Female Baldness - Female Hair Loss Guide

The majority of information we have presented in this guide is aimed at men as they tend to experience this to a larger extent than women.

Male pattern baldness is a major cause of hair loss in men and receives a great deal of attention but are you aware that women too can suffer from ‘female pattern baldness’?

Probably not. Many people assume that losing your hair is something that only happens to men but women are also affected. However, hair loss in women differs from that in men.


Women can experience a form of baldness similar to men but the biggest cause of hair loss in women is due to a condition called ‘telogen effluvium’.

What is ‘telogen effluvium?’

This is a condition in which more hair than normal is shed during the hair growth cycle. This excess loss results in a thinning of the hair and eventual leads to hair loss.

It is a temporary condition which occurs after childbirth but can occur as a result of any period of stress, e.g. accident or illness.

What happens is that you notice a large amount of hair loss when you wash your hair and there will also be a noticeable thinning of your hair in general. Childbirth affects the hair growth cycle to the extent that new hair growth is prevented. Older hairs are shed as per normal but this happens before they have reached the end of their natural life cycle.

This results in more hairs than usual being lost.

It takes around two to three months for new hair to be grown but when it does your hair growth cycle should return to normal.

Why is female hair loss different from male hair loss

The main difference between male hair loss and female hair loss is hormones. Hair loss in men usually occurs due to genetics but changes in hormones are usually the cause of hair loss in women.

Hormones fluctuate in women on a monthly basis but other changes include pregnancy, hormone replacement therapy (HRT), menopause and stopping/starting birth control.

Changes in oestrogen or testosterone production can impact upon hair growth. An excess or lack of these hormones will directly affect the amount of hair grown and shed.

Other causes of hair loss in women include:

    • Over styling or excessive use of hair products
    • Stress
    • Illness
    • Bad/poor diet
    • Trichotillomania

Female pattern baldness happens for the same reasons as in men. Women have tiny amounts of testosterone in their bodies just as men have tiny amounts of oestrogen and these can affect hair growth.

Testosterone is converted to 5-dihydrotestosterone’ (5-DHT) which then impacts upon the hair follicles, causing them to shrink and eventually die. This breakdown prevents them from producing new hair which leads to thinning and eventual loss.

Female hair loss Guide Index:

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