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How to increase hair volume and density | 6 Ayurvedic tips

This post was last updated on March 1, 2024 by Preethi Sukumaran

Hair thinning is an extremely common problem today. It affects nearly 60% of Men and half the adult female population. We used to see it post menopause a few decades ago, but now younger and younger age groups are experiencing this, thanks to issues like PCOD, stress, etc.

The internet is rife with articles on how to increase hair volume and thickness naturally. You might wonder is using Ayurvedic herbs like fenugreek, Amla, etc. can improve volume of your hair, promote hair growth or thicken hair naturally (as many articles online seem to suggest).

The problem is that using a herb, or an essential oil is only a small part of the problem of poor hair volume.  Poor hair growth , hair thinning or other hair concerns is an outcome . An outcome of many small decisions we make everyday like what to eat, how to craft our day, how we respond to circumstances , apart from our genetics.

Looking at this problem of hair thinning through different lenses like diet, exercise, or lifestyle can lead us to different paths. A nutrition expert could suggest eating supplements that contain biotin that could add volume to hair. A beauty blogger may suggest using a home made hair mask remedy with ingredients like fenugreek seeds, curd, etc.

A lifestyle coach may suggest working on sleep issues. A yoga teacher may suggest doing asanas to balance kapha dosha in the body that may lead to hair balance.

All of these are one part of the answer, but not the complete answer. Ayurveda gives us a way to understand how all these parts can integrate and help us with our hair concerns. 

 

Why does hair thinning occur according to Ayurveda?

Charaka Samhita –Chikitsa has a shloka which says this:

तेजो अनिलध्यु सह केशभूमिं दागढ़वा आशु कुर्यात् खाल्तीम नरस्या

किंचितु दगद्वा पलितानी कुर्यात् हरि प्रबतवं शिरो रुहानाम

Charaka Samhita Chikitsa Sthanam – 26

This can be loosely translated as:

“When high pitta combines with vata, it burns the hair from the roots very rapidly, causing baldness. If the pitta is not that high, it turns hair grey or fully white.

Aggravated pitta affects hair volume

Therefore, we can understand that aggravated pitta affects hair in 4 ways:

·       First it turns hair grey leading to premature greying

·       Then it turns the grey hair completely white

·       In the third stage, it thins down hair reducing volume and density and triggers hair fall

·       Finally, it causes balding

However, we must remember that Pitta aggravation is not linear. Some could skip the initial stages and go directly to the hair thinning and hair balding stage. This is especially true for men with a genetic history of baldness. 

 

How to increase volume of your hair – what to avoid according to Sushruta Samhita

Ayurveda explains that high Pitta leads to Hair thinning. So logically if we work on these causative factors, we can improve hair volume. The Sushruta Samhita is a key text in Ayurvedic Science, part of the Brihat trayee texts.

In this text, Acharya Sushruta outlines factors that can aggravate Pitta dosha in people which we have outlined below.

But, we may already be prone genetically to high levels of Pitta dosha. Ayurveda explains that we inherit prakriti characteristics from our parents like genetic traits. If our parents have dominant Pitta dosha, we are also likely to have this . This also explains the genetic pathway behind hair traits like premature balding and hair thinning.

Besides genetics, food, lifestyle choices and life circumstances can further aggravate Pitta. Some of these factors are explained in Sushruta Samhita below:

Excessive Anger (“Krodha”) can aggravate hair thinning

Emotional issues or behaviour management rarely find their way into a list of tips to increase your hair volume. But this is the difference between Ayurveda and other systems of wellness. Ayurveda understands the connection between mind, body and wellness. 

Anger Management issues directly aggravate Pitta which in turn leads to hair thinning and hair fall.

This is because Pitta has a close relationship with “Fire” or agni and blood and both of these are harnessed in responses of Anger.

Therefore if we are unable to handle anger or respond with anger, then we are likely to develop Pitta aggravation. 

Excessive Grief or fear (“Shokha” and “Bhaya”) can reduce hair volume

Ayurveda explains we have 3 mental states: Sattva (perfect balance), Rajas ( tending towards high anger and anxiety), and Tamas (tending towards depression, lassitude and sloth). These mental states are a product of our conditioning, learned response to circumstances and are also triggered by the food we eat and lifestyle we lead. 

Grief and fear both trigger Rajas which is one of 3 mental states we can have. Rajas is made up of the mental manifestation of imbalanced Pitta and Vata dosha. 

grief, anger and fear trigger pitta affecting hair volume

If we experience these feelings often due to distressing circumstances or under high personal stress, or even due to eating certain kinds of pitta and vata triggering foods, then again Pitta dosha is likely to aggravate.

High Sun exposure & excessive physical activities can trigger hair fall and thinning

Aggravated Pitta dosha is the root cause of hair thinning and Pitta based hair fall . So any exposure to heat or regular increase in body temperature can aggravate Pitta dosha, leading to hair thinning. 

Outdoor games or strenuous physical activities in the strong sun (for example strong afternoon sunshine) can help the body absorb a lot of Pitta energy . This aggravates Pitta dosha over time. 

This is why we often see hair thinning and Pitta based hair fall among those whose career leads them to regular high sun exposure & high physical activity ( architects, those in construction, professional athletes, marathon runners). 

Your diet can actually reduce the thickness of your hair  ! 

Ayurveda explains that what we eat creates every cell and organ system in our body. So if we eat the wrong kind of food, it could actually lead to hair fall and a reduction in hair volume.

pitta rich foods trigger diet imbalance thinning hair

Spicy, Sour & salty food aggravates Pitta dosha. Regularly eating certain foods like sesame oil, mustard oil, chilies, curds, chocolates and alcohol can aggravate Pitta dosha.

Many foods which we consider healthy are also surprisingly pitta aggravating – for example eating Idly or dosa regularly and frequently can aggravate the Pitta in your system. 

So in cases of high hair fall and hair thinning it is really important to examine our diet and eliminate hair thinning foods from it.

Regular Dinacharya practice can increase hair volume naturally 

Doing Abhyanga and Hair oiling regularly is excellent at improving hair thickness and hair growth. These Dinacharya practices work on hair by giving the body a  dosha reset.

But the key to any Dinacharya practice is regularity. A regular Abhyanga helps keep all 3 doshas in balance, reducing imbalanced Pitta dosha.

A regular Shiro Abhyanga (head oiling) keeps down imbalanced Pitta and vata dosha. It especially helps restore Pitta imbalance in the head, nourishes the eyes and relieves stress in the head. 

But, if we don’t do a regular Shiro Abhyanga or a regular Abhyanga, the excess Pitta energy in the body has nowhere to go . So over time we end up aggravating it, leading to hair fall and hair thinning.

 We saw how Acharya Sushruta in the Sushruta Samhita gave us general factors that aggravate Pitta in the body right from poor emotional management, to poor diet and .

How can we balance these Pitta aggravating factors? Lets look at diet, hair care and lifestyle hacks to improve our hair thickness below.

Increase Hair volume & hair growth with these lifestyle changes

1.     Tips to increase hair volume – Start the 3 step Ayurvedic hair routine

A modern hair care routine actively reduces hair growth and thickness. Chemical shampoos and conditioners which are an integral part of a modern hair care routine play havoc with hair health. If you shampoo your hair regularly with a chemical shampoo, you could be triggering hair thinning because the cleansing agents in a Shampoo are known protein-denaturing compounds  .

Silicones and other coating agents in shampoos and conditioners cause the hair to appear silky and glossy. But in reality they can block the pores in the scalp. This prevents the proper release of excess Pitta energy. Therefore the modern hair care routine increases Pitta buildup that helps trigger hair fall and increase hair thinning.

a well crafted authentic ayurvedic hair routine boosts hair growth and helps improve hair volume

If you are looking for ways to increase hair volume, the 3 part Ayurvedic hair care routine with genuine Ayurvedic hair products is a game changer. 

The first part of an Ayurvedic hair care routine is to replace a synthetic shampoo with an Ayurvedic hair wash powder. It is better than a synthetic shampoo. While it does not directly enhance your hair’s volume, it supports the scalp better and improves the scalp’s ability to absorb nourishment. It also helps keep your hair strong by ensuring the cuticular structure is intact.

The second part to an Ayurvedic hair routine is to add a weekly Hair Lepa (mask). A Hair Lepa works by deep cleansing the scalp and improving the health of the hair follicles. A Hair Lepa also helps bring down trapped Pitta in the scalp, improving eye and scalp health.

The 3rd part of an Ayurvedic hair care routine is to oil the scalp 3-4 times a week. This nourishes the scalp & helps increase hair thickness & quality. It helps stimulate hair growth. It also improves the texture of the hair and protects it from water and chemical damage to some extent.

2.     Eat a Pitta balancing diet to increase hair volume and density

We saw above how the Sushruta Samhita tells us that eating Pitta aggravating foods can directly impair hair thickness. One of the important ways to increase the volume of your hair is to avoid eating foods that trigger Pitta dosha i.e. sour, salty, spicy taste. 

When pitta is severely aggravated, hair thins down, and we grey faster. To help rein this in, Ayurveda advises us to cut down specific high pitta foods like the ones listed above. This improves health of hair in the long term and also helps improve your overall health and balance.

We have a more detailed blog post in 2 parts on how you can modify your diet and balance Pitta dosha within it. Do take a look here and here. Following a pitta balancing diet help cut down pitta aggravation and can help improve hair density , stimulate new hair growth and also help increase the volume of hair.

3.    Switch to a Pitta balancing Bath to increase hair thickness

Bringing down the overall volume of Pitta aggravation is one of the ways to prevent hair fall & increase the volume of our hair. Pitta does not simply aggravate in the head. It aggravates throughout the body. 

A Snana (bath) with Pitta relieving herbs is an excellent switch to make to your daily bathing routine.

A Snana (bath) with pitta balancing herbs helps reduce minor inflammatory responses and skin sensitivity due to elevated Pitta throughout skin. As it helps bring Pitta down throughout the body, it indirectly impacts the hair and scalp. Hair strand thickness improves and hair growth also improves. 

When we work on bringing down elevated Pitta levels throughout the body, we bring down overall Pitta. This helps naturally improve the density of the hair, improves hair length and thickness and improves overall health of hair and hair follicles. 

4. A regular Abhyanga Snana helps boost hair growth & thickness

In the portion above from the Sushruta Samhita, we saw how adopting Dinacharya practices like Abhyanga Snana help balance the 3 doshas in the body. An Abhyanga is an excellent health giving Dinacharya practice that should be adopted by all.

how to increase volume of hair  - a regular abhyanga snana helps bring down accumulated pitta throughout the body

Nevertheless, in the context of hair thickness , a regular Abhyanga helps balance aggravated Pitta and vata dosha throughout the body.  This helps prevent hair loss & helps improve hair health . It also reduces premature greying and encourages hair to grow faster.

5.Pada Abhyanga – Increase hair volume and thickness & nourish eyes

When there is a reduction in hair thickness and density, we can see a buildup of Pitta dosha in the head area.  IF you have high stress, have excessive worry or anxiety, this can tip Pitta dosha to an imbalance.  Knowledge workers and those glued to screens can also suffer for elevated Pitta due to eye overwork. This reduces the density of hair. This also leads to a decrease in hair strength and colour. So hair is weak, brittle and greys quicker. 

Controlling high stress, anxiety and screen time can have a direct effect on hair quality , control hair fall and give your hair a boost. 

Moderating work, working on stress responses and controlling screen time are long term lifestyle changes that you must work on. They have a hair growth-promoting effect besides improving the overall quality of life.  

Controlling screen time is also important. As excessive screen time can aggravate the eyes which are a direct Pitta organ.

how to increase hair volume - Controlling screen time and nourishing the eyes everyday with a pada abhyanga helps bring down daily pitta excess in the head

A nightly pada abhyanga is excellent at reducing stress, relieving fatigue from the legs, and nourishing the eyes. Here’s a longer video which explains the exact technique you can use.

But why is a foot massage helpful when we want to impact the scalp and hair? 

 Ayurveda explains that a nadi (nerve) from the eyes is directly connected to the foot. Therefore we can control the nourishment of the eye and help to increase hair quality by working on the foot.

 This is why an ayurvedic foot massage (and not only a hair massage) is such a good way to balance pitta and help you get the thick hair you are looking for.

For Pada abhyanga, we suggest the Krya Classic Abhyanga Oil.

6. Rest & non-competitive hobbies | Improve hair & increase your hair volume

One of the tips to increase hair volume we often come across is to blow-dry your hair upside down. This helps make the hair appears create fuller looking. We also get bouncy hair, atleast temporarily.

But Krya is an ayurveda first company. So we want you to get the voluminous hair you are looking for by using transformative wellness practices from Ayurveda, and not just temporary hacks.

This is the hallmark of Ayurveda.

So this last point talks about your Mental health.

Competitiveness , keeping score and jealousy are all Pitta-related mental traits. When we become too worked up, attached to an outcome we desire or are competitive, we end up aggravating Pitta dosha. This can also make your hair thinner, weaker and more prone to hair fall.

Pitta imbalance affects us both mentally and physically. So o improve hair quality and health we should work on the mental aspects of imbalance too

Taking up non-competitive hobbies, inner reflection and spending time with ourselves to observe and understand our behavior is a part of the inner work we need to do when we have dominant Pitta dosha or when Pitta is severely aggravated. Thinning hair is a sign of severely aggravated Pitta dosha. To make hair appear fuller and voluminous genuinely, needs a behaviour change if we feel we are out of control.

Every dosha imbalance causes both mental and physical issues. Pitta dominance may see us trapped in vicious cycles of being unable to let go, toxic anger and jealousy, one-upmanship and cutting sarcastic speech that alienates us from our near and dear ones.

The physical and mental balance we suggest in this article has an impact on all parts of our being. Bringing down sour, salty and spicy tastes can help control our extreme anger. Fueling our competitive nature into nurturing and nourishing hobbies and time spent in reflection can help our mind quiet down and quell the fire, burning forces within us.

Any hobby which is meaningful, noncompetitive and helps us find balance and peace can be followed. Gardening, painting, journaling are all some suggestions. You can further reflect and find the right activity for yourself.

Concerned about thinning greying hair?

Hair thinning occurs due to aggravated Pitta dosha. You need a well crafted set of ayurvedic hair care products that can bring down aggravated Pitta and stimulate high quality hair growth.

Sum up: Ayurvedic ways to increase hair volume and density & boost hair growth

Hair loss in women and men is on the rise. So is hair thinning.

In this article we discussed the causes behind hair thinning from Ayurveda and explored diet, lifestyle and product suggestions from Ayurveda to improve hair thickness.

We didnt focus on temporary fixes that are useful only in making your hair look thick. We focussed on integral changes that you should make to your diet and lifestyle and routine that help with hair concerns by tackling the root of these issues – pitta imbalance.

Hair is highly affected by the kind of food we eat, our stress levels, and the way we live each day. We hope this compilation gave you food for thought and explored several ways you could start working on Pitta imbalance. Through these practices we wish for you to have great hair every day. 

Throughout this piece we have also offered suggestions on Krya products that could help you. However, if you would like a personalised hair consultation, please DM us on WhatsApp to get started

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Preethi Sukumaran
Preethi Sukumaran

Preethi is deeply committed to the formal study and application of the timeless principles of right living as laid down in the Ayurvedic canon. At Krya, her synthesis of ayurvedic principles with botanical expertise drives R&D & Product development.

We have over 100 proprietary formulations in the market today which are trusted and loved by our consumers.

Preethi is also deeply passionate about building Krya based on the Indic principle that Dharma leads to Artha ; we call this "Dharmic Entrepreneurship". She works with the Krya team on establishing Krya as one of the most trusted wellness brands in the categories we operate in.

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