reason to have imbalanced hormones. If you have more than 1% of DHT in your body, you have too much.
The problem is, DHT is so toxic it not only kills your hormones but it feeds the most lethal creature out there… Cancer.
Remember the National OBGYN board I mentioned earlier and how they study women’s hormones? They are very aware of how dangerous imbalanced hormones are. This is why one of their focuses is reproductive cancers.
This board, along with the American Cancer Society and hundreds of other internationally recognized health boards, insist that being out of shape floods a body with dangerous levels of testosterone and even unusable, toxic versions of progesterone and estrogen (much like DHT is the toxic version of the useful hormone testosterone).
Hormonal cancers, like breast and ovarian (and related men’s cancers), thrive in this situation.
The board likened being out of shape (and the resulting hormone imbalance) to “giving steroids to cancer.” In another article, one doctor called DHT “cancer candy.” That doesn’t sound like a good thing, doesn’t it.
Of course, the board wanted women to know that the signs of hormone imbalance were their body’s way of warning them that something dangerous was happening.
“Losing her hair should be a woman’s red warning sign that she is very close to getting or already has cancer” stated a recent article about hair loss.
Over 60% of women who suffer from MPB will also eventually suffer from breast, ovarian, cervical, or other reproductive cancers. Furthermore, non-reproductive cancers like lung and brain are also “fed” by imbalanced hormones.
While these articles were focusing on women, the situation is the same for a man.
If you are losing your hair because of DHT, your are DRAMATICALLY increasing your risk of prostate cancer and accelerating the growth of possible lung, pancreatic, and brain cancer.
According to a recent fact sheet published by the American Urology Association, 96.3% of all prostate cancer patients have unusually high amounts of DHT in their system.
Unfortunately, 5-10% of these patients will have an advanced, fast-killing, and incurable form of prostate cancer. They had all the signs of DHT overload, but they did nothing and they lost their lives in addition to their hair.
The remaining patients who survive prostate cancer are treated by depriving the body of all testosterone. However, since a man’s body needs testosterone for many functions, there are often some very bad side affects of this treatment.
45% will face lingering erectile dysfunction, diminished labido, and an increased risk of heart disease.
In most of these cases, scientists believe the cancer could have been adverted if the DHT had been controlled years, even decades, beforehand. If your DHT is out of control you are risking a life of ED and heart disease.
You could even be gambling with your life. If hair loss is a red flag for a woman, it should be a red flag for you too.
#5 Hair Gives Out Early Warning Signs Before It Starts Falling Out
Women are sensitive… To hormones. They have a lot of different hormonal situations happening inside their bodies, but they are not supposed to have DHT.
So, this is a case where a woman’s sensitivities can help you stop your hair loss before it begins. Most women are also forced to be hypersensitive about hair style, so they often notice hair changes more quickly than men which also comes in handy for us men.
As I said earlier, women are not supposed to have too much testosterone in their systems and they should never have DHT. As soon as these hormones show up in her system, a woman’s hair starts to change.
Her hair will change much quicker than yours and will fall out sooner than yours, because a man’s body can use some DHT elsewhere. However, if you start noticing some of these same changes you should know your full head of hair has an expiration date.
Color is typically the first thing to change. For some reason, and it is typically only noticeable in Caucasians, a woman’s hair begins to darken when she has too much DHT present.
This isn’t the natural darkening that happens in the few decades between age 15 and age 30. This is a rather sudden change in hair color that happens within a year or two. Many women color their hair so they miss this first sign of DHT.
Curl is often the next noticeable change. When testosterone, especially DHT, attaches to the hair follicle it changes the way the hair follicle functions. One of these changes is how the hair proteins are physically bonded together.
Bonds which were typically structured into straight hair soon become wavy or loosely curled. Bonds that were already structured for wavy or curly hair can become kinky tight curls.
As the hair grows out, the change will become very noticeable. Hair will start to seem “unmanageable”. Some women with especially long hair have even experienced hair that is dramatically curly at the top and still limp straight at the bottom!
About the same time the hair begins to curl from DHT, a woman’s hair also becomes finer. This is not THINNER. There are still the same number of hairs, but the hair shafts are growing distinctly skinnier.
This emphasized the curliness too, because lighter hair can curl up more than thicker hair. The finer hair will also be more fragile to breaking and chemical enhancements.
Oiliness is typically the last sign before hair loss begins. The scalp gets incredibly oily, as you know if you are already suffering from hair loss.
DHT starts pushing against the sebum producers in the scalp and literally pumps out about 3-5X the needed skin oil. The finer, weak hair absorbs the oil more quickly-giving it a weighted down, dirty look that needs to be washed and styled more regularly.
Women on hormone therapy, like the breast cancer patients on Tamoxifen I mentioned earlier, experience these changes rapidly. Sometimes the color-texture-curl change happens in a matter of months.
Some breast cancer patients who lost their hair are surprised when they seem to grow a completely foreign head of hair after their treatments.
If you have noticed these signs (darkening, curling, thinning) on your own head, it is time you acknowledged your DHT problem.
If you are already losing your hair, but recognized these signs before the hairfall began, you should no longer deny your DHT problem.
If you’ve noticed these changes but haven’t yet begun to actually lose hair, you better see these as your hair sending up one last S.O.S. before it begins to abandon ship.
#6 Changes On The Face Equals Changes Within The Scalp
Once again, women aren’t supposed to have DHT in their systems. So, everything happens a lot faster.
This is why women are practically DHT labrats for men: anything that happens to a woman because of the DHT can be seen as a roadmap to what will happen to you.
No where is this more evident than on a woman’s face. After puberty, women are expected to have clear, smooth, and highly touchable skin. When you look at a woman between 20-60 and you don’t see those features, chances are DHT is involved.
The second biggest complaint of female MPB sufferers is the acne. They thought they’d left their days of acne behind with their puberty.
One day they looked in the mirror and there was a big red bump accompanied by some blackheads and whiteheads. Before long, their face was covered and they were back to feeling like an awkward teenager.
Just as it does in the scalp, DHT affects your body hair follicles. It causes a dramatic increase in skin oil production.
The oil production in the “T-zone” (forehead, nose, and chin) typically increases the most.
Women’s skin is not accustomed to this amount of oil and quickly begins to erupt in blackheads, whiteheads, and pimples.
Furthermore, usually the body (mainly in women but also to a small extent in men) uses estrogen to maintain skin health and elasticity but in these cases the estrogen is nonexistent.
This lets the DHT infection grow and spread under the skin. It leads to large, cystic acne breakouts which last for weeks and can even leave scars.
This type of acne shows up more quickly in women, but eventually men with DHT overload will have the same experience.
You may still be unsure if DHT is your problem, but if you have also been struggling with acne for the first time since puberty you need no more proof. DHT is causing your hair loss and it must be controlled if you want to stop losing your hair.
#7 There Is No Undateable Bald Man
Women can see past your hair. Okay, I’ll admit-maybe not all women. There might be some bubble headed chick in a bar one night with the perfect outfit and perfect hair.
She might not give you the same chance as she would some thick haired rock-star. However, she probably is also going to give a chance to a guy with a dull car, an out-of-style suit, a bad zip code, or a small limit on his credit card. That girl is a waste of time.
I’m talking about real women. Attractive, smart, passionate, friendly, and kind women can see past a head of hair to the man that’s underneath.
In fact, these women have their own insecurities that they’re hoping you can see past to the women they are underneath.
So, why do we all think we are undateable and undesirable if we lose our hair. I know that is one of the first worries I had when I realized I was losing my hair.
All I could think of was the hype I’d heard all my life and I firmly believed no one would want me if I couldn’t stop the hair loss.
Then, I took a look around. Everywhere I looked I could see women-BEAUTIFUL women-hanging on the arms of bald or balding men. Were these men fabulously wealthy? Some, but not most.
Did they find these men with full heads of hair and are sticking around after hairfall out of a sense of duty? Maybe for a few, but some of these men were in new relationships with beautiful women.
Obviously, women don’t care about our hair as much as we think they do. Yet, if you asked most people they would tell you women don’t date bald men.
There a discrepancy there and I wanted to get to the bottom of it and find out exactly how women feel about men with hair loss.
Here’s something I think you’ll find VERY interesting. During my research I found 3 studies stating that women were 3-5X more likely to date men with hair than bald men. That would seem like a devastating fact, but there’s a catch.
All 3 of those studies were bought and published by hair loss or hair regrowth programs-including one of the biggest brands on the market!
The people spreading the myth of the undateable bald man are the very people who stand to make the most money on him buying hairloss products!
Of course, the urban legend of the undateable bald man has been around a while longer than our commercial hair loss products, but that set me to thinking about the rumor.
In less than 1 minute I could name more than 15 women I know that have a crush on at least one bald or thinning haired celebrity. So, where did this myth come from?
I did some digging through archived advertisements. In a 1950’s edition of the New York Post, there was an ad for a hair loss cream guaranteeing an improved love life within 3 weeks of using this “miracle” cream which I later found out was just a mix of Vaseline and aloe.
In the San Fransisco Chronicle, in 1873, there was a small box for some type of vapor guaranteed to grow hair and improve a “gentleman’s chances with a fine woman.”
As far back as the 1800s, people have been profiteering on a balding man’s belief that a woman will find him unattractive. I would imagine it has probably been happening for many centuries.
Who knows, maybe the myth of the undateable man originated in a chemist’s lab.
So, exactly how do women feel about balding hair? According to Terence Kealey, vice-chancellor of Buckingham University, women feel pretty good about him! The myth is busted.
Kealey stated that women seek older men because they are more likely to have stable jobs, less moodiness, they are more monogamous, and are often more likely to commit to the relationship.
Women know that more than 50% of men over 50 have thinning hair so they now have subconscious “blinders” to thinning hair. As Kealey put it, many women “expect desirable men to be bald”.
Kealey went on to explain that there is something very primal about a woman’s attraction to a balding man. For thousands of years, the larger more muscular men (those with the power to protect the home) had thinning or no hair.
This makes sense as DHT builds mega-muscles but also causes mega-hair loss. Therefore, women-on a subconscious level-may actually associate a bald head with testosterone, power, and sex.
A study in Virgin magazine concurred with those findings. It stated that women over 30 are more than 2X as likely to be seeking a bald man than not.
That same study showed most 20-25 year old women found leading men with thinning hair equally or more attractive than their full-haired counterparts.
I find it interesting Virgin magazine paid for the study. The owner of Virgin brand, Sir Richard Branson, has found his own hair creeping up his forehead over the past decade. Apparently even the great and powerful have the same insecurities we do.
In fact, a recent study by a popular dating site noted that balding men are surging above the rest in certain cities. In these cities, bald or balding men with dating profiles where flirted with and asked out on dates sometimes 3X more than their full-haired competitors.
Those cities were: Fort Lauderdale, FL, New York, NY, Phoenix, AZ, Minneapolis, MN, San Diego, CA, Brooklyn, NY, Chicago, IL, Houston, TX, Tucson, AZ, and Tampa, FL.
If that’s happening in some of the world’s biggest towns, I bet the trend isn’t too far behind in small towns too. The point is, the right woman for you won’t care about your hair or lack of hair. Unfortunately, your psyche may not feel the same way.
Many men become very depressed when they begin to lose their hair. The increased DHT naturally increases moodiness and aggression and this can lead a man to punish himself unnecessarily for what he believes is his shortcomings.
He may put up walls that get in the way of meaningful relationships. He may dismiss a potential relationship because he doesn’t believe the woman would actually be interested in him.
A negative psyche is a powerful thing and it can use hair loss to prey on your nerves and wreck havoc with your love life.
You may believe you are of less value because you have less hair, but it isn’t true. You may not believe you are attractive anymore, but hair was just one small part of what made you attractive in the first place.
The only way your hair can get in between you and the right woman is if you let it.
Women Can Teach You A Lot, The Hair Loss Black Book Can Teach You More!
Women aren’t so different from us, especially in matters of the scalp. DHT is DHT.
While your body can use a little DHT, any more than a little is a toxic-even deadly-situation. It’s time to use those lessons you’ve learned and stop the situation before it gets worse.
In this article, and in my other articles, you’ve read 1001 signs that DHT is your problem. You know the hair loss is only going to get worse if left unchecked. Now, you’ve even learned that hair loss is an early warning sign for cancer.
My suggestion… Use The Hair Loss Black Book to guide you to an ideal state of health and a DHT-free, full head of hair.