Scalp Massage: The Simple Therapy For Your Scalp Health
Written by
Morgan German

Overview About Scalp Health

The scalp is home to many hair canals and sebaceous glands, which nurture the hair follicles and the enlarged epidermal surface. These glands also create an environment for microbes to develop. That is to say there exists a microbiome of fungi and other microorganisms living on our scalps causing both healthy and unhealthy conditions in this part of our body.

Studies have shown a strong link between scalp health and hair growth and quality - so having a healthy scalp benefits you whether you’re focused on aesthetics or functionality.


Scalp Massage And Its Benefits For Scalp And Hair Health

What is scalp massage?

Massage therapy is a type of mechanotherapy that stimulates cells within the soft tissue by stretching, contracting or compressing them. Depending on different devices and techniques applied during the massage session, there might be active mechanisms for tissue healing as well as mechanical stimuli followed by positive outcomes with such treatment.

Scalp massage and hair health

Scalp massage is a way to reduce stress through increased blood circulation and nerve stimulation. This helps relax the muscles and is reported to reduce hair loss by increasing oxygen flow to follicles, in turn, stimulating new growth. Additionally, massages are thought to decrease scar thickness and improve skin elasticity following soft tissue injury. In particular, scalp massages induce a relaxing effect and that increases blood flow as well as the softening of the skin. These effects may likely trigger stabilization of hair loss while also increasing hair growth and thickness.

Studies suggest that scalp massaging has a positive influence on hair thickness in a number of ways. There is an assumption that massaging the scalp will deliver mechanical forces to the epidermis, dermis, skin appendages, blood vessels, and nerves. As a result, blood flow to such areas improves, which may lead to an  increase in hair thickness. Additionally, direct stimulation coming from massages exerts forces on the dermal papilla cells of the scalp, potentially leading to increased hair thickness. 

Although more research is needed to deliver concrete evidence regarding the results of scalp massages, scientists have already hypothesised that such massage activities provide signals and stimule the anagen phase of the hair cycle. Meanwhile, they stimulate hair growth genes, which results in speeding up hair growth. 

 

 

Scalp Massage Methods

It should be well aware that scalp massage should be more gentle than the one you get for different body parts. The best way to do a scalp massage is gentle stroking with either your fingers or tools such as scalp massagers that target specific areas of the head for faster benefits.


Traditional scalp massage by hands

Traditional scalp massages carried out by hands include different types.

Effleurage is a gentle circular stroking with the padded parts of your fingertips or palmar surface. It provides you with an excellent relaxing massage, calming effect by increasing blood circulation and strengthening tissues in the scalp.

Petrissage massage is also a circular motion with several rolling and pinching to increase blood flow and circulation.Such  intense stimulations generated can results in avery rejuvenating form of massage 

Quite similar to petrissage is vibration massage. It involves rapid movements with fingertips or palms and provides different benefits for hair and scalp. In addition to increasing blood circulation and stimulating the nerves, this type of massage also facilitates the scalp and hair to become supple and soft. The hair also gets more lustrous and shinier when receiving more nutrition through the massage. 

One other type of traditional scalp massage is hacking, which employs the sides and palms to rub your head in a side-to-side motion. This can be done by one person or with help from another individual. Just like all other types of massages we've discussed so far, this technique stimulates soft tissues such as muscles and increases blood circulation throughout your body resulting in various health benefits including pain relief, improved mood regulation , increased mental clarity and focus, etc.

 

 

Scalp massage with tools

When you massage your scalp, it's important to choose the right pressure. You don't want to irritate your scalp by using too much force! In order for this method of treatment to work well and without any risks involved, you must first know how sensitive your own scalp is before using these tools. This will allow you to choose whether to apply light or greater force depending on what works best in each case - preventing overstimulation which would lead towards discomfort instead of expected results.

Use a brush or rubber massager with light pressure and work from front of ear toward crown for about 5 minutes. To level up a scalp massage, you can consider adding suitable oils or herbs into the therapy. They make massaging smoother and provide nourishment to roots, thus enabling healthier hair. It takes time to see benefits and for best results, it's recommended to do this at least once per day. The results also vary depending on the duration of your massage sessions.

Last but not least, you can use a scalp massager during your hair wash. Work the massager in small circular motions to gently massage your scalp while spreading the lather around. You could also use it to get shampoo out of your hair and scalp thoroughly.


Conclusion

Scalp health is important for the quality of your hair. A healthy scalp will mean thicker and more voluminous hair, as well as a decreased chance at losing it from thinning or balding. To improve scalp health, scalp protection and nourishment are necessary.

Different studies have speculated scalp massaging to account for improvement of hair thickness and stabilization of hair loss. These effects arise from the stimulations by applying mechanical forces on scalp cells, thus enhancing blood flow and circulation, and stimulating hair cycle-related genes.


Scalp massages are easy to carry out since you can do that whenever you have time: washing your hair, watching TV or before bedtime. To do a simple yet good scalp massage at home, use either hands/fingers or tools depending upon how the pressure intensity is needed with support from hair oils or herbs. Using a scalp massager during your hair washing routine is also beneficial. Not only does it give your scalp a good massage but also assist your washing routine to be effortless. 



References:

English, J., & Barazesh, J. M. (2019). Self-Assessments of Standardized Scalp Massages for Androgenic Alopecia: Survey Results. Dermatology and Therapy9(1), 167–178. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13555-019-0281-6

Koyama, T., Kobayashi, K., Hama, T., Murakami, K., & Ogawa, R. (2016). Standardized Scalp Massage Results in Increased Hair Thickness by Inducing Stretching Forces to Dermal Papilla Cells in the Subcutaneous Tissue. Eplasty16, e8–e8.

A Complete Guide to Scalp Massage for Organic Hair Spa. (2020).