Project Hair: Day 506

Since the last check-in, I've been taking kelp almost every night to see if it would make a difference to the rate my hair grows.

Kelp is a large, broad seaweed, known for growing very fast, with some types gaining up to half a metre a day. Certain nutrients found in kelp are also found in bodily functions to do with hair growth, so it didn't sound too illogical when my hairdresser said she heard it might help.

Now, I wasn't born yesterday. I can usually tell what an over-simplified claim sounds like, and I know how to look stuff up. But I wanted to indulge in some citizen science, and experiment for myself.

I can confirm that kelp tablets did not make my hair grow faster over the past month-and-a-bit. Here's the breakdown:

  • I took one (1) Thompson's One-A-Day Kelp 1400 tablet almost every night before bed. The times I skipped were due to drinking too much (and forgetting) or feeling fragile (and not wanting to swallow an uncoated pill - yuck).

  • All up, I would have had about 40-ish pills in the last 46 days.

  • I have a decent diet and a moderately active lifestyle. I had not been experiencing hair loss or thyroid problems (to my knowledge). I wonder if kelp only makes a difference to people who do have issues beforehand.

  • The tablets did not make me feel healthier, happier or more energetic; nor did they alleviate or worsen my normal unhealthy, unhappy and fatigued periods.

  • My hair is currently the healthiest it's ever been, but it got this way before I tried the tablets.

My experience aligns with what Livestrong and The Superfoods say about kelp and hair growth. I'm not sure how credible these sites are, but they were in the upper echelons of what I could find regarding this specific hair growth claim.

So, I would continue to eat kelp in my meals, but no more or no less than usual. I certainly wouldn't recommend spending money on pills just to make your hair grow faster. If you have a medical issue that it might help with, you probably should take a doctor's advice instead of mine. :)

Might wait a few months before the next check-in. Watching hair grow is like watching paint dry.

Hair progress: 19.5cm
Rate since last check-in (day 460): approx. ½" per month (bit less, but I'd like to leave room for measuring errors)