Today, it is fashionable to leave natural hair in every way: format, colors, and more. Women who once had progressive or definitive chemical procedures, including relaxation and hair other styling, are now undergoing thru the transition phase to assume their naturally wavy or curly hair.
The same trend continues in the coloring theme. Some more mature women are definitely determined to leave the dye dictatorship to the side to take on the white hairs. And today the alternatives for a well-kept target are many: whitening, platinum effect, intercalated cold wicks, etc.
However, many of these women are frustrated in the transition phase, noting that hair that is born white, is born more rebellious, more harsh and dry.
And it’s true! White hair is not just born without its natural color. What few people know is that melanin, the protein responsible for hair pigmentation, also has other functions for your health.
WHAT IS MELANIN?
Melanin is a protein produced from tyrosine (an essential amino acid) by specialized cells called melanocytes. This pigment is normally brown in color and its main function is to protect the DNA against the harmful action of the radiation emitted by the sun. This serves both our skin and eyes, as well as our hair.
For the hair, specifically, there are two types of melanin:
Eumelanin – which defines brown and black hair.
Feomelanin – which defines reddish-brown and blond hair
In general, there is more melanin (eumelanin) present in the bark of darker hair than in lighter hair (pheomelanin). In some cases, over the years, the production of melanin is altered, occurring then the bleaching of the hair. Not only age, but stress and some diseases, such as thyroiditis or pernicious anemia, also promote gray tone.
WHY DO WHITE HAIR LOSE ELASTICITY AND BRIGHTNESS?
Well, we understand that over the years or under the influence of some diseases the hair loses Melanin and, therefore, remained white. Because melanin is a protein with a protective function, losing it means leaving your hair more fragile. Therefore, to avoid all this fragility, the hair can change its thickness.
It happens that our brain understands that the hair that is white is also unprotected, then we proceed to produce more keratin to prevent the hair from daily aggressions. This keratin production can be up to 5 times higher than in normal hair phases. And, precisely, keratin is responsible for leaving hair thicker, without elasticity and opaque. In addition, oiliness of the scalp also decreases in later stages of life, further contributing to the loss of hair shine and dehydration.
In any case, some tips are essential to keep hair white in a healthy way: lots of nutrition, lots of hydration and distance from keratin treatments. After all, you do not want your hair to get even thicker and dull, right?