67 per cent, or more than two thirds, of women in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are experiencing hair loss, according to an independent survey released on Tuesday.
This is significantly more than the other most-reported beauty problems experienced by UAE women; these include weight gain (45 per cent of those surveyed), dark circles under their eyes (31 per cent), eye wrinkles (28 per cent) and ageing (26 per cent). The research which was commissioned by INVERSION and conducted by research experts Nielsen.
Although the research is based on a small sample of one hundred Dubai and Abu Dhabi-based women aged 25-60, it does highlight that hair loss is a prevalent problem among women in the UAE. The survey included UAE nationals, Asians, Western and Arab women.
The survey results showed that hair-fall or hair loss concerns were highest amongst expat Arab women, with 92 per cent experiencing some degree of hair loss in the UAE. Expat Asian women were similarly affected with 80 per cent experiencing hair loss. This compares to about 40-50% of caucasian women who experience hair loss.
Of the Emirati nationals surveyed, more women reported experiencing hair loss (60 per cent), then any other beauty problem. Only western women considered other beauty problems a significant beauty obstacle, whilst 36 per cent of westerners quizzed experienced hair-loss, the same percentage of western ladies experienced weight-gain. Surprisingly, age was not a significant factor in categorizing women that suffer from hair loss; 76 per cent of women of all women aged 25 - 29 reported the condition, only one per cent less than women 20 years older aged 45-49 years old.
Varying environmental causes are held responsible for the concerns of the UAE's ladies, who are thought to be amongst the most beauty conscious women in the world. Whilst some blame the UAE's desalinated tap water, others hold the extreme climate of the Emirates responsible. The truth is probably more complicated, according to esteemed tricologist (hair specialist), Mike Ryan.
Mike Ryan, Consultant Trichologist, Hair SPA Dubai, said: "The hair is a great barometer and indicator of general health. Hair loss is a much more widespread problem for women of all ages than anyone realizes and there are several factors that can cause it, but nutrition is of vital importance. Hair cells are among the fastest growing in the body, so they need good nutrition".
In fact, there is much evidence to support that malnutrition as the cause of many beauty problems widely reported in the survey such as splitting nails, dry hair and skin, pimples and acne, and weight-gain. However, the survey indicated that of the surveyed women experiencing hair loss, just 16 per cent have ever-sought advice concerning the condition from a nutritionist, preferring to seek advice from friends and family (36 per cent), dermatologists (33 per cent) or a pharmacist (12 per cent).
Dr. Sheriff Al Gamil, Inversion Femme, said: "The results reveal that UAE women are concerned about many factors that can be relieved via optimum nutrition. Consider hair loss for example, the survey finds that two out of three women regardless of nationality and age were concerned about hair- fall, with expat Arab women particularly concerned. Inadequate protein and iron in a diet is a well-known cause of hair-loss in women."
Andrew Wilson, from Transitions Hair (Sydney, Australia) notes that "some communities or ethnicities appear to be more genetically prone hair loss that others. Genetic hair loss or Androgenic Alopecia is by far the most common cause of hair loss in women and these factors may be more substantive than nutrition. More research needs to be done before anything conclusive can be drawn out from this report." However, the figures stated for women's hair loss in the UAE are significantly higher than other places. In Australia it is estimated that 700,000 women experience chronic hair loss and 2.2 million experience moderate hair loss.
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