My name is Kinsey. I'm a 23 year old woman who has suffered hair loss since I was about 14 or 15 years old. My grandmother is almost completely bald, and wears a wig, and my mother has fairly severe hair loss that she has been treating (with relative success, as compared to my aunt, who doesn't) for almost 20 years now. My grandmother is an identical twin, and very single one of their female children and grandchildren suffer from hypothyroidism. Additionally, everyone suffers from at least some degree of hair loss with the exception of one female cousin, who is the daughter of my uncle. I grew up with shiny, silky, wavy, beautiful (I'm sorry! I miss it! Rhapsodizing here) hair model hair. Hair dressers commented on it, friends wanted it, it was serious 80's music video babe hair. Tawny Kitaen would have envied me! I became fairly seriously anorexic at about age 13 1/2. I lost too much weight, was not taking care of myself properly, and around six months after my hair started falling out in handfuls. It was horrifying. I was scared and devastated, and my mother told me it was normal. At around this point I was (mis!)diagnosed with severe hypothyroidism and medicated for hypothyroid with levothyroxine. I became severely depressed around this point and spent a period on antidepressants. I was using recreational drugs, and had developed severe B.E.D. (binge eating disorder). I was not taking care of myself. At this point unaware of hair loss. I was gaining a lot of weight. At 19 I changed doctors and my current (great!) doctor discovered that I'd been misdiagnosed with hypothyroid and actually suffered from Graves' Disease. My medication was changed and in August of 2011 I underwent a total thyroidectomy, when I was 21 years old. After having my medication changed, my depression alleviated greatly, and I went on to lose fifty points through healthy portion control, cutting empty carbohydrates, and exercise. I still struggled with B.E.D. at this point in time, and do honestly to this day. I was unaware of my hair loss, still, at this point. Around 19 I remember noticing my long, thick hair was thinner than I'd used to think, but I let it go because my shed was consistent and not excessive. From 19-22 I had very short hair, mohawks and pixie cuts, that fully disguised any hair loss that might have been occuring. In July of 2012 I started growing my hair out, and noticed that my hair was thin to the point of being see-through in the bangs area. Knowing my mother's hair loss issues, I consulted my dermatologist. She said that due to the pattern, she would guess Androgenetic Alopecia, and told me to use Rogaine but that there was nothing else I could do. We did a blood test and I was found to be anemic, so I currently take iron supplements. As of now, I use Rogaine 5%, I take the BCP Ortho-Tricyclen 7/7/7 (? i think), use Nioxin shampoo twice a week, take iron and biotin supplements, eat healthily, use Salicylic Acid-free shampoo, and try not to think too much about my hair. I think my hair looks better now than it did when I first started treatment, one year later. I have considered seeing a specialist, but I currently live in South Korea and had previously been studying in India, so I haven't had a lot of access to Western hair specialists, and I don't know that Androgenetic Alopecia in women is something frequently treated here. My hairs feel like they have gotten thicker, where I apply Rogaine, and I think they look less like baby fuzz. At the moment, I'm going through a shed which I hope isn't going to become a Gollumish hairocalypse. It actually inspired me to post this. I'm hoping that finally (after years of having my thyroid vacillate wildly between hyper and hypo) all of my hormone levels are evening out and I can maintain the hair that I do have, if not improve regrowth. This website has helped me tremendously. I have never posted before but lurk regularly when I feel alone, and I just want to say, I think every single one of you is a knockout. Beautiful, beautiful women. This is one of the most supporting, nurturing communities on the internet and you all make me proud to be a girl. Thank you all for being here, and being so warm and lovely. Some days I feel like no one can notice my hair loss, and others, I feel like Gollum, especially when it's getting greasy. I am including photos here and would love opinions on my hair loss. Is it noticeable to most, follically-oblivious normal folks? It still looks pretty bodacious when it's down, but in a ponytail I've lost ~50% volume and you can see where it's getting lost from the sides. Also when it's dirty and I don't part it with a comb. Thoughts? Opinions? It feels good to share this with someone. Thank you for listening. My combed part-line. Hair in direct sunlight.... It looks thickish here but can look thin at times. At a geothermal vent on a mountain in Japan! It was windy. The dreaded doll-size ponytail Uncombed part, not in direct light A comparison of my mother and I. Her hair loss is much more severe, but she has very thick, wiry hair which helps to hide it, where my hair has always been very fine and soft. You can clearly see the loss in direct sunlight. Terrible obvious??