Getting a scalp massage following your regular cut at the salon is not only pleasant but also purported to bring more than just blissful relaxation. In fact, many claim that this soothing technique promotes hair health and, most importantly, supports hair growth.
In this article, we take a closer look at the scientific literature to help you decide whether scalp massages are worth your time.
Do scalp massages actually stimulate hair growth?
As of present, there are not many diverse or large studies on the advantages of scalp massages, and the limited ones that focus on the subject generally have very small sample sizes. Moreover, current evidence suggests no direct link between scalp massages and improved hair growth. However, that does not necessarily mean they do not work, either.
In a small-scale study published in 2016, Japanese male participants without hair loss problems were treated with a daily four-minute scalp massage for 24 weeks straight. Although the study concluded with no significant improvements in hair growth, it did show an increase in hair thickness. This led the researchers to believe that scalp massages help promote blood flow to the scalp, ultimately leading to fuller strands. In addition, the stretching and direct stimulation of the hair dermal papilla cells, which are pivotal in hair formation, growth, and cycling, may improve hair health.
There is also a 2019 study that discovered scalp massages play a role in hair regrowth. The research focused on more than 300 people with alopecia who performed scalp massages for 11 to 20 minutes per day for nearly six months, and as many as 70% of the participants reported more hair regrowth or less hair loss. These effects may also be partly due to improved blood circulation in the scalp, which delivers the nutrients necessary for hair growth.
In short, those who are having trouble with hair loss may need to look elsewhere for a solution to their problem, such as tried and true hair replacements in Singapore, since scalp massages are highly unlikely to be the answer.
Other worthwhile benefits of scalp massages
Despite the insufficient evidence on the hair growth properties of scalp massages, they still have other proven benefits, like boosting hair thickness or regrowth, as covered previously.
What’s more, another small study states that the relaxation from scalp massages helps lower stress hormones like cortisol, blood pressure, and heart rate. This is worth noting since stress is among the well-known causes of hair loss.
However, it’s essential to manage expectations as the effects of scalp massage might take time to become apparent, and individual responses may vary.
On the other hand, hair replacement procedures offer an instant solution for those seeking a full head of hair. Unlike scalp massage, the results are immediate and natural-looking without any downtime.
How to massage your scalp
There are different ways to incorporate scalp massages into your self-care routine. Since there are no general guidelines on how to massage your scalp by hand, consider starting with the following basic steps:
- Press your palms or fingertips against your scalp, apply anywhere between light to medium pressure, and move them in small circles.
- Apply these movements on a single part of your scalp for a few seconds, then move elsewhere until you’ve covered every part of your head.
- Do this for at least six minutes and repeat once or twice a day.
Also, it is common to use essential oils when doing a scalp massage. If you’d like to give it a try, apply one to two drops of your preferred essential oil mixed with a carrier oil like sweet almond oil or jojoba to your scalp before beginning the massage.
Alternatively, you can also do the massage while in the shower. Simply follow the same steps when shampooing or use a massage brush instead of your hands.
Although a few studies show scalp massages having promising results for hair growth, additional research is necessary to verify if it truly has a tangible effect, if any. As such, if you are struggling with hair loss or hair thinning, it is better to pivot towards science-backed treatments or more proven alternatives like hair replacement systems.
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