Hair oils, masks, shampoos, conditioners - do you consider them weapons of transforming your hair? Has it ever occurred to you that providing blood circulation to the scalp is an important step?
One of the most underrated solutions for promoting hair growth, blood circulation is a lot more necessary than you'd thought! Read on to know why and how you can improve blood circulation to your scalp.
What Expert Says
“Since the scalp has the highest blood circulation for a given area in your body, it helps in providing essential nutrients and hormones.”
Dr. Harish Koutam, Chief Dermatologist, SkinKraft
Does Blood Circulation Affect Scalp & Hair?
Your hair goals are possible to achieve only if you keep your scalp in good shape. Blood circulation ensures that your scalp derives all the essential nutrients and oxygen to be healthy. Dr. Harish Koutam, Chief Dermatologist at SkinKraft says, “Since the scalp has the highest blood circulation for a given area in your body, it helps in providing essential nutrients and hormones.”
Subcutaneous blood flow helps in the anagen phase of the hair, making them grow longer. However, the duration of this phase depends on the nourishment of the hair follicles and genetic factors. Your hair follicles derive their nourishment from the blood which delivers oxygen and hair-building nutrients. Proper blood circulation in your scalp ensures a steady supply of blood to the hair follicles, thus ensuring a longer anagen phase .
On the contrary, poor blood circulation implies inadequate nutrition to the hair follicles, resulting in shortening of the anagen phase. The hair follicles fail to function properly without adequate nutrients and oxygen and finally leads to the production of short, brittle hair strands.
Increased blood flow is also linked to decreased hair loss.
Symptoms Of Poor Blood Circulation In Scalp
- Hair fall - more than normal
- Weak, brittle hair strands
- Lustreless hair
- Rough, dry hair
- Hair strands lose density, becomes thinner 
- Decrease in hair volume
How To Increase Blood Circulation In Scalp & Hair?
1. Massage Your Scalp
Massaging your scalp can be one of the best ways to stimulate blood circulation . You can simply massage your scalp with your fingers using gentle pressure. This opens up and prompts the blood vessels to supply more oxygen and nutrients to your hair follicles, boost metabolism in the papillae at the base of your hair follicles, etc.
You can consider using lukewarm olive oil, coconut oil, sweet almond oil or castor oil for massage. All these oils are enriched with phytoconstituents that promote healthy hair growth.
2. Try Inversion Method
Inversion method may seem like rocket science at first, but it is pretty simple. Allow us to explain.
Lie down on your bed with your upper body facing the side of your bed. Gently drop your upper body down towards the ground until you feel a rush of blood to your hair.
You can also consider sirsasana or head stand pose in yoga for inversion.
No matter what technique you consider, don't hang in there for too long because you don't want to feel dizzy afterwards.
Word of Caution
If you are a beginner, practise only under the supervision of a yoga instructor. Inversion method is not recommended for pregnant women.
3. Cleanse Your Scalp
Scalp buildup can sometimes obstruct blood flow under the skin. It is crucial to have a clean scalp for the blood to flow normally.
Wash your hair every 1-2 days if you have an oily scalp and every 3-4 days if you have a dry scalp. Use a clarifying shampoo once a month to get rid of dead skin cells, dirt, excess oil and product buildup on the scalp.
4. Brush Your Hair
The bristles of a hairbrush are known to stimulate the capillaries and increase blood flow to the scalp. Make sure to detangle your hair with a wide tooth comb before you start brushing your hair.
Some people believe that 100 strokes per day can lead to hair growth. This is a myth. Avoid excessive and harsh brushing of hair as it can cause damage to the hair cuticle and lead to hair breakage.
5. Massage With Essential oils
Essential oils like lavender, thyme, rosemary, cedarwood and peppermint are believed to help in blood circulation to the scalp. Besides, these oils also prevent certain microbial infections of the scalp.
Dilute a few drops of the essential oil in a carrier oil such as olive oil. Apply to your scalp and hair and wash after 30 minutes. Make sure you buy essential oils from safe brands that use high quality ingredients.
6. Use Hair Growth Stimulators
Hair growth stimulators are potent serums with ingredients from recent research and backed by ancient science.
They energise hair follicles and promote a healthy scalp . They contain essential oils that promote blood circulation to the scalp.
7. Do Breathing Exercises
Breathing exercises like pranayama in yoga boost oxygen supply to the entire body including the scalp. Such exercises involve deep inhalations, retention and exhalations for opening up the nostrils and supplying oxygen to all parts of the body.
Breathing exercises also calm down your mind and combat stress, which could be one of the reasons for hair fall. So, what are you waiting for?
8. Eat A Proper Diet
According to Dr. Harish, “Diets rich in vitamins like biotin, dexpanthenol and amino acids help in increasing blood circulation to the scalp.”
Niacin or vitamin B3 increases blood flow to the scalp and has anti-inflammatory properties. Chicken, beef, fish, mushrooms, brown rice, peanuts, green peas, avocados and turkey are high sources of niacin.
Besides niacin, vitamin A, B3, zinc, iron and protein are great for the hair. Eat a balanced diet to promote healthy hair growth.
9. Take A Cold Shower
As a cold stream of water hits your scalp, it causes the blood in the deeper tissues to circulate faster. This helps in maintaining the ideal body temperature.
Haircare experts recommend rinsing your hair with cold water after you've shampooed with lukewarm water.
10. Use Raw Onion Juice
Onions contain flavonoid antioxidants. Antioxidants are compounds that fight against free radicals in the body which cause oxidative stress. Thus, onion helps in blood circulation to the scalp and is often used as an age old remedy to promote hair growth.
Peel an onion or two and grind them in a blender. Extract the onion juice, leaving aside the pulp. Apply this extracted juice on the scalp and leave it on for 30 minutes. Wash off with a gentle shampoo.
Note: Raw onion juice has a very strong odour. It is advised to apply it on the scalp only and not across your hair length.
Water is important for transporting oxygen to the cells and tissues. You may experience dull, rough hair when dehydrated. Thus, make sure to drink adequate water to ensure proper blood flow to your scalp.
Your scalp feeds on nutrients and oxygen while blood helps transport them. Massaging, essential oils, cold showers and all the above methods help increase blood flow to your scalp. While you do these, also figure out and stick to a healthy hair care routine, consisting of basics like washing, conditioning and protecting your hair from heat.
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