My Hair Loss Journey

My Hair Loss Journey

Embarking on My Hair Loss Journey: Navigating Challenges and Discovering Confidence

Thanks so much for stopping by again.  I’d love for you to get to know a little about me and my hair loss journey and how I navigated through the process. 

I’m Karen.  I work full-time as a nurse in a busy Emergency Department in Sydney.  I have 2 beautiful rescue dogs…Ginger, a King Charles Spaniel who was rescued from a breeding facility in Coonabarabran and spent the first 5 years of her life in a cage.  The more recent cheeky adoptee is Hicky, who is a Maltese x Shih Tzu.  Her background’s a little unclear but I believe she was rescued from an elderly person with multiple dogs…all rescued in very poor condition.  Good news is that they are both doing fabulously well now and are a constant source of fun and entertainment and keep me fit with lots of walks.  

My gorgeous, nearly 21-year-old daughter has just moved out to “find her feet” (she knows what life’s all about and needs no advice or guidance or so she tells me)  so there has been an adjustment period for me.

Will my Hair Loss Journey Resonate with you?  Read on...

I have Androgenic Alopecia which is another name for Female Pattern Hair Loss. Alopecia has been with me for over 37 years and I am now at peace with the person staring back at me in the mirror.

Research has shown that FPHL has a strong genetic predisposition and that the inheritance can come from either parent (polygenic) – so I can’t blame one or the other!   I did notice that my mother had identical hair loss to me when she was in her middle 30’s.

In the early stages of losing my hair, I had a gradual widening of my part line and then years later there was diffuse thinning over my crown area.  Below is a scale that accurately determines the stage of hair loss you are experiencing.

The diagnosis of FPHL had me searching day and night at my local library (no Google back then) on topics such as alopecia, medical issues that could cause this, the list was endless.  I was thinking that there must have been some miracle cure.  It was an all-consuming process, from every waking moment till I fell asleep and even then, dreaming about it.

Personally, I felt losing my hair was a “taker".  It takes away your self-esteem, your social life, your identity, and makes you feel vulnerable in ways that you would never have imagined.

I would frequently check myself in the mirror, ensuring my heavily hair-sprayed hair concealed my baldness flawlessly. If a strand had strayed, I'd rush to the bathroom, armed with hairspray.

Over the years, I tried every best hair growth vitamin on the market, hair restoration treatments such as Rogaine (for women), Minoxidil in combination with Spironolactone which can slow the balding process -  Spironolactone is taken when some women have higher levels of androgens (hormones) and typically can take up to 12 months for results to be seen. I found Minoxidil messy, never drying properly on my scalp and my hair having that “crunchy” look and feel to it.  I didn’t like the side effects of Spironolactone and neither did my body.  It messed with my periods, caused breast tenderness, and dizziness. So that medication was ceased too.  If you are interested in hair loss benefits using Spironolactone, you can read it here .

A dermatologist opted for a dual diagnosis of a genetic form of alopecia combined with a scalp fungal infection. I used Ketoconazole shampoo for a few months which improved the infection but not the androgenic alopecia itself. If you have a fungal hair infection, this can clear it up effectively.

Finally, I gave up on the so-called hair loss miracle treatments and accepted it for what it was.  It wasn’t easy and took a lot of work on my journey for self-acceptance and self-love. 

I thought that my only option was to wear a wig for the rest of my life, not realising that human hair toppers were a thing.  I struggled to find the right one and ultimately ended up designing beautiful and ultra realistic human hair pieces. These were not only quick and easy to apply (think extra snooze time) but looked bad ass too!  They boosted my self-confidence and were the ultimate solution from going "meh" to "yeah" in seconds.

It’s hoped that my story has given you some inspiration, knowledge, and the power to take the next step in your journey in wearing hair.

Below is a link to some frequently asked questions about toppers which you may find helpful:

https://www.frankiehairtoppers.com/pages/faqs

Here is an interesting journal article about Minoxidil and its application in higher concentrations:

https://academic.oup.com/ced/article/47/11/1951/6966079

I’d also love to hear about how you have navigated through your hair loss journey.  So please get in touch with me via an email or IG.

Till next time.

Karen

xx

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