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Green tea for hair

Benefits, how to use it, and risks

Many companies are now incorporating green tea into their products, particularly those that promise to nourish your hair. This article delves into the benefits of green tea for healthy hair.

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Green tea for hair: Benefits, how to use it, and risks
Last updated on March 31, 2024, and last reviewed by an expert on January 24, 2024.

Sipping green tea and applying hair products that contain it might reduce hair thinning and even encourage hair growth.

Green tea for hair: Benefits, how to use it, and risks

Green tea is a beloved beverage worldwide, enjoyed for its taste and numerous health benefits.

Recognized for its potential health perks, green tea is now a common ingredient in many products, particularly those promising to nurture your hair.

Still, you might be curious about the actual impact of green tea on hair health.

This article dives into the specifics of green tea and its possible advantages for maintaining healthy hair.

In this article

What is green tea?

The Camellia sinensis plant gives us tea leaves, which can be processed to create green, black, white, or oolong tea.

Green tea involves a unique process where fresh tea leaves are dried and exposed to sunlight, halting oxidation and fermentation, giving green tea its distinctive taste.

Different green tea variants might undergo varied processing techniques. For instance, matcha green tea comes from tea leaves shaded 90% before harvest, offering a deeper taste and more antioxidants.

Green tea is celebrated for its abundance of antioxidants, predominantly flavonols, especially catechins.

Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) stands out as the most significant catechin in green tea, noted for its potential in reducing heart disease and certain cancer risks.

With its high antioxidant levels, green tea and its derivatives are explored for various uses, including combating hair loss and promoting hair vitality.

Summary: Green tea, derived from fresh, dried tea leaves, is rich in antioxidants like epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). EGCG is associated with reduced risks of heart disease, cancer, and may also protect against hair loss.

Exploring the hair-enhancing properties of green tea

Green tea is increasingly included in various hair care items, thanks to its potential advantages for hair health. Let’s delve into the specific ways green tea might benefit your hair.

Potential to combat hair loss

Hair loss is a widespread issue, with several contributing factors like stress, dietary habits, autoimmune conditions, and hormonal fluctuations.

A condition called androgenetic alopecia impacts roughly 50 million men and 30 million women in the U.S. Statistically, by the age of 50, half of the male population and a quarter of the female population may experience some level of hormonal hair thinning.

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Hair loss alters the normal growth cycle of hair, which comprises the anagen (growth), catagen (transition), and telogen (shedding) phases.

Two particular hormones, testosterone and dihydrotestosterone, are known to shorten the hair growth phase and hasten shedding. Research indicates that a compound in green tea called EGCG might counter these hormones’ effects on hair, thereby reducing hair loss.

In a preliminary study funded by a company, a supplement named Forti5, containing green tea extract among other components, was given to individuals with androgenetic alopecia for 24 weeks. Remarkably, 80% of the participants reported noticeable hair regrowth. However, the exact impact of green tea extract in this mixture remains unclear.

Moreover, a study on mice demonstrated that those treated with an EGCG-rich green tea solution experienced significantly less hair loss compared to untreated ones. It seems that EGCG can extend the hair growth phase and delay the shedding phase by mitigating testosterone’s effect on hair.

Green tea may encourage hair growth

There’s evidence to suggest that green tea might promote robust hair growth and restoration.

A small-scale study applied a green tea-derived EGCG solution to the scalps of individuals with hair loss, resulting in a marked increase in hair growth activity within just 4 days. EGCG seems to energize hair follicles and protect skin and hair cells from damage.

In another research involving mice, 33% of those treated with green tea extract displayed hair regrowth after six months, unlike the control group. However, the exact effectiveness and speed of green tea-based hair treatments in humans, particularly for those without hormonal hair loss, are yet to be determined.

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Green tea might enhance nutrient delivery

Your hair is an integral part of the integumentary system, which encompasses skin, nails, and related structures. Hair grows from the skin, drawing blood flow and nutrients during its growth phase.

A study involving 15 participants found that consuming green tea extract supplements for 12 weeks led to a 29% increase in skin blood flow and oxygen delivery compared to a control group.

Additionally, in a separate part of the study, participants who drank 4 cups of green tea daily for 12 weeks showed significant improvements in skin hydration compared to those who didn’t.

Given that hair growth is closely linked to nutrient and oxygen supply to the skin, and considering that inadequate blood circulation can trigger hair loss, consuming green tea might enhance the delivery of these vital nutrients to your scalp, promoting better hair growth.

Summary: Green tea’s epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) might play a role in preventing hair loss by counteracting certain hormone activities and fostering hair regrowth by activating hair follicles.

How to leverage green tea for your hair

With its attributes that support hair growth, green tea and its extracts are key components in numerous hair care products available for purchase both online and in stores.

Here are several approaches to integrate green tea into your hair care routine:

Additionally, consider drinking 1–2 cups (240–480 ml) of green tea daily to enrich your body with antioxidants.

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Summary: Hair care products like shampoos and conditioners often contain green tea or its extract. Apply these products directly to the scalp and roots for optimal effects. You can also consume 1–2 cups (240–480 ml) of green tea daily to boost your antioxidant levels.

Considerations and precautions of using green tea

While green tea and its derivatives in hair products are touted for fostering hair growth, it’s important to be aware of a few cautionary points.

Potential risks

Green tea is generally safe for consumption, but high concentrations of EGCG found in some supplements and oils can lead to complications such as liver toxicity and digestive issues.

A review suggests that the safe daily intake of EGCG is up to 338 mg in supplement form and 704 mg when consumed as brewed tea. Exercise caution with supplements that contain much higher amounts than these levels.

It’s also advisable to consult your healthcare provider before introducing any new supplement into your routine.

For green tea beverages, most individuals can drink 3–4 cups (710–950 ml) daily without adverse effects.

Application of products

The surge of green tea-based hair products is notable, but their effectiveness hinges on correct application.

Hair follicles, which are nourished by blood flow, are responsible for growing hair strands. Once the hair strand extends out of the follicle, it no longer receives nutrients.

Hence, drinking green tea may not influence the strength of your existing hair but can impact the growth of new hair from the follicles. While certain hair products can moisturize and nurture hair strands, they don’t stimulate growth.

For hair masks or shampoos, it’s crucial to apply them to your roots and scalp to ensure the product reaches your hair follicles. Additionally, handle your hair gently while shampooing to prevent root damage.

Summary: Up to 3–4 cups (710–950 ml) of green tea can be consumed safely daily, but caution is advised with green tea supplements. Apply green tea hair products to your scalp and roots for maximum benefit.

Summary

Green tea, a drink rich in antioxidants, is celebrated globally.

Consuming green tea or using hair products that contain it could reduce hair loss risks and potentially encourage hair regrowth.

A variety of green tea hair care items are accessible in the market or online. Remember to target the scalp and roots when using these products. Post-shampooing and conditioning, consider a green tea rinse for your hair.

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For those preferring to drink green tea, up to 3–4 cups (710–950 ml) daily is considered a safe amount.

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