Addressing baldness and falling hair, the natural herbal way

With Novuhair products, formulated from pure botanical extracts, hair shedding is said to decrease by 50 percent in one to two weeks

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12:10 AM June 25th, 2013

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By: Anne A. Jambora, June 25th, 2013 12:10 AM

FANNY Serrano and Nutramedica Inc.’s Mae Velilla

If you’re beginning to clog the drain due to hair fall each time you shower, then it’s time to seek solutions to your hair-loss problem.

It is normal to shed 50-150 strands every day as part of the hair growth cycle, so don’t panic yet if you see a few tangled in your hairbrush. The hair cycle typically lasts two to six years, with about 90 percent of hair in the growth phase and 10 percent in a “resting” phase. “Resting” hair will naturally fall out in two to three months to make way for the growth of new ones.

Hair loss, whether it occurs in one’s prime or senior years, happens for different reasons. Excessive hair loss may be caused by a hereditary disorder, hormonal problems, medications, stress, illness, air pollutants, childbirth or major surgery.

Preventing hair loss, then, depends on a person’s specific circumstances. For some, it’s as simple as changing their medications or getting fungal scalp treatments. Even complying with basic hygiene, such as maintaining a clean scalp and hair, can prevent hair fall.

Inevitable?

But can you actually change what is perceived to be inevitable hair loss as you age? Or can you grow hair again when you’re genetically predisposed to become bald?

Local pharmaceutical and nutraceutical company Nutramedica Inc. says it is possible. Its product, Novuhair, consisting of three 200-ml bottles—shampoo, conditioner and scalp lotion—underwent clinical trials last year conducted by hair and scalp expert Dr. Rica Mallari, and the results showed close to 100-percent success rate among volunteers.

The same study showed there was no progression of hair loss, and hair shedding was significantly decreased. No subjects experienced side effects.

“In one to two weeks, hair fall decreased by 50 percent. As long as the hair follicles are still there, hair can grow again. That’s why it’s always best to treat them at an early stage,” said Sheila Mae Velilla, chief operating officer of Nutramedica.

Novuhair products are formulated from pure botanical extracts. They contain malunggay, which is said to help restore skin and prevent hair fall. Vitamins A, B1, B6 and E, extracted from sweet almond oil, are easily absorbed by the hair shafts and follicles, providing nourishment to the hair to promote hair growth.

“This is a product of long research and development, of understanding the active principles and coming up with a synergistic effect of all these ingredients. Because even plants contain flavonoids that are toxins and might even cause more problems if the formulation is wrong,” said Dr. Eleuterio G. Bernardo.

Bernardo has spent 15 years  researching the efficacy of herbs and other natural products in the pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and cosmeceutical industries. By religiously using Novuhair twice a day, he said consumers can see a remarkable difference in one to two months.

Big demand

The topical scalp lotion promises to nourish hair follicles and promote blood circulation, thus helping hair growth. Massage on scalp for five to 10 minutes before rinsing with water. The lotion can be applied before or after using the shampoo and conditioner.

Use the shampoo and conditioner as you would regular products, applying the conditioner on the tips to prevent hair from becoming coarse.

“We were amazed at the big demand from our customers for an herbal conditioner,” said Velilla. One of them is popular hairstylist Fanny Serrano, who said he first noticed his thinning hair when he turned 40. Now 65, the hairstylist said he spent the past 23 years looking for the right hair product that might help restore hair growth on his bald spot. He was drawn to imported brands because the more expensive the product, he thought, the better its performance would be.

“I thought imported meant better. I didn’t trust local brands. When someone suggested Novuhair to me two years ago, I thought, ‘Yuck. Local,’” Serrano said in Filipino.

Now on his third year on Novuhair, he said he not only got his hair back but has also regained so much of the confidence he lost after decades of enduring baldness.

“I was so insecure then. I avoided going out when it was windy because it might blow away my ‘topper’ (toupee). I avoided beaches. At events, I wanted to sit at the back because I didn’t want people seated behind me to see my toupee. It was like a case of Fear Factor every day. I was even so polite to everybody, even those that I knew were talking behind my back, because I didn’t want them to lash back at me and say I was bald,” he said, laughing.

Maintenance

Novuhair also contains panax ginseng, said to help improve blood circulation; ginger, a hair bulb nutrient and stimulant; rosemary, to disinfect scalp and combat dandruff; lemongrass, to clean the scalp’s pores; peppermint, to slow down growth of bacteria and fungi; and lavender, to relieve itching.

Itching occurs around the seventh week, when black spots appear on the scalp, said Serrano. The black spots are just new hair growing, he said.

Pregnant women, children below 12 years old and people who have allergic reactions to its components are not advised to use Novuhair. It is also not advised to be used with other hair growth products.

If you’re using a different brand, Bernardo said you must wait for a month after discontinuing its use before trying Novuhair. For hair and scalp maintenance, Novuhair can be used once a day or twice a week.

Novuhair 3-in-1 Topical Scalp Lotion, Herbal Shampoo and Herbal Conditioner Pack is available at all Mercury Drug and Watsons stores at a suggested retail price of P4,980. Visit www.novuhair.com or their Facebook page Novuhair Official for more info.

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