11 Best Vitamins and Supplements for Hair Growth
Hair loss occurs for a lot of reasons, and it's far more common than you think. The good news is, there are things you can do to mitigate this, and adding a daily vitamin or supplement to your routine could help. Before you make any drastic changes to your wellness regimen, it's important to pinpoint a possible reason behind the hair loss you're experiencing, as some causes are more innocuous than others. Board-certified dermatologist Dr. Dendy Engelman says that we can attribute extensive shedding to the following factors: genetics, birth control, weight loss, diet, chemical hair treatments, hot tools, lifestyle changes, and aging. "As we age, most hair is reduced either in the form of balding, receding, or thinning," Dr. Engelman says.
Look into taking vitamins and supplements for some added hair growth support. "I think supplements are essential to any successful trichological practice," says certified trichologist Bridgette Hill. "Because combating hair loss requires us to address the blood, cells, and tissue, quality dietary supplements support the body by providing necessary vitamins and nutrients without having to compete with the body. [They] also aid in blocking harmful androgens that lead to androgenic hair loss [and] improve cellular turnover and increase blood circulation, which is imperative to feeding the hair follicle and building the hair fiber."
But remember that vitamins and supplements, while helpful, might not be the only way to improve the quality of your hair. "If you want your hair to grow faster and stronger, don't underestimate the power of a healthy lifestyle and its influence on the growth and appearance of your hair," says board-certified trichologist and member of DevaCurl's Expert Curl Council Dr. Kari Williams. "Take care of your body and your hair will flourish."
If you are ready to add a supplement to your everyday routine, consider the following options, but be sure to discuss it with your doctor before making any sudden changes.
Dr. Engelman recommends this hair vitamin because it uses highly concentrated botanicals to address every stage of the growth cycle, while also containing vitamins, minerals, and amino acids to regrow and support hair building blocks. "DHT inhibitors and anti-stress adaptogens rebalance hormone levels to reduce follicle damage," she says. "Anti-inflammatories and antioxidants reduce damage, and natural vasodilators revive follicles and increase scalp circulation."
Shop Now: Nutrafol Women Hair Growth Supplement for Thicker, Stronger Hair, $88, amazon.com.
This pick from Dr. Engelman contains biotin, vitamin B3, B5, B6, copper, zinc, and cynatine HNS keratin powder that is processed into easily absorbed protein peptides. "By nourishing the body with keratin—which is the building block of healthy hair—hair grows thick and strong throughout the growth cycle," she says.
Shop Now: Reserveage Nutrition Keratin Hair Booster Powder, $40, professionalsupplementcenter.com.
Hill recommends this because it contains ingredients like horsetail, which is important for healthy hair growth. "Horsetail is rich in silica," she says. "Silica strengthens the hair fibers, supports the elasticity of the hair fiber, as well as adds sheen and texture."
Shop Now: Nourkrin Woman Tablets, $41.12, amazon.com.
Another one of Hill's picks, this hair vitamin contains an AminoMar marine complex to nourish thinning hair and promote healthy hair growth, as well as ingredients that Hill says, are important to getting hair strong and long like zinc and vitamin C. "Vitamin C is a water-soluble that helps to starve free radicals which can damage cell membranes as well as helps keeps cells more youthful and healthier," she says. "Zinc reduces inflammation and is essential to how the body uses protein in body functions."
Shop Now: Viviscal Hair Growth Supplements for Woman, $40, ulta.com.
Dr. Williams doesn't have a specific brand of supplements that she recommends; instead, she promotes a holistic approach that includes a healthy lifestyle and the use of daily multivitamins. Our pick is this multivitamin from Rae Wellness. It contains all the important vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin A, C, D, and E, and biotin to help hair grow healthy and strong.
Shop Now: Rae Wellness Multivitamin Capsules $14.99, target.com.
All three experts list vitamin A as an important element for helping combat hair loss. Hill explains that vitamin A is vital in supporting the tissue and cells which make up the hair follicle. Dr. Williams says that vitamin A prevents the drying of the hair, but to be wary of using too much of it as an excessive amount can things worse.
Shop Now: Bronson Vitamin A 10,000 IU Premium Non-GMO Formula Softgels, $9.47, amazon.com.
Hill says that zinc reduces inflammation and is essential to how the body uses protein in body functions, as studies show that hair loss can be attributed to zinc deficiency. Too much of it, however, may make things worse, so consult with your doctor before upping your zinc intake.
Shop Now: Life Extension Zinc Caps, $8.15, walmart.com.