The types and degrees of hair problems for women vary with countries and races, however they can be roughly classified into two groups: frizzy and less volume. Fewer women suffer severe alopecia than do men but for many women, the hair density and hair diameter decrease as they grow older. Reductions of hair volume have a great impact on appearance.
For women, balding or hair loss has more serious consequences for quality of life than for men. One characteristic of hair loss in females is a widespread and diffuse balding area that differs considerably from male pattern baldness and makes it more difficult to diagnose alopecia in women.
The hair cycle consists of three phases. In the anagen or growth phase, hair matrix cells grow rapidly, extending the hair shafts. In the catagen or regression phase, hair matrix cell growth is diminished and epithelial cells around hair bulbs undergo apoptosis. In the telogen or resting phase, hair follicles shrink and stop growing.
The anagen period of normal human hair growth is as long as four to seven years, but in some kinds of alopecia, it gradually becomes shorter and finally decreases to only a few months. As a result, the hair does not grow to be hard, thick terminal hair, but remains as thin, short, vellus hair and enters the catagen phase. Thick hair is produced during anagen so it is important to act on hair follicles during that phase to improve hair volume. To make hair thicker for effective hair growth promotion it is necessary to increase anagen hair and also to maintain the anagen period of each hair follicle.
This study examines the efficacy of the hair growth promoter t-flavanone on female pattern baldness. t-Flavanone or trans-3, 4′-dimethyl-3-hydroxyflavanone is known for its effect on hair development and its efficacy to treat male pattern baldness.
Excerpt Only This is a shortened version or summary of the article that appeared in the December 2007 issue of Cosmetics & Toiletries magazine. The full content is not currently available online.