Boomerangst: Turning Dilemmas Into Discoveries – Thinning Hair

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Thinning hair could be more than just an embarrassing issue

Q. My problem is my hair is thinning out. It’s short and grey and you can see a lot of pink skin through the hair. I am only 62 – too young to go bald.  I used to have very thick, coarse hair and now it’s soft and thin. I often wished for soft hair but I would gladly give it up to have my old hair back again. Is there something I can do to stop the hair thinning any further and prevent my scalp from showing through? Is there a particular haircut that will help make it look thicker?

— Anne, Toronto


A. The first thing you need to do is find out why you’re losing your hair. There are all sorts of potential reasons.

According to the American Hair Loss Association, a private association dedicated to the prevention and treatment of hair loss, as well to educating the public, determining the cause of hair loss in women can be a tricky business.

“Hair loss in women isn’t always as straightforward as it is in most men. In men about 90 per cent of all cases are caused by hereditary male pattern baldness. In women, however, hair loss can be triggered by a multitude of conditions and circumstances.”

And no matter what you find out, there’s still the psychological toll that comes with losing your hair, which I’m sure you know about all too well.

So, your first step should be to make an appointment with your family doctor. As for what you can do in the meantime, there are several options. You might consider a wig. There are some fabulous, real hair wigs out there, although the good ones can command a hefty price. You might think of it as a good investment though, since it may not be possible to resolve this issue as quickly as you’d like. The thing to remember about great quality wigs is they also come with a full consultation that includes proper fitting and styling, both of which are obviously very important.

If you don’t want to go that route, there are also assorted hair loss concealers that you can try. They come in powder form or in sprays and in a multitude of colours. Basically, they just try and camouflage the thinnest areas by temporarily colouring the scalp to match your hair.

As for a particular haircut that might help make your hair look thicker, well, without actually seeing your hair and the shape of your face it’s hard for anyone to make that call. I would advise booking a couple of consultations (which are usually free) with a few high-end hair stylists. Listen to what they have to say, then go home and mull it over before you make a decision. I think the best options for you will quickly become apparent. But no matter what route you choose to go, your first step should definitely be to have a talk with your family physician.


Send Diane a brief description of your dilemma, along with your first name and where you live, to [email protected]

A professional journalist for more than 25 years, Diane Sewell has written for some of the top newspapers and magazines in Canada and is a baby boomer herself. Her new blog “Boomerangst, Turning Dilemmas into Discoveries” is interactive with readers and focuses on life issues – like aging, dating, second marriages, sex, death, family and fashion. Diane will use her expertise to find the right expert to help solve your predicament, unearthing kernels of truth and quickly getting to the heart of the issue.