Stress Kills Your Hair: Here’s How to Beat It

It’s called telogen effluvium (TEL-o-jun uh-FLOO-vee-um), and it’s terrifying. This is when you undergo stress, which triggers your hair follicles to go into a so-called resting phase, or hibernation. Within just a few weeks or months of this happening, your hair starts to fall out in clumps, especially when you’re washing your hair or combing your hair.

Don’t let stress make you bald. Here’s how to beat it. Use these proven anti-stress measures to keep your hair where it belongs: on your head!


Visualize a happier, more stress-free you. According to psychologists, seeing is truly believing. By seeing yourself in your mind’s eye as more relaxed and happy, you’ll begin to manifest and feel that in your actual life.

Likewise, visualize yourself with healthier, thicker hair. This can signal to your body to send blood, oxygen, and nutrients to your scalp to help nourish the mental image you created.

Do Deep Breathing Exercises

Researchers have found that while you start to hyperventilate when stressed, doing the opposite and slowing your breath can help soothe and calm your nervous system.

When you start to feel anxious or stressed, take a deep breath in and count to 5. Pause for a second or two, then exhale slowly to the count of 5. Repeat for five cycles, and you’ll feel your body slowly release tension with every breath.

Take Magnesium

It’s known as nature’s chill pill. This natural mineral is needed by your body to not only grow hair but to also buffer the effects of stress. And when you’re chronically stressed, your body needs more of it. Eat magnesium-rich foods, such as kale, or take a magnesium supplement (talk to your doctor first before adding in new supplements!).

By incorporating these three proven destressing tools in your life, you help to prevent one of the most common causes of baldness and thinning.