Both men and women are often searching for natural solutions to improve their hair, but usually for different reasons. Men may want to preserve their hair and reduce (or even reverse) hair loss, while women are typically more focused on improving the quality of their hair, reducing breakage, and improving thickness.
In this article we’ll examine the benefits of chlorophyll for hair based on published medical research, and suggest some alternative natural solutions which may be better options.
Benefits of Chlorophyll for Hair
We can't identify any medical studies on chlorophyll specifically to treat hair loss or otherwise improve hair quality. This doesn’t mean that chlorophyll can’t improve hair, just that it doesn't appear to have been proven to do so, either via topical application or via oral supplementation.
One way that oral chlorophyll supplementation may indirectly improve hair quality is by improving overall mineral status in the body. We know that chlorophyll supplements contain either magnesium or copper depending on the type of chlorophyll.
Chlorophyllin contains copper, while natural chlorophyll, such as that found in vegetables, contains magnesium. It’s proven in medical research that vitamin and mineral status impacts hair follicle health, so health food supplements like chlorophyll which can improve nutritional status may positively affect hair quality.
However, given that the potential of chlorophyll to improve hair seems theoretical and indirect at best, we would suggest alternative options for natural hair quality improvement.
Better Alternative #1 - Biotin
Biotin is a B Vitamin which has been extensively studied for its benefit to hair. It’s commonly included in Skin, Hair & Nails supplements.
There is medical research suggesting that biotin may be effective for hair growth. A meta-review from 2017 concluded the following after reviewing 18 clinical trials on biotin for hair loss: “All cases showed evidence of clinical improvement after receiving biotin.”
It's notable that in all of the studies referenced above, there was an underlying pathology that may have been causing the hair loss. Patients may have been deficient in biotin or had another health condition which was improved with biotin supplementation.
Biotin may also be effective for thinning hair and hair quality improvements generally. One study on an oral supplement containing biotin found it improved women’s hair and increased hair growth, but the biotin dosage wasn’t published.
Another study found that women with low levels of biotin were significantly more likely to experience hair issues than women with normal levels of the vitamin.
The research highlighted in this section suggests that people experiencing hair issues may benefit from getting a full blood panel testing biotin levels as well as levels of other vitamins. As we detailed in our Nutrition Response Testing review, blood tests can be a cost-effective way to treat health issues because they’re generally covered by medical insurance, and allow for more targeted therapy.
The biotin brand we recommend is Pure Encapsulations Biotin, because it has a clean formulation: the supplement contains an effective dose of biotin and no questionable filler ingredients.
Better Alternative #2 - Saw Palmetto
Saw palmetto is a plant which has been studied for hair loss and can be taken in supplement form.
One study found that a 320 milligram (mg) daily dose caused an increase in hair growth in a statistically significant percentage of participants. The hair growth benefits were less than that seen by participants using a prescription pharmaceutical drug (finasteride), but that prescription medication can cause sexual side effects so patients sometimes seek alternative treatments.
Another study on saw palmetto found that both topical and oral preparations were effective for hair loss, with 60% overall improvement in hair quality across all studies examined.
The saw palmetto supplement we recommend is Havasu Nutrition Saw Palmetto. It provides an effective dose of saw palmetto (500 mg), and contains no questionable additive ingredients.