For many years, egg yolks have been promoted for use in beauty treatments including hair masks where the egg yolk was said to improve the growth and appearance of hair as well as make it stronger. However, it was never made clear just how the egg yolk is beneficial when it comes to stimulating hair growth. A recent study, published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. and the Korean Society of Food Science and Nutrition in the Journal of Medicinal Food, identified egg yolks as scientifically beneficial to hair growth. In addition, they were identified as an alternative to well-known hair growth treatments such as minoxidil. While minoxidil has been proven to effectively stimulate hair growth, the results only last as long as the medicine is used on a consistent basis. So, the question remains….Are egg yolks a viable alternative to hair regrowth methods such as hair transplants and minoxidil?
Egg Yolks and Hair Growth
An egg yolk is the yellow portion suspended in the white of an egg when it is cracked open. Egg yolk is densely packed with nutrients like proteins, biotin, vitamin A and vitamin D. These nutrients, that are naturally present in the yolk of an egg, are the same ones needed in healthy glossy hair
Unlike human beings, baby chickens develop hair before they hatch from the egg. Because of this fact, it has been predicted that the egg has important hair growth factors. Furthermore, water-soluble peptides that are derived from the egg yolk stimulate VEGF production (the formation of blood vessels) as well as human hair follicle dermal papilla cell growth. In the study mentioned above, this was shown to enhance the hair growth in mice used in the study as well as in female pattern hair loss.
It was found that, through insulin growth factor-1 receptor activation-induced hypoxia-inducible factor-1α transcription pathway, VEGF expression is induced by the water-soluble peptides. As a result of this discovery, the water-soluble egg yolk peptide was named “hair growth peptide (HGP)” Plus, it was found that this discovery will benefit both men and women.
According to the study, there are two main types of baldness that patients should be aware of when it comes to hair loss and they are androgenic and non-androgenic. It is not completely clear what role androgen plays in hair loss in female patients. On the other hand, there is a strong tie between androgen and hair loss in male patients. It is important to remember that the function of HGP is not related to androgen so it will not have a different impact on men and women.
Egg Yolk Hair Benefits
Egg yolk may help the hair resist damage. Studies have shown that egg yolk is rich in the vitamins that may make hair more resistant to damage. The yolk might especially be useful to moisturize hair that appears dry.
Egg yolk can be superfood for the hair due to the unique combination of vitamins found inside it. Vitamins A and E, as well as biotin, are just some of the nutrients that researchers have linked to hair growth and healthy hair.
Egg yolk may help the hair grow faster. Applying egg yolk topically to the scalp can infuse hair roots with vitamins which make newly growing hair stronger and less susceptible to breakage and shedding. When thee hair doesn’t fall out as much, it becomes fuller and it can even seem like it’s growing faster.
When used in addition to a technique such as hair transplantation and restoration, it is a treatment option that is pretty inexpensive. Plus, it can be used as a transplant enhancer that has no dangers of side effects if it is used properly by the patient.
It should be noted that more studies will need to be conducted in the future to support the evidence of the existing study before doctors actively recommend it as a viable alternative to hair transplantation or the use of minoxidil.
How to Use Egg Yolk for the Hair
Hair Mask - This is one of the most potent ways to derive the most benefits from egg yolk. Patients can make a hair mask using egg yolk and olive oil to get the benefits of egg yolk for the hair. An entire raw egg, without mixing it with anything else, can also be used as a deep moisturizing treatment. To make a hair mask using egg yolk, simply stir the egg or a mixture of egg and oil. Once this is done, apply the mask to the hair using the fingers while wearing gloves. Make sure to coat the top of the scalp and the ends of the hair. Let the treatment sit on the hair for about an hour before rinsing it out with cold water.
Dietary - Incorporate more eggs in the diet as a way to get healthier hair. Eating eggs for breakfast provides protein and B vitamins.
Supplements - There are pills on the market that are distilled versions of egg yolk proteins. Try these supplements to get access to the rich nutrition inside of egg yolks without having to eat egg yolks.
Potential Risks and Side Effects of Egg Yolks for the Hair
There are minimal side effects of using or consuming eggs. However, patients with an egg allergy should not use egg yolk on the head (even as a topical treatment).
Egg yolk is a food that is high in cholesterol so it should be noted that consuming egg yolk in large quantities isn't advisable for individuals with a high risk for heart disease or that already have heart disease or diabetes. While eating an egg a day won’t harm your health, eating large quantities of it may impact your health in the long run.