When I found out I was pregnant, I already knew postpartum hair loss would probably come for me — it’s reported that postpartum hair loss affects 40% to 50% of people who give birth. As someone with fine hair anyway, I mentally prepared myself to look like Gollum in The Lord of the Rings after every workout or shower. What no one prepared me for was postpartum hair regrowth, when all your fallen follicles sprout back up.
I first noticed my regrowth because my usual styling products just weren’t controlling my frizz anymore, and the baby hairs around my hairline were absolutely feral. Then, I realized the frizz was actually just super short hairs, standing straight up, all throughout the rest of my hair. Suddenly, the hair around my ears that had come out in clumps was replaced by 2-inch-long sideburns that curled straight up, defying gravity and my every attempt to hairspray them into submission.
So, what’s a tumbleweed-headed new mom to do while waiting for this crop of baby hairs to catch up with the rest?
When Will My Hair Grow Back Postpartum?
There’s no one timeframe in which every postpartum mom’s hair starts to grow back, but WebMD says you should see some volume return by your baby’s first birthday:
“Your hair should return to its usual growth patterns over time. By the time your baby is one year old, you can probably expect your hair to be as full as it usually is at the roots. However, the new hairs growing in will be shorter than the other hairs on your head.”
And, while taking a hair, skin, and nails vitamin certainly can’t hurt you, as Cleveland Clinic says on their website, there’s not really anything you can do to speed up the growing process.
“The only treatment for post-pregnancy hair loss, though, is patience. There’s no magic vitamin or secret supplement that can prevent the shedding.”
Styling Your Hair With Postpartum Hair Regrowth
Until your little bitty hairs have time to catch up with the rest of your head, it’s all about making the best of it. A quick search on Reddit reveals that plenty of other postpartum people have turned to the internet for answers, and there are some pretty great ones out there.
For example, Reddit user lewan049 asked how to control all the new baby hairs growing at her hairline, which she hilariously dubbed her “unwanted tiara.” Moms who lost most of their hair around the temples will really appreciate that nickname. One commenter said using a clear mascara helped her smooth down her own baby hairs, while another responded she’s been wearing a French braid across her hairline to help tuck away the whispies.
Moms on other threads swapped ideas about using gel with a bristle brush or toothbrush to smooth down short hairs. (A massive thank you is owed here to Black and BIPOC women, who have been laying their edges all this time so that the rest of us know these techniques even exist.) Others opted for headbands and hats to control flyaways.
YouTuber Desi Perkins has a super helpful video on how to blow dry your postpartum hairs so they lay down instead of reaching for the sky, and it’s all about shaping them with warm air and allowing them to set.
This woman experienced her postpartum hair loss at the nape of the neck. She considered an undercut, since her baby developed a habit of tugging on the regrowth when in the baby carrier on Mom’s back. Commenters also said good old bobby pins and gel may be the only other option.
No matter where your postpartum hair loss hit hardest, or how much regrowth you’re battling every time you throw your hair in a mom bun, just know you’re not alone. This phase isn’t forever, and one day you can throw out the gel toothbrush and headbands for good. Or, if they’re cute enough, you could always hold onto them for baby number two.
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